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It’s good to know that our friendly, über-secret National Security Agency is out there every day, protecting our freedom. By violating it.
A whistleblower has literally blown the lid off NSA’s seven-year, super-snoop program of rummaging electronically through about a billion phone calls made every day by us average Americans. This revelation even prompted Al Gore to tweet: “Is it just me, or is secret blanket surveillance obscenely outrageous?” It’s definitely not just you, Al – this latest explosion of the Fourth Amendment is so mega-awful that authorities had to invent a new word for the process: Metadata mining.
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Most shocking, however, is the tin-eared, who-cares reaction by both Republican and Democratic leaders to this outrageous meta-surveillance of our private lives. For example, GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham blustered that, “It doesn’t bother me one bit that NSA has my number.” Hey, Lindsey, it’s not your number we’re worried about – it’s NSA’s collection of our entire country’s numbers. Then came Sen. Saxby Chambliss: “We have not had any citizen who has registered a complaint,” he blathered. Hello, Sen. Clueless, no one knew to complain since y’all kept the program secret from us!
And President Obama was even more ridiculous. He tried to rationalize his wholesale invasion of our privacy by declaring that Congress knew about the program, as did a special spy court, that routinely reviews and blesses it, so it’s all legit. In a perplexed voice, Obama said” If people don’t trust the White House, Congress, and federal judges, “then we’re going to have some problems here.”
Gosh sir, We the People have now learned that all three branches of government have furtively conspired for seven years to violate our privacy – so, no, we don’t trust any of them. And, yes, that is a biiiiiiig problem.
“Obama’s Spy Plan Includes Internet,” USA Today, June 7-9, 2013
“Metadata mining: Why do the feds do it?,” www.usatoday.com, June 7, 2013.
“A rare glimpse into secret surveillance powers,” www.usatoday.com, June 6, 2013.
“Congress Can Stop Privacy Abuse,” www.nytimes.com, June 8, 2013.
“A Furor Over Government Surveillance,” www.nytimes.com, June 8,2013.
“Obama: Spying legal, limited,” Austin American Statesman, June 8, 2013
“To tap a call, U.S. must get court OK,” Austin American Statesman, June 8, 2013