At yesterday's Senate Intelligence Committee hearings, NSA boss Keith Alexander and top spy James Clapper evaded, blocked, and dodged questions from elected reps, making a mockery of the idea that there's any adult supervision of America's spooks. A telling moment came when Mark Udall asked if they ended to collect the records of all Americans, and Alexander said, "I believe it is in the nation's best interest to put all the phone records into a lockbox – yes."
Wyden and his fellow Democrat Mark Udall used the public hearing to press the intelligence chiefs on aspects of the top-secret surveillance infrastructure.
Asked by Udall whether it was the NSA's aim to collect the records of all Americans, Alexander replied: "I believe it is in the nation's best interest to put all the phone records into a lockbox – yes."
He would not be drawn on any past attempts or plans to store cell site data for security reasons. The NSA director evaded repeated questions from Wyden over whether the NSA had either collection of cell site phone data, or planned to do so. Alexander eventually replied: "What I don't want to do senator is put out in an unclassified form anything that is classified."
US intelligence chiefs urge Congress to preserve surveillance programs [Paul Lewis and Dan Roberts/The Guardian]
The new data-sharing rules enacted by the Obama administration will allow the NSA to lawfully share the unredacted, full take of its surveillance databases with sixteen other US government agencies — meaning that, for example, Trump’s door-to-door deportation squads could use that data to figure out who’s doors to break down, and his Muslim surveillance […]
Kamala Harris was just sworn in as a senator from California, but her last gig was as California’s Attorney General, and in that role, she decided not to prosecute Trump Treasury Secretary pick Steve Mnuchin, whom her office had identified as presiding over “widespread misconduct” in foreclosing on Californians — that is, stealing their houses.
Update: They’ve backed down because Trump warned them it would be a distraction from taking away healthcare and giving tax cuts to rich people. The independent Office of Congressional Ethics — created in 2008 after three Congressmen were jailed for corruption — has been stripped of its powers by the House GOP, who held an […]
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