NSA Quote

Quote of the Morning

“The long national pile of phone bills nightmare is not over, but it did get a debate and a vote on the floor of the House of Representatives, and All In with Chris Hayes host Chris Hayes and Salon’s David Sirota couldn’t be happier to see it. As little as I care about the NSA’s collection of telephone metadata, I have to agree with both men that the amendment offered by Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) is exactly the sort of thing that the unproductive Conversation™ on government surveillance needs.” Tommy Christopher writing for Mediaite

The first part of this quote earns Tommy the honor: the long national pile of phone bills nightmare. Metadata being the equivalent of what’s on a phone bill. The only difference being that your corporate phone company can see it and sell it to third parties while the government doesn’t do a damn thing with it without an individual warrant.

Anyway, it’s a classic post from Tommy. He delivered a killer takedown of Sirota’s appearance on All In last night. Read the whole thing here.

  • http://twitter.com/TeekeeMon/ TeekeeMon

    New Jersey Democrat proposes bill to repeal the Patriot Act http://t.co/3vGwSPcXzb

    Undermining the President.

    • D_C_Wilson

      Good. It should never have been passed in the first place.

  • http://www.broadwaycarl.com Broadway Carl

    Funny – I hadn’t watched the talking heads on MSNBC for months now, except for the occasional 15 minutes of Maddow. Then I caught Chris Hayes’ takedown of Bill O’Reilly and thought, “Gee, what have I been missing?” So I decided to watch the 1pm repeat last night and my hand couldn’t reach for the remote soon enough the second he introduced Sirota. Oh, well.

  • BlueTrooth

    Hard enough to watch Chris but when David popped up, I just couldn’t watch. That aside, the big “myth” that is at the heart of this crusade is that data and metadata will simply “vanish” or be “destroyed” if the NSA doesn’t store it. That is simply wishful thinking and quite naive on the part of our self-appointed “security/privacy experts” on the left or right. Data is value. Data is similar to digital currency. Data allows humans the closest thing to time-travel we’ve ever known, at least going backward in time. What do our “experts” think “The Cloud” actually is? Do they think that every 3 years or so, the data is destroyed? Recently, the first-ever “web page” was made available for viewing and it was produced from the original data, huh, imagine that. When your hard drive crashes and you load a new operating system and you enter your passwords…are your emails gone? And hey, why is it that I can retrieve “destroyed” emails after jumping through a couple hoops? These are just simple examples to generate thought, but hopefully the point is clear. It is not a “red herring” to suggest that Corporations with Billions in profit are collecting and storing every last byte they can find. Primarily because it is a very cheap investment with a guaranteed margin of at least “some” profit. That isn’t the whole story, but it’s part of the premise we should be recognizing when we discuss the 4th Amendment and the storage/analysis of data. Transparency is the key issue. The individual’s right to know they are being investigated or their data security has been breached. In other words, FISA reform. When you come to the realization that the “Internet” itself is like one HUGE NSA storage bin that can be searched and analyzed for the very same information they currently minimize and archive, you will understand that the Amash Amendment was just a stunt and would be pointless even if adopted. You might hear the argument that if the data is so available, why do they store it? The answer is efficiency and accuracy. Warrants may be approved at a high rate, but they require time. Time is a precious commodity in the national security business. And I can double-guarantee that without the archives, the NSA and FISC would generate a more broadly applied warrant that would allow mining as a means of collection OR there would be a private sector solution (yay for business opportunities!) because the data the NSA wants has value, in real dollars, and it’s right there on the interwebs.

    • BlueTrooth

      By the way…whenever I write “Yay for ” I’m being very sarcastic.

    • http://twitter.com/Cody_K/ Cody

      This is exactly what I replied to on Tommy’s post.
      His idea that data is immediately destroyed is remarkably dim. And his scenario of “if a disaster happens”… well, that’s the time for the NSA to go digging
      through archives.

      There is no reason to have an ongoing secret order to hoover up all communications metadata 24-7-365 on American citizens that are not involved in any current investigation of criminal activity.

  • i_a_c

    I tried to watch Chris Hayes but I shut him the fuck off when he suggested that the president’s policies are responsible for the somewhat sluggish economic growth. Fuck you for reciting RW talking points. His ratings suck horribly so maybe he’ll get shitcanned soon enough.

    • i_a_c

      Also, fuck you for putting on David “Obama = Zimmerman” Sirota. Way to have an informed debate about the issues.

  • Badgerite

    I read Nicholas Kristoff’s piece in the Times, A Policy of Rape Continues. It seems that whenever the world isn’t looking Bashir of the Sudan ratchets up the murder and rape campaigns that he is so well known for in disputed areas of the Sudan and in Darfur. Reading that, I could not help but be reminded of Greenwald’s tweets comments about how much Snowden has done for humanity. This is all going on while the left engages in this pompous campaign of self glorifying ‘navel gazing’. It is rather disgusting really. It would seem that they only care about a person death if it is caused by a drone. A gang of armed men, some in army uniforms, coming into a village and murdering the men and boys and gang raping the women doesn’t seem to register. And this is their ‘big victory’ for Humanity? That they ALMOST got Congress to say that the NSA cannot collect phone bills? Phone bills that have to be destroyed after 5 years. I’ll bet the phone company keeps them longer than that. And to go any deeper into an investigation they need a particularized warrant. So, the problem is what? And they keep saying that this is about the 4th Amendment. But phone metadata is not within the protections of the 4th Amendment according to SCOTUS whose pronouncements on such things are supposed to be definitive. I just think these people have lost any sense of perspective. AT ALL.

  • blackdaug

    Reading the comments under that post is particularly sad. His mild rebuke of the hair aflame brigade is met with universal scorn.
    No one sees Sirota’s glee at democrats undermining the President as anything other than a good thing…..and it turns out Chris Hayes is just as up for a presidential witch hunt as the next talking head.
    The Republicans have let the inmates take over their wing of the asylum, and the Democrats seemed determined to follow suit.
    If only the problem with the democratic inmates was their leaning too far to the left, instead of just too far to the crazy. Which really just makes them the same inmates, with better meds.

    • ranger11

      Maybe it’s just me but I kind of prefer the old Democratic Socialist Left to this newfangled Libertarian Left. How can these be the same people who love FDR and LBJ so much yet now praise the likes of Rand Paul and Justin Amash? Makes no sense to me. Yeah; smash that Left/Right paradigm! And replace it with what? Minorities and poor people better hang on to their balls with this brave new world.

      • Badgerite

        It’s not just you!

      • trgahan

        I don’t know. When it comes to issues of foreign policy and national security, the faux-libertarian left is hocking the same intellectually lazy utopian arguments and condemnations that have been screeched for decades under many a different banner.

        • blackdaug

          It’s pretty weird, spending your entire life on the left of everyone on almost every issue, finally getting a President whose core beliefs pretty much mirror you own, and watching him be torn down as an overreaching civil rights abusing dictator, by a bunch of people who just discovered the left after Bush’s first term.
          Weird in a kind of..makes one want to say “fuck it” and move to Norway….kind of way.

          • http://www.dlancystreet.com reginahny

            Hit the nail on the head! As a 52 year old life-long liberal activist I agree 100% with “by a bunch of people who just discovered the left after Bush…” I’m all for people evolving and changing their political beliefs but this just feels disingenuous.

          • Kerry Reid

            Right — like Glenn Greenwald blithely assuming that everything worked just fine and ignoring politics until he was, what, 40? And then deciding that OMG YOUGUYS!!! BUSH IS BAD!!!

            As if those of us who have been working on women’s rights and other civil rights issues for decades hadn’t been doing our damndest to put the lie to the glibertarian BS about “Both Parties Are the Same!”

            Though I suppose if you’re a rich white male, they ARE essentially the same inasmuch as you have the resources to protect your prerogatives regardless of administration and nobody targets you for discrimination.

            Since that demographic doesn’t have obvious attacks on civil liberties (curtailment of voting rights, attacks on health and bodily integrity, etc.), they have to invent martyrdom for themselves in the form of “BUT WHAT IF THE GUMMINT LISTENS TO MY PHONE CALLS? HUH? HUH?” variety. I mean — again, the fact that Glenn actually WROTE AND PUBLISHED an assertion that it had never been possible to hold a U.S. citizen without trial before Jose Padilla shows just how blindingly out of touch with history and reality he and quite a few others in the EmoProg commentariat have been for quite some time. Thanks for finally waking up, but have a seat and get schooled before you run your mouths.

          • nathkatun7

            Thank you for expressing so well the way I feel. I am 67 years old and I’ve known Presidents since JFK. Now all of sudden former right wing Republicans like Cenk Uygur and Arriana Huffington, and libertarians, like Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowden, are paraded by the MSM as the paragons of pure liberalism/progressivism.

          • Kerry Reid

            And they are too stupid (or feckless) to see how their broad-brush attacks against GUMMINT!!! and INVASION OF PRIVACY!!! play right into the hands of those who argue against “government takeovers” of healthcare. I mean, what is more private and intimate than health records? If you don’t think that elected officials can come up with acceptable ways to protect privacy in an age of metadata, how on earth do you turn around and tell Teabaggers that THEY are paranoid conspiracy freaks for thinking that “death panels” are just around the corner?

    • Political Info

      If Chris Hayes applauds this next Schiff effort the way Bob has:
      (well, a mention anyway… can’t get Bob to actually voice support here on his blog for the multiple attempts at narrow efforts to roll back the Patriot Act)

      So anyway, if Chris Hayes also supports that bill… does that mean Bob is simply undermining the President?

      • blackdaug

        Well..welcome 12 comment troll who apparently doesn’t know what Bob has posted! Get in line and rave on…

        • Political Info

          12 comments? I’ve never posted comments here.
          I think I may have on his old “GD Awesome” blog, but not here at Daily Banter.

          I do know he hasn’t voiced any support for any individual bills or proposals to roll back domestic surveillance in the last two months.
          He spoke about FISC court reform once in another Snowden/Greenwald centric drama post recently… but no specific legislation to encourage his readers to build support for.

          Last night he seemed genuinely unaware or bewildered by the process altogether… http://bit.ly/13gJfQk

          So anyway, back to my question:
          Is Bob Cesca undermining the President with talk like that?

          • http://twitter.com/TeekeeMon/ TeekeeMon

            Given that polling has swung hard against Patriot Act domestic spying, here are the people undermining the president…

          • blackdaug

            Click on your name…right above your post…it shows how many comments you have made. Idiot.

          • Political Info

            You seem determined to avoid my question about your silly “undermining the president” framing in your original remarks. But I’ll go ahead and bite on your similarly ridiculous assertion now.

            How many Daily Banter comments do you add up to, prior to yesterday, when you click on my discus acct name, Genius?