NSA

Clapper Didn't Lie About Metadata Collection, Guys! He Just Totally Forgot!

Yeah, that's the ticket!

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Would you believe … ?
Credit: Medill DC / photo on flickr

After Edward Snowden revealed the National Security Agency (NSA) had been collecting and storing telephone metadata from pretty much all Americans, supporters within the administration and security state-loving legislators insisted that this program was absolutely vital to protecting us all from terrorists. It was absolutely important. Abandoning the program would put us all in danger, privacy rights be damned.

But apparently it's also not so important a program that Director of National Intelligence James Clapper would remember it exists when he's directly asked about it. This is the latest spin to explain why Clapper falsely told the Senate Intelligence Committee back in 2013 that the NSA did not "wittingly" scoop up data on millions of Americans. From The Hill:

"This was not an untruth or a falsehood. This was just a mistake on his part," Robert Litt, the general counsel for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, said during a panel discussion hosted by the Advisory Committee on Transparency on Friday.

"We all make mistakes."

Mind you, this has already been spun once before. Previously Clapper acknowledged he wasn't truthful but gave the "lest untruthful" answer he was allowed to give, because secrecy and all that.

Litt insists that Clapper was thinking about a completely different program authorized by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. He totally forgot about this one.

Watch the video of Clapper's testimony below and decide for yourself if you believe him:

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  1. Snowden is a true hero to expose the NSA. They will lie before Congress to hide their spying on American citizens. They can never be trusted..not or in the future.

  2. so who is the GOPer candidate saying anything about dialing back this agency, or any other part of the police state apparatus?

    1. Rand Paul?

  3. I wonder how the “I forgot” defense would work for a mere citizen.

    1. Ignorance of the law is no excuse!

    2. Robert Litt’s statement is wrong on several levels. First, regardless of intent, Clapper’s original statement was untrue. And it was false. It was inherently an untruth and a falsehood. Snowden settled that issue since the cowards in Congress would not.

      Of course, we all know that Clapper was lying with the intention of deceiving Congress, the public, and the world at large. Say what you will about Clapper, he is not in an advanced stage of dementia. This means that Litt is lying here as well.

      I don’t know much about this Advisory Committee. Is it comprised of kindergartners or first-graders? Because nobody else is so naive as to believe Litt’s statement.

      I think Litt has displayed here the profound contempt the national security state has for the American people. If the Advisory Committee accepts this statement as a proforma explanation for Clapper’s “misstatement”, it will further display the profound contempt that the Congress has for the American people.

      1. If the Committee accepts this pathetic, utterly incredible proforma excuse for perjury, it does so knowing full well that everybody who pays attention knows that they are willful in their own deceit. The very fact that the general counsel for national intelligence should so transparently lie to achieve his ends should be disturbing even to flag-waving neocons, socons, and phony liberals.

        Litt should be disbarred for perjury himself.

        1. Wait a minute. A lawyer can be disbarred because he defended a person who is accused of perjury now?

          1. If he perjures himself in the process, why not?

  4. “We all make mistakes.”

    He just forgot to turn off the spy machine one night and ended up recording everything every American citizen ever did!
    Just a mistake, that’s all.

  5. Why isn’t Snowden living peacefully in the U.S., and why isn’t Clapper living in exile in Putin’s Russia?

  6. It’ll soon be summer. Just in time for Clapper to be the guest of honor at the Scaphism on the Potomac Festival.

    1. The Boats!

  7. “We all make mistakes.”

    Uh, no.

    E-3 make mistakes. E-4’s and 5’s make mistakes. *Sometimes* an E-6 makes a mistake, gets his arse reamed for it and potentially faces replacement.

    Fucking *Generals* who head up major government agencies – those guys don’t make mistakes. They have a whole staff whose job it is to prevent exactly that.

    1. No shit. The last time in my life when I might have even considered using the “I forgot” excuse was when I was a 17 year old Marine recruit – and the consequences for that would have been dire. In every job or position I’ve had since then saying “I forgot” would have cost me that job or position.

      Just how is it that the head of a major US government agency is allowed to trot this line of BS out in front of congress and the consequences don’t even amount to a ripple ? WTF?

  8. That fucking Clapper. Just looking at that fuckhead makes me angry.

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  10. He rubbed his scalp and looked down most of the time during the “no” answer. His body language was telling the truth.

  11. Look, the guy made a mistake, I believe him. Can’t we just move on ?!?!?11

  12. What difference, at this point, does it make ?

    That was 2 years ago people. The fact that gays might want pizza delivery at their weddings is what we should be concerned about.

    Hey look!!…….SQUIRREL…over there…

  13. Clapper is stealing Steve Martin’s material

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l00GGEy_72c

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