Intelligence agency conducts intelligence. News at 11.

So, doughty warrior of the glibertarians Glenn Greenwald has a MAJOR SCOOP: the National Security Agency obtained a warrant from the FISA court to have Verizon Business hand over millions of phone records. SHOCK! ALARM! OBAMA IS SPYING ON YOU!

Now, I don’t mean to be glib myself. The expanded powers given to intelligence agencies in the wake of 9/11 are a valid subject of debate. Barack Obama’s NDU speech in which he wants to work to curtail the Presidency’s expanded powers is an indication on where he stand on this issue.

But comparing the NSA’s latest data mining to what was occurring under the Bush administration is an exercise in the purest sophistry, and a way for Mr. Greenwald to drive clicks to his Guardian website. (And, really, Guardian, why do you employ a writer who BEGS FOR DONATIONS on your website? )

What the Bush administration did from 2001-2007 was to buttonhole telecom companies to provide call records without a warrant. When the warrantless wiretapping regime was uncovered, the administration was forced to defer all data collection to the FISA court, much to its chagrin. And that’s where all decisions on data collection have resided since 2007.

Again, we can have a vigorous debate as to whether the government should have this kind of far-reaching power. But here’s the secret many of the outraged seem to miss: living in the 21st century means that, basically, you have no privacy. Amazon, Facebook, Apple, and Google all collect personal information, and sell it to their advertisers. All those ads targeted to you on Facebook and Google Mail are a result of data mining personal information on a far grander scale than this latest NSA record warrant. And all of it is done with nary a peep from the people now most incensed by Greenwald’s exposé.

Now, some GOP Congresspeople are shocked, SHOCKED, that the NSA is conducting the sort of intelligence gathering specifically authorized by the PATRIOT Act, its various reauthorizations, and the FISA acts passed by the very same Congress. If Mitt Romney had won the presidency in 2012, these same legislators would be mute. But, much like Greenwald and his acolytes, everything coming from the Obama administration, even if they voted for it, is immediately suspect as the actions of an out of control autocrat. If he didn’t use the powers vested in him by law to protect against or investigate terrorist actions, he would be pilloried as a weak defender of the homeland. Consistency goes out the window where Obama is involved.

If the folks agitated by Mr. Greenwald want intelligence agencies’ powers curtailed, then perhaps a better use of their time would be to work to elect candidates who promise to do just that. These expanded powers were voted by overwhelming majorities in both houses of Congress. These powers are the law; a change in powers requires a change in the law. But of course, that requires actual work, which is long and slow; powers, once granted, are hard to retract. It is much easier for Mr. Greenwald to write scathing diatribes from his perch in Rio than enter the lists of politics, where outcomes are much messier.

The headlines scream “OBAMA SPYING ON YOU”; as this article in The Week explains, the truth is that the NSA, by law, has telecoms dump all their phone records into its database, in case they might be needed for a future investigation, as telecoms hold onto records for only 90 days. (Which means that the NSA has to go to the FISA court every 90 days to obtain a new order for collecting phone records.) But, it can dip into this database only if there is a specific suspicion. It can’t simply go trawling for possible criminality. And all is done within a framework of judicial oversight. Once more, one can argue whether such a thing as a “secret” court should exist, and whether the NSA should be able to have this database. But this court exists only to authorize surveillance; any evidence gathered which leads to prosecution still has to be tried in an open, civilian court. Lobby Congress to rescind the FISA laws, or work to elect a new Congress which will; tweeting Mr. Greenwald’s article will achieve very little.

This is going to be a long summer, as war by leaks take up oxygen for the coming months. In the meantime, the Supreme Court authorizes taking DNA without a warrant, and Republicans in Congress continues to shirk any pretense of sharing in the governance of the country. But those scandals aren’t sexy enough, and don’t lend to screaming headlines. And so it shall be, until we say “enough” and deal with the real problems facing this country.

But the silly season always passes, and Mr. Greenwald will always have to beg for donations. There is that.

188 Responses to “Intelligence agency conducts intelligence. News at 11.”

  1. 1 theo67
    June 6, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    “Much ado about nothing”.

  2. 5 hopefruit2
    June 6, 2013 at 4:12 pm

    • 6 Allison
      June 6, 2013 at 4:25 pm

      Not surprised. They’re trying to stifle all of the President’s achievements which are vast.

    • 7 Bill
      June 6, 2013 at 4:41 pm

      For awhile Fox Business and and some of the pundits on CNBC were consistently mocking GM and anyone who would purchase a GM product. They were rooting for its failure. As usual they are wrong about any predictions they make. How many business pundits predicted the crash in 2008, and how many predicted the recovery? Business news on cable is hazardous to ones financial health. The investment business is one of the most regulated industries we have, yet they love to tout free market capitalism is the only path to properity. Business news is probably more misleading than political news.

  3. 10 Ladyhawke
    June 6, 2013 at 4:13 pm


    Revealed: Letters From Republicans Seeking Obamacare Money

    By Lee Fang


    Even before President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law, Republicans were vowing to repeal it. It’s no wonder, because polls showed that the basic elements of the ACA were quite popular, and there was a real danger that it would become more so as people found out that the plan denounced as a “monstrosity” by the National Republican Senatorial Committee would not trample on their liberties so much as help protect their health. Desperate to avoid this, the GOP-controlled House has voted no fewer than thirty-seven times to repeal Obamacare in the three years since it was enacted.

    Many of these same anti-Obamacare Republicans have solicited grants from the very program they claim to despise. This is evidence not merely of shameless hypocrisy but of the fact that the ACA bestows tangible benefits that even Congress’s most extreme right-wing ideologues are hard-pressed to deny to their constituents.


    Read more: http://www.thenation.com/article/174669/revealed-letters-republicans-seeking-obamacare-money#ixzz2VT8Yf0lP

  4. 13 hopefruit2
    June 6, 2013 at 4:13 pm

    Good – it’s about time they go after the REAL obstructionists.

  5. 17 Linda
    June 6, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — A New York City woman has pleaded guilty to engaging in a fraudulent fundraising scheme in which she posed as the aunt of a Newtown school shooting victim.

    Federal prosecutors say 37-year-old Nouel Alba, of the Bronx, pleaded guilty Thursday in Bridgeport, Conn., to wire fraud and making false statements.

    Shortly afterward, authorities say, Alba used Facebook, email, text messages and telephone calls to falsely claim to be the aunt of a child who had been killed and made up details about the aftermath of the shooting to solicit donations for a “funeral fund.”

    Prosecutors say she also lied to FBI agents about her activities.

    Alba is scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 29.


    • 18 jackiegrumbacher
      June 6, 2013 at 4:48 pm

      Well, Linda, there’s low and then there’s very low. This woman is such scum she rates a new category.

  6. 19 Claire
    June 6, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    This year has turned out to be so very stressful and extremely busy for me. Between my clients and my mother being very ill I am ALWAYS busy and pulled in so many directions. Thank goodness for the few minutes I can take to visit this site. I don’t get to post often, but when I do it is a comfort to see so many voices of reason. The recent attacks on the POTUS and FLOTUS have been unwarranted and tiresome. It sickens me to read of the attacks which I find rooted in racism, that is the only cause I can find for them. People may not agree with me, but that is my personal belief.

    Anyway, just wanted to stop by and say thanks for the sanity safe haven.

    • June 6, 2013 at 4:32 pm

      Afternoon Claire….it’s never easy to have sick family members, be gentle with yourself and take care.

    • June 6, 2013 at 4:54 pm

      Sorry to hear about your mom. This site is such a comfort in hard times. Please feel free to share with us at anytime.

    • 22 pkayden
      June 6, 2013 at 6:43 pm

      Agreed that this site is an oasis. Very few blogs (even on the left) actually support President Obama. I have no problem with constructive criticism but some attacks from the Left seem to come out of la la land. President Obama is not a dictator or a magician.

    • 23 June Cleaver 2.0
      June 7, 2013 at 10:22 am

      You are right. Lee Atwater told his people they can’t call the Prez the n word, but they can call him Muslim or Socialist. Those are the substitute words. They can repeal Obamacare and ACORN as acts of hostility toward people those entities are intended to help. A rallying cry to repeal Obamacare reminds me of the Confederacy–it is a confederate whoop. Kill Obamacare is a euphemism for some other obvious thing.

  7. 24 Ladyhawke
    June 6, 2013 at 4:20 pm


    America’s Voice | Released on 06/06/2013 at 3:29pm


    Said Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice:

    We are optimistic that immigration reform is going to pass this year. The fundamentals are strong. The general public strongly supports reform. As this poll shows, Latino voters are watching closely and care deeply. And with respect to Latino voters, both parties want to deliver: Democrats want to deliver on their promises and Republicans want to rehabilitate their badly damaged brand. The GOP, in particular, is facing a moment of truth: it either modernizes and becomes electorally competitive with Latino voters, or it stays stuck in a status quo that is anchored in a whites-only strategy. Let’s hope, for the good of immigration reform, the country and the Republican Party, that they make the right choice.



    • 25 Bill R.
      June 6, 2013 at 4:41 pm

      I wish this were so. Looks to me like the House GOP is going to kill it. And that should be a defining issue for 2014 midterms.

      • 26 jackiegrumbacher
        June 6, 2013 at 4:52 pm

        I agree, Bill. The article is predicated on a GOP that has common sense. The Republican members of Congress do not. They will kill any immigration bill or make it so heinously punitive that it will be unacceptable. I’d willingly contribute to a series of ads that squarely lays the blame at the Republican’s door in 2014. Meantime, I intend to do everything I can to spread the word among my Latino neighbors and friends.

      • 27 pkayden
        June 6, 2013 at 6:45 pm

        It definitely will be a defining issue in 2014. Not only for immigrants but for sensible people who want reform for those entering this country and doing the dirty work. Republicans are writing off so many segments of the population that it’s amazing that they think they can win national elections.

        • 28 kfreed
          June 6, 2013 at 7:14 pm

          They KNOW they can’t win national elections. And state elections are looking just as iffy these days. That ‘s what voter suppression, redistricting, and rigging the electoral college are for.

    • 29 Lovepolitics2008
      June 6, 2013 at 6:00 pm

      The republican strategy: offer some watered down immigration reform, make the path to citizenship difficult with of all sorts of administration rules, and reduced budgets to slow down the process. What the republicans want: lots of latino workers who will be “legal” but will wait all their life for true citizenship, for health care and social security benefits, and of course, the right to vote.

      Look at Rubio backpedaling on his OWN proposal. Very telling. Republican senators are going with the strategy of the House: a piecemeal approach without a REAL path to citizenship.

  8. June 6, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    So, OT on my own post: missus is down 81 lbs from her pre-surgery weight!!

    Carry on.

    • 31 hopefruit2
      June 6, 2013 at 4:23 pm

      Wonderful news- congrats to the Mrs. LL and to you as well! 🙂

    • 32 japa21
      June 6, 2013 at 4:32 pm

      Great news.

    • 33 Bill R.
      June 6, 2013 at 4:41 pm

      Congrats to the Missus! I’m carrying on my own weight loss program. Lost 28 lbs. since March.

    • 37 desertflower
      June 6, 2013 at 5:48 pm

      Wonderful news!! So proud of her AND you:) I wanted to let you know that this piece was spot on. I was pleased that you included the Supreme Ct. decision on DNA, which, to my way of thinking, is FAR, FAR worse than this NSA bs because it will directly impact many, many more people. They PRESUME GUILT and this is much, much more dangerous than anything like acquiring legal phone records…yet we hear silence. This one ruling will keep the prison pipeline humming along…..filled mostly with people of color….(which the cynical part of me thinks the powers that be, won’t mind) and it goes on and on. Thanks so much for all you do. You’re a GEM!

    • June 6, 2013 at 6:21 pm

      Whooooooooooooo Hoooooooooo!!

    • 39 Pugeretto
      June 6, 2013 at 6:37 pm

      That’s great news LL, here’s to missus health! Just want to add, someone close to me is a retired special agent, & how are we to stay safe if you tie everyone’s hands? Plus, no kidding, privacy in this day & age….only if you’re a total hermit.

    • 40 pkayden
      June 6, 2013 at 6:46 pm

      Tell her congratulations! Just great.

  9. 41 hopefruit2
    June 6, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    NY Times editorial board has the audacity to attack President Obama on this NSA issue – the same NY Times who LIED on behalf of GWB into dragging the country and its resources into a false war with Iraq. The same NY Times who was silent when congress voted for the Patriiot Act and renewed it twice.

  10. 46 japa21
    June 6, 2013 at 4:40 pm

    LL, as usual, great job.

    This is what I was trying to get across earlier today and making a total mess of it.

    This is not spying, monitoring or surveillance. It is gathering information that may, if necessary be utilized.

    That doesn’t mean that there should not be outrage about the program. I, personally, feel the program is overreach, although I see the logic of it. Nor does it mean that someone shouldn’t defend the program if they believe it is appropriate and useful.

    But outrage coming from people who approved even of the warrentless mining and “wiretapping” done by the Bush administration is hypocritical.

    The attacks on PBO as if he created, authorized and is personally going through all the records is ludicrous.

    So many attacks are based on things other than the actual facts.

    This is a program about which there can be, and should be, an honest debate. And it should definitely be something Congress looks at.

    But hyperbole doesn’t contribute to that debate. Using words like spying, wiretapping, etc. don’t contribute to that debate.

    As you mentioned, PBO recently gave an address where he actually asked Congress to remove powers by repealing the AUMF. Perhaps he will do the same thing here.

    • 47 theo67
      June 6, 2013 at 5:01 pm

      Good points, Japa!

    • 48 pkayden
      June 6, 2013 at 6:57 pm

      Is the Administration getting its message out that the NSA surveillance was targeted to solving the Boston bombing? I love President Obama but I worry sometimes about the fact that his message is muted. More Democratic politicians need to get out there in the media and give President Obama’s side of the story so that it’s not so one-sided.

  11. 49 hopefruit2
    June 6, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    • 50 Linda
      June 6, 2013 at 4:51 pm

      Hayes is so hyper he is not watchable…..that fast talking and arm waving is awful….I think he may knock himself out one day.

      Scahill must have a segment tonight.

    • 52 Ladyhawke
      June 6, 2013 at 4:51 pm

      MSNBC is unwatchable during the day and unbearable at night. One of the main reasons why they have lost my eyeballs is Chris Matthews and Chris Hayes. This snarky tweet just turns me off.

  12. 54 hopefruit2
    June 6, 2013 at 4:46 pm

  13. 55 hopefruit2
    June 6, 2013 at 4:49 pm

    • 56 theo67
      June 6, 2013 at 5:02 pm

      I thought Breitbart was dead. It’s kind of eery to see his name still active. Does this mean that all the hate these hate-mongers spread around will continue to live after they’re dead? I was kind of looking forward to that day…

  14. 59 Linda
    June 6, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    A Texas jury acquitted a man for the murder of a woman he hired as an escort, after his lawyers claimed he was authorized to use deadly force because she refused sex.

    Ezekiel Gilbert shot Lenora Ivie Frago in the neck on Christmas Eve, after she denied his requests for sex and wouldn’t return the $150 he had paid her, according to the San Antonio Express-News.

    Under Texas law, an individual is authorized to use deadly force to “retrieve stolen property at night,” and Gilbert’s lawyers cited that provision as justification for Gilbert’s action, reasoning that Frago had stolen $150 from him by taking his money without delivering sex.

    In a police interview played for jurors, Gilbert “never mentioned anything about theft,” a detective told the San Antonio Express-News. Frago, who was 21, was critically injured and died several months later.


    Insanity in Texas

    • 60 theo67
      June 6, 2013 at 5:03 pm

      This is pretty disgusting.

    • 61 Bill
      June 6, 2013 at 5:04 pm

      Was Louie Gohmert the judge?

    • 63 cookemom
      June 6, 2013 at 5:38 pm

      I guess in Texas, two wrongs do make a right. Remind me to stay away from that idiocy there. I can’t believe a jury didn’t nullify the instructions, if there were any. Then again, that state hasn’t been sane since Ann Richards was governor.

    • 64 jackiegrumbacher
      June 6, 2013 at 5:39 pm

      Linda, I hope someone on the prosecution team appeals this case to a higher court. Maybe some judge somewhere can assert that a human being IS NOT property. I’m sorry to say that Texas has become a cesspool of hate and prejudice and almost profound stupidity. It will take decades of enlightened leadership to turn this state around, but that’s not likely to happen as long as people who can change things refuse to vote.

    • 67 pkayden
      June 6, 2013 at 7:00 pm

      Are you kidding me?!!

    • 68 Jeff
      June 6, 2013 at 7:42 pm

      Sounds like a decision that Scalia would agree with.

  15. 69 Layla
    June 6, 2013 at 5:14 pm

    This is sooooo disgusting !!!! look on fuffpuff front page re what they did with the pic!!! Can we not push back on this

    • 70 Bill
      June 6, 2013 at 5:30 pm

      Howard Fineman has an article there named “Dare I Make a Phone Call”. The MSM has decided to run with this story.

      • 71 COS
        June 6, 2013 at 5:36 pm

        I started to watch my recording of Bashir’s show, and it started with him on a phone and showed other folks walking and talking on a phone. I deleted the show right away. I just do not want to hear these folks talk about this like it is something new without doing any type of research.

    • 72 Cman
      June 6, 2013 at 5:37 pm

      Guys take a Xanax before you check out the page. Seriously! Or at least be locked up in a bubble wrap room where you can do no physical damage to yourself or surrounding. You have been warned. It’s going to be visceral.

    • 74 Claire
      June 6, 2013 at 6:06 pm

      I find the picture extremely offensive. There must be something that can be done. I find it borderline racist and completely disrespectful.

      You know this is why Democrats cannot win elections consistently. They tear one another down. Just when the POTUS has an opportunity to get some Democrats in office in the 2014 elections and then get some legislation passed the idiots on the far left start destroying the party. Every time without fail the far left loonies are so damn stupid that they can’t see that the right sets them up for failure.

      • 75 Vicki
        June 6, 2013 at 6:38 pm

        I feel your pain, Claire. Some of those who pretend to be the left aren’t. Jeremy Scahill is not left, although he might argue this. He has been hard to miss as he tries to sell his new book and if you can listen to him for more than a minute or two you’ll notice he doesn’t make much sense. He is fury without foundation.
        Which makes him no different than H Fineman. G. greenwald, D. Sirota, etc. They speak for the corporations just as Rush and O’Reilly do. Only their approach is different.

        The actual battle here is between the corporations and the good of the American people.

        Barack Obama and his administration stand alone.

        And Layla, I can offer no comfort. Our voice has been severly constricted. The only oppositon to Corporate speak on Tv is the fake left voice. Here on the Internet we can share the truth.

    • 76 Jeff
      June 6, 2013 at 7:56 pm

      I posted on there that HP was experimenting with black face.

  16. 77 desertflower
    June 6, 2013 at 5:58 pm

    Pointed response from WH on House immigration vote today

    This afternoon, the White House press office slammed the “extreme amendment”:
    This amendment, sponsored by Representative Steve King, runs contrary to our most deeply-held values as Americans. It asks law enforcement to treat these Dreamers the same way as they would violent criminals. It’s wrong. It’s not who we are. And it will not become law.


  17. 78 Nena20409
    June 6, 2013 at 6:03 pm

    GE TODers. I am looking for the Post Ms. Chips did on Glenn Greenwald. I thought that I had bookmarked it. I didn’t. I would like to e-mail that post to some fools at Mediaite, HP and DKos. Can I get any Help in locating that Post, please? Thanks in advance.

  18. 87 Vicki
    June 6, 2013 at 6:16 pm

    LOL at you Huff Poop. George W. Obama. HaHaHaHaHa
    The American people respect, trust, and like, even love, our POTUS.
    Nothing you say or do will change this.

    From Day 1 there have been strenous efforts to sling mud at PBO. Somehow, any way possible, no matter how ridiculous the MSM/GOP/TP tried to make us mistrustful of our President.
    It has not worked until now.
    It will not work in the future.

    What scares me is having failed so entirely, what will they stoop to next?

    • 88 Layla
      June 6, 2013 at 6:20 pm

      That’s my point Vicki, should we just let them have “carte blanche”; this is getting so outrageous something needs to be done. Shame on the media. We need to stop them before they stoop….

      • 89 Vicki
        June 6, 2013 at 6:41 pm

        How can we stop them, Layla? They own and control the airwaves the newspapers everything but the internet. At least for now .

    • 90 Jeff
      June 6, 2013 at 7:58 pm

      I’m used to the idiotic media posting dumb articles like that. It’s been 5 years and they’ve been doing this shit without fail.

  19. 91 Jovie
    June 6, 2013 at 6:19 pm

    And here is Fridays outrage Leak-

    They’re really going for the throat of all government intel services.
    Somebody is paying for these leaks, obviously!
    God Damnit!

    • 92 Lovepolitics2008
      June 6, 2013 at 7:03 pm

      This is definitely very coordinated from behind the scenes. The suspects certainly are republicans. What is the strategy ? They AGREED to the Patriot Act and I suspect they are much less preoccupied than the President about the need for legal frameworks.

      I said in a previous thread that President Obama needs to do something to launch the debate on privacy vs national security, but on HIS own terms. A big address, a summit , I don’t know. The “leaks” keep on coming… I think the administration has to turn the tables, and begin to control the conversation. President Obama is a great counterpuncher, but the time for counterpunch is coming fast.

      The media is incapable/unwilling to make a rational debate, put everything in context, do fair comparisons with what Bush was doing ILLEGALLY. Once again, the President will have to be the one who will have to counter the hysteria, and lead the debate in the right direction. Sigh.

  20. June 6, 2013 at 6:37 pm

  21. 98 Jovie
    June 6, 2013 at 6:39 pm

    GOP proposes ending Export-Import Bank
    By Pete Kasperowicz
    Republicans in the House, led by Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.), have proposed legislation that would eliminate the Export-Import Bank, which provides government-backed export finance assistance to U.S. companies.

    The Export-Import Bank Termination Act, H.R. 2263, would shut down the bank’s financing activities after a year and hand the entity over to the Treasury Department to wind down.


  22. 99 Jovie
    June 6, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    See? I told you! This one is next . How about all these leaks?

  23. June 6, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    you have to wonder…..who is behind all the leaks

  24. 103 kfreed
    June 6, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    THE moment I spotted the first tweet re: “NSA spying on you” I knew from whence it came. Without ever clicking a link, I KNEW. This is how predicatable “Libertarian Glenn Greenwald of Cato Institute” has become. You can practically set your watch by him.

    We might even say that he’s following Paul Weyrich’s Training Manual to the letter. This makes for some interesting reading (note the section on “New Traditionalists and Libertarians”) – The Integration of Theory and Practice: A Program for the New Traditionalist Movement:



    “1) Falsehoods are not only acceptable, they are a necessity. The corollary is: The masses will accept any lie if it is spoken with vigor, energy and dedication.

    2) It is necessary to be cast under the cloak of “goodness” whereas all opponents and their ideas must be cast as “evil.”

    3) Complete destruction of every opponent must be accomplished through unrelenting personal attacks.

    4) The creation of the appearance of overwhelming power and brutality is necessary in order to destroy the will of opponents to launch opposition of any kind. ”


    • 104 desertflower
      June 6, 2013 at 7:02 pm

      This covers nearly ALL the Libertarian/ RWNJ’s out there! it’s what they do!! Nasty, scary shit.

  25. 105 JER
    June 6, 2013 at 6:58 pm

  26. 106 Jovie
    June 6, 2013 at 7:01 pm

    Jason Collins throws out first pitch at Red Sox game.
    That was nice !

  27. 107 Bill
    June 6, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    CNBC is saying the Washington Post received their information from an NSA employee who was “horified” at what the NSA is doing.

    • 108 Layla
      June 6, 2013 at 7:12 pm

      in other words, a plant!

    • 109 Jovie
      June 6, 2013 at 7:13 pm

      I don’t think any of this is good news- people are just going to keep leaking shit from Inside the US government.
      Guess what?
      That’s a vote of no confidence in the President .

      • 110 Jovie
        June 6, 2013 at 7:14 pm

        A nervous laugh!

      • June 6, 2013 at 7:22 pm

        No..it just means that there are still holdovers from the previous adm…because this has been going on for quite a while….why only now is there outrage…

      • 112 Bill
        June 6, 2013 at 7:25 pm

        I lived in DC for about 20 years and met a few extreme rwnj libertarian types who worked for the government. It would only take one in the right place to leak this stuff to the Post.

    • June 6, 2013 at 7:22 pm

      They were horrified at what?

    • 115 COS
      June 6, 2013 at 7:27 pm

      Why is this NSA employee suddenly horrified at the NSA’s actions? Why are folks treating this like it just started yesterday? It is baffling.

      • June 6, 2013 at 7:46 pm

        Exactly. FISA is not new. Why are they trying to pretend otherwise? I mean besides the scary Black guy is going get you.

      • 117 desertflower
        June 6, 2013 at 8:00 pm

        I work for a spy agency…I am shocked and horrified that we collect data in a big junk drawer in case we need it! NSA employee……YOU LIE!

        • 118 Bill
          June 6, 2013 at 8:08 pm

          Well said. A spy being “horrified” his agency is spying.

          • 119 desertflower
            June 6, 2013 at 8:19 pm

            Seriously. I’m so over the faux outrage at every little thing that has been going on for decades…all of a sudden they all found Jesus. More than a little suspect to me. I also think that, just like America doesn’t pay attention to anything else that matters, this will get a MEH from the majority…we all know its been going on forever.

    • 120 hopefruit2
      June 6, 2013 at 7:50 pm

      All of this nonsense from the media is just more carnival barking. I don’t see PBO panicking. He’s doing his business as usual, getting his agenda implemented.

  28. 121 a4alice
    June 6, 2013 at 7:15 pm

    Great entry Liberal Librarian and the one you did the other night was fantastic. I gotta run to a meeting but just wanted to say hi and thanks for the great post!

  29. 122 Layla
    June 6, 2013 at 7:17 pm

    I wish Bob was here…

  30. June 6, 2013 at 7:27 pm

  31. June 6, 2013 at 7:57 pm


    Love all your posts here at TOD, but we Obots should follow our President’s lead and let things play out.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if POTUS’ goal is for both GOP and MSM to overplay their “hands.” Praying the scum Greenwald suffers the most.

  32. June 6, 2013 at 7:59 pm

  33. 131 forus50
    June 6, 2013 at 8:00 pm

  34. 134 pickle48
    June 6, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    Chris “Nelly” Hayes is at it again. Scream, scream, it’s SO TERRIBLE! Eeeeewwwww!

  35. June 6, 2013 at 8:13 pm

    Because I’m a geek, a little Bene Gesserit mantra, which from all I observe PBO lives by every day:

    I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.


  36. June 6, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    This looks and smells like a hoax ….

  37. June 6, 2013 at 8:18 pm

    Jovie, Bill, Layla, Bob:

    Administration leaks to trap viscious and self-serving emoprogs and GOP shills blinded by their hatred of our President? Please, please, let Greenwald get shamed and discredited by his “scoop.”

  38. June 6, 2013 at 8:24 pm

    My email is being flooded with “BREAKING NEWS” about all the data monitoring and internet tracking (and scandals in general). Breaking news that didn’t raise any eyebrows in previous administration…

    But just so I understand… The current scandal has to do with the invasion of people’s privacy?!?!?!? What privacy? If we are really concerned about our privacy, we wouldn’t use the internet or smart phones or any of the technology that we use for communication and data sharing in the 21st century. The fact that the NSA and FBI can subpoena data from these providers says that these providers also have our data – more data than what the government is even asking for. But it’s okay for these corporations to have our data? And it’s okay for them to SELL it to others?

    Given today’s technology, maintaining the security of this country is not a simple task. Do we tie the government’s hands for the sake of an individual’s privacy? (I doubt that attention is being paid to the majority of us anyway.) Is it just that we want assurances that the government is not recording our conversations or tracking the sites we visit, or our physical movements via the technology on our smart phones and automobiles? Do we demand those same assurances from the providers?

    I know that there is a lot of complexity to this situation. But all the “breaking news” and cries of “scandal” is starting to wear.

    • 147 desertflower
      June 6, 2013 at 8:29 pm

      I find “delete” works well 🙂 If I get any emails that demand that I TELL President Obama…..delete. They all want to get you outraged and get money from you….

      • June 6, 2013 at 9:02 pm

        Most of the email I’m receiving are the result of contributions made or responding to petitions or subscriptions to online “news” sources. The delete button is my friend. 😀 And the outrage they derive is from their audacity. And as far as getting money from me…that money tree does not exist.

        President Obama has people in place to advise him — extremely qualified people. So there is nothing that I would need to tell him besides “You’re doing a good job”; “I support you”; “I trust you because you’ve earned it!” and “Thank you!”

  39. 149 hopefruit2
    June 6, 2013 at 8:27 pm

    I won’t be watching.

  40. June 6, 2013 at 8:31 pm

  41. 155 Eveingeorgia
    June 6, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    You might want to avoid Rachel tonight. She seems to be going all in on the NSA junk.

    • 156 Ladyhawke
      June 6, 2013 at 8:46 pm

      Thanks for the warning. It looks like The Rachel Maddow Show is positively giddy tonight. They are hoping tonight’s show will be the best one that ever happened. News is breaking all over the place. Imagine that.



      Tonight’s guests include:

      Dominic Rushe, Business correspondent for the Guardian

      Jameel Jaffer, deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union

      Nicolle Wallace, former communications director for the George W. Bush administration and former senior adviser for the McCain-Palin campaign

      We hope tonight’s show will be the best one that ever happened.

      Here’s executive producer Bill Wolff with a look at what’s coming up (even as news is breaking all over the place right now):



      • 157 carolyn
        June 6, 2013 at 9:02 pm

        So, when Rachel gets “giddy” with excitement over a coming show, she always overdoes it, and is careless, then has to walk it back later. Let’s see, this is Thursday…..by Monday she’s going to have to recant what she says tonight…….it happens every time.

      • June 6, 2013 at 9:08 pm

        OMG. This sickens me.

        Said before I’m not into conspiracy theories, but…

        The week of Bradley Manning’s trial that puts Wikileaks front-and-center in the news (for those journalists who aren’t too lazy to pay attention) and the two papers to simultaneously “scoop” PRISM were the papers Assange leaked to.

        I really hope this is payback for Assange, Manning and I hope that Greenwald is left the most damage. Taking the professional left down a few notches too is good, just sorry to see @Lawrence part of this fiasco.

  42. 159 desertflower
    June 6, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    http://thinkprogress.org/security/2013/06/06/2118301/prism-internet-surveillance-nsa/ GWB holdover program

    Companies participating in the program are obliged to accept “a directive” from the the attorney general and the director of national intelligence to open their servers to the FBI’s Data Intercept Technology Unit. In exchange, the companies receive immunity from lawsuits.
    The broad, top secret program, code-named PRISM, was established in 2007 with Microsoft as its first partner but now counts Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube, and Apple among its membership. Twitter is notably absent from the list.
    PRISM appears to closely resemble the warrantless surveillance orders issues by President Bush after the September 11th, 2011 terrorist attacks rather than a dragnet data collection operation, but the NSA has the capability to search through the company’s servers for whatever it likes. To collect data, analysts in Fort Meade key in search terms designed to produce an “at least 51 percent confidence in a target’s ‘foreignness.’”

    These companies CAN’T say they didn’t know this was going on!!! They agreed to do this in exchange for immunity from prosecution!!!

    • 160 desertflower
      June 6, 2013 at 8:43 pm

      Someone is lying

      Analysts have access to Facebook’s “extensive search and surveillance capabilities” while the Skype partnership allows for monitoring of any combination of “audio, video, chat, and file transfers”, and Google allows surveillance of “Gmail, voice and video chat, photo libraries, and live surveillance of search terms.” The career intelligence officer who leaked documents about the program to the Washington Post noted “[t]hey quite literally can watch your ideas form as you type.”
      Apple and Facebook have both denied participation in the program, with Apple saying they’ve “never heard” of it, and Facebook flatly denying they provide “any government organization with direct access” to their servers. Google has been slightly less clear, but told Washington Post they lack a back door for the government to obtain access to private user data and care “deeply” about the privacy of users.

      • 161 desertflower
        June 6, 2013 at 8:45 pm

        Comment from TP 🙂

        John Heitzenrater · Top Commenter
        the NSA now has access to billions of cat videos and pictures of people’s lunches and children. I’m trying really hard to find this frightening, but I’m coming up short.

      • June 6, 2013 at 8:50 pm

        Oh yes, df, someone is definitely lying.

        If you wanted to uncover a conspiracy to leak information intended to the President — irrespective of whatever damage to our National Security — via media actively SOLICITING such information from members of the intelligence community (after they learned that that is exactly what Rosen was doing), this could just be the moment of that sting.

        • June 6, 2013 at 8:52 pm

          As I said, when Bush’s wiretapping came to light, the telcos didn’t deny it. They said they were doing what they thought was legal. Now with this story, the named companies are FLATLY denying it. There’s no wiggle room there. This story just doesn’t smell right.

          • 164 desertflower
            June 6, 2013 at 8:58 pm

            Facebook ALLOWED it, Skype and Google ALLOWED it…now they pretend they didn’t know????? Bullshit flag!

            • 165 desertflower
              June 6, 2013 at 9:01 pm

              My guess is this leaker is a holdover from GWB, meant to “leak” this if PBO won re election. You don’t “all of a sudden” find this out and be “shocked and horrified” That’s utter and complete bullshit. Like I said upthread, the guy works at a spy agency. It’s what they do!

        • June 6, 2013 at 8:57 pm

          ^^^intended to HARM the President (specifically PBO)^^^^ clarification ….


  43. June 6, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    When Bush’s warrantless surveillance came out, the telcos rushed to push Bush to immunize them and put any future requests under FISA. But they didn’t flat out deny that they gave Bush those records.

    Now, with PRISM the ISPs are flat out denying that they’ve given access to their servers to the NSA. Something is definitely fishy.

  44. 169 JER
    June 6, 2013 at 8:46 pm

    LIVE NOW: President Obama arrives in California – http://www.cbsnews.com/liveFeed/widget.shtml

  45. 170 hopefruit2
    June 6, 2013 at 8:46 pm

    Lawrence is a smart man, and I hope he has something up his sleeve with this invitation of Greenwald on his show. I really do hope that Lawrence will be bold enough to engage in some serious investigative journalism and confront Greenwald’s hypocrisy, and not just allow this man to spew his Obama-hating drivel unchallenged. I won’t watch the show but I will know by the end what Lawrence’s agenda was here.

    • 171 forus50
      June 6, 2013 at 8:52 pm

      Just giving him the publicity is a problem. Plus he describes it as “broke the story”. I have watched O’Donnell maybe 2 or 3 times at most and even though the content was fine It was way too theatrical for me – like he was going for “Best Actor in a Political Cable Show” award.

      • 172 hopefruit2
        June 6, 2013 at 8:56 pm

        LMAO! I agree he gets a bit melodramatic at times, but he’s one of the few on MSNBC that I can barely tolerate, and I don’t even watch his show that much.

  46. 174 Eveingeorgia
    June 6, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    Reat at ThinkProgress that officials are investigating who leaked this story to the Guardian. This whole thing stinks; I smell some rats who are really pissed at Obama for naming Rice.

  47. 175 hopefruit2
    June 6, 2013 at 8:57 pm

  48. 177 hopefruit2
    June 6, 2013 at 9:00 pm

    Chris Hayes needs to grow up, really.

  49. 182 Eveingeorgia
    June 6, 2013 at 9:00 pm

    That’s “read” at Think Progress.

    Also, can we start a hashtag #notwatchingyourshow to be sent to all the MSNBC hosts because of their overreaction to this.

    I could be wrong, but I think Lawrence got caught up in this. I had hoped he would be the one voice of reason.

  50. 183 Claire
    June 6, 2013 at 9:00 pm

    I am through with all of these idiots. I won’t watch any of them. FISA was extended to 2017, 6 months ago. No one said anything. No one complained. This is all crap.

  51. 184 Jovie
    June 6, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    Wow- the civil Libertarian MSM is going nuts, just shitting their pants about the next leaked story.
    They are going to keep doing this and doing this.

  52. 185 kathryn kivett
    June 6, 2013 at 9:06 pm

    Wow, as I have been consumed with the glory of PBO being so close,(dripping in the rain no less), bringing attention to the little school system that could and announcing a major initiative to lay fiber optics to provide more bandwidth and high speed internet to all schools within 5 yrs which does not need Congressional approval, the rest of the country, including this site, seems to be consumed with Verizon, Chris Christie, and whatever scandal of the day….No media seemed to care about what he said….No one seems to care that the Gov. of NC, nor any other politician, including Kay Hagan, bothered to show up to welcome him to NC…..Oh, well, what a wasted trip for him, except for all those children that will never forget his visit that honored them…………………..guess the next scandal will be “Obama wants to provide internet to schools to spy on them”.

  53. 188 June Cleaver 2.0
    June 7, 2013 at 10:13 am

    I haven’t seen Rachel Maddow and Chris Hayes in a while, and they wonder why their ratings dropped. Who wants to tune in to MSNBC sounding like the fake Fox channel? Continue MSNBC, and other professional left outlets to see your following plunge. I laughed at HuffPost’s main page, combining Bush and Obama’s face, so stupid– and wrong! If all of the lefty blogs think they can change public opinion by acting like the GOP–meaning all coming out in concerted effort to hurt the President, watch their credibility drop, and the Prez’s approval ratings rise. I’m GLAD that his administration is vigilant. The Prez does not apologize to keep us safe.

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