Are the FISA courts even more secretive than we thought?

In the wake of NSA scandal, government surveillance techniques have been under increased scrutiny. The main defense of NSA supporters revolves around the actions of a small and secretive court that originated from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978. Over the weekend, the Washington Post published a fascinating story that looked into the inner workings of one the nation’s most enigmatic magistrates – the FISA courts.

“Did you see in the Washington Post this weekend, this amazing story about what was built underneath the Capitol museum,” Glenn said on radio this morning. “Remember that Capitol museum cost, what, three quarters of a billion dollars to build? And I'm walking through the Capitol museum a couple of weeks ago and I'm like, that doesn't look like a three quarter of a billion dollar building.”

The Capitol Visitor Center remodel, which was commissioned under President George W. Bush, cost a small fortune, but there was very little pushback from Republicans or Democrats. Based on the information in the Washington Post article, Glenn believes we are now beginning to figure out why.

“Nobody had a problem with the three quarters of a billion dollar Capitol Visitors Complex… Now we are beginning to figure out why,” Glenn said. “The Washington Post had an amazing story this weekend about the secret meetings that happened way below the Capitol Visitors Complex. The Visitors Complex was a ruse. They built the Visitors Complex to make us believe they were building this stupid museum. There was a lot of infrastructure that's underneath the Visitors Complex… I've never believed in the Star Chamber. I've never believed there are secret courts going on and things like that. I know the FISA court, but not Star Chamber stuff.”

Glenn is specifically referring to the opening of the Washington Post article, in which it becomes clear there is a lot happening below the surface of the Capitol Visitors Center:

Wedged into a secure, windowless basement room deep below the Capitol Visitors Center, U.S. District Court Judge John Bates appeared before dozens of senators earlier this month for a highly unusual, top-secret briefing.

The lawmakers pressed Bates, according to people familiar with the session, to discuss the inner workings of the United States’ clandestine terrorism surveillance tribunal, which Bates oversaw from 2006 until earlier this year.

Perhaps that more alarming part of the article comes a few paragraphs later, when the decisions and actions of the court are described as Supreme Court-style:

Critics, including some with knowledge of the court’s internal operations, say the court has undergone a disturbing shift. It was created in 1978 to handle routine surveillance warrants, but these critics say it is now issuing complex, classified, Supreme Court-style rulings that are quietly expanding the government’s reach into the private lives of unwitting Americans.

(emphasis added)

“So basically who they can monitor, who they can't, who they can kill, who they can't. I'm not comfortable with the Star Chamber underneath the Capitol. Is anybody else,” Glenn asked.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) spoke at the progressive Netroots Nation conference over the weekend, and she faced a less-than-friendly audience that took issue with the lack of transparency in the NSA/FISA court system:

PELOSI: [Snowden] did violate the law in terms of releasing those documents. We don't know. I understand. I understand. I understand. But it did violate the law, and the fact is – and the fact is that, again, we have to have the balance.

“I like that ‘you suck’ in the background there,” Pat said.

“They were not only saying ‘you suck,’ they were also saying, ‘No secret courts. No secret courts,’” Glenn said.

There are a lot of things progressives and conservatives, Democrats and Republicans disagree on, but reducing the overt secretiveness of the FISA court system is something we can all agree on.

“And this is something that we can unite on,” Glenn concluded.

Time after time, Americans have taken to the streets to defend our constitutional rights, whether it was our livelihood at stake -- or our lives. But, what was the point of all the civil rights movements that came before, if we're about to let the government take our rights away now?

On his Wednesday night special, Glenn Beck argued that Americans are tired of having our rights trampled by "tyrannical" leaders from state and local governments who are ignoring our unalienable rights during this pandemic.

"Our nanny state has gone too far. The men and women in office -- the ones closest to our communities, our towns, our cities -- are now taking advantage of our fear," Glenn said. "Like our brothers and sisters of the past, we need to start making the decisions that will put our destiny, and our children's destiny, back into our hands."

It took less than two months of the coronavirus tyranny to make America unrecognizable, but some Americans are fighting back, risking losing their jobs and businesses or even jail time, as they battle to take back our civil rights.

Here are just a few of their stories:

After New Jersey's Atilis Gym reopened in defiance of the governor's executive order, the Department of Health shut them down for "posing a threat to the public health." Co-owner Ian Smith says somebody sabotaged the gym's toilets with enire rolls of paper to create the public health "threat."

Oregon Salon owner, Lindsey Graham, was fined $14 thousand for reopening. She said she was visited by numerous government organizations, including Child Protective Services, in what she believes are bullying tactics straight from the governor's office.

77-year-old Michigan barber, Karl Manke, refused to close his shop even when facing arrest. "I couldn't go another 30 days without an income," he said. But when local police refused to arrest him, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's (D) office suspending his business license instead.

Port of Seattle police officer Greg Anderson was suspended after he spoke out against enforcing what he called "tyrannical orders" imposed amid coronavirus lockdowns.

Kentucky mother-of-seven, Mary Sabbatino, found herself under investigation for alleged child abuse after breaking social distancing rules at a bank. After a social worker from child protective services determined there was no sign of abuse, he still sought to investigate why the Sabbatino's are homeschooling, and how they can give "adequate attention to that many children."

Dallas salon owner Shelley Luther was sentenced to seven days in jail after she defied the state-mandated stay-at-home orders to reopen her business.

Watch the video clip from Glenn's special below:


Watch the full special on BlazeTV YouTube here.

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It took less than two months of the coronavirus tyranny to make America unrecognizable. Leaders from state and local governments across the U.S. have flattened the curve of some of our most basic constitutional rights, but some Americans are fighting back — and risking jail time or losing their businesses.

On Wednesday night's GBTV special, Glenn Beck argued that we're witnessing the birth of a new civil rights movement — and it's time to build a coalition of common sense to keep America as we know it free.

Watch the full special below:

Use code GLENN to save $10 on one year of BlazeTV.

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multiplatform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

On the radio program Thursday, Glenn Beck sat down with chief researcher Jason Buttrill to go over two bombshell developments that have recently come to light regarding former Vice President Joe Biden's role in the 2016 dismissal of Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin.

"Wow! Two huge stories dropped within about 24 hours of each other," Jason began. He went on to explain that a court ruling in Ukraine has just prompted an "actual criminal investigation against Joe Biden in Ukraine."

This stunning development coincided with the release of leaked phone conversations, which took place in late 2015 and early 2016, allegedly among then-Vice President Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry, and Ukraine's former President Petro Poroshenko.

One of the audiotapes seems to confirm allegations of a quid pro quo between Biden and Poroshenko, with the later admitting that he asked Shokin to resign despite having no evidence of him "doing anything wrong" in exchange for a $1 billion loan guarantee.

"Poroshenko said, 'despite the fact that we didn't have any corruption charges on [Shokin], and we don't have any information about him doing something wrong, I asked him to resign,'" Jason explained. "But none of the Western media is pointing this out."

Watch the video below for more details:


Listen to the released audiotapes in full here.

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A recently declassified email, written by former National Security Adviser Susan Rice and sent herself on the day of President Donald Trump's inauguration, reveals the players involved in the origins of the Trump-Russia probe and "unmasking" of then-incoming National Security Adviser, Gen. Michael Flynn.

Rice's email details a meeting in the Oval Office on Jan 5, 2017, which included herself, former FBI Director James Comey, former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, former Vice President Joe Biden, and former President Barack Obama. Acting Director of National Intelligence, Richard Grenell, fully declassified the email recently amid President Trump's repeated references to "Obamagate" and claims that Obama "used his last weeks in office to target incoming officials and sabotage the new administration."

On Glenn Beck's Wednesday night special, Glenn broke down the details of Rice's email and discussed what they reveal about the Obama administration officials involved in the Russia investigation's origins.

Watch the video clip below: