By now, it looks like we're all aware of the problem -- the NSA and it's reach or over-reach into our privacy. That's something that the Constitution was supposed to be protecting. But I guess the Framers forgot to put in the part about internet searches and unauthorized invasion of privacy. What were those powdered wig cut-ups thinking? How could they have overlooked electronic surveillance? Oh, that's right, they didn't have electronic devices.
But the Supreme court has ruled that we are protected by the Bill of Rights -- that same set of rights that lets us all bear arms and have rights like freedom of religion and speech. So the SCOTUS tells us we also have the right to privacy.
The right to privacy is not mentioned in the Constitution, but the Supreme Court has said that several of the amendments create this right. One of the amendments is the Fourth Amendment, which stops the police and other government agents from searching us or our property without "probable cause" to believe that we have committed a crime.
"Probable Cause" is not just making a phone call or sending an email. There needs to be more to it than that. So this mess of collecting data on our basic right of freedom from unreasonable search and seizure seems to have been grossly violated. If you're caught doing it, you must face the music. James Clapper not only violated our rights, he lied to congress about it. And that too is breaking the law.
So how can we have a man like that go off scott-free? Or worse, continue in his position of public trust? And take this one step farther, how can Obama put this man in charge of investigating his own lawbreaking activities?
Grab a clothespin or just hold your nose while watching this video. You're going to see that the fish stinks from the head on down.
Here's what the bruhaha is about -- Director of National Intelligence James Clapper lying to Congress, delivered by Cenk Uygur from Young Turks:
Doesn't seem too hard to understand. Clapper lied plain and simple, when queried by Congress about this program that we now know is called, Prism. It would have been easy to just fess up, but he had to go on to explain how difficult it is to answer a simple question.
Out the window went his credibility as he, with the administration's blessing, tendered a directional shift. The push became, he didn't really lie, but he misled -- with good reason. "Your Honor, I did shoot that sleeping, quadriplegic man, but let me explain."
Well Clapper's explanation holds as much water as an industrial spaghetti-draining sieve over at The Luigi's House of Pasta. It was done for national security. That old chestnut of an excuse. Labeling his statement "misleading" instead of an intentional, bold-faced lying is tantamount to calling the Rock of Gibraltar a pebble. According to the Director of National Intelligence, revealing the truth, even to a select few in Congress would have greatly compromised this important program and done it irreparable harm.
Seems congress isn't buying that -- yet.
So, step three. President Obama will form a special presidential panel to study this. Now that sounds like action. Good plan -- an "independent group" of "outside experts" to review privacy issues raised by the nation's surveillance programs
Whoa, Nelly. Not so fast. Who does POTUS put in charge of this panel? James Clapper. The same James Clapper who lied to Congress.
As you can see, I'm not the only one who's starting to smell the stench of preventive cover-up. C'mon, Obama, you can do better than that. We deserve better than that. Even if you put your brother-in-law in there to oversee it, we'd have more confidence than in the current director of National Intelligence.
Now's the time to do like the commercial for the sound activated electric switch, "clap on, clap off." It's one thing for the GOP to take us for fools. But we had much higher standards set for you, Mr. Obama. Fool me once, shame on me. Fool me twice, shame on...you or me or someone. I'll have to check with George W. He knew what he was talking about.
So withdraw Claptrap from supervising this panel. Put someone in there we can trust. I know, in Washington that's hard to find. But maybe you can get someone who's knowledgeable and not doing anything -- like say, Joe Biden.