James Clapper

Why Should Americans Believe Spy Chiefs Clapper and Alexander Now? Fire Them.


U.S. Government

Today, director of national intelligence James Clapper and NSA head Keith Alexander testified in front of the House Select Committee on Intelligence. Both defended spying on foreign leaders and spying on American citizens. The New York Times reports:

"To be sure, on occasion we have made mistakes," said James R. Clapper, the director of national intelligence, though he attributed most of them to human error.

The Washington Post reports:

Army Gen. Keith Alexander, director of the NSA, said reports to the contrary, based on revelations by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, were "completely false." He said European intelligence services collected phone records in war zones and other areas outside their borders and shared them with the NSA.

"This is not information that we collected on European citizens," Alexander told the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. "It represents information that we and our NATO allies have collected in defense of our countries and in support of military operations."

Apparently referring to a slide outlining the information, Alexander said the leaker and reporters "did not understand what they were looking at."

Then explain it to us, General.

Given the fact that Clapper is a known baldfaced liar and Alexander has certainly exaggerated the number of terrorist incidents that the massive violation of Americans' Fourth Amendment rights his agency's domestic spying program has only tangentially provided some information about, why should anybody believe either of them?

If "mistakes were made," then those who made them and the supervisors who allowed them to go unreported should be punished. Ultimately, the only way to restore credibility to our government's intelligence agencies and protect the privacy of Americans is for President Obama to fire both Clapper and Alexander immediately. Then Congress needs to quickly pass legislation reining in intrusive domestic spying programs.

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  1. Did Clapper give the least untruthful answer again?

    1. Several years ago we had a hospital administrator that I had to answer to, who looked amazingly like Clapper does in this photo. What an unsufferable psychotic prick he was. It took the entire hospital staff signing a petition and threatening to go on strike before the Board of Directors finally “reassigned” him to a pasture somewhere.

      Perhaps our USA citizens can threaten to go on strike until Clapper is farmed out?

  2. Fire them? Arrest them, for christ’s sake. They and their minions are culpable for BILLIONS of felonies.


    1. It’s true; if you use the standard applied to normals, each collection is its own count.

      1. What’s the point of having double standards if you can’t use the second one?

    2. How many nudie pics of teens did they sweep up in their wire tapping?

      Aren’t they at least guilty of trafficking in kiddie pr0n?

  3. I’ve asked people of varying ideological stripes repeatedly why Clapper is not in jail despite the fact that everybody knows he lied to Congress.

    I have yet to receive anything even resembling a coherent answer. Nobody can defend what he did. Worse, nobody even seems interested in doing much of anything to possibly move things in a direction towards the slightest accountability–even in a case where virtually everyone admits the guy knowingly committed a serious crime.

    1. I’ve asked people of varying ideological stripes repeatedly why Clapper is not in jail despite the fact that everybody knows he lied to Congress.

      Coherent answer…..? Here ya go!


  4. Personally, I don’t care much about spying on international leaders. The United States government ostensibly has no direct power over them. It can’t use what U.S. intelligence gathers about Merkel to arrest her or tax her or arbitrarily slap her on a no-fly list.

    Let’s our representatives instead worry about what the administration is doing to those of us who they do hold direct (and pretty much unchallenged) power over.

  5. There is a positive side to them keeping their jobs.

    Spying is finding hidden data without getting caught. These guys are awfully bad.

    Unless the apparatus of spying is dismantled we’re all better off if idiots like these are in charge. If they are fired, we run the risk of someone competent taking over.

  6. End the NSA, put its leaders in prison, and blacklist everyone else there from ever working for the government again.

  7. Today was a turning point, as the rest of the leadership of both parties have jumped on the bandwagon and are saying they support reforms. Snowden and Greenwald and their allies have won the first round, they have tipped public opinion against the surveillance. Now the fight shifts to the legislation.

  8. “This is not information that we collected on European citizens. It represents information that we and our NATO allies have collected in defense of our countries and in support of military operations.”

    Why, oh why, will no congresscreature scream an obscenity, blow a whistle, ring a gong, or at least laugh out loud when crap like this is uttered during a hearing?

    At least Marilyn Tavenner elicited some guffaws today with her “it’s working” bullshit.

  9. They, and Obama, have lied consistently regarding the issue; never once stating the whole truth and nothing but.
    I wouldn’t trust a one of them with taking out the garbage. Obama should probably be impeached and the others summarily fired, and denied any and all benefits.

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    1. Fuck you, spam bot.

      1. Something has to be done about the spambots on Reason. If I hear one more time about how much some bitch makes at home on her computer I’ll scream.

  11. Jing Sunn is not making sense dude.


  12. It looks like the easiest way to get rid of Clapper would be to play some Slim Whitman songs. Make sure to pack a raincoat.

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