I know, I know … what scandal? It’s amazing just how quickly and how extensively a phony scandal can grow, but the NSA domestic spying program is a leviathan that keeps on spreading, and every new break is just more proof the President is a liar.
The Wall Street Journal has a new report detailing how the NSA can track 75% of all internet traffic as well as snaring and holding all email correspondence between Americans.
Wait, you heard that we don’t have a domestic spying program? What uninformed person told you that? Oh, the President… well now that it’s on the news he probably knows better.
“We don’t have a domestic spying program… What we do have is some mechanisms that can track a phone number or an email address that is connected to a terrorist attack…That information is useful.” The President also said that the programs are “a critical component to counterterrorism,” but he knows that they revelations about the NSA programs have “raised a lot of questions for people.”
Mr. President, “a domestic spying program” is precisely what the NSA spying program is! It is the most accurate definition of the crimes that the federal government is currently perpetrating. The stories that will continue to pour out of Washington, D.C. about these programs will show that you have lied to the American people, and that you continue to lie in an attempt to cover for the misdeeds of your administration. That is why Glenn Greenwald still faces persecution from our government and our allies, and why we hear new revelations of malfeasance from the NSA almost every day.
Now to those of you who are still defending the government’s egregious attacks on our privacy, I would point you to the recent Washington Post expose on the failed oversight of the spying program.
“The National Security Agency has broken privacy rules or overstepped its legal authority thousands of times each year since Congress granted the agency broad new powers in 2008, according to an internal audit and other top-secret documents.”
This internal audit was not made public but was part of the treasure trove of information leaked to the American people by erstwhile data analyst, Edward Snowden.
“A notable example in 2008 was the interception of a “large number” of calls placed from Washington when a programming error confused the U.S. area code 202 for 20, the international dialing code for Egypt, according to a “quality assurance” review that was not distributed to the NSA’s oversight staff. In another case, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which has authority over some NSA operations, did not learn about a new collection method until it had been in operation for many months. The court ruled it unconstitutional.”
It’s incredibly interesting that the analyst accidentally recorded all of the phone data for Washington, D.C. when they were trying to spy on Egypt. What information could the government have discovered in digging through and analyzing phone data from the DC metro area? Could they have spied on reporters? Or on political opposition? It’s terrifying to think what the government could do with the technology they have and their legal interpretation that they have the right to use it on us.
Did you notice what it says at the end there in the bold print? The NSA was using these methods for MONTHS without any oversight whatsoever. Sure when the FISA court found out they ruled it unconstitutional… but it took MONTHS. A little better hiding and FISA might never have discovered it at all. It’s apparent that the NSA is not being exceedingly forthcoming with anyone, not even their superiors.
The NSA even accidentally admits to the Washington Post that they don’t tell the oversight people “everything.” When they realized what they’d said, the White House tried to pressure the Washington Post to change their quotes. Luckily for us, the Post said “no dice.” Here’s the tacit admission of lying to their oversight.
“In one required tutorial, NSA collectors and analysts are taught to fill out oversight forms without giving “extraneous information” to “our FAA overseers.” FAA is a reference to the FISA Amendments Act of 2008, which granted broad new authorities to the NSA in exchange for regular audits from the Justice Department and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and periodic reports to Congress and the surveillance court. Using real-world examples, the “Target Analyst Rationale Instructions” explain how NSA employees should strip out details and substitute generic descriptions of the evidence and analysis behind their targeting choices.”
The President is lying to us, and the federal government is abusing its power while infringing on our rights. Are you just going to sit there and let them get away with it? Join with us, RISE UP, and get involved. The more of us who raise our voices against this tyranny, the harder it will be for the legislators in Washington to continue to disregard our voices.
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com