FISA NSA Terrorism The Daily Banter

NSA Bombshell Story Falling Apart Under Scrutiny; Key Facts Turning Out to Be Inaccurate

A special weekend column:

It turns out, the NSA PRISM story isn’t quite the bombshell that everyone said it was. Yes, there continues to be a serious cause for concern when it comes to government spying and overreach with its counter-terrorism efforts. But the reporting from Glenn Greenwald and the Washington Post has been shoddy and misleading.

We shouldn’t shrug off our weakened privacy as a merely a side effect of the digital age, either. We ought to fight to preserve as much of our personal information as possible. So if there’s any benefit to the NSA news, it’s to serve as a reminder that, yes, the government is serious about attaining information in its war on terrorism and that we should be aware of what’s going on — checking it when it gets out of control.

But with new contravening information emerging since the original stories were posted by Greenwald and the Washington Post, it’s clear that the reporting by each news outlet was filled with possibly agenda-driven speculation and key inaccuracies.

Greenwald told CNN, “It’s well past time that we have a debate about whether that’s the kind of country and world in which we want to live.”

Canonizing bad reporting as a means of inciting a debate is as bad as no debate at all. Attachment to empirical reality must remain a central trait of the left, otherwise the progressive movement is no better than the non-reality based propagandists on the right who will say and do anything to further the conservative agenda. So perhaps some positive changes on domestic spying are eventually achieved, but at what cost? Greenwald, who doesn’t really care about “left and right,” isn’t concerned with anything other than his personal agenda and clearly he’s willing to do whatever it takes in pursuit of those goals. Specifics presently.

It’s a shame because there’s a way to have this debate without selling out to misinformation. Instead, we appear to be careening way off the empirical rails into hysterical, kneejerk acceptance of half-assed information.

Here’s how this story has played out since late Thursday. [READ MORE]

  • TiredOfThePhonies

    Greenwald has never gotten over that fact that Hillary Clinton is not President and uses every chance he can get to trash President Obama.

  • missliberties

    No, it isn’t debate. It isn’t journalism. And it’s infuriating.

    That anyone gives paranoid, angry, spite filled, maniac, sensationalist Glenn Greenwald credit is tragic, for everyone except Greenwald’s ego.

    “Canonizing bad reporting as a means of inciting a debate is as bad as no debate at all.

  • Victor_the_Crab

    You really brought the Greenwaldian zombies out on this one, Bob. Way to get under their skin, which shouldn’t have been too difficult seeing how thin it is.