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Category Archives: Government Documents

CRS – Can the Department of Defense Build the Border Wall?

Via FAS/Secrecy News: “If the President were to declare a national emergency in order to justify building a “wall” on the border with Mexico, there would be certain legal authorities that he could invoke to initiate construction operations. But the scope of those legal authorities is uncertain and would almost certainly trigger litigation to challenge their application, the Congressional Research Service said last week. “Whether these authorities — individually or in combination — extend to the construction of a border wall would present a reviewing court with several questions of first impression,” CRS said.

The data casualties of the federal government shutdown

Pew: “The ongoing shutdown of large parts of the federal government – now at 18 days and counting – has left hundreds of thousands of federal workers either furloughed or working without pay indefinitely, reduced staffing at national parks to skeleton levels, and closed down popular museums. It’s also squeezed the daily flood of data from federal… Continue Reading

Impact of Partial Federal Gov’t Shutdown on Legal Information

AALL: “As of midnight December 21, 2018, the President and Congress were unable to agree on the provisions of a Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund the federal government. As a result, a partial shutdown of some government operations now enters its fourth week. This is a politically dynamic event, and AALL continues to monitor federal… Continue Reading

U.S. Government Has Amassed Terabytes of Internal WikiLeaks Data

Gizmodo: “Late last year, the U.S. government accidentally revealed that a sealed complaint had been filed against Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks. Shortly before this was made public, the FBI reconfirmed its investigation of WikiLeaks was ongoing, and the Wall Street Journal reported that the Department of Justice was optimistic that it would be… Continue Reading

(Don’t) Return to Sender: How to Protect Yourself From Email Tracking

EFF: “There are a lot of different ways to track email, and different techniques can lie anywhere on the spectrum from marginally acceptable to atrocious. Responsible tracking should aggregate a minimal amount of anonymous data, similar to page hits: enough to let the sender get a sense of how well their campaign is doing without invading users’… Continue Reading

Politico – Impeachment Guide

“As talk of the I-word heats up, here’s POLITICO Magazine’s soup-to-nuts answers to all your questions about the politics—and the practical realities—of removing a president. So, what would an impeachment really take in the Washington of 2019, and how would it all go down? To answer these questions, POLITICO interviewed more than two dozen sources,… Continue Reading

Patricia Wald, First Woman to Preside Over D.C. Appeals Court, Dies at 90

The New York Times: “Patricia M. Wald, who was the first woman to serve as chief judge of the federal appeals court in Washington and who later wrote seminal rulings while serving in The Hague on the international court for war crimes in the former Yugoslavia, died on Saturday at her home in Washington. She… Continue Reading

Now on Craigslist, Facebook: Household items from furloughed workers trying to make ends meet

Washington Post – “…As hundreds of thousands of federal workers brace for their first missed paychecks of the government shutdown this week, some have become immersed in the frantic financial calculus of choosing what they can live without. In the United States, living paycheck to paycheck is disturbingly common, regardless of profession or location. A… Continue Reading

New digital archive enables community use of terrestrial and subsurface ecosystem data sets

Earth and Space News: “Over the past decade, data from Earth and environmental research have dramatically increased in volume, complexity, and diversity, but in many cases, efforts to make these data usable and accessible have not kept pace. This data proliferation has created an urgent need for data preservation, curation, quality checks, and standards for… Continue Reading

The Furloughed Federal Employee’s Guide to the 2019 Shutdown in D.C.

Washington City Paper – Apply for unemployment, apply for utility assistance, exercise, clean your closets, volunteer, shout your anger into a phone. “City Paper launched this as a guide for furloughed federal employees, but it has become a resource for many more people—especially the thousands who earn their living in government-adjacent careers, like taxi and… Continue Reading

Global Economic Prospects Darkening Skies

The World Bank: “Global economic growth is projected to soften from a downwardly revised 3 percent in 2018 to 2.9 percent in 2019 amid rising downside risks to the outlook, the World Bank said on Tuesday. International trade and manufacturing activity have softened, trade tensions remain elevated, and some large emerging markets have experienced substantial… Continue Reading

White House legal team prepares aggressive defense of Trump’s executive privilege

Washington Post – “A beefed-up White House legal team is gearing up to prevent President Trump’s confidential discussions with top advisers from being disclosed to House Democratic investigators and revealed in the special counsel’s long-awaited report, setting the stage for a potential clash between the branches of government. The strategy to strongly assert the president’s… Continue Reading