The latest news about how far the National Security Agency goes with warrantless spying doesn’t exactly make the agency’s defenders look like policy savants.
Just ask Dick Cheney.
When Cheney met privately with Republican donors recently he was completely dismissive on the subject of NSA snooping, maintaining that there’s no way that the organization is abusing its powers.
“[The idea] that we have created in the National Security Agency this monster bureaucracy that’s reading everybody’s mail, listening to everybody’s phone calls, infringing upon our civil liberties and civil rights. Hogwash,” he said.
The “hogwash” of it is actually Cheney’s statement, which was debunked late last night by revelations of Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and Democrat senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Mark Udall (D-Colo.) — the latter two sit on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.
Clapper revealed that NSA has performed warrantless searches on Americans’ calls and emails, used a ‘back-door search loophole’’ to monitor Americans’ communications — a new and secret legal rule that justified NSA analysts’ snooping on citizens within the databases — and collected data through ’Prism’ and ‘Upstream’ programs.
The two senators released a statement slamming the NSA and the “misleading” information President Obama has shared with the public.
“It is now clear to the public that the list of ongoing intrusive surveillance practices by the NSA includes not only bulk collection of Americans’ phone records, but also warrantless searches of the content of Americans’ personal communications,” the senators wrote in a letter.
Full article: http://rare.us/story … t-hes-talking-about/