10 Thoughts Re Unlawful Mass Surveillance (w/out snips)
Edward Snowden is risking his welfare in order to expose illegitimate surveillance of millions of Americans and foreign peoples who are innocent of any wrongdoing.
Edward Snowden has revealed the betrayal and incompetence of our Congress and judicial system, both unable to watch-dog and prevent such anti-4th amendment over-reach of the executive branch’s intelligence and security operations.
The government security system has a “classification” system that protects political and military leaders and bureaucrats and consultants from being accountable and having their activities transparent to the citizenry whom they are supposed to be serving and whose tax dollars are paying them. Significant failures and criminal activities can too easily be covered up under the label “classified.” This label can be exploited to block judicial investigation.
Most of the enormous taxpayer budget for security -- domestic and foreign -- goes to outside, profit-motivated (and lobbying of politicians) corporate contractors not government departments and employees
It is suspect for US security leaders to now insist they have protected us by thwarting many and serious attacks from terrorists from their over-reaching illegal surveillance programs. Did they or not? They have proven how willing they are to lie to self-protect themselves and their programs.
Do people who think they have nothing to hide from government scrutiny really feel comfortable having masses of private information and revelations stored through the years “just in case” any of it may be needed for their prosecution and/or intimidation in the future? Do they not care about the fates of more proactive citizens who threaten the dysfunctional and criminal ruling class establishment damaging the welfare of ALL citizens?
Obama recently called the anti-constitutional mass surveillance systems “modest encroachments” on our liberty for the sake of security. These systems violate the 4th amendment. They are not modest encroachments! They are an illegitimate presumption of executive power.
When security operations leaders of the executive branch commit perjury in front of Congress, the crime of perjury should be legally pursued, not shrugged off by DC cronies of all three branches of our government along with those in corporate media who readily minimize, normalize or ignore it.
It is clear that Obama and Congressional leaders feel that they have the right to keep a massive, anti-constitutional dragnet secret from the citizenry and, in the case of the Congresspeople, from many of their own members.
It is clear that the intelligence agencies consider citizen activists exercising their first amendment right to speak out and assemble “potential domestic terrorists”. More and more of these citizen activists will be put onto “watch lists” and as the present “police state” intensifies, more and more of these activists will be threatened with prosecution and punishment.
[cross-posted on open salon]