NSA

Sorry Mr. FBI Director, Challenging Government Snooping Is Heroic

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FBI Director James Comey
FBI

FBI Director James Comey is perplexed. It seems many Americans view revealer-of-snooping-and-eavesdropping Edward Snowden as a whistleblower on wrongdoing and a hero. How can this be, he asked a room full of reporters at a lunchtime interview Thursday. After all, the president said hoovering up everybody's private information is OK, lawmakers said it was a swell idea, and judges gave a big-ol' thumbs-up to the practice. "I see the government operating the way the founders intended," Comey insists. "So I have trouble applying the whistleblower label to someone who basically disagrees with the way our government is structured and operates."

Here's the thing that Jimmy doesn't understand. When government officials do terrible things, and structure the rules to authorize themselves to do terrible things, blowing the whistle on their shenanigans is a good thing to do because it goes against the horrible, horrible "way our government is structured and operates." Given the risks involved—former CIA Director James Woolsey suggests Snowden "should be hanged by his neck until he is dead."—challenging government officials in defiance of the rules those same officials have crafted to whitewash their misdeeds can, understandably, be characterized as "heroic."

The fact is, many Americans don't think of Comey, and James Clapper, and General Keith Alexander, and their friends and enablers in the three branches of government as being on the same side as us. Snowden scored a coup for our side by revealing the other side's creepy surveillance schemes.

And let's be honest here. Comey did himself no favors when, in the same interview, he argued against a review panel's recommendations that the FBI's own use of secretive and intrusive national security letters be subject to some kind of oversight.

"What is broken for which we need that solution?" he asked.

Where to start…? Where to start…?

What would seem to be broken is the political class's sense of right and wrong, and their appreciation of individual liberty and privacy. And that's why so many of us cheer for Edward Snowden and hope for more like him.

Maybe there's somebody with access to FBI files who feels the same way.

NEXT: Former CIA Acting General Counsel: Hollywood, Washington Have Close Relationship, Actor Once Offered to Help CIA in Exchange For $50K's Worth of Cocaine

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  1. Robert Redford in Three Days of the Condor: whistleblower or traitor?

    1. Liked the movie. Loved the book, Six Days of the Condor.

      1. Never read it. What happened to those other three days?

        1. Abortions, circumcisions, refilling ammo clips and deep dish pizza.

          1. Don’t forget artisanal mayo.

  2. It went through the process! Process! How can it be wrong if it went through the process?!?!

    1. Is it just me or is Ed Snowden some sort of ultra-individualist comic book hero.

      He’s seriously awesome than John Galt, and JG was just the product of Alyssa Rosenbaum’s methed up imagination.

  3. Did anyone in that room full of reporters ask the bureaucrat with a gun what a person is supposed to do when confronted with systemic violations of constitutional protections?

    1. Trust your government with all of your heart and all of your soul. What you perceive as violations simply can’t be, since they are better than you in every way.

        1. You have to accept the government as your personal savior. And, believe in the laws, word for word, as being the inerrant word of Gov.

    2. If the government’s doing it, it’s not illegal. Duh.

    3. Ask him to repeat the Oath he took.

      1. “I will love and obey and abase myself before the Chosen One?”

  4. “I see the government operating the way the founders intended,”

    Someone needs to get his money back for any civics, history, or just social studies classes he took. Then they all should be tarred and feathered and run out of town on a rail.

    1. The Founders would’ve gone into armed rebellion against our government more than a century ago. That’s how far removed we are from constitutional government.

      1. The Founders would’ve gone into armed rebellion against our government more than a century ago.

        And they would have all been killed.

        1. Perhaps, but that’s the way they rolled.

    2. So, is the FBI Director a delusional idiot, or a mendacious psychopath?

      Because based on that statement, I don’t see any other alternatives.

      Secret courts, unaccountable bureaucrats, secret policies are all profoundly inconsistent with what the founders intended.

      Not to mention the mass seizure of people’s information without even a hint of probably cause or a warrant issued by a bona fide court.

      1. It went through The Process! How can it possibly be inconsistent with what the founders intended if it went through The Process?!? The Process legitimizes everything!

      2. So, is the FBI Director a delusional idiot, or a mendacious psychopath?

        Can’t he be both?

      3. Why do we have to pick? Can’t he be both delusional idiot and mendacious psychopath?

        1. Of course, he’s an idiotic, delusional, mendacious psychopath.

          It’s pretty much a job requirement for high office in the US, especially in branches of the so-called Justice Department.

      4. No, he’s just your standard order statist bureaucrat with a gun who understands that if you just keep saying shit like “I think this is exactly the way the founders intended it” a lot of the people will nod and go “oh, ok”. He doesn’t believe that any more than you believe it when you tell your kids that the tooth fairy is coming tonight.

        1. Perhaps he has access to the secret Constitution. Most of the Founders were Freemasons, you know.

          1. I thought you had to be 33rd degree Mason to get that? At least that’s what I learned from Dan Brown.

          2. That would be the one on the back written special invisible ink, right? It’s only words: “fuck you, that’s why.”

        2. Someone needs to ask him to explain to us who James Madison was…..i guarantee he would not even know he wrote the freakin document. Someone needs to interview this retard and ask him these basic civics questions so he can be shamed.

        3. He doesn’t believe that any more than you believe it

          So, mendacious psychopath it is. Which is not at all inconsistent with being a standard order statist bureaucrat.

    3. Could be the most outrageous statement of any government bigwig I’ve ever heard.

  5. “What is broken for which we need that solution?” he asked.

    Behold.

  6. Would that the Roman people had but one neck!

  7. Someone doesn’t attain that kind of position by questioning authority.

  8. “I see the government operating the way the founders intended”

    Fourth Amendment.

    No, Seriously.

    “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

    —-Fourth Amendment

    “What is broken for which we need that solution?” he asked.”

    I’d start with probable cause. Probable cause is obviously broken.

    My next step would be to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate, indict, and prosecute any FBI directors, etc. who are traitors to the Constitution and massively violated the American public’s Fourth Amendment rights.

    Incidentally, does the FBI director have to swear and oath to defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic?

    I’m not sure that Eric Snowden did, but a lot of people in the Air Force working for the NSA did, and don’t they have a lot of explaining to do?

    1. I’m not sure that Eric Snowden did

      I asked around at work because lots of people here have security clearances, and they said they had to swear an oath.

      1. He enlisted enough to start training, but he didn’t complete training because he broke both of his legs in an accident, apparently.

        Is that oath something he takes at the beginning of his training or after training is over?

        As far as I’m concerned, if he took that oath? Then what we’re calling “heroism” on Snowden’s part should, actually, be normal behavior.

        People doing what they swore they were going to do isn’t heroic; rather, all the Air Force people working at the NSA–and I understand there are plenty–are in direct violation of their oath. They swore to protect the Constitution from all its domestic enemies, and they joined the enemy.

        Last I checked, there are some 30,000 people working for the NSA, and a ton of them are military.

    2. WHo’s Eric Snowden?

      1. Edward’s slightly less famous younger brother.

        He just blew the whistle on porn sites learning what videos you like to watch.

        Very interesting KK.

        1. So what Dave Franco is to his older, more successful brother.

      2. You know what I meant.

        1. So? We are the choir Pedantic.

          1. I thought the Pedantic went down in 1912.

  9. Even taking away the 4th Amendment issues, the people still have the final say on what the government does and does not do. So if the people don’t want the government collecting their private information, they have every right to through the electoral process put a stop to it.

    The worst thing this guy is saying is not his total disregard of the 4th Amendment, thought that is bad. The worst thing is that he seems to think that not only have no right to object to what various top men decide to do but don’t even have a right to know about it. He is not just objecting to Snowden leaking this stuff. He is objecting to the American public trying to stop this.

  10. So, these self same officials could (and should) be defined as ‘domestic enemies of the Constitution’?

    The answer is yes. Yes they are.

  11. OBEY

  12. “I see the government operating the way the founders intended,” Comey insists

    [violent eliminationist tirade redacted]

    1. I should have been smarter and redacted mine, below. Now I’m going to get my very own drone strike. Yay!

  13. What would seem to be broken is the political class’s sense of right and wrong, and their appreciation of individual liberty and privacy.

    assumes facts clearly not in evidence.

  14. Tree.
    Rope.
    Government bureaucrat (aka “traitor”).

    Some assembly required.

    1. Justice could be obtained at the end of a rope, BUT a much more practical and socially palatable route to justice would be through a tough Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Bloodletting revolutions usually don’t turn out so well.

  15. “I see the government operating the way the founders intended”

    Then you are a fucking moron and deserve to be forcibly removed from office, never to be allowed near any kind of power ever again.

    If it was up to me you would be and then before finally being your head.

    1. Stupid squirrels ate my “redacted” notes. Guess I should have used [] instead of .

      1. Well, you told them to redact, and they did. What were you expecting?

  16. “I see the government operating the way the founders intended,” Comey insists.

    It’s becoming more and more obvious by the day that none of the clowns running our government, from the elected “representatives” to the bureaucrat shit-weasels like Comey understand the first thing about individual liberty or rights. The very concept that there are things the government shouldn’t be allowed to do no matter how noble sounding the stated intentions are is a completely foreign one to these assholes. Which makes this shithead’s assertion that the government is working the way the founders intended a sick joke at best. Fuck them all.

    former CIA Director James Woolsey suggests Snowden “should be hanged by his neck until he is dead.”

    Funny, that’s pretty much how I feel about former CIA Director James Woolsey. And James Comey, James Clapper (what is it with people named James being massive security state fellating shitheads?), Kieth Alexander, John Brennan, Peter King, Mike Rogers, Dianne Feinstein…

  17. Perhaps he has access to the secret Constitution. Most of the Founders were Freemasons, you know.

    It’s kept in a special display case in the basement of the Library of Congress, but you have to know the secret knock, handshake, and password* to get in to see it.

    *Sword-a-fish

  18. So has anyone else been unable to comment for the last ~30 minutes or so? Fucking squirrels.

    1. I haven’t tried.

      1. I find it interesting that the threads I notice the most problems with, like comments failing to post properly, are these kinds of threads dealing with some government bureau-weenie saying or doing something stupid to provoke the vitriol of the commentariat. Kind of makes you wonder…

        *adjusts tin-foil hat*

    2. I had to close the page and open up a new one.

  19. “I see the government operating the way the founders intended,” Comey insists. “So I have trouble applying the whistleblower label to someone who basically disagrees with the way our government is structured and operates.”

    Hey, you. Yes, you, Comey, you lying sack of shit. If the USG is operating in line with the founders, why did you and your fellow fascists work so hard to keep what you were doing secret? Why not just let a grateful nation know that you interpret the founders vision for America to be a national security, total-information-awareness state?

    After all, if you’ve done nothing wrong, you have nothing to hide.

  20. “What is broken for which we need that solution?” he asked.

    For starters, the system is so broken that it selects and promotes psychopath like Comey to high positions of authority.

  21. So has anyone else been unable to comment for the last ~30 minutes or so? Fucking squirrels.

    If by “squirrels” you mean “NSA transcriptionists”…

  22. “I have trouble applying the whistleblower label to someone who basically disagrees with the way our government is structured and operates in total secret to undermine key features of the constitution…”

    Fixed

  23. The disconnect between government officials and individual liberties grows by the day.

    I’m old enough to remember the Red Scare of the late 50s and early 60s; now updated to Comey, Clapper, et. al., just with really cool computers.

    Sigh….

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