NSA

Do Mike Rogers and Dianne Feinstein Even Know What They Think They Know About NSA Snooping?

Why are they defending an agency that may even be concealing information from them?

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Knowing stuff is what the staff are for.
Talk Radio News Service / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

On Friday, Matt Welch took note of the news that  the National Security Agency had violated its own surveillance rules thousands of times, withheld information from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, and likely has, indeed, illegally accessed people's communications by reminding us all of the conservatives who bashed Reason and other liberty-minded folks a decade ago for raising warning flags about the PATRIOT Act. Ramesh Ponnuru at the National Review was among the critics.

Today, John Fund, national affairs columnist for National Review, is saying it's time for conservatives who have been supporters of the NSA's surveillance to start asking tough questions:

The Washington Post opened a can of worms last Friday when it reported that, in 2012, an internal NSA audit found that the agency had violated privacy rules 2,776 times within just one year. The audit counted only violations at NSA's Washington facilities — nearly 20 other NSA facilities were not included. In the wake of the Post's report, the NSA insisted that the violations were "inadvertent," but it failed to explain why it had not shared the report with Senate Intelligence Committee chair Dianne Feinstein or other congressional oversight authorities.

Yet some NSA defenders continue to insist that nothing is wrong. Back in July, House Intelligence Committee chair Mike Rogers claimed that there have been "zero privacy violations" on the part of NSA. After the leaked audit made news on Friday, he retreated to saying that "there was no intentional and willful violation of the law."

Fund turned to a former official with knowledge of the NSA's behavior and offered him anonymity to go on the attack, questioning  whether Rogers and Sen. Dianne Feinstein even really know what they're defending:

A veteran intelligence official with decades of experience at various agencies identified to me what he sees as the real problem with the current NSA: "It's increasingly become a culture of arrogance. They tell Congress what they want to tell them. Mike Rogers and Dianne Feinstein at the Intelligence Committees don't know what they don't know about the programs." He himself was asked to skew the data an intelligence agency submitted to Congress, in an effort to get a bigger piece of the intelligence budget. He refused and was promptly replaced in his job, presumably by someone who would do as told.

Fund also makes note of Director of Intelligence James Clapper's lie to Sen. Ron Wyden about mass collection and the deliberate withholding of information from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. He concludes:

In 1999, then-senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan wrote Secrecy: The American Experience, in which he analyzed the parallel growth of secrecy and bureaucracy in the U.S. "Secrecy is a form of regulation," he warned. "At times, in the name of national security, secrecy has put that very security in harm's way." He observed that although secrecy is absolutely necessary for our protection, it all too often serves as the first refuge of incompetents or those drunk with arrogance. We should not give these groups the ability to cloak their operations — no matter how virtuous the goal.

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  1. It’s almost like Rogers and Feinstein are different sides of the same, clueless, power-hungry, statist coin.

    Oh – because they are. Shocker!

    What meretricious pieces of shit. Fuck ’em all.

    1. So is Fund. Everything was fine and For Our Good when Bush was running the show.

      1. What do you mean was?
        –shrike.

        1. Shrike is a schizophrenic who thinks he is Philip Dick. He believes the empire never ended. Bush is just an incarnation for the eternal Caesar, and he is nailing Obama Christ to the cross built from his own eight years of misdeeds.

          Okay, you kind of have to go deep into the Dick literature to get that, but it totally works.

    2. Look, I may deplore their politics, but Rogers and Feinstein wrote some great musical scores. The hills are indeed alive with the sound of music.

      1. Their music isn’t as bad as it sounds!

        1. We know we belong to the land
          And the land we belong to is grand!
          And when we say
          Yeeow! Ayipioeeay!
          We’re only sayin’
          You’re doin’ fine, our NSA!
          Our NSA O.K.

          1. Product of fear may you feed and grow,
            Feed and grow forever.

            N-S-A, N-S-A,
            Protect my homeland forever.

            /Capt. von Trapp

            1. I always wanted to see a version of The Sound of Music in which the Von Trapps get caught by the Nazis.

              1. No way, I don’t want to see anything to happen to the eldest daughter…fine aryan breeding stock right there.

  2. Do they not know what they think they know?

    Or do they know what they don’t know what they think they know?

    Or do they not want to know what they know they don;t think to know?

    1. I know that that don’t know what they think they know, but they don’t know that I know that because they think I’m beneath their notice.

      1. I believe the danger lies in all the things we know that aren’t so…

    2. Operation Ivy covered this very dilemma.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5HtUnubXAO4

      Knowledge

      I know things are getting tougher
      When you cant get the top off the bottom of the barrel
      Wide open road of my future now…
      Its looking fucking narrow
      All I know is that I don’t know
      All I know is that I don’t know nothing
      All I know is that I don’t know
      All I know is that I don’t know nothing
      We get told to decide
      Just like as if I’m not gonna change my mind
      All I know is that I don’t know
      All I know is that I don’t know nothing
      All I know is that I don’t know
      All I know is that I don’t know nothing
      Whatcha gonna do with yourself
      Boy better make up your mind
      Whatcha gonna do with yourself
      Boy running out of time
      This time I got it all figured out
      All I know is that I don’t know
      All I know is that I don’t know nothing
      All I know is that I don’t know
      All I know is that I don’t know nothing
      All I know is that I don’t know
      All I know is that I don’t know nothing
      All I know is that I don’t know
      All I know is that I don’t know nothing
      And that’s fine

      1. Rebuttal:

        A cat lies awake when it sleeps
        Was she conscious of her own miseries?
        Will the agony of her pain
        Win her to enlightenment and set conscience free?

        Do you really wanna know what’s happenin’?
        Do you really wanna know what’s goin’ on?
        Hey, girl, you better please take a look around
        Explore your heart, find out for yourself

        Jenny Demilo, you don’t care nothin’ about me
        Jenny Demilo, well you don’t care nothin’ ’bout me

        I never really got a reason
        Never had a use for one before
        But now I know that there’s now a prize
        Both for the wise and the unwise

        Do you really wanna know what’s happenin’?
        Do you really wanna know what’s goin’ on?
        Hey, girl, you better please take a look around
        Explore your heart, find out for yourself

        Jenny Demilo, you don’t care nothin’ about me
        Jenny Demilo, well you don’t care nothin’ ’bout me

        About me, about me
        About me, yeah yeah, about me
        About me, about me
        About me, yeah yeah, nothin’ ’bout me

        Jenny Demilo, you don’t care nothin’ about me
        Jenny Demilo, well you don’t care nothin’ ’bout me

        I say you don’t care nothin’ about me
        I say you don’t care nothin’ about me
        I say you don’t care

  3. All Frakenfiend knows about it, is that it’s totalitarian and therefore, she’s for it.

  4. What Feinstein liked was that she was in the loop–which is a type of power–and the proles weren’t. Now that she’s finding out that she isn’t as powerful as she thought she was, she’ll get pissed at the NSA.

    1. I’d hate you less right now if you were wrong.

      1. Let the hate flow through you.

      2. Don’t let that stop you. Epi strikes a unique balance of being right and retarded. I like to think of him as rightarded.

    2. NSA == Big Government. Feinstein will never hate the NSA.

      1. I can totally see her throwing a hissy fit because they made her look like a chump. Remember, what people like Feinstein like most of all is power. Big government happens to be the way she achieves that, but the NSA is only a part of it.

        Can’t you see her ranting and raving to her staff about “getting” the NSA higher ups because they made her look like a gullible idiot who wasn’t considered important enough to be told everything?

        1. I can see her demanding a new regulatory oversight commision (I’ll call it NSA+1) that reports directly to her to make sure the NSA stays in line stays under her direct control.

          1. Sure, but my point is, she is very likely pissed at the NSA and petty tyrants like herself will often do something about it if they can; that’s the point of being a petty tyrant.

            1. It’s good to be the petty tyrant…

              1. Right up until the time people wise up and start thinking “You know what? Fuck this bitch. Off with her head!”

                Bah, who am I kidding…

    3. I doubt it. But maybe if there is some noise about dissolving the intelligence committee and moving to general oversight, she’ll get a clue, if she isn’t too senile.

  5. Sensenbrenner, who was the primary author of the Patriot Act, is saying that the NSA has gone way beyond what the Patriot Act authorizes.

    “As I have said numerous times, I did not know the administration was using the Patriot Act for bulk collection, and neither did a majority of my colleagues. Regardless, the suggestion that the administration can violate the law because Congress failed to object is outrageous. But let them be on notice: I am objecting right now.”

    http://www.latimes.com/opinion…..7481.story

    1. Yeah, even though everyone that objected pretty much laid what’s happening right now out for the proponents.

      It’s almost like libertarians can see how actions have consequences and the rest of the world thinks it’s just magic.

      1. The first mistake of ‘the rest of the world’ is trusting government.

    2. That was a fine read.

    3. Fuck you, Sensenbrenner.

      1) You ignored warnings that this would happen.

      2) You would be perfectly OK with it if the POTUS were Team Red.

      Die in a drone strike, asshole!

  6. When I see “Dianne Feinstein” and “know” in the same sentence, I don’t read past.

  7. . “Secrecy is a form of regulation,” he warned. “At times, in the name of national security, secrecy has put that very security in harm’s way.” He observed that although secrecy is absolutely necessary for our protection, it all too often serves as the first refuge of incompetents or those drunk with arrogance. We should not give these groups the ability to cloak their operations ? no matter how virtuous the goal.

    Moynihan had Reagan in mind when he wrote that– ignore the 1999 date. Had Obama been in power, Moynihan would have likely shredded that editorial.

    1. Know who else had secret organizations…

      Ah fuck it, it’s too easy.

  8. They’ve been so adamant that they knew everything and it was all for the greater good that they couldn’t possibly reverse course. They’ve hitched their wagon firmly to the surveillance state horse and it’s not coming off until the whole thing crashes to the canyon floor.

    1. I was actually going to comment along those lines, but then figured it was too obvious.

      The one thing a power hungry politician never does is admit it was wrong.

      1. Nothing is ever too obvious for me.

        1. Or this:

          https://reason.com/archives/201…..nt_2200755

          Emo Philips? Hwarf! Still the funniest thing I’ve seen here.

  9. As angry as I get about Pelosi and the PPACA, I forget that the PATRIOT Act was the first bill that you had to pass before Congress got to see what was in it.

  10. Submitted without comment:

    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013…..963f4.html

    1. “Other kids quit because they can’t keep up,” Marie Gandron said, adding that she considered changing the rules of the contest so prizes are given to children whose names are pulled out of a hat instead of reading the most books.

      You dumb fucking cunt, YOU ARE RUINING OUR COUNTRY.

      1. But what about the kids who aren’t good at having their names pulled out of hats?

        1. Well, at least they’re learning why not to play the lottery while young.

      2. And now you see that in the world of librarians SugarFree is far from the most evil.

        1. He’s evil-ish. Sort of a milquetoast evil, as it were.

          1. He’s the Diet Coke of evil.

        2. My school librarian told me to read Atlas Shrugged and enter some kind of essay writing contest. Clearly she was the most evil.

          1. The exact same thing happened to me. The librarian was a short Irish woman, literally from there, and not an American thrice bullshitting you derivative. Oh man, did we play some pranks on her leprechaun ass. I don’t know why she thought I was a good fit, but I wasn’t about to do anything for the satisfaction of another before my own. Also, not knowing much about the objectivist society running the contest, I thought of them as Scientology wannabes.

            1. Scientologyist

        3. If there’s one thing you should learn from Parks and Recreation, it’s that librarians are evil.

        4. He’s a librarian? I thought he was a homeless man who posted from the library.

          1. Spent so much time there, they gave him a position. And a cape!

    2. and once your name has been pulled, you can’t win again until every other child has won.

  11. I recently bought a book of insults. Let me see what I can find:

    “May the devil damn you to the stone of dirges, or to the well of ashes seven miles below hell; and may the devil break your bones! And all my calamity and harm and misfortune for a year on you!”

    Curse of the Cois Fharraige, West of Galway City, in Connemara

    “…a pig, an ass, a dunghill, the spawn of an adder, a basilisk, a lying buffoon, a mad fool with a frothy mouth…a lubberly ass…a frantic madman…”

    Martin Luther on Henry VIII

    “A monster, gibbering shrieks and gnashing imprecations against mankind – tearing down all shreds of modesty, past all sense of manliness and shame: filthy in word, filthy in thought, furious, raging, obscene.”

    William Thackeray on Jonathan Swift

    “A vacuum with nipples.”

    Otto Preminger on Marilyn Monroe

    “Attila the Hen”

    Clement Freud on Margaret Thatcher

    (Matthew Parris, ed. Scorn: With Added Vitriol (New Edition). Penguin Books, 1996.)

    1. Thanks for the recommendation.

  12. What was the name of that movie, where Rogers and Feinstein fall in love?

  13. Too bad David Icke hasn’t said what he thinks of this NSA shit.

    Oh wait

    1. I don’t know if I’d am supposed to feel dumb about this, but I never heard of this guy. So I am thinking… who the hell is David Icke?

      So I clicked the link and started reading random sections of it, and then I saw this:

      His most staggering revelation is that the Earth and the collective human mind is manipulated from the Moon, which, he says, is not a ‘heavenly body’, but an artificial construct ? a gigantic ‘spacecraft’ (probably a hollowed-out ‘planetoid’) ? which is home to the extraterrestrial group that has been manipulating humanity for aeons.

      And that’s when the ‘oh great, another nut case’ alarm went off and I quickly left that site…

      1. yeah he’s a nut

      2. I think he’s the main guy who started talking about “Shapeshifting Reptilian Overlords” and all. That shit.

        1. Ah, I bet the lizard overlords are from a planet that no one has ever seen because it’s been hidden behind the sun for 6000 years, but will soon suddenly appear…

          1. Yeah, I pretty much lump him with von Daniken, Sitchin, all those guys who talk about secret planets and shit, the whole “Ancient Aliens” crowd.

      3. HOWEVER,

        I don’t discount that Luna could be hollow or an artificial construct.

      4. That is a pretty staggering revelation alright.

  14. You’re asking about the NSA? Hey the President got a new puppy!

    1. The messiah should name the puppy Chairman Mao.

  15. Minister, the traditional allocation of executive responsibilities has always been so determined as to liberate the ministerial incumbent from the administrative minutiae by devolving the managerial functions to those whose experience and qualifications have better formed them for the performance of such humble offices, thereby releasing their political overlords for the more onerous duties and profound deliberations which are the inevitable concomitant of their exalted position.

    1. Is that a quote from Yes Minister?

      1. HERCULE TRIATHLON SAVINIEN

      2. Yep. Although given that the inability of politicians to restrain the civil service was the subject matter of the entire show, you could just about pick a quote at random and have it work.

        1. Sir Humphrey: Bernard, Ministers should never know more than they need to know. Then they can’t tell anyone. Like secret agents; they could be captured and tortured.
          Bernard: [shocked] You mean by terrorists?
          Sir Humphrey: [seriously] By the BBC, Bernard.

        2. Hacker: The three articles of Civil Service faith: it takes longer to do things quickly, it’s more expensive to do them cheaply and it’s more democratic to do them in secret.

        3. Sir Humphrey: Open government, Prime Minister. Freedom of information. We should always tell the press freely and frankly anything that they could easily find out some other way.

        4. Bernard: That’s another of those irregular verbs, isn’t it? I give confidential press briefings; you leak; he’s being charged under section 2A of the Official Secrets Act.

  16. Sometimes man, you jsut have to rol lwith the punches. Wow.

    http://www.Anon-Prime.tk

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