Friday, June 21, 2013

They Wire Tapped Candidate Obama

NSA whistleblower Russ Tice talks about how then candidate for Senate Barack Obama was being surveilled by the NSA.  Thanks to Examinator for the tip off on this one.  If you had any doubt about the potential for abuse of this program, consider that whatever skeletons existed on Obama's closet are now possibly known by the NSA.  Is the most most powerful man in the world being controlled by potentially embarrassing information?  You sometimes wonder how a community organizer and Constitutional lawyer like Barack Obama can turn into a war mongering, Constitution shredding lunatic, going in 100% the opposite direction of what his rhetoric during the campaigns would suggest.  Obviously I don't know.  For all I know he could just be a psychopath with no real moral bearings, just saying whatever is expedient for securing power.  But could he be bending to the powers that know his secrets?  While we can't know it we know it's the very kind of thing that the laws in our country were designed to guard against.  We know the temptation for those in power will be to exploit this NSA program in exactly this manner.  People that have power strive to retain their grip on power, and this is how you do it.  This is a travesty that exposes how undemocratic our institutions are, and getting worse.

In a related note, researches are working on drones that look like mosquitos.  They'll be in our homes surveilling, securing their grip on power, unless we stop it.


Examinator said...

Here's a sprinkling of international opinions and the consequences.

Having posted the original URL I think it's appropriate for me to make a few comments.
I have long held and expressed the view here that no POTUS has the power the public think they do. The interview makes it crystal clear that there are other players involved who usually have their own interests. The General in question is a point in fact... He has been described as E J Hoover on steroids. Also clearly this man must have strong sociopathic tendencies (i.e. ambition at all costs, narcissistic messianic convictions, rampant paranoia and lacking in empathy etc. If he didn't he'd have burned out years back. To be fair he may not have started out that way. As Tice quoted (Lord Acton's) ' power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely'. Most likely it's a case of the mythical ' boiling frog scenario'. The defining factor is knowing where the boundaries are. Clearly he has resorted to the all too familiar ' neo Capitalist 'it's only wrong if you get caught or can't get around blocking law(s).' In this case the system allows non elected individuals to exclude the public from knowing (Secrecy) and oversight is from all appearances merely an expensive rubber stamp.

Common sense tells you that any top of the NSA , CIA, FBI etc. clearly have conflicts of interest as they are all direct players in Government. It is apparent that they as unelected advisers can sway / prefabricate evidence/ bully/ cajole and threaten those who are elected. In short usurp elected mandates ( such as they are.) this has shades of the Pakistani true power being with their generals an secret services.
One must be quite clear that 'morality' is a cultural, societal creation in order to facilitate living in extended groups.

I have long argued that America's greatest threat isn't external or is it a feral POTUS rather it's the increasing importance of the Military and it's hand maidens the Military Manufacturing complex. Simply put that historically has been the base of all internal takeovers of governments.
If one thinks about it the US is showing the classic signs.

A comparatively dysfunctional/distrusted government. Sinking life styles, increases in poverty and therefore discontent. ALMOST rampant Nationalism and a push back that demands the end justifies the means by unconstrained (not oversighted) power. Let's be realistic who in the world can stand up to the US ? No body
so much for the external threat.

I have consistently raled against I Nationalism and any other ideology (aka isms) as a primary or sole justification for anything. More often than not they're code for antisocial power for a self proclaimed elite minority by it and it's proxies be that a nation or some domestic coterie. They are all flawed and open to extremism. (note the ism).

Examinator said...

Part 2
Putting both Cassandra and the foil hat aside. Even on a pragmatic level the scope and range of Prism can't guarantee that there will be no more terrorist attacks! In fact it has more benefit in controlling the domestic citizen than say China or Muslim extremism. Again I point out proportion of the acts and the purpose of terrorism. Seems to me they are ticking all their boxes.

From that perspective alone one can reasonably be suspicious of Prism then it's justified by nationalism rather than defence per se. But most importantly given that America is a hegemony (empire) and the wide reaching nature of PRISM and US' use deadly force without trials ( drones) , renditions , proxy extra territorial killings be they by proxies or secret it own clandestine services . It ignores both your own laws and the sovereignty of other nations ….i.e. America protect Some of Bush's cronies who have been indited for crimes against humanity . Yet America is after Assange note the secret Grand Jury . How is this not the early stages of a militaristic world government for profit. What it isn't is leadership.

Taking the nature of most of the US blog sites their focus on that such practices are only an issue when it involves Americans BUT IT'S OK TO DO IT TO EVERYBODY ELSE! Can any one explain it without America sounding well Sociopathic. I can't .

Notwithstanding the Over the top hypocrisy . I think it's reasonable that all politicians etc to be vetted including wanna be senator Obama . HOWEVER, what isn't acceptable is the means, the secrecy and who makes the decision and subsequent uses (abuses) of the data .