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27 June 2013

Flood was natural, tragedy man-made

Geologist explains why Uttarakhand tragedy was man-made
 Amit Bhattacharya, TNN Jun 26, 2013

NEW DELHI: A day after Uttarakhand chief minister Vijay Bahuguna dismissed as "childish" suggestions that the flash floods in the state were man-made, one of the most respected Himalayan geologists in the country voiced a different view. Padma Shri awardee KS Valdiya told TOI that while "heavy rain and cloudbursts were natural, the tragedy that followed was entirely man-made".

Valdiya, an honorary professor at Bangalore's Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, said the heavy loss of life and property in the deluge was a result of "criminal oversight" over the decades of the state's geological features and water channels by various authorities.

"These features are well-mapped and documented. But engineers and builders choose to overlook them," said Valdiya, who comes from the state and has been studying the region for close to 50 years.

The geologist identified four major ways in which constructions flouted scientific norms. First, he said, the seismic faultlines of this earthquake-prone state were not kept in mind while building roads.

"These tectonic faultlines, which are active and see back-and-forth movements, have been cut in many places by roads. More dangerously, roads are built along the faultlines at many places. As a result, tiny seismic movements in the faultlines weaken the rocks at the base of the roads, making these stretches susceptible to cave-ins and slides," Valdiya said.

The second area of rampant neglect, the expert pointed out, was drainage. "I have never seen road engineers provisioning for draining out all rainwater that can possibly enter the stretch. Where one to two metre bridges are required, they build small culverts. At places where drains have been provided for, these are usually filled with debris."

Buildings have been constructed over old drains and streams, blocking the natural pathways of rainwater, he said. "One of the reasons for the devastation at Kedarnath was that people had constructed houses on the west stream of the Mandakini river that had been dry for decades. When the river returned to its old course following the deluge, these constructions were washed away," he added.

Valdiya said another type of transgression, similar to the previous one, was construction taking place on river flood ways. A flood way is the area covered by the river at the time of its biggest flooding in the past 100 years.

"In places along Alakananda/Ganga such as Karnaprayag and Rishikesh, constructions have taken place on the lower terraces which are part of the flood way. Sooner or later, water would get to these places," the expert said.

Lastly, Valdiya said roads have been built over the debris of previous landslides because it's costlier to build paths higher up on the hills where the rock is firmer.

"Sadly, the department geologists are often no more than rubber stamps, okaying everything the engineers say. Independent geologists are never consulted," he said.

Valdiya has written extensively on ways to avoid landslides in Uttarakhand. "But scientific engineering has very low priority in the state," he lamented. Unfortunately, the state pays with human lives and huge property losses because authorities do not pay attention to basic scientific principles.

23 June 2013


He who one day teacheth men to fly will have shifted all landmarks; to him will all landmarks themselves fly into the air; the earth will he christen anew — as “the light body.”

The ostrich runneth faster than the fastest horse, but it also thrusteth its head heavily into the heavy earth: thus is it with the man who cannot yet fly.

Heavy unto him are earth and life, and so WILLETH the spirit of gravity! But he who would become light, and be a bird, must love himself:— thus do _I_ teach.

Not, to be sure, with the love of the sick and infected, for with them stinketh even self-love!

One must learn to love oneself — thus do I teach — with a wholesome and healthy love: that one may endure to be with oneself, and not go roving about.

Such roving about christeneth itself “brotherly love”; with these words hath there hitherto been the best lying and dissembling, and especially by those who have been burdensome to every one.

And verily, it is no commandment for to-day and to-morrow to LEARN to love oneself. Rather is it of all arts the finest, subtlest, last and patientest.

For to its possessor is all possession well concealed, and of all treasure– pits one’s own is last excavated — so causeth the spirit of gravity.

Almost in the cradle are we apportioned with heavy words and worths: “good” and “evil”— so calleth itself this dowry. For the sake of it we are forgiven for living.

And therefore suffereth one little children to come unto one, to forbid them betimes to love themselves — so causeth the spirit of gravity.

And we — we bear loyally what is apportioned unto us, on hard shoulders, over rugged mountains! And when we sweat, then do people say to us: “Yea, life is hard to bear!”

But man himself only is hard to bear! The reason thereof is that he carrieth too many extraneous things on his shoulders. Like the camel kneeleth he down, and letteth himself be well laden.

Especially the strong load-bearing man in whom reverence resideth. Too many EXTRANEOUS heavy words and worths loadeth he upon himself — then seemeth life to him a desert!

And verily! Many a thing also that is OUR OWN is hard to bear! And many internal things in man are like the oyster — repulsive and slippery and hard to grasp;–

So that an elegant shell, with elegant adornment, must plead for them. But this art also must one learn: to HAVE a shell, and a fine appearance, and sagacious blindness!

Again, it deceiveth about many things in man, that many a shell is poor and pitiable, and too much of a shell. Much concealed goodness and power is never dreamt of; the choicest dainties find no tasters!

Women know that, the choicest of them: a little fatter a little leaner — oh, how much fate is in so little!

Man is difficult to discover, and unto himself most difficult of all; often lieth the spirit concerning the soul. So causeth the spirit of gravity.

He, however, hath discovered himself who saith: This is MY good and evil: therewith hath he silenced the mole and the dwarf, who say: “Good for all, evil for all.”

Verily, neither do I like those who call everything good, and this world the best of all. Those do I call the all-satisfied.

All-satisfiedness, which knoweth how to taste everything,— that is not the best taste! I honour the refractory, fastidious tongues and stomachs, which have learned to say “I” and “Yea” and “Nay.”

To chew and digest everything, however — that is the genuine swine-nature! Ever to say YE–A— that hath only the ass learnt, and those like it!—

Deep yellow and hot red — so wanteth MY taste — it mixeth blood with all colours. He, however, who whitewasheth his house, betrayeth unto me a whitewashed soul.

With mummies, some fall in love; others with phantoms: both alike hostile to all flesh and blood — oh, how repugnant are both to my taste! For I love blood.

And there will I not reside and abide where every one spitteth and speweth: that is now MY taste,— rather would I live amongst thieves and perjurers. Nobody carrieth gold in his mouth.

Still more repugnant unto me, however, are all lickspittles; and the most repugnant animal of man that I found, did I christen “parasite”: it would not love, and would yet live by love.

Unhappy do I call all those who have only one choice: either to become evil beasts, or evil beast-tamers. Amongst such would I not build my tabernacle.

Unhappy do I also call those who have ever to WAIT,— they are repugnant to my taste — all the toll-gatherers and traders, and kings, and other landkeepers and shopkeepers.

Verily, I learned waiting also, and thoroughly so,— but only waiting for MYSELF. And above all did I learn standing and walking and running and leaping and climbing and dancing.

This however is my teaching: he who wisheth one day to fly, must first learn standing and walking and running and climbing and dancing:— one doth not fly into flying!

With rope-ladders learned I to reach many a window, with nimble legs did I climb high masts: to sit on high masts of perception seemed to me no small bliss;—

— To flicker like small flames on high masts: a small light, certainly, but a great comfort to cast-away sailors and ship-wrecked ones!

By divers ways and wendings did I arrive at my truth; not by one ladder did I mount to the height where mine eye roveth into my remoteness.

And unwillingly only did I ask my way — that was always counter to my taste! Rather did I question and test the ways themselves.

A testing and a questioning hath been all my travelling:— and verily, one must also LEARN to answer such questioning! That, however,— is my taste:

— Neither a good nor a bad taste, but MY taste, of which I have no longer either shame or secrecy.

“This — is now MY way,— where is yours?” Thus did I answer those who asked me “the way.” For THE way — it doth not exist!

Thus spake Zarathustra.

22 June 2013

Alien Base And Flying Saucer Found In Antarctica

Very interesting and intriguing images from Google Earth, which seem to show two possible entrances to an alien base or at least an entrance to something, and a huge saucer shaped object buried in the ice. If there are Alien bases in the Antarctic it would follow that there are ET craft there. Could the crashed saucer have come from one of these bases? And why have Google Earth censored the location?

19 June 2013

There is no karma to master or overcome

by John L. Lash
18 October 2010
from MetaHistory Website

The essence of karma in the Gnostic model is not reward and punishment, as seen in the Abrahamic creed of divine retribution and, in another way, in the Hindu-Buddhist doctrine of rebirth.
Rather, it is pure compulsivity that feeds on itself and gets rutted in patterned repetition.
The deal with the archons binds every human act to corporal entrainment, so that an act done automatically tends to produce a similar act or an opposite, compensating act, by the same person. The key idea here is entrainment, which is what hiemarmene means.
The chain of karmic bondage does not cause a kind deed to generate another kind deed, nor does it cause an evil deed to generate another evil deed, qualitatively speaking. It just causes any kind of deed to become repetitive and take on a life of its own.
This being so, someone who harms others is condemned by their own actions to continue doing so until they self-correct - or until someone else corrects them, or stops them, dead cold.
Repetition compulsion forces the doer toward self-correction, or else the sheer physical entropy of repetition will eventually undo the doer.

This is how Sophia sets up human karma: without a reward and punishment system, except for the reward or punishment that one inflicts on oneself by blind, compulsive action.
A genuinely free act has no merit or detriment, no mechanically derived consequence for the doer.
liberated action has no external or extraneous consequences for the actor. Its consequences, if any, inhere in the sheer pleasure of its performance, the gesture in perfect transience.
The common sense conclusion of this arcane behavioral diagnostic is:
those who do harm will continue to do it and never attract punishment from the cosmic order, for there is no such system of retribution.
Then they will either see what they are doing and self-correct, or just do it to the end when they wear themselves out, or self-destruct in a violent blow-out - if they are not stopped by someone else first.
The option of self-correction means that there is no accountability from outside the sovereign will of each solitary individual.
There is no cosmic system of moral compensation. There is no ordained justice in the universe, although justice can occasionally be attained by human initiative in certain situations. The evil-doer who harms and deceives others, and who cannot self-correct, can only be stopped by another individual, in direct and first-hand interaction.
How many Hollywood films demonstrate that obvious truth?
 Anarchy at Last 

Karma as moral compensation is a lie, but the behavioral game of hiemarmene works exactly as it is intended to work.
The game is rigged by the archontic bias that Sophia allows:
the trancing factor or power of suggestion.
The mechanism of moral entropy operates in the human body, in the physiological and neurological circuits that sustain behavior and retain behavioral patterns.
If Sophia did not allow it to happen this way, we would experience total resilience of mind and body, bounding from one moment of peak expression to the next, correcting and improving ourselves in every single action taken. But we would never fool ourselves and become that much wiser by catching the act.
Due to compulsion, we run down and wear out, behaviorally speaking.
But overcoming compulsion gives us a lift, a special elan, that does not arise in the constant unhindered thrust of our potential. Archons provide the resistance against which we generate a an ever-higher release of potential. From Sophia's view, it's a fair trade-off: without that challenge to our potential, we would not go for the optimal scope of our species. With the challenge, the archons get to play their game.
But self-correction can be realized in each and every situation where they intrude.

Above I noted that a good deed does not seek compensation. Or it if does, prudential morality is at work.
"In The Faith of a Heretic Kaufmann argues that Judeo-Christian morality 'does not know the value of a deed done for its own sake,' without expectation of reward (or punishment).
'The ethic of the Old Testament is an ethic of prudence and rewards, as if the point were that it pays to be good' "
(Not in His Image).
It don't pay to do good, that is just a brutal fact.
It can, but not necessarily. But in the expression of innate goodness, no payoff is sought. Or needed. It is worth noting that there is often more vigor involved in doing harm than doing good.
Evil, malicious people can be possessed of truly demonic determination.
"The best lack all conviction, while the worst / Are full of passionate intensity".
(Yeats, The Second Coming)
Why? Because to persist in doing harm you have to work vigorously against the natural order of things, and the benign disposition of the human animal, but the archontic entropy that informs blind compulsion increases as you resist it.
To overcome that entropic bias requires continually hyping your system, ratcheting up your forces. This goes some way to explaining the success of Starbucks, doesn't it?

On the other hand, it is natural to act in goodness and go with the flow of the universe, co-operating with the beauty and elegant functionality of life. One never tires from doing good and so one doesn't have to make a super-effort to persist in that behavior - to which we are naturally disposed, as Pagan ethics affirms. But perpetrators can thrive on the amplification of vital force required to persist in abusive and controlling behavior.
Another brutal truth of the way things are in the human condition.

There is no karma as it's been pitched to us. No one has the authority to hold you accountable for what you do, not even God. Not even Sophia, the planetary mother animal. Only you can do that for yourself.
An-archy is composed of the root arch, found in archon. An-archy is the condition of being "not- or un-archonic."
Anarchy is against all authority except that which resides in the sovereign will of an individual person. There is no such thing as karma considered as a system of reward and punishment. That is a bald fabrication of old men for intimidating children.
You are free to do whatever you like in life, and treat people just as you wish with no prescribed moral regulation of any kind.
"Do as thou wilt," as Crowley notoriously advised.
That adage is just a little under half of an essential truth, and a most dangerous half-truth, indeed.
The other half is, whatever you do happens in a pattern of blind compulsion, unless you see that pattern and break through it. Then you are really free to do as you will; but unfree of compulsion, you can't realize what free will actually is.
Freedom depends not merely on the liberty and capacity to act, but on action free of patterned repetition, blind compulsion, archontic entropy, heimarmene.
 Kali's Game

Karma is a rigged game. Liberation from karma comes first with seeing how it is rigged, how the archontic spin induces auto-suggestion and clouds perception, and then by simply choosing not to play that game.
In a liberated view, there is no karmic law by which you may gauge the cause and effect of your actions.
Imagine how that kind of freedom feels.

At this late date in human history, it may well be time to admit how human compulsion is rigged by an adulterating force in the mind. Everyone is equally subject to the trancing factor, but not all people succumb to it to the same degree. Some human specimens are entirely consumed by it.
They become totally archontified. They shop and kill with equal abandon. There are plenty of them running around these days.
So we find a cabal of psychopathic control-freaks managing human affairs. Big surprise. Orchestrations of archontic behavior are by now so painfully obvious on the global scale that Sophia may be looking us over with a keen eye to the test she set for us, checking on the results.
Every single problem in the world at large is rigged, orchestrated, deliberately instigated and deceitfully implemented and managed:
the food crisis is rigged, the financial meltdown is rigged, mass media are rigged, entertainment is rigged, democratic elections are rigged, statistics are rigged, education is rigged, epidemics are rigged, vaccines for epidemics are rigged, Google is rigged, the immanent UFO invasion is rigged, anthropic global warming is rigged, WW III is rigged, terrorism is rigged.
How much rigging does it take before we snap to the way karma works and see through the blind collusion of a self-deluded species?

The single decisive factor in the much-heralded "planetary shift" may be, not a massive spiritual awakening across the globe with everyone suddenly vibrating to the higher frequencies of their light-bodies, but some agreement on this elementary perception: the only problems of human society that cannot be solved in a relatively happy and productive fashion are deliberately created ones.
Were it not for those problems, we might all be working things out quite well. But you cannot win a game rigged for you to lose.

But there is good news, too, in this excruciating diagnostic that now grinds to an end. Seeing how the game of karma is rigged brings liberation on Kali's terms, that is, according to the metaphor of gaming which resolves all forms of human behavior in Kali Yuga. (Translation: In Kali Yuga, any situation can be mastered by putting it into the metaphor of gaming.)
It could be said that Sophia cut the deal with the archons, but Kali sees out the deal.
She oversees human enmeshment with demonic powers of deceit and manipulation. She is called Durga, "invincible," because no archontic or demonic impulse in the universe can defeat her. Kali liberates humankind from all illusions, including the illusion of compassion.

Like Kali, Sophia loves to gamble, to play the odds. This is evident all through nature in the way Sophia throws the evolutionary dice lavishly for a minutely selective win.
The planetary animal mother is indeed teleological, goal-oriented, but she plays wildly with chance and novelty to keep the margins of her world open and fluid. She loves running through the odds like an autistic child conjugating square roots to 50 decimal points. The Gnostic scenario of hiemarmene shows how Gaia-Sophia has set up a precarious gamble pitting humankind against itself with the archons for leverage.
Kali oversees the game for a particular purpose, because admission to Kali's Game becomes an option upon getting out of the rigged game. You do not beat that archontic game, you just get off it.
There is no karma to master or overcome.
The act performed for its own beauty and pleasure is already a Kalika initiation.


12 June 2013

Nietzsche's criticism of anti-Semitism and nationalism

Although Nietzsche has famously been represented (some strongly argue misrepresented)[17] as a predecessor to Nazism, he criticized anti-Semitism, pan-Germanism and, to a lesser extent, nationalism. Thus, he broke with his editor in 1886 because of opposition to his anti-Semitic stances, and his rupture with Richard Wagner, expressed in The Case of Wagner and Nietzsche Contra Wagner (both written in 1888), had much to do with Wagner's endorsement of pan-Germanism and anti-Semitism — and also of his rallying to Christianity. In a March 29, 1887 letter to Theodor Fritsch, he mocked anti-Semitics, Fritsch, Eugen Dühring, Wagner, Ebrard, Wahrmund, and the leading advocate of pan-Germanism, Paul de Lagarde, who would become, along with Wagner and Houston Chamberlain, main official influences of Nazism.[3] This 1887 letter to Fritsch ended by: "— And finally, how do you think I feel when the name Zarathustra is mouthed by anti-Semites? ..."[18] 

Section VIII of Beyond Good and Evil, titled "Peoples and Fatherlands", criticized pan-Germanism and patriotism, advocating instead the unification of Europe (§256, etc.). In Ecce Homo (1888), he criticized the "German nation", its "will to power (to Empire, to Reich)", thus underscoring an easy misinterpretation of the Wille zur Macht, the conception of Germans as a "race", the "anti-Semitic way of writing history", or of writing "history conform to the German Empire," and stigmatized "nationalism, this national neurosis from which Europe is sick", this "small politics".[19] 

Nietzsche heavily criticized his sister's husband, Bernhard Förster, and his sister, speaking harshly against the "anti-Semitic canaille.": "I've seen proof, black on white, that Herr Dr. Förster has not yet severed his connection with the anti-Semitic movement...Since then I've had difficulty coming up with any of the tenderness and protectiveness I've so long felt toward you. The separation between us is thereby decided in really the most absurd way. Have you grasped nothing of the reason why I am in the world?...Now it has gone so far that I have to defend myself hand and foot against people who confuse me with these anti-Semitic canaille; after my own sister, my former sister, and after Widemann more recently have given the impetus to this most dire of all confusions. After I read the name Zarathustra in the anti-Semitic Correspondence my forbearance came to an end. I am now in a position of emergency defense against your spouse's Party. These accursed anti-Semite deformities shall not sully my ideal!!". Draft for a letter to his sister Elisabeth Förster-Nietzsche (December 1887) 

Georges Bataille was one of the first to denounce the deliberate misinterpretation of Nietzsche carried out by Nazis, among them Alfred Baeumler. He dedicated in January 1937 an issue of Acéphale, titled "Reparations to Nietzsche," to the theme "Nietzsche and the Fascists.[3]" There, he called Elisabeth Förster-Nietzsche "Elisabeth Judas-Förster," recalling Nietzsche's declaration: "To never frequent anyone who is involved in this bare-faced fraud concerning races."[3] 

Nietzsche titled aphorism 377[dead link] in the fifth book of The Gay Science (published in 1887) "We who are homeless" (litt. "We who are without Fatherlands" — Heimatlosen), in which he criticized pan-Germanism and patriotism and called himself a "good European". In the second part of this aphorism, which according to Bataille contained the most important parts of Nietzsche's political thought, the thinker of the Eternal Return stated:
"No, we do not love humanity; but on the other hand we are not nearly "German" enough, in the sense in which the word "German" is constantly being used nowadays, to advocate nationalism and race hatred and to be able to take pleasure in the national scabies of the heart and blood poisoning that now leads the nations of Europe to delimit and barricade themselves against each other as if it were a matter of quarantine. For that we are too open-minded, too malicious, too spoiled, also too well-informed, too "traveled": we far prefer to live on mountains, apart, "untimely," in past or future centuries, merely in order to keep ourselves from experiencing the silent rage to which we know we should be condemned as eyewitnesses of politics that are desolating the German spirit by making it vain and that is, moreover, petty politics:—to keep its own creation from immediately falling apart again, is it not finding it necessary to plant it between two deadly hatreds? must it not desire the eternalization of the European system of a lot of petty states? ... We who are homeless are too manifold and mixed racially and in our descent, being "modern men," and consequently do not feel tempted to participate in the mendacious racial self-admiration and racial indecency that parades in Germany today as a sign of a German way of thinking and that is doubly false and obscene among the people of the "historical sense." We are, in one word—and let this be our word of honor!— good Europeans, the heirs of Europe, the rich, oversupplied, but also overly obligated heirs of thousands of years of European spirit: as such, we have also outgrown Christianity and are averse to it, and precisely because we have grown out of it, because our ancestors were Christians who in their Christianity were uncompromisingly upright; for their faith they willingly sacrificed possessions and position, blood and fatherland. We—do the same. For what? For our unbelief? For every kind of unbelief? No, you know better than that, my friends! The hidden Yes in you is stronger than all Nos and Maybes that afflict you and your age like a disease; and when you have to embark on the sea, you emigrants, you, too, are compelled to this by— a faith! ..."[20]

10 June 2013

Some Reasons Why People Don’t Want The Conspiracy To Die

from BeforeItsNews Website
  1. You work for Big Brother or have a good paying job for a corporation, and feel there are no better options.
  2. You believe sold your soul to 'satan'… even though that’s impossible because no one can own another’s soul.
  3. You are afraid of your own power (and you know it).
  4. You have lost interest or knowledge in how the rest of the universe operates. You believe you are better off in a fascist system, where everything is competition, rather than a system where everybody supports everyone… you believe this because you feel you are superior in some way, or that you are better off, if someone you believe is superior, tells you what your rights are, and how to think, and how to live.
  5. You are simply unable or unwilling to see the truth beyond the illusion.
  6. You are scared to “be on your own” when in a spiritual universe, you have NEVER been alone.
  7. You actually believe the illusions are the way to go because “they seem to have worked so far”.
  8. You believe humanity is all alone in the universe, and planet earth life is only ‘intelligent life’ (you do not care to define ‘intelligence’).  
  9. You believe “nothing really matters”… rather than “everything matters”.
  10. You believe your power comes from control of other people, or their control over you, or someone’s control over someone.
Consciousness and The Conscious Universe

08 June 2013

Top Secret Document Discloses Depth Of Surveillance By US Government

NSA Taps In To User Data of Facebook, Google and Others, Secret Files Reveal 

• Top secret PRISM program claims direct access to servers of firms including Google, Facebook and Apple
• Companies deny any knowledge of program in operation since 2007

By Glenn Greenwald and Ewen MacAskill

June 07, 2013 "Information Clearing House - "The Guardian" - The National Security Agency has obtained direct access to the systems of Google, Facebook, Apple and other US internet giants, according to a top secret document obtained by the Guardian.

The NSA access is part of a previously undisclosed program called PRISM, which allows officials to collect material including search history, the content of emails, file transfers and live chats, the document says.

The Guardian has verified the authenticity of the document, a 41-slide PowerPoint presentation – classified as top secret with no distribution to foreign allies – which was apparently used to train intelligence operatives on the capabilities of the program. The document claims "collection directly from the servers" of major US service providers.

Although the presentation claims the program is run with the assistance of the companies, all those who responded to a Guardian request for comment on Thursday denied knowledge of any such program.

In a statement, Google said: "Google cares deeply about the security of our users' data. We disclose user data to government in accordance with the law, and we review all such requests carefully. From time to time, people allege that we have created a government 'back door' into our systems, but Google does not have a back door for the government to access private user data."

Several senior tech executives insisted that they had no knowledge of PRISM or of any similar scheme. They said they would never have been involved in such a program. "If they are doing this, they are doing it without our knowledge," one said.

An Apple spokesman said it had "never heard" of PRISM.

The NSA access was enabled by changes to US surveillance law introduced under President Bush and renewed under Obama in December 2012.

The program facilitates extensive, in-depth surveillance on live communications and stored information. The law allows for the targeting of any customers of participating firms who live outside the US, or those Americans whose communications include people outside the US.

It also opens the possibility of communications made entirely within the US being collected without warrants.

Disclosure of the PRISM program follows a leak to the Guardian on Wednesday of a top-secret court order compelling telecoms provider Verizon to turn over the telephone records of millions of US customers.

The participation of the internet companies in PRISM will add to the debate, ignited by the Verizon revelation, about the scale of surveillance by the intelligence services. Unlike the collection of those call records, this surveillance can include the content of communications and not just the metadata.

Some of the world's largest internet brands are claimed to be part of the information-sharing program since its introduction in 2007. Microsoft – which is currently running an advertising campaign with the slogan "Your privacy is our priority" – was the first, with collection beginning in December 2007.

It was followed by Yahoo in 2008; Google, Facebook and PalTalk in 2009; YouTube in 2010; Skype and AOL in 2011; and finally Apple, which joined the program in 2012. The program is continuing to expand, with other providers due to come online.

Collectively, the companies cover the vast majority of online email, search, video and communications networks.

The extent and nature of the data collected from each company varies.

Companies are legally obliged to comply with requests for users' communications under US law, but the PRISM program allows the intelligence services direct access to the companies' servers. The NSA document notes the operations have "assistance of communications providers in the US".

The revelation also supports concerns raised by several US senators during the renewal of the Fisa Amendments Act in December 2012, who warned about the scale of surveillance the law might enable, and shortcomings in the safeguards it introduces.

When the FAA was first enacted, defenders of the statute argued that a significant check on abuse would be the NSA's inability to obtain electronic communications without the consent of the telecom and internet companies that control the data. But the PRISM program renders that consent unnecessary, as it allows the agency to directly and unilaterally seize the communications off the companies' servers.

A chart prepared by the NSA, contained within the top-secret document obtained by the Guardian, underscores the breadth of the data it is able to obtain: email, video and voice chat, videos, photos, voice-over-IP (Skype, for example) chats, file transfers, social 
networking details, and more.

The document is recent, dating to April 2013. Such a leak is extremely rare in the history of the NSA, which prides itself on maintaining a high level of secrecy.

The PRISM program allows the NSA, the world's largest surveillance organisation, to obtain targeted communications without having to request them from the service providers and without having to obtain individual court orders.

With this program, the NSA is able to reach directly into the servers of the participating companies and obtain both stored communications as well as perform real-time collection on targeted users.

The presentation claims PRISM was introduced to overcome what the NSA regarded as shortcomings of Fisa warrants in tracking suspected foreign terrorists. It noted that the US has a "home-field advantage" due to housing much of the internet's architecture. But the presentation claimed "Fisa constraints restricted our home-field advantage" because Fisa required individual warrants and confirmations that both the sender and receiver of a communication were outside the US.

"Fisa was broken because it provided privacy protections to people who were not entitled to them," the presentation claimed. "It took a Fisa court order to collect on foreigners overseas who were communicating with other foreigners overseas simply because the government was collecting off a wire in the United States. There were too many email accounts to be practical to seek Fisas for all."

The new measures introduced in the FAA redefines "electronic surveillance" to exclude anyone "reasonably believed" to be outside the USA – a technical change which reduces the bar to initiating surveillance.

The act also gives the director of national intelligence and the attorney general power to permit obtaining intelligence information, and indemnifies internet companies against any actions arising as a result of co-operating with authorities' requests.

In short, where previously the NSA needed individual authorisations, and confirmation that all parties were outside the USA, they now need only reasonable suspicion that one of the parties was outside the country at the time of the records were collected by the NSA.

The document also shows the FBI acts as an intermediary between other agencies and the tech companies, and stresses its reliance on the participation of US internet firms, claiming "access is 100% dependent on ISP provisioning".

In the document, the NSA hails the PRISM program as "one of the most valuable, unique and productive accesses for NSA".

It boasts of what it calls "strong growth" in its use of the PRISM program to obtain communications. The document highlights the number of obtained communications increased in 2012 by 248% for Skype – leading the notes to remark there was "exponential growth in Skype reporting; looks like the word is getting out about our capability against Skype". There was also a 131% increase in requests for Facebook data, and 63% for Google.

The NSA document indicates that it is planning to add Dropbox as a PRISM provider. The agency also seeks, in its words, to "expand collection services from existing providers".

The revelations echo fears raised on the Senate floor last year during the expedited debate on the renewal of the FAA powers which underpin the PRISM program, which occurred just days before the act expired.

Senator Christopher Coons of Delaware specifically warned that the secrecy surrounding the various surveillance programs meant there was no way to know if safeguards within the act were working.

"The problem is: we here in the Senate and the citizens we represent don't know how well any of these safeguards actually work," he said.

"The law doesn't forbid purely domestic information from being collected. We know that at least one Fisa court has ruled that the surveillance program violated the law. Why? Those who know can't say and average Americans can't know."

Other senators also raised concerns. Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon attempted, without success, to find out any information on how many phone calls or emails had been intercepted under the program.

When the law was enacted, defenders of the FAA argued that a significant check on abuse would be the NSA's inability to obtain electronic communications without the consent of the telecom and internet companies that control the data. But the PRISM program renders that consent unnecessary, as it allows the agency to directly and unilaterally seize the communications off the companies' servers.

When the NSA reviews a communication it believes merits further investigation, it issues what it calls a "report". According to the NSA, "over 2,000 PRISM-based reports" are now issued every month. There were 24,005 in 2012, a 27% increase on the previous year.

In total, more than 77,000 intelligence reports have cited the PRISM program.

Jameel Jaffer, director of the ACLU's Center for Democracy, that it was astonishing the NSA would even ask technology companies to grant direct access to user data.

"It's shocking enough just that the NSA is asking companies to do this," he said. "The NSA is part of the military. The military has been granted unprecedented access to civilian communications.

"This is unprecedented militarisation of domestic communications infrastructure. That's profoundly troubling to anyone who is concerned about that separation."

A senior administration official said in a statement: "The Guardian and Washington Post articles refer to collection of communications pursuant to Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. This law does not allow the targeting of any US citizen or of any person located within the United States.

"The program is subject to oversight by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, the Executive Branch, and Congress. It involves extensive procedures, specifically approved by the court, to ensure that only non-US persons outside the US are targeted, and that minimize the acquisition, retention and dissemination of incidentally acquired information about US persons.

"This program was recently reauthorized by Congress after extensive hearings and debate.

"Information collected under this program is among the most important and valuable intelligence information we collect, and is used to protect our nation from a wide variety of threats.

"The Government may only use Section 702 to acquire foreign intelligence information, which is specifically, and narrowly, defined in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. This requirement applies across the board, regardless of the nationality of the target."

Additional reporting by James Ball and Dominic Rushe

© 2013 Guardian News and Media Limited

See also:
The National Security Agency: surveillance giant with eyes on America - The NSA is the best hidden of all the US intelligence services – and its secrecy has deepened as its reach has expanded.