PHOENIX, AZ –-(Ammoland.com)- The lamestream media told you:
“An Internet scouring program, code-named PRISM, allows the NSA and FBI to tap directly into nine U.S. Internet companies to gather all Internet usage — audio, video, photographs, emails and searches. The effort is designed to detect suspicious behavior that begins overseas,” according to the Associated Press, according to British newspaper reports.
“Any analyst at any time can target anyone. Any selector. Anywhere. Where those communications will be picked up depends on the range of those sensor networks and the authority that that analyst is empowered with,” Edward Snowden said, a former CIA employee and NSA contractor, in accompanying video on the Guardian newspaper's website. “Not all analysts have the power to target anything. But I, sitting at my desk, had the authority to wiretap anyone, from you or your accountant to a federal judge to even the president if I had a personal email.”
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has decried the revelation of the intelligence-gathering programs as reckless and said it has done “huge, grave damage.” The full article is fascinating: http://tiny.cc/br4i2w
The Uninvited Ombudsman notes however that:
Anyone who thinks the Internet is not an open party line directly to the government is an idiot.
More than a decade ago the Echelon and Carnivore programs were exposed as direct taps of everything flowing through the web, filtered by government agents, for “national security purposes,” which could mean anything. This is just the latest version of that. The fact that a whistle blower has once again come out to say the same thing is almost meaningless.
An intelligence official saying this has done damage is pointless. Everyone in the spy community, diplomatic community, geek community, political community, even people of average intelligence know this. Nothing secret is revealed. If you have information you don't want the government to know, you don't write about it from your computer. Even jihadi warriors living in caves in mountains know this, after getting drone bombs dropped on them.
The “news” media should be ashamed of itself presenting this as news. Any expectation that these gross violations of Fourth Amendment or other constitutional protections will lead to jail or repercussions should be abandoned, because they won't. We would also be wise to heed to words of the man currently in the White House (“You can't have 100% security and then also have 100% privacy and zero inconvenience”), because Big Brother arrived long ago, and he is not about to leave anytime soon. This doesn't surprise Page Nine readers, does it?
Like many others working in the spy community, Snowden was freaked out by the degree to which officials could do anything and get away with it without controls. He simply had the cojones to say something about it. He is now being investigated for criminal charges. “My sole motive is to inform the public as to that which is done in their name and that which is done against them,” Snowden told the newspaper. The AP reported he hoped Obama's election would curtail some of the clandestine programs. He said he was disappointed that Obama did not rein in the surveillance programs.
Two final notes before you get real angry at me for saying this. First, all any of you know about this is what you learned in the “news” and you know how accurate that is. Second, the president, attorney general and members of Congress should know better than to call a person a traitor on TV — because that requires a trial, and according to the Constitution, two witnesses (Art. III, Sec. 3).
Who were the witnesses again? I missed that part.
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