The Criminal N.S.A.
THE twin revelations that telecom carriers have been secretly giving the National Security Agency information about Americans’ phone calls, and that the N.S.A. has been capturing e-mail and other private communications from Internet companies as part of a secret program called Prism, have not enraged most Americans. Lulled, perhaps, by the Obama administration’s claims that these “modest encroachments on privacy” were approved by Congress and by federal judges, public opinion quickly migrated from shock to “meh.”
This view is wrong — and not only, or even mainly, because of the privacy issues raised by the American Civil Liberties Union and other critics. The two programs violate both the letter and the spirit of federal law. No statute explicitly authorizes mass surveillance. Through a series of legal contortions, the Obama administration has argued that Congress, since 9/11, intended to implicitly authorize mass surveillance. But this strategy mostly consists of wordplay, fear-mongering and a highly selective reading of the law. Americans deserve better from the White House — and from President Obama, who has seemingly forgotten the constitutional law he once taught.
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I realize that this is an opinion piece but it highlights the fact that ALL justifications for these programs are also opinions from the same govt officials who are supposed to be held accountable for the legality of these programs but hid them behind viels of secrecy laws and gallons of public relations, spin and down right propaganda. From what we now know is true and can assume must be true, these programs now need to be tested in a series of courts, in the remaining 3rd branch govt, in order to align or override the opinions from the Executive and Legislative branch in regards to the legaility of these programs.
The last time we were content wtih going along with the opinions from the Executive and Legislative Branches of the US Govt and took thier assurances at face vaue, we got the 2nd Iraq War. If you are a supporter of Obama and let this color your opinion of these programs now he is POTUS, is now responsible for them and has defended them, you are no better than the brainless pathetic wighnut sheep that sit slack jawed in front of their Faux News.