I voted for Obama, but I am compelled to speak up with he pushes the same insane policies as bush when it comes to spying on Americans. He continues to act against our allegedly-treasured Constitution as he continues to expand America’s surveillance State. Glenn Greenwald sum up the situation: “The continuously expanding Surveillance State in the United States is easily one of the most consequential and under-discussed political developments. And few are doing more to ensure it continues than top-level Obama national security officials.”
Amy Goodman discussed recent developments in Congress with William Binney, who served in the National Security Agency for nearly 40 years, including a stint as technical director of its World Geopolitical and Military Analysis Reporting Group. Since retiring from the NSA in 2001, Binney has warned that the NSA’s data mining program has become so vast that it could “create an Orwellian state.”
Here is the immediate problem:
The Senate is closer to renewing controversial measures that critics say would allow the emails and phone calls of U.S. citizens to be monitored without a warrant. The Select Committee on Intelligence has voted to extend controversial amendments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act that were set to expire at the end of this year.
Here is William Binney’s reaction:
Well, in my mind, this is a continuation in the mindless legislation that our Congress has been putting out, just to justify what they’ve been doing for a decade or more. Instead of trying to use discipline and living up to their oath of office to defend the Constitution, they’ve decided to violate the civil liberties and the rights of all U.S. citizens. And that’s what—that’s what’s going on here. That’s what PATRIOT Act Section 215 is about. That’s what they’ve been doing. And what’s happening is they’re destroying the strength of this nation, which is the freedom and liberties that the citizens have to do things . . . [O]ne of the primary reasons I left NSA. I mean, we were collecting data on virtually every U.S. citizen in the country. And so, I couldn’t—I couldn’t participate in that. I couldn’t be an accessory to subversion of the Constitution and subverting the constitutional rights of every U.S. citizen. So I had to go. And that’s the reason I left. But like I say, I left a system, that they used that system that I built to target U.S. citizens. But when I left it there, I had built in protections, but it meant that, for them, they could not use my system that way and target U.S. citizens, so they had to remove the protections to make that possible.