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Tue Jun 11, 2013, 03:56 AM

Maybe it's because I've held a Top Secret security clearance once...

Last edited Tue Jun 11, 2013, 01:05 PM - Edit history (4)

And I've spent quite a bit of time in DC before that, making frequent trips to Ft. Meade MD, and I've even dealt with Korean linguists while I was in Korea.

I don't see the reason to panic.

It's not like any of this stuff is new news to me.

Plus, in this world where people are Instagramming their lunches, Facebooking their relationships and Tweeting from their toilets millions of times a day, who the hell can even say that we have an expectation of privacy with a straight face?

Now, I'm not saying that all of this government monitoring is a good thing. Far from it. It's totally excessive. But then, as I've said before, it just isn't the government, it's private enterprise on top of it... Both through government contracts AND their own commercially driven, profit motivated purposes. The latter is something that ISN'T covered under the Fourth Amendment, it's covered under Interstate Commerce.

So, people are just now realizing that this shit is out of control. ANYONE living inside of the Beltway for the last twenty years could have told you that.

Now, two things. Snowden, from what i can tell, the man's an idiot. Pure and simple. However, the mere fact that he received a security clearance and a job at a big time contractor is highly problematic, in that it's a clear demonstration that the system is so hopelessly bloated that just about any idiot can become part of it. There are just too many people with security clearances out there.

These things have become meaningless.

When I retired from the Air Force with my TS/SCI, I entertained the idea of joining some contractor like Booz, despite the fact that I was just a paper pusher and not an IT or SIGINT guy. But, I thought, why the hell should I put myself through this kind of aggravation? I didn't want to have to move back to DC while I was owning a house in Southern VA, commuting and shit, having to worry about the expense and the possibility that I could lose my job at anytime and fuck everything up.

It just wasn't worth it. For what? To be a cog in the wheel? Fuck it. I don't have to deal with that world anymore.

However, any fool with a clearance and the knowledge of how the system works shouldn't be shocked at the extent of which it actually exists. That's a fact. If this doofus didn't understand what he was getting into before he got into it, to me, that's a serious indication that this dumbass would have been shocked by anything.

Which brings us to the second part... Glenn Greenwald.

Here's a man who took a doofus who was shocked about common knowledge in the field of which he was supposed to be working and sen-sen-sation-sationalized (echo) it, because sensationalizing things is his stock and trade. Especially, if it's anything to make the present administration look bad.

If Greenwald's been covering the National Security State for all of these years, he must have known that Snowden was only telling him shit that he already knew. After all, everyone is busy rehashing crap that came out six freaking years ago. But Greenwald's a blatant opportunist, pity that poor sucker, Snowden... Greenwald played the fool like a fiddle just to get copy. If Snowden finds himself in serious legal trouble... Scratch that - WHEN he finds himself in serious legal trouble, I'll will bet you Kroners to Krispy Kremes the Greenwald will do everything within his vast powers of self-promotion to turn this fool into a martyr, personally persecuted by the Evil Obama Administration.

Now about the National Security State, there's nothing to defend there. It's bloated and out of control, I'll be the first to tell you that. However, it was allowed to get that way because no one was paying attention to it. It's simply one more facet of how things are fucked up in DC. This shit happens when people don't pay attention to it.

I'm glad that people ARE paying attention to it now. Unfortunately, the crying and drama queening about it is just getting way out of hand. Yes, yes, yes... Our Constitutional rights are important. The issue, unfortunately, is that a lot of people are using 18th Century standards to a problem that's as old as the 20th Century. Your rights were destroyed even before most of us were born. This is an extension of the 1947 National Security Act and has been tweaked and bloated ever since.

It's not like it's something that would ever go away with the stroke of a pen. There are just too many livelihoods and political careers at stake. There's the bogey man that every single American has had drilled into his or her head that rationalizes the existence of this massive internal and external security infrastructure in one way or the other. You won't find one rational person who'll say to you that we should shit can the whole kit-and-kaboodle. Everyone will say that we need to have it (perhaps in a more limited fashion). BUT that's all the keepers of the key will need to keep their foot in the door so that it would never go away.

The entire global telecommunications infrastructure will have to collapse before we see the removal of this surveillance apparatus. And even if we ever have to go back to communicating with each other by using two tin cans and string, you best believe that there will always be someone with an extra string and tin can listening in on it.

So, what do you do need to do?

First thing, calm the fuck down. There's nothing wrong with wanting the National Security State to shrink, or about being concerned about abuses of the system. The problem is that it's a guarantee that the system is being abused. Everything in this country is being abused in one form or fashion. That's because every single institution in this country, both public and/or private, is utterly and irreparably corrupt.

Don't be fucking naive.

Corruption is an inherent part of the any system. That's basic human nature and it shouldn't be such a shocking secret to any of us.

Next, what you need to do is focus on one thing. That thing should be an effective way of reducing the size and scope of the security state. I suggest that everyone focuses like a laser beam on repealing that god-damned PATRIOT Act. The only people for whom that thing is doing any good are the contractors, who are cashing in big time because of it and the politicians, whose careers depend upon getting the American people to cheer them on while they slip the contractors a nice, friendly hand-job under the table when they're having their lobster bisque and arugula.

Here are my thoughts about it from before: http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022965384

This problem is not the utterly Orwellian nightmare that people are making it out to be. It's worse, because it's real. And that means that you can't approach it as if it's something straight out of a dystopic high school reading assignment. You have to come up with real solutions for a real problem and hyperbolic drama queening will get you nowhere.

BUT... If I were going to go the way of a metaphor about the metadata situation, I've leave you with this.

Let's say that there exists a crystal ball which will allow the owner the power to observe anything about us that's out there in the realm of crystal ball communications. Now, knowing this, any rational person would stipulate that NO ONE should be entrusted with that kind of power. And that's abundantly true. However, we are given the choice of deciding who should be allowed to have custody of the crystal ball. That's our most important responsibility. Again, the crystal ball exists, there's nothing that we can do about that, one way or the other. But we can decide who should have it, who shouldn't have it and the limits of what can be done with it by the person that does have it.

So, tearing your hair out because of panic about the mere existence of this crystal ball will simply distract you from understanding and engaging in your most basic responsibility... Keeping the crystal ball out of the hands of the idiots and ensuring that responsible people have custody over it and use it responsibly. Like our country and the National Security Network, it has existed for so long and will most certainly endure for quite awhile.

Better yet, stop listening to the fools in the media who should know better than to sacrifice a rube or two in order to try getting everyone to go straight into panic mode. If it bleeds, it leads, Baby. Even if they have make shit up, sensationalize common knowledge and use it to troll whomever mercilessly, you need to fucking chill.

You have to have a good head on your shoulders in order to fix this problem.







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Reply Maybe it's because I've held a Top Secret security clearance once... (Original post)
MrScorpio Jun 2013 OP
Sherman A1 Jun 2013 #1
MADem Jun 2013 #2
madokie Jun 2013 #8
MADem Jun 2013 #9
oldhippie Jun 2013 #81
MADem Jun 2013 #96
Voice for Peace Jun 2013 #120
okaawhatever Jun 2013 #109
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JDPriestly Jun 2013 #135
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freshwest Jun 2013 #172
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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 04:27 AM

1. Just my first thoughts

If I post something on FB or other sites of my lunch or alike, then that is something I have chosen to do. It may have been bad judgement on my part to let the world know that I had a tomato salad at Joe's Diner on Tuesday, but I am the one who decided to do so. In the case of someone else using the crystal ball, I have no choice in what they choose to collect or observe.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 04:32 AM

2. Very good essay. Some more info to add to the pile:

This guy was making the decision to go public before he ever joined Booz. That's what I find most odd: http://www.salon.com/2013/06/10/qa_with_laura_poitras_the_woman_behind_the_nsa_scoops/


He contacted the filmmaker in JANUARY, and the WAPO reporter in FEBRUARY.

I think people who have held a clearance while in uniform tend to be more cautious. Maybe I'm the odd one out, but I took seriously those non-disclosure caveats and I thought my signature on a document saying that I'm not going to run my big fat mouth about this project or that meant something. I would be inclined to use the appropriate channels, not a major dump on the news media, as my first resort, if I found something squirrelly going on. I don't know if it's a "civilian" thing, or a "youth" thing, or an NSA contractor thing, to go the other way. We know he didn't contact anyone on the Senate Intel Committee, and I haven't heard anyone on the House side say he'd been in touch either.

I get the impression there's a lot yet to be revealed about this guy's motivations. He wanted the information out by a particular time, one that coincided with the POTUS - Chinese Premier meeting.

Maybe that's a coincidence. Maybe not...?

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Response to MADem (Reply #2)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:15 AM

8. Top secret clearance here

Navy's SERE school. I still can't talk much about my time there. I have to be careful what I say as I was debriefed upon leaving telling me this is all to be forgotten if you know whats best for you. I forget . I know whats best for me.

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Response to madokie (Reply #8)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:17 AM

9. I hear ya! nt

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Response to madokie (Reply #8)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:42 PM

81. Yep, those outbriefings were always effective on me .....

.... I think there is some hypnosis involved. ("You will forget these Droids.")

I usually erased very easily.

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Response to oldhippie (Reply #81)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:16 PM

96. Ha ha ha!!! I wouldn't be surprised...!

I see nothing!!!!! I know NOTHING!!! I vas not HERE!!!!

https://

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Response to madokie (Reply #8)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:10 AM

120. ...

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Response to MADem (Reply #2)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:41 PM

109. I suspected that. I posted it here somewhere. At first I thought he just got the job to out all this

but then I read the statements from his neighbor in Hawaii. The neighbor said they had boxes floor to ceiling in their garage that were never touched the entire time they lived there. That's when I realized he moved to Hawaii, to get the job, to out the info. Remember they said in one article (which I can't find) that an organization was formed six months ago to fight Obama and the patriot act. It's an off shoot of EFF. EFF went before scotus six months ago. What I want to know is who is the money behind this organization? The article mentioned a couple of members. One is Laura Poitras, the other is Lemming or Demming the retired nsa worker who gave Poitros the info. Poitras outed all this stuff in Aug of 2012. Hmmm

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Response to okaawhatever (Reply #109)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 11:58 PM

117. The boxes in the garage may have been an odd habit of the girlfriend.

Have a look at this video, and note the date it was posted. Unless they moved to Hawaii last year, ahead of his hiring by BAH, this would be in MD, I suppose.

https://

Maybe she thought the boxes provided some privacy, or dampened down the noise? Or maybe she moved frequently enough to just keep the damn boxes, because she'd need them in a year or so?

This is the pole dancing girlfriend practicing in some garage. She is not a "gentleman's club" type of pole dancer, she keeps her clothes on. She is, apparently, an active member of a group that does this; they have competitions and shows and different categories and so forth. She's apparently not without talent--though I'll admit I have never heard of this emerging sport/art, it seems pretty clear from the variety of videos she has posted (and that others post as well) that this is a legitimate area of interest, and not a "nudge-wink" stripper thing.

What's also interesting is, looking at her blog (she's disabled access to it now but you can see some of it via cache: http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:mKFPKgnvKVgJ:www.lsjourney.com/+&cd=10&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&client=firefox-a ), she was stuck entertaining her "in laws" (as she called them; they were actually future in-laws, and now they're probably outlaws!) in a house she'd just moved into, that wasn't ready, and she had to run around with her hair on fire getting the place spiffied up for HIS relatives. And then he takes a powder and leaves her in the lurch. Here's her mid-May blog entries:

From the seventeenth, where she calls his relatives her "in-laws:"

I must bid you all adieu for a week. After a five hour flight delay Iím currently adventuring on a neighboring islandís gorgeous beaches and wild terrain. When I return to sunny Oahu Iíll have my hands full of in-laws. Thereís only so much time one super hero can devote to chaos before she needs a break. And now is just that time. But before I run off into the land of wild, lush, and green; do you remember that one night I was a circus freak for a fancy high-priced event? Hereís a video of that magical evening ó my debut adagio performance. See you all in June!


From the fifteenth--she's feeling some stress:


Alls well that ends well, right? My Hawaiian return has been less than paradisal. Unable to put up with my three day long stomach pain I dragged E on a couple hour adventure to an emergency after hours clinic. Where they told me to basically stop being a wuss and superhero up. Saturday started early (thanks jet lag and island birds) with a best friend reunion at a famously delicious spot. But before Chisel, Spotter, and I could enjoy our over-the-top pancakes I was involved in my first two-car collision. I say two car because prior to Saturday Iíve managed to damage my car all on my own. A very apologetic, pick-up truck wielding restaurateur ran his tow hitch into my back door. Determined to rekindle my aloha spirit, I went ahead with my weekendís plans of pancakes, diving, and circus play. Diving ended up being snorkeling with a new underwater camera, but after the way the weekend started I was happy just to be in the water. With my flickering aloha spirit I endeavor to unpack this three bedroom house in two days time. Why two days? Well Iím island hoping the end of this week and Eís family gets into town the following. Throw in fixing my busted up car on top of it all and I could use a little luck with my to-do list the length of a majestic humpback whale.


Here's the May 10 entry where she also refers to "E's" family visiting. I feel very sorry for this young lady; she writes like a romance novelist half the time--it's a bit florid and off-putting--but no one deserves to get crapped on like she was:

Jet lag on top of being unwell, with a slice of unpacking pie makes for a stressed out L. Not only am I waking up with the sun like the farmer I never was, but my body has decided that it would rather be in days of pain for no apparent reason. Add in a little new house problems like my refrigerator leaking / leaving my food to sour. And maybe itís understandable why Iíd rather go back to bed and wake in a future where my body and house are no longer in disarray. I only wish it were that easy, but there is no rest for this super hero. In less than a week I need to have a functioning house ready for guests. Eís family will be visiting this island at the end of the month. But before they arrive Iíll be setting sail to adventure with friends on one of Hawaiiís other gorgeous islands. And that leaves me with no time at all to accomplish a million tasks while feeling terrible. Itís like someone swapped my task-busting tablets for zombie pills. With sleepless nights, incredible stomach pains, and a familiar cardboard sea; I could certainly use a reboot.



I find his conduct pretty shitty, frankly. You don't do that kind of stuff to people you claim that you care about. This woman went from being engaged to being the most famous 'dumped' girlfriend on the planet--and all because he didn't feel like flying to DC and taking a meeting with someone on one of the House/Senate Intel oversight committees. Which makes me wonder--did he want to fix this problem he said existed at NSA, or just blow shit up?

Still waiting for a shoe or ten to drop. I don't think we've gotten the whole story, here.

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Response to MADem (Reply #117)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 01:55 AM

135. Nothing in that post changes the fact that the government is

spying on some or all of the citizens and in so doing is making a mockery of the concept of government of the people, for the people and by the people. You cannot govern an entity that is spying on the records of your communications. That is just impossible.

And the excerpts that you posted are examples of the kinds of things that people communicate trusting that they will remain either private or only public to a select group they call family and friends.

What a pity that we no longer have privacy.

If people think all this spying is such a great idea, they should just take all the curtains and shades off their windows and let the world watch their most intimate moments. Most of us would not want to do that. But that is what you are basically allowing when you allow someone to look at the records of all the e-mails you receive and send and all the telephone calls you receive and send.

And I am wondering whether the government has a record of every contact you have with your bank or an overseas bank. If so, it would seem to me that this problem with identifying which people are cheating on their taxes by holding money overseas should be easily solved.

By the way, are you suggesting that the company that hired Snowden did not properly vet him, did not properly make sure that he was trustworthy? Doesn't that cause you concern about how careless the company is in performing its contract? And doesn't that cause you to question whether that company and its employees or any company or anyone should have the scope and quantity of information that they have?

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #135)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 07:26 AM

162. Your claim is not proven. And if you think the government is "spying on ALL its citizens" I have a

bridge for sale. It's an absurd statement.

This young woman's blog was quite public--she wanted to tout her activities in the field of dance--and she didn't have an expectation of privacy or a desire for it--her goal was to publicize her activities.

She probably didn't expect her fiancee to screw her over and make her a spectacle, either. But that's all on HIM. He did that to her. He drew the attention of the media to her by his creepy actions and cruelty towards her.

My post was about her, for the most part. My comments about him were limited to this paragraph, which discusses his behavior towards his fiancee and his poor judgment in prancing off to Hong Kong and thinking it was a smart idea.

I'll repost for you:

I find his conduct pretty shitty, frankly. You don't do that kind of stuff to people you claim that you care about. This woman went from being engaged to being the most famous 'dumped' girlfriend on the planet--and all because he didn't feel like flying to DC and taking a meeting with someone on one of the House/Senate Intel oversight committees. Which makes me wonder--did he want to fix this problem he said existed at NSA, or just blow shit up?


I didn't talk about the company or his vetting at all in that post. I have no idea if this guy was a patronage hire, the product of lousy vetting, or an IT savant. That's a shoe that has yet to drop.

Perhaps you're confusing me with someone else.

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Response to MADem (Reply #2)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 06:22 PM

172. The whole story seemed slick, managed. Thanks for showing why it had that apperance.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 04:38 AM

3. The making of a Crystal Ball.

Last week sometime I came upon a really old declassified document from the Hoover era, in which a security hole in phones, which allowed an attacker to use the (hung up) phone to listen in on the room, was detailed. No apparent measures to recall the phones were discussed as I recall, the knowledge was to be used for "national security reasons" only, the memo said.

But what kind of national security threat would justify needing this and thousands of other extreme things back then? Well, one example of such a group would include, say, a mafia group who's able to tap anyone's office phones even while hung up. Or a KGB cell doing the same. And the policy was to leave open the security whole which let those groups do that, so that it could be used as well by the administration as needed.

So with the national security state, we're talking about a complex: One one hand are these forces that protect us from national security threats, on the other hand we're talking about the threats that necessitate their existence. What we have to see is how they feed in to each other.

You can call Snowden an idiot all day long, but the fact that he's a pretty intelligent guy basically shines through in his interviews. And this guy, when he saw what's going on, knew he had to act. He believed he had to do something extreme. He described what he saw as a prison built for Americans, and he was unwilling to live with it.

So he leaked, and in so doing became a national security threat. He saw the national security apparatus, and he became a threat. That's happening to people all over the middle east, in marginalized places in the US, in Asia, and on and on. They will take extreme measures to stop the world from turning into a prison, which is the sort of thing they believe is happening. They become national security threats. And why? Because they saw the machine which exists to defend us from national security threats in action. No where has it been clearer than in the Arab spring conflicts, where the rulers become harsher and harsher, and the people became more and more resolute in their opposition. Didn't somebody say "softly softly?" Maybe we should be thinking more about that here.

Anyway, some food for thought on the good points you bring up. I don't have the answers here either, but I think that there's good reason for people in power to really, really look at the methods of non-violence that have been used so successfully: I don't believe there is some arch villain pulling the puppet strings behind this perpetuating complex, I think it has arisen naturally out of a lack of questioning and innovation on how we create peace and stability globally.

Peace!

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Response to napoleon_in_rags (Reply #3)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:25 AM

11. I think the confusion comes from the fact that he was working at NSA. For years.

In several jobs.

I mean, come on--he wasn't unclear on the concept. They aren't making pizza at NSA. They're intercepting electronic data. It's their damn job. It has always been their damn job. Why, then, is he now surprised, shocked, and disappointed?

They're going to do it every which way they can, legally, and if this guy was really all that smart, he would have taken concerns he had about the legality of collection methods up to oversight agencies first, rather than publicly shit out sources and methods in excruciating detail.

Five years from now, he'll have his crisis under control, and I'll wager, if he can, he'll kick himself in the ass. I don't think he's got a handle on himself. His actions are not "brave," they're bizarre. There were better ways of fixing any issues he thought he may have had.

I know who's loving that guy, though--the new Premier of China.

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Response to MADem (Reply #11)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:04 PM

87. In five years we would not know there is a crisis without people like him. He risks

everything to get the truth out. As far as him going through the supposed possible channels, I saw an interview with an ex-CIA agent who was queried about such a thing. Her response was that as a practical matter there are no such channels.

If there were such channels, a release of information might take decades to wind its ways through the courts and would likely be fought tooth and nail by the DOJ. I am confident that anything released would be heavily redacted to the point where it would be useless.

Frankly, with the way these whistle-blowers are being crushed like flies by our government (which I am sure has nothing to do with assuring the continued flow of the $80 billion of tax money being blown on these programs) that they still have the balls to come forward.



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Response to GoneFishin (Reply #87)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:50 PM

90. Nonsense. He didn't even TRY. And the son of his political hero is sitting in the Senate on the

Intel Committee. You know, the guy he to whom he made not one, but TWO donations. You think he couldn't have gotten a meeting with that guy?

Please. You're making excuses.

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Response to MADem (Reply #90)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:14 PM

95. You don't get to try one road, then use the other if it doesn't work out.

Even you must realize that, even if you are unwilling to admit it.

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Response to GoneFishin (Reply #95)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:25 PM

97. He had a clear path to the Senate Intel Committee.

Randy Rand needs a way to make his mark in the Senate--this would be a sure thing for him. All he'd have to do is make a huge fuss and he'd be booked on every Sunday talker in the USA. And the Whistling Rover would be famous AND safe, without having to shit on the Intel apparatus that paid him (a third less than he claimed in his taped interview, apparently, but never mind that). A ten minute convo with Randy's COS and he'd be booked for fifteen minutes, with a fifteen minute "slop"--if the convo got real good, it would be "cancel my afternoon meetings."

It's not even iffy. Ask yourself the question, Cui bono? Rand, with his scant talents, has been asking that question all his life, and coming up with the answers that got him to the Senate and that Committee assignment. It would have been a perfect storm, from his perspective.

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Response to MADem (Reply #97)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:30 PM

98. I can't dismiss the possibility, because Rand is squirrely. I truly don't know.

As for a sure thing, I disagree.

There is no guarantee Rand would have had the balls, because his ass could end up on the line too.

Have a good evening.

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Response to GoneFishin (Reply #98)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:43 PM

100. I have some experience with Hill staffers and principals.

This would have been a slam-dunk. That Teapublican is still looking for a big, fat, juicy issue. This would have been his signature "sky is falling" drumbeat. It would assure him of Sunday talker bookings, as well as the usual "appearance fee" stand ups on the cable newsers, now and anytime a national security overstep complaint came up. It would greatly increase his visibility, his influence in his own party, and his ability to fundraise.

He could have rung the "illegal" bell without going into juicy detail, too. Sometimes a threat to tell all causes the mind to go places that pedestrian reality can't begin to compete with.

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Response to MADem (Reply #100)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:15 PM

103. How much do we know about Snowden's military injury?

Where was he treated?

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Response to Eddie Haskell (Reply #103)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:29 PM

105. Obviously he was treated in a MMF--military medical facility.

Initially, anyway, and maybe through the course of his recovery, if his breaks were uncomplicated.

It was a "training injury." He broke both legs. We'd have to find someone in his squad to get more details, I imagine.

He went into a National Guard training program for Special Forces, apparently. I believe, based on what I've read, that it's a combined deal--boot camp with immediate follow on training (I will be pleased to be corrected if anyone from ANG knows more about this). He was in the military for four months, per the Army (he said five, maybe six? months and got the year wrong) --now, it is unclear if that is boot camp (ten weeks), training (who knows how long), and hospitalization (who knows how long). I think it might be, though. Your discharge documentation shows when you went on active duty to when you're shown the door.

He would have gotten either a medical or uncharacterized discharge for that brief amount of time in--there was almost certainly a "med board" at the end of his time in service, as well, that recommended discharge. He could have fought it, but without access to those records, we have no way of knowing if he did or not.

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Response to MADem (Reply #105)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:37 PM

107. Just thinking ... maybe he did complete his training.

Records are made to be broken. Might explain how he got those jobs.

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Response to Eddie Haskell (Reply #107)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:04 AM

118. Army has said no.

The training takes more time than they said he spent in uniform.

This article says five months, I've read others that say four (perhaps it was four months in duration, but spanned five months owing to a mid-month start and finish?).

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/06/10/snowdens-army-career-lasted-only-five-months/2407855/

Special Forces recruits are all men and have passed an aptitude test before entering the program. They then take a 14-week course that includes basic training and advanced individual training, according to the Army.

The next step: airborne training followed by four weeks training and assessment. If the recruit passes, the rigorous qualification course follows. This phase includes about three months of intense individual and group training.

The Guardian newspaper reported that Snowden's Army career ended when he broke both legs in a training accident. It's unclear when that accident occurred, and the Army has not released further details of his service.


He would have had to have been hospitalized and his injuries healed before he was given a 214. This leads me to speculate that his injuries happened early on.

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Response to MADem (Reply #105)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:54 PM

112. the mos for that program is 18X. Apparently they call the recruits X Rays. Here's the training

from Go Army

Training
Special Forces candidates attend Infantry One Station Unit Training, which combines Army Basic Combat Training and Advanced Individual Training in a 14-week course.

Upon graduation, Special Forces Candidates will attend Airborne Training, followed by a 4-week Special Operations Preparation Course and the Special Forces Assessment and Selection program. This program allows Special Forces an opportunity to assess each Soldierís capabilities by testing his physical, emotional and mental stamina.

If the recruit passes, he moves on to the Special Forces Qualification Course to develop the necessary skills of a Special Forces Soldier. The course is currently divided into three phases:

Individual Skills Phase: 40 days of training in common skills, land navigation and tactics
MOS Qualification Phase: 65 days of training in different specialties that include a mission planning cycle
Collective Training Phase: 38 days of training in Special Operations, Direct Action Isolation, Air Operations and Unconventional Warfare classes

Other areas include:

Language Training: Languages are assigned in relation to the scores from the Defense Language Aptitude Battery test
Survival Training: The survival, evasion, resistance and escape course

Minimum ASVAB Score
General Technical (GT) : 107, Combat (CO) : 98

Seems like it would really dilute the SF soldier capability. I heard they did this to swell the ranks of SOCOM

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Response to okaawhatever (Reply #112)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:17 AM

121. He was in and out in four--some say five--months.

That would include some hospitalization and rehab. He didn't get to the language training, he probably didn't get too far after the boot camp/advanced training combo--if at all. Two broke legs don't heal overnight.

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Response to MADem (Reply #100)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 02:13 AM

138. But, had Snowden taken the route you suggest, the Rand

Paul route, then his testimony would have been dismissed as simply extreme right-wing hysteria.

Snowden is not a stupid guy. He seems quite calm and intelligent. He does not appear to be impulsive at all. And it may be that he knew that his call to Rand Paul would show up in his records which were under surveillance by the very company he was outing.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #138)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 02:58 AM

146. His testimony would not have been public.

It would have been in camera, behind closed doors. Rand could have sounded the alarm without being specific, and people on the Intel committee, assuming they agreed with him (and there would be some who did), would chime in. He'd go on the talkers, talk about the program in general terms, lay out his objections, and the press would circle like hounds at the scent--not just the Intel committees, but the WH as well. And of course, CIA, NSA and contractor sources would be shaken down.

Who knows what would be revealed, but tongues would be wagging and it would have provided Rand with both publicity and a level of gravitas he does not have now.

And it would have put the problem where change, if needed, could be effected without fucking the country over.

These actions by Snowden are either the actions of someone who just wants to blow up the system, or someone who is in deep personal crisis and is engaged in self-destruction on an international stage, like a slow suicide.

He isn't all that calm--listen closely to the timbre of his voice, it betrays him; he's made some substantial misstatements in his video interview (and that's twelve minutes that we're seeing out of several HOURS, if reports are accurate). He misstated his annual salary, and he got the very YEAR of his brief military service wrong. Seeing as he broke not one, but two legs that year, you'd think it might stick in his mind--it wasn't all that long ago. It's been many decades since I joined the military, but I can tell you the very date I went on active duty, as well as the date I retired. These are things people tend to remember.

Also, the cavalier way he abandoned his girlfriend, who schlepped all the way from the east coast to join him in his new Hawaiian life, was flat out cruel and a red flag to me, as though he wasn't going to be around to worry about her for long. She went from talking about her (future) "in-laws" as she cleaned and readied HIS house for their visit to Hawaii, to shutting down her blog as the media focused on her as the most famous, dumped and clueless ex-girlfriend on the face of the earth. She has every right to feel hurt and used and discarded.

If he really wanted to "fix" things, there are better ways than the path he chose. He left a path of destruction, like someone who just doesn't give a shit anymore. I'd wonder what was up with those seizures he had been having this past year--did they affect his behavior, his judgment, his thought processes, his emotional lability? Were they indicative of something terribly serious, and not just a (rather unusual) diagnosis of adult-onset epilepsy?

His choices aren't brave, they're incredibly stupid. There are reasons for these choices, and I just can't buy the "I don't want to live in a world where....." argument. It does not pass my smell test. You don't have a "Come to Jesus" epiphany moments after you accept a job in Hawaii after working in the NSA-CIA contracting world for years. Something else is going on with this guy--best case, a physical health issue that has caused behavioral changes or a personal, mental health crisis; worst case, he sold his soul and engaged in treasonous conduct for personal gain. YMMV.

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Response to MADem (Reply #146)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 03:01 AM

148. Regardless. I am grateful that he came forward.

This program is an abomination.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #148)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 03:02 AM

149. I think that's still up for debate. There's a lot we don't know, still. nt

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Response to MADem (Reply #149)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 03:28 AM

152. If the program is not as awful as our worst suspicions, then the

government should tell us precisely how it works. There is some talk about having a national discussion. We need to know a lot more detail about what it is we are supposed to discuss. The secrecy about the program makes intelligent discussion difficult.

But to me, if the government is creating a permanent database of all of our calls, it will have the ability to call that information forward in any situation in which we do not comply with its wishes. On top of this, the government is claiming the authority to imprison us in violation of our right to a fair trial and to confront the witnesses against us and to have counsel.

These are all violations of the Constitution. And this program makes all those other violations of the Constitution far more menacing for future generations. On top of it all, the Supreme Court has ruled that if you are brought in for questioning the government has the right to take your DNA. There can be a million bogus excuses for arresting someone. Not everyone who is arrested is charged. But now the government has the right to take your DNA just because you, let's say participated in some sort of demonstration and were arrested.

This is just one of a number assaults on our rights.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #152)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 04:03 AM

157. Let's send the plans of our latest military aircraft to the Chinese, too, shall we?

We elect representatives who serve on committees to vet this stuff for us, so that we, each and every one of us, do not have obtain a TS/SCI clearance to go take a briefing on the Hill in a SCIF so that no one can hear what is being said. There is an implied contract between those we elect to see to these matters of national security, and those of us who vote for these people to make these decisions of the highest order.

Our elected servants do need to go to the damn briefings though, and make informed votes.

The database is not "permanent." I'd invite you to read into the program, it provides for dumping "non-actionable" data. The database that (insert name of your phone company) has on you is far more "permanent" than anything NSA has.

And if they are "violations of the Constitution" the courts -- not folks on a message board--will be the ones to make that determination. I do think this needs to be run up the judicial flagpole, and a determination made once and for all.

We don't tote muskets any more, and we don't have a need for buggy whips to propel our steeds forward as we tool around town. Times have changed, and the concept of privacy--like it or not--has changed with it.

People willingly vomit all their personal details to a little shit name Zuckerberg, who "aggregates the data," without batting an eye. They post their images, their locations, where they went on vacation, who their friends are, who their families are, what they "like" in terms of entertainment, politics, you name it. Pinterest, LinkedIn, Ancestry.com, Spotify, Netflix...you access it, you're adding to your own database. Same deal with those supermarket loyalty cards--what don't they know about what we eat or drink, and what we wipe our asses with, etc? We give over enthusiastically to our email providers, cable providers, cell phone providers, banks, ATM/debit/credit cards, and we smile for the camera as we pass dozens of security cameras at a crack--when we go to any store, any gas station, pass by any crowded street. Every time we go to the doctor, our medical details are put into one of those "clouds" so that if we travel on holiday to the opposite coast and get hit by a bus, the ER doctor can access a database and learn that we're on "X" medication, even if we're comatose.

Hell, Amazon knows everything I've bought since their site went live. A LOT of stuff, too. I took a stroll down memory lane awhile back, and their database goes back to the very first book I bought from those guys.

No one cries about their "rights" in these instances, and these corporate entities do not have any oversight or rules about how long they can keep your details. All of a sudden, though, people are invoking a quaint idea of what constitutes privacy--and that said, I do agree that it is a subject the courts need to discuss. This particular judicial conversation should have happened twenty five or more years ago--but no one gave a shit back then. Funny how that works.

I think there is a generational divide, too--young people have a different attitude towards collection of data and what constitutes privacy. They expect to be tracked if they do certain things, they LIKE to be able to log in to so-and-so's Xbox and bring up their own avatar and history, and they have less of an uneasy feeling about the whole notion of living in a real life AND virtual community where there's much more sharing of personal data than is comfortable for some people who are slightly older.

Let's send it to the courts. Perhaps the judges will read the documents, since the legislators--some of them, anyway--are playing dumb about stuff THEY voted on. That said.... I would not be surprised if the courts rule in a way that will disappoint many people who do believe their "right to privacy" is being violated. I think we are on the cusp of a very big change in how we conduct ourselves. Soon, in my lifetime, I think (and I am closer to the end than the beginning), passwords will be a thing of the past, and biometrics will rule the day--and then, ardent privacy advocates will REALLY have something to cry about, I suspect.

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Response to MADem (Reply #157)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 04:15 AM

158. Many people on DU do not understand the legal concept of chilling

rights.

If you know that a call to someone will be recorded in the government's database, you might hesitate to make the call and discuss something with the person at the other end of the phone line. That chills your right to free speech, your right to speak to that person.

If you belong to the ACLU or a group of peace demonstrators and you receive and send e-mails to your friends in those groups, you might think twice about continuing that practice because your e-mails are being cataloged or at least the senders and recipients of those e-mails are in the register. That chills your speech and your freedom of association.

The same principle applies to nearly every right we enjoy.

And all that might not make much of a difference except that we have no assurance that a database like that cannot be hacked. And if it is, then everyone in the world has this information including employers, etc.

The threat that others have our secrets or can hack into our system is very real. That is especially true of the Chinese and certain countries in the Middle East. But the solution is to devise a fail-safe system that is independent of the internet that the rest of us use. Obviously, our encryption systems are not very good. If that is the case, then our banking encrypting systems could also be hacked.

Perhaps we need to rethink the use of the internet.

I'm not on Facebook for the very reasons you have given. I don't keep diaries either -- for the reasons you have given.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #158)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 05:06 AM

160. I've had a telephone party line, and I've lived in countries where it was assumed that the

authorities were listening in, or could so do. I conduct my life in such a way that I am circumspect about what I say down the telephone, but that's me. At my age, I don't have anything to hide; I'm not carrying on with some Hot Stuff or planning train robberies.

That said, I've seen nothing that says the government is "recording" everyone's phone calls. I keep hearing people HERE saying that, but nothing I have read suggests that, even remotely. My understanding is, there has to be a nexus with an overseas POI, some indication of terrorist activity or other harm to persons on our soil, AND a warrant. And if the warrant is gotten, and the subject of the phone calls is roses, birthday parties, hemorrhoids, and lollipops, and no actionable data is gathered, the entire record is trashed. Dumped. Gone.

Which is more than I can say for my AMAZON buying record, going back to the last century!

In a society like, say, the Persian one, which is a place where rights are chilled, every fault's a fashion. The Twitter usage in the Green Revolution during the last election gladdened my heart, but the ulema are slowing down the net and vigorously blocking sites for the one coming up quite soon. "The kids" are struggling to cobble together a work-around, and so they will, I'm sure. It may be smoke signals or horn toots, who knows, but they'll come up with something if they get out in the road this time round.

You aren't on Facebook, but if you wanted to let everyone in a protest group know where to meet up, you could do worse than to slap up a FB page or even post some sort of inocuous commentary to a little used page. You go to Martha Stewart's page, and ask her if she ever does cooking demonstrations in Central Park. You go to some Fanboy's sports page, and ask him if the big game on Saturday starts at three o'clock. Your "crew" checks those public pages and knows where and when. This kind of stuff is fairly easy, and basic, but we'd be at the ballot boxes voting the bastards out if it ever got to that point--and the extreme conservatives and extreme liberals would finally have something to talk about in a civil tone, for a change.

There's no real difference between getting a warrant to read your email and getting a warrant to read your snail mail, or tap your phone, which is what the FBI did back in the old days. With electronic footprints, it's harder for people to say they did one thing on the net when they actually did something else.

As for rethinking use of the net, that horse has left the barn. Even if you don't have a facebook account, get in there and start clicking on some of the public sites and migrate over to look at some of the individual posters' sites--you'd be astounded at the piles of innocuous shit that people just love to post and they don't care who sees it. Pictures, personal details, long, drawn out stories about things that are perhaps best not aired...and with no compunctions.

People, particularly the youth, have a different view of privacy than I do. It's not just a few people, either--it's a preponderance of people. People seem to think that living their lives in public, on view to the world, is how it's done. The Kardashian Kulture has helped to foster that POV amongst the youngsters, but even people around my vintage and beyond are digging the facebook and putting way too much of their business out there, and being thrilled when that old boy/girlfriend from a century ago contacts them.

It's a different world. The time to cork that bottle and not let the genie out was thirty years ago. I don't think there's any going back, myself, but I suspect we'll see the courts deciding this matter, eventually.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #152)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 04:36 AM

159. If we weren't all freaking out about this NSA thing ...

I sure would like to hope we'd INSTEAD be freaking out about a roughly 100x WORSE violation of our civil liberties that was given the green light by the SCOTUS last week that you're talking about above ... collection of DNA from everyone who's so been so much as ARRESTED.

In fact, this 'decision' was so much more unbelievably egregious than the NSA ordering the collection of the records of everyone's phone calls that it's frankly AMAZING to me that ANYBODY is actually even talking about the NSA program when something as atrocious as this decision has just been handed down.

I mean, there's no NAMES associated with the phone numbers, so which is more 'personal' ... the phone calls you made, that the government doesn't actually know were made by you ... or a sample of YOUR DNA, your very BIOLOGICAL MAKEUP, in the possession of god knows whatever 'law enforcement agency', that is directly and forever associated with YOUR NAME?

If you ask me, it's awfully convenient that this little NSA scandal popped up right when it did. Otherwise, well ... I'd be awfully disappointed if the DU wasn't about to burn down from the fiery anger and rage emanating in 100's of posts from folks like yourself.

But if I was to guess, in REALITY, there'd have probably been like 2 threads, that were popular for like 2 days, in response to the most horrifying breach of privacy that 'the government' has even considered in it's 240 year 'life' ... the legalization of the collection of the DNA of ANYONE who's ever arrested.

But, I guess, there's no 'political opportunity' involved in protesting a Supreme Court decision, right? Especially since all of Obama's appointees voted 'NO' on this mind-numbingly fascistic decision. So, nobody can sit around and take pot-shots at the POTUS because of THAT decision, right? And there's not 100's of threads on the subject for folks like yourself to pop into and have a major freak-out on, right? So ... it's really no 'fun'.

But I'm glad you mentioned it, because if people on DU had 1 oz of the proper perspective, that SCOTUS decision would be all we're friggin talking about here. The NSA thing is PEANUTS compared to that. But since it hasn't been in the NEWS everyday, and there's no POLITICIAN to bash ... we've just let it pass by with almost no comment.

Convenient timing, if you ask me.

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Response to brett_jv (Reply #159)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 05:49 AM

161. The globe is marching towards biometric identifiers.

If this continues on, our bodies will be our passwords, our access codes, our IDs. This is an uncomfortable concept for many, but it's the future, I think.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Countries_applying_biometrics

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Response to MADem (Reply #100)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 06:33 PM

173. And there are at least 279 people in DC that would love something to hang on the administration

At least one of them would listen.

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Response to GoneFishin (Reply #95)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:31 PM

106. Yes, you do get to try additional roads

Go read up on how the Pentagon Papers were leaked. "Leak to the public" was about the 3rd or 4th road.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #106)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 02:19 AM

142. That was then.

But now we have this kind of surveillance program. That program was known to Snowden. He may have felt that the program meant that he could appeal to no one before going to the public. I could imagine that someone very intelligent would think that.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #142)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:02 PM

165. No, someone very intelligent would realize that was not the case.

It's literally illegal to block access to the IG or any member of Congress, or to retaliate for it. As in the person doing the blocking or retaliating gets to go to jail, not hide behind "the NSA".

In addition, someone who was not desperately trying to justify Snowden's actions would realize:
1) They weren't watching Snowden specifically
2) The various IGs have phone numbers set up for anonymous tips.
3) There's plenty of ways and reasons to contact a Congressman, so contacting a Congressman doesn't actually indicate anything suspicious for the "evil boss" to act upon.

Life is not an action movie.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #165)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 02:41 PM

167. But with this system, there are no anonymous phone numbers if

the caller or recipient of the call happens to be in a sensitive position.

Watch the video here:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023000144#post28

It's a video posted by Octafish and it is down the thread. This is someone who worked in the NSA and blew the whistle during the Bush administration. He absolutely agrees with me. He points out that he told members of Congress but there are reasons why that does not work. It is useless. That is what he explains.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #167)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 04:38 PM

169. No. Again, life is not an action movie.

There's still ways to make an anonymous phone call.

Off the top of my head:
-Payphones still exist, even if they're hard to find.
-Call from a conference room at work. Or from your friendly neighborhood FedEx Office location (formely Kinkos).
-You can buy a "prepaid" cell phone for $10 and provide fake contact info to the indifferent Wal-Mart clerk.
-There's a ton of anonomizing technologies available via the Internet. For example, send an email through TOR.

I could probably come up with several more if I spent more than a second thinking about it. And that's still if you want to remain anonymous.

Congress pays the bills. Going after a whistleblower who goes to Congress is a fantastic way to get your funding cut.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #169)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 04:44 PM

170. It isn't so simple.

If you have the information, you will be placed under surveillance along with everyone else who has access to the information that you release. That is why people are sometimes given different information when someone is suspected of leaking. At least I imagine that is what is done. The government traces down leakers. Please listen to the video of the whistleblower. I think I gave you the link. If not, let me know. I will try to get it for you. He speaks from experience having been the target of a leak investigation.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #170)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 05:00 PM

171. Once again, life is not an action movie.

If you have the information, you will be placed under surveillance along with everyone else who has access to
the information that you release.

You are now claiming that the FBI has literally millions of people under constant surveillance - they'd have to watch everyone with a clearance according to you. If I remember correctly, Maddow reported that somewhere around 2M people have a clearance of some sort.

Again, life is not an action movie. The evil spy agency in the movie can watch everyone, because they only have to have the script say so. In the real world, that requires real agents to park outside real houses. 24/7. 3 shifts. And that doesn't count the staff monitoring phones and Internet.

That is why people are sometimes given different information when someone is suspected of leaking. At least I imagine that is what is done.

Nope.

The leak already happened. Handing out different information to different people after the leak does what, exactly?

Not to mention you'd have a lovely time trying to clean up all the misinformation afterwards - people make decisions based on the information. Lying to them causes them to make the wrong decisions. And when you're dealing with national security, the wrong decisions are quite bad. See: Iraq.

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Response to napoleon_in_rags (Reply #3)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:25 AM

125. thank you! very thoughtful point of view

and I agree ..
except that peace isn't something we're going to
create, nor will governments, because it is already
here, in existence, inside every human being.

When we learn to tap into that, into our own
human hearts, peace on earth will have a chance,
and maybe humans will start trusting one another
again, living with integrity.

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Response to Voice for Peace (Reply #125)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:30 AM

126. Thank you, I believe you're right.

But at the same time, we must never make the mistake of thinking that peace only makes sense from the lens of the heart: Under careful analysis, it turns out that it can also make sense to the brain - its the religion of trying to accomplish things through wrath that turns out to be irrational on close inspection.

PEace!

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Response to napoleon_in_rags (Reply #126)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 01:12 AM

131. you are right, it's what makes the most sense. if people stop and use their brains and common sense.

but it's in the heart where the real power lies.

Reason and logic can't always break through
a lifetime of wrong beliefs. But when the heart
is touched, it starts a new perspective -- and
even the most dogmatic will re-think their
positions.

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Response to Voice for Peace (Reply #131)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 01:14 AM

132. Thanks for sharing this.

Its really refreshing to hear such positive messages in this argumentative environment.

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Response to Voice for Peace (Reply #125)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 02:20 AM

143. Thank you.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 04:41 AM

4. K & R. Love your longer posts.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 04:41 AM

5. I don't agree with everything you write in your op but this is spot on:

Corruption is an inherent part of the any system. That's basic human nature and it shouldn't be suck a shocking secret to any of us.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 04:53 AM

6. A related post that I have just put up

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:06 AM

7. "This shit happens when people don't pay attention to it."

The (greedy) people in charge have to spend most of their time fundraisin'...

They don't even have enough time left to read the Bills they get called to vote on!

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:23 AM

10. Great post, Scorpio, thanks.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:30 AM

12. Glenn Greenwald lost all credibility with me when he called atheists racists in his defense of Islam

Fuck him.

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Response to GreenEyedLefty (Reply #12)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 05:38 PM

72. Got a link for that Greenwald quote? nt.

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Response to druidity33 (Reply #72)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:33 PM

78. This is a excellent overview of that incident.

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Response to snagglepuss (Reply #78)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:19 AM

122. what a bullshit smear by association

@Greenwald is GUILTY of RETWEETING an ARTICLE that has BAD STUFF about ATHEISTS!!!!

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Response to bobduca (Reply #122)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 01:32 PM

166. Obviously you didn`t read anything at the link I provided.

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Response to GreenEyedLefty (Reply #12)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:53 PM

91. I thought he screwed it when he took money as a CATO Institute consultant and "white paper" writer.

That's code for being put on Koch Brothers retainer for a year or more.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:32 AM

13. As a former military officer,

I seem to recall a caveat in my debriefing about revealing if you ever held a clearance and at what level. You and some others on here just revealed your level of clearance to the whole world. You are either fudging in your post or you didn't pay attention during your debriefing.

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Response to fasttense (Reply #13)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:31 AM

26. I don't remember much about my debriefing...that was ~39 years ago.

I don't remember being told I couldn't tell anyone I had had one. I'm not saying they did or didn't, or that things haven't varied over time. I'm pretty sure my post military resume indicated I had a TS/C.

The thing I do remember about my 'debriefing' is that some travel restrictions were placed on me. The restrictions mostly required communicating intent to travel to countries that were potential hot spots--including Germany and Israel.


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Response to fasttense (Reply #13)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:50 AM

48. In my

debriefing in the early 90's I was not informed that I could not mention the clearance. I was however told that if I reveled what type of functions I performed outside of my MOS assigned to me that the Army would deny it and that I never existed within the program. They never really once told me that I could not mention the program after I ETS'd, but instead that they would deny it or I ever existed, they asked me to not discuss the details but I could state that I was in "Special Weapons". Now while I was in the program I was not permitted to discuss it with civilians and only a select few other soldiers in the chain of command.

I used my clearance credentials on my resume in the past even though my clearance had expired. I think ones ability to obtain this level of clearance speaks a lot about a person in the civilian world when it comes to finding a job, however it appears that we are not as stringent today as we were back in the 80's in passing out security clearances!

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Response to Munificence (Reply #48)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:01 PM

54. Same here.

I was told that I could say I was a Russian linguist and analyst, and that I could reveal that I held a security clearance, and where I had been stationed, but that I could not reveal any details of what work I did or what it entailed.

Much of that information, it turned out, was revealed in books and writings and even government documents in the ensuing 44 years, but I don't know what and when and how much, so I don't talk or write about what I did. the information that I was a linguist and analyst stationed in Turkey and at the NSA pretty much says, in general, what I was doing.

44 years later, nobody much gives a shit, anyhow, but I still follow the rules on the papers I signed.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #54)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 01:03 PM

64. Funny you mentioned Linguist

Just as side note, I was offered this.

Basically I scored a 121 general technology score (130 max) and as far as intelligence level judged by the Army I could be anything I wanted to be. I likewise maxed most of my physical fitness tests, already had the clearance, so I was approached about going into special forces in a literal "boots on the ground" capacity. I was offered $50K bonus (tax free I was in 1st Persian Gulf War at the time), would go to college for 5 years (Combat Surgeon or Linguist) and then had a 5 year commitment after that (10 years total). Sometimes I wondered when I was in my late 20's if I made the wrong decision in getting out, but by the time I was in my 30's I knew I did. I retired at age 40 after starting a business when I was 29 and selling it at 40...so I retired quicker in the civilian world and I was able to have a family and a life.

If I would have stayed in I would have probably seen a lot of shitty time spent in Iraq and Afghanistan over the past 10 years + my first go round in Iraq in 90/91, so out of 20-25 years it would have been 15 or so years of making war.

I enjoyed my military service but am glad I decided to go the civilian route.

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Response to fasttense (Reply #13)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 01:25 PM

66. How about neither...

The past existence of my old clearance is no state secret. However, I will not disclose the stuff that my old unit did, even though The Military Channel has most certainly done a program about it and there are been a ton of news stories about it as well.

I was not some kind of spook. I was a paper pusher who worked in an Intelligence unit.

When I was debriefed, no one cared about the fact that I once had a clearance. There was nothing that I signed to prevent me from putting my clearance on a resume.




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Response to fasttense (Reply #13)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:54 PM

85. I had my final read off and debrief in 2010 .....

... when I retired. There was no mention of not revealing I had a clearance. It was pretty much expected that you would put your highest clearance held on your resume. I worked on dozens of different code word programs over the 40 years. Some I still cannot mention. Others were so well known that nobody cared if you once worked with them. Back in the late 70's when I worked in a TEMPEST program even the code word was classified. It got declassified and now you can read about it on Wikipedia.

Times and rules change.

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Response to fasttense (Reply #13)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:36 PM

99. Bingo

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Response to fasttense (Reply #13)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:24 AM

124. You remember incorrectly. Clearances held are a common feature of most defense/state

and other cabinet level/contracted posts.

It's right there on the employment applications. These applications are NOT classified.

Your clearance isn't a secret--it's what you learned while HOLDING the clearance that needs to be kept close to the vest.

Example: http://www.northropgrumman.com/Careers/Pages/SecurityClearances.aspx

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:34 AM

14. You hit it right on all points, I think. Thanks for the perspective.




Stop looking for heroes. BE one.


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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:34 AM

15. years ago my dh had a top security clearance too

And people here would not believe what the feds snooped into! Continuously. It became, in a sense, so comedic that I tried to entertain them! . What could I do but try to get some jollies out of the situation?! Rather like in a M*A*S*H fashion.
This was back in the 80's and 90's.


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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)


Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:37 AM

17. We were a family of clearances

My Dad had top secret, my Mom "Q" level and top secret, my Uncle Jim, top secret, myself, secret. Knowing a bit of the vetting that was done for my clearance it seems really strange who they are giving top secret these days. It's not a problem to me that contractors have clearance since that has been the norm for years without problems - except for leaking congresscritters and WH staff. There will always be those who leak confidential material for political gain.

I do think that the world's intelligence communities pretty much know what everything about everything and that the rest of us are just left in the dark. I told this to both my Mom and Dad, neither commented but gave me the raised eyebrow.

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Response to TexasProgresive (Reply #17)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:46 AM

19. ...

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Response to TexasProgresive (Reply #17)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 02:59 AM

147. If this is true,

"I do think that the world's intelligence communities pretty much know what everything about everything and that the rest of us are just left in the dark,"

then we need to stop pretending we are a democracy or that our votes make any difference because they don't.

This kind of elite class in a society is incompatible with the ideals or the reality of honest, open, representative government.

Who and what is this elite class representing? No one elected it. No one knows what it does or why. In fact, if it could, it would hide its very existence. It intimidates. It makes people fear it.

It is because of that class that we are in so much trouble around the world. The mess in Iran, in Iraq, everywhere can be traced back to stupid decisions made in secret by an elite few.

That class is to America like a husband's mistress is to the innocent, unknowing wife. The mistress knows the wife exists. The wife does not know the mistress exists. And the husband is betraying the wife's trust with the mistress.

Such love affairs are commonplace.

But the fact is that when one or the other partner in a marriage has a lover, the trust that is fundamental to that relationship is placed under severe stress. Many marriages do not survive if the partner who is not a part to the affair finds out.

It takes a lot of work, a lot of honesty and sincerity and openness between husband and wife to reconstruct and rebuild a marriage after such a betrayal assuming that the basic understanding between husband and wife prior to the mistress was that both partners would be honest with each other -- the most common case.

Our government betrays all of us who are not part of the elite when it creates an elite that can make basic decisions about the nation's future and the nation's relationships with other nations behind the backs of the rest of the citizens without ever telling the majority of the population the details about what the elite is really doing. That Congress is advised of the basic framework of the matter simply makes members of Congress accomplices in keeping Americans ignorant and docile while the elite works its mischief.

And, of course, those who make up the elite are first, probably chosen because they feel they are better than everyone else and deserve to be part of the elite and also because they feel separate from others, that is, do not have enough empathy or feeling of solidarity with others to have difficulty keeping secrets that will obviously have repercussions on the lives of others. They, I assume, comfort themselves with the thought that the others not in the elite need their help and would be lost without them.

Then we see the syndrome that is revealing itself here -- the elite attacking anyone of their number, any member of the elite who crosses over and gives away secrets to the uninitiated.

This is the typical behavior of elites in dictatorships. It is thanks to people who are susceptible to becoming parts of such elites that dictators exist. That was true in the Third Reich. It was true in Communist countries. It is probably true in places like China and Syria, etc. now.

But America is supposed to be different. There is utterly no provision in our Constitution for forming an elite working for our government that can keep secrets from our free people.

Do we need some secrets? Yes. But they should be kept to a minimum. We have secrets gone wild. Do we need them in today's world? It is easy to think so. But then those secrets if too numerous render democracy impossible.

The more secrets we create, the more others want to know our secrets and we theirs. A vicious circle is formed. We have more secrets because others become more skilled at discovering our secrets. And others keep more secrets because we are more skilled at discovering theirs.

Secrets should be kept to a minimum.

And this elite that knows the secrets is becoming ridiculously large. The leaking may be due to the fact that the elite that knows the secrets is too numerous and too powerful.

We may be seeing so many leaks because our elite is working for private companies with private interests and profits to consider and therefore has divided and uncertain loyalties.

I have read histories of spies in WWII. It was very different. Then, most members of the secretive elite clearly worked for and was a part of the government, mostly for the military. There was a very clear sense of loyalty to a noble cause, of working for our nation and for democracy. That does not seem to be the goal in this spying program and the companies that do the spying. I might be wrong on that, but I think that if the connection between the good of the country, our nation's goals, and this program were clear to the employees doing this work, we would not be discussing this.

There is something basically unpatriotic and disloyal about the program and that is why the whistleblower came forward.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:45 AM

18. I have been saying it but no one seems to be listening.

It's like it just came out of the blue and is newsworthy. Yawn!!

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:50 AM

20. Have To Agree To Disagree - The Surveillance State Is Out Of Control - No More Excuses

eom

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Response to cantbeserious (Reply #20)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:24 AM

25. I agree with you

I'm surprised so many people seem to be ok with this.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:02 AM

21. Just because some ass tweets a pic of their ass doesn't mean everybody has to lose THEIR privacy

Lets face it, the crystal ball you speak of is already in the hands of idiots. It has to be, given the vast millions of folks with 'top secret' clearance. Even you would have to admit that is the case, given that Snowden himself had such clearance and you consider him an idiot.

And we don't get out of this by singing kumbyya and forming a protective ring around the President like a heard of musk oxen.

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Response to n2doc (Reply #21)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:14 PM

94. The false equivalency crap going on here is rampant. The DU friends of Agent Mike group...

has multiplied like rabbits. Trust the government ...who doesn't trust us ...the same government that has lied to us over and over again ...the same government that calls out the pigs to remove occupy protestors from the front of Skank of America. The over confident reassuring warm milk being served up is making me sick.

Hang in there n2 ...it's going to be a ruff ride IMO.

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Response to L0oniX (Reply #94)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 11:00 PM

113. Yeah.. the apologists are arguing in favor

of rolling over and telling us to trust a known criminal entity, aka the US the government.

...Not a white shining entity, but an imperfect organization made up of imperfect humans.

"Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves." William Pitt

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:06 AM

22. Then comparing it to the One Ring and suggesting we toss it into Mt. Doom is out of the question?

n/t

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:13 AM

23. Thanks for that.

I am a nobody as it comes to espionage and spying. An expert in TV movies on it. But what you say is what I suspected. We are all getting our underpants in a bunch over this nonrevelation. And Greenwald is getting his out of this, too. But this Snowden "kid" is a beginneer and should not have been spilling his guts about that which he did not really know.

Now I agree with cali, and I think you said it too, the Patriot Act has to go, and the size and scope of the espionage community needs to be reduced get those damn mercenary spies out of it. I did not like those sell outs over in Iraq and Afghanistan (and I did not like either of those in the first place) and I certainly don't like them in our surveillance community.

We need to reduce the vast number of agencies, link all their computers, and let them do the job they really should be doing. The right hand does not know what the left is doing or if there is even a left hand to start with.

Personally I think this is another diversion by the right wing to take our eyes off the prize, and even more take the eyes of the dumbed down right wing off what the real prize should be.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:15 AM

24. "Don't be fucking naive. "

This is a major point.

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Response to greytdemocrat (Reply #24)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:43 AM

29. There was

a much better way to say that. You were not being attacked other than with an opinion.

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Response to greytdemocrat (Reply #24)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:19 AM

123. Rationalizing an authoritarian surveillance state is naive.

Making up stories about why Big Brother is necessary and good is naive.

Delusions that it's bad when China or Iran do it but not the USA are naive.

The idea that the national security state "defends" this country when it has evidently created most of its enemies is naive.

Don't be fucking naive means, wake up, this is a business. A racket of the military industrial complex. Those of you work in it may not be running the racket, but don't come fucking tell those of us who see the racket that we are naive ones.

If it's naive to prefer constitutional government over the arbitrary power of a national security state made up primarily of corporate contractors who profit from fear mongering and war, then I AM NAIVE.

The national security state is highly compartmentalized. By definition most people in it have only a tunnel vision of their small part, don't even know what's going on next door.

I do not consider experience in this state to be a special qualification that makes your justifications of an unaccountable national security state to be any more worthwhile than some pundit's.

I consider people who reject this state and courageously stand up for the right thing to be the real experts. If Snowden was an Iranian or a Chinese, you'd be finding out he was a hero.

Snowden and Greenwald are heroes.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:33 AM

27. That was a good read. n/t

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:38 AM

28. Thank you. K&R n/t

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:49 AM

30. I've read the same sentiment severl times.

It is as unacceptable now, as it has been. Let me boil down the argument.

First. The Government is going to collect intelligence and spy on you. Get over it. Get used to it, and learn to love it. That is the same asinine arguments that small minded people use about rape. If you're going to be raped, you might as well relax and enjoy it. It's wrong, it's immoral, and it's not in keeping with the principles of this nation. I eschew such arguments whenever they are made.

Second. The messenger. The messenger is a bad guy, and while he may be telling the truth, he is a bad guy and we should hold that against him and reject any information he brings out. Churchill when asked why he was speaking well of Stalin, a Dictator in charge of a system that Churchill had actively worked against, said that if Satan declared war on Hitler, he could count on Churchill making a favorable mention on the floor of the House of Commons. The obvious point is that first, we must defeat the greatest evil, and then we should work towards defeating the other, less threatening evils. Glen Greenwald may be a RW asshat. But is that worse than a Government that spies on it's own citizens? If I can find one area in which everyone can agree with me, and my ideals are based upon good principles, then my view is not that I am wrong, but that finally they are right.

My opinion is this. Civil Rights matter, for every one of us. When they are abused, or trampled, even for the worst of us, that abuse becomes the foundation of the next abuse. We did it here, and this guy is almost as bad as that guy.

No one should have the kind of power that these programs entail. We have a choice, we can accept, and become parties to it, and later when we ask how our children, and grand children, were targeted for speaking ideals that were unacceptable, we can feign ignorance, but we can't be stupid. We know where this leads. We've seen it before. We've seen McCarthyism, we've seen the House Un American Activities investigations. We've seen blacklists. Why would we not object?

Oh that's right, there's nothing we can do to prevent it, so we might as well relax and enjoy.

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Response to Savannahmann (Reply #30)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:02 PM

55. +1

Cheers!

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Response to Savannahmann (Reply #30)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:51 PM

73. THANK YOU!

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Response to Savannahmann (Reply #30)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 01:58 AM

137. Very well stated!

Thank you.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:49 AM

31. Tremendous: thoughtful and insightful

Plus, "Kroners to Krispy Kremes."

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:58 AM

32. good post, it's so much easier for people to go off emotionally

Than to think through the issues. Every bureaucracy gets bloated, has irrational procedures, people who work in it who forget the overall purpose.

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Response to treestar (Reply #32)


Response to seaglass (Reply #34)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:14 AM

36. That's not all that over-emotional

Especially words like idiot or doofus.

Can't compare with some of the rantings we've seen here. The OP is not overemotional in tone like the doom-filled posts that we live in a fascist state.

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Response to treestar (Reply #36)


Response to seaglass (Reply #37)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:26 AM

38. If that OP is like that

the most OPs are worse.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:07 AM

33. k&r

Excellent.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:12 AM

35. I'm curious how he got the job and security clearance in the first place

A high school drop out with no real computer experience (he dropped out of the couple classes he took) and he gets a job as a security guard. Within months he has an IT position (paying $200,000 per year, way above the average entry level pay for an IT guy. I know, I'm one) with Top Secret security clearance. He holds the job just long enough to copy the information and leak it to the press, then he quits and goes into hiding.

Who, exactly, pulled strings to get this man the job?

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Response to auburngrad82 (Reply #35)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:38 AM

40. Good question.

It makes no sense. The whole thing seems orchestrated. China? Because when I think China, I think "freedom". Wasn't there a hacker in China recently?

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Response to auburngrad82 (Reply #35)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:40 AM

42. Yeah, that was my first take on everything, too. HS dropout to SF dropout to security guard

to $200,000 IT top-secret guy? That is such an unusual job trajectory that it merits some real investigation. Anyone who lives in the real work world saw his "job history" and said "WHAT THE FUCK?" out loud.

My guess? He was recruited when he broke both legs in that SF training accident, still works for the CIA/NSA, not Booz Allen Hamilton, and is being placed somewhere as some sort of double/triple agent. But then, maybe I read too much John Le Carre.

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Response to Nay (Reply #42)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:23 PM

104. How do we know he broke both legs?

We just know what we've been fed.

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Response to auburngrad82 (Reply #35)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:45 AM

45. +1, from security guard to INFRASTRUCTURE sys admin?!

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Response to auburngrad82 (Reply #35)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:47 AM

46. Clearance investigations and re-investigations are seriously backlogged

and are also seriously impacted by sequestration/budget cuts. He may have been given less scrutiny since apparently he was in the system for a while.

I seriously doubt that $200k salary that's been bandied about.

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Response to Zorro (Reply #46)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:22 PM

61. Backlog is going to be worst now...

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Response to auburngrad82 (Reply #35)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:38 PM

108. Your timeline is compressed

He appears to have gone from security guard to IT grunt. And then he got promoted a few times over a few years. Then he took the job in Hawaii, which has a large cost-of-living "bonus".

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #108)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 06:48 PM

174. The salary is still very high for the position he is reported to have had

The national average for a systems administrator with 5-10 years experience is $75,000-85,000. To get a salary two to three times that, apparently without a degree or equivalent certification, after being a security guard, seems to be a bit unbelievable. Or maybe I need to look into switching jobs..

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Response to Trekologer (Reply #174)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 11:56 PM

175. According to Salary.com

A Systems Administrator V in Honolulu makes about $120k. Add in the clearance and the familiarity with the NSA, and you can get to the high 100's pretty easily. Keep in mind the $200k figure is rounded up - I'm not sure but I think I remember hearing he was actually making $175k.

As for the "no degree" part, that becomes less and less relevant as work experience grows. Especially in IT, because technology moves so fast that much of a degree becomes moot in a shockingly short period of time.

For example, I'm a software developer. When I graduated from college they had just invented this new thing called the "World-Wide Web". Software development is completely and utterly different today compared to when I graduated. As a result, employers only care about what I've been doing the last 5 or so years.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:30 AM

39. Thank you

Your experience and expertise have validated my thoughts on this.

From the start, The only thing that surprised me was that anyone was surprised. W started it and every president to follow will continue it from fear that NOT doing it may arguably lead to another huge attack laid at his/her feet.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:59 AM

41. Thanks for this Mr. Scorpio

I have lived in South Korea for almost 10 years now and it is an interesting place. The Yongsan base is going to close in the near future and they will be moving most of the Americans south toward Pyeongteak. Camp Humphrey's is about 3 times what it used to be from what I understand. I'm not military, but I worked with a guy who was retired military and was able to go on base with him as an escort a few times to eat lunch. If you ever head back this way let me know and I'll buy you a beer and some kimchi.

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Response to davidpdx (Reply #41)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 01:15 PM

65. Kasamnida, Adashi! nt

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:41 AM

43. As a security person

Can you tell me if the NSA can, and possibly has, tracked my cell phone when I went by Occupy Wall Street? If I decided to go down and join the protest, would my cell phone have possibly been logged?

Twice, as a construction worker, I had to get clearance for construction work at a major airport and then later at a government lab. Is it possible, in your opinion, that they checked for something like that?

I'm pretty sure that I signed over the right for them to check anything on me. Facebook, whatever I posted online, included.

And, here's the rub, in your expert opinion, isn't it useful for government to create a state of mind in the people that they might be getting monitored, at any time?

If you need the money, why risk it by joining protests that might cost you government related work?

Can you tell me there's no risk of people losing a chance for a clearance because the government knew they had associated with protestors?

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Response to Babel_17 (Reply #43)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:51 PM

62. Let me try to answer your questions as best I can.

Last edited Tue Jun 11, 2013, 02:51 PM - Edit history (1)

"Can you tell me if the NSA can, and possibly has, tracked my cell phone when I went by Occupy Wall Street? If I decided to go down and join the protest, would my cell phone have possibly been logged?"

In truth, I don't think that the NSA would have cared enough about you to do anything like that to you specifically. These people are not The Stasi, they don't care if you go to protests or even hug trees. On the other hand, your cell phone is always sending out signals to indicate it's status and location whenever and wherever it can. The phone companies themselves do that and the NSA, at any time but under the correct circumstances and authorization can access that metadata.

But just because you sat around, protesting with a phone in your pocket, it doesn't mean that you're a target.

"Twice, as a construction worker, I had to get clearance for construction work at a major airport and then later at a government lab. Is it possible, in your opinion, that they checked for something like that? "

No. Your protesting history didn't matter. They were checking your criminal background and credit histories instead.

"I'm pretty sure that I signed over the right for them to check anything on me. Facebook, whatever I posted online, included. "

It's right there in the user agreement that you signed in order for you to use that stuff.

"And, here's the rub, in your expert opinion, isn't it useful for government to create a state of mind in the people that they might be getting monitored, at any time? "

You've been reading too many spy novels. The Government is not doing this keep people paranoid about being spied on. They're doing this because there's a vast telecommunications system that everyone uses and they don't want to be left out of the loop. There's money to be made here, but most of all and it's obvious that these are government contracts to both manage and monitor the system on behalf of the government to function as an excellent way for these companies to get paid.

"If you need the money, why risk it by joining protests that might cost you government related work?

Can you tell me there's no risk of people losing a chance for a clearance because the government knew they had associated with protestors?"


Again, they don't care. Exercising one's right to protest doesn't represent a threat to them.

They've got bigger fish to fry.




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Response to MrScorpio (Reply #62)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 02:04 PM

68. "Exercising one's right to protest doesn't represent a threat to them. "

 

That's a weird view of reality. It's the ONLY threat to them. Is there any other?

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Response to reusrename (Reply #68)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 11:20 PM

115. They're concerned with the people who want to blow us up. The people who are trying to break into

our computer systems for nukes, satellites, and encryption. The people trying to do it have the tools and skills that the nsa has. The threat is omnipresent. NSA is tasked with protecting the country from people who want to harm it. Most are unconcerned with individual Americans or groups of protestors. They're trying to weed through all of us to get to the bad guys. Protestors will always to some degree be looked at. It's one of the favorite situations for terrorists. Just like Boston. High value target, lots of people, chaos, confusion, overwhelms hospitals and police forces, lots of coverage on the news.

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Response to MrScorpio (Reply #62)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 02:50 PM

70. Thanks for taking the time for the detailed reply (nt)

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Response to MrScorpio (Reply #62)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 06:55 PM

74. They don't care? NOT YET.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:43 AM

44. No matter how "private" you think things are, there is a room full of analysts somewhere who can see

everything you say and do in any aspect of your life.

I'm in the health insurance industry....and there is no real privacy anywhere!

I feel the same way Mr. Scorpio, perhaps from my years working as a health insurance analyst with access to databases with millions of people's medical records, including all claims and doctor records and doctor notes, etc. Pretty much, everyone who is hired in my department has access to this information the first day, and yes we sign non-disclosure agreements but that wouldnt' stop someone with bad intentions from doing bad things.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:24 AM

47. R#60 for, EXCELLENT o.p. & here are highlights:

*************QUOTE*************





the man's an idiot. Pure and simple. However, the mere fact that he received a security clearance and a job at a big time contractor
is highly problematic, in that it's a clear demonstration that the system is so hopelessly bloated that just about any idiot can become part of it. There are just too many people with security clearances out there.

Here's a man who took a doofus who was shocked about common knowledge in the field of which he was supposed to be working and
sen-sen-sation-sationalized
(echo) it because sensationalizing things is his stock and trade. Especially, if it's anything to make the present administration look bad.

Our Constitutional rights are important. The issue, unfortunately, is that a lot of people are using 18th Century standards to a problem that's as old as the 20th Century. Your rights were destroyed even before most of us were born. This is an extension of the 1947 National Security Act and has been tweaked and bloated ever since.


repealing that god-damned PATRIOT Act. The only people for whom that thing is doing any good are the contractors who are cashing in big time because of it, and the politicians whose careers depend upon getting the American people to cheer them on while they slip the contractors a nice, friendly hand-job under the table while they're having their lobster bisque and arugula.


Better yet, stop listening to the fools in the media who should know better than to sacrifice a rube or two in order to try getting everyone to go straight into panic mode. If it bleeds, it leads, Baby. Even if they have make shit up,

sensationalize common knowledge and use it to troll whomever mercilessly, you need to fucking chill.


*************UNQUOTE*************

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:56 AM

49. Greenwald is in this for himself


absolutely:

"I'll will bet you Kroners to Krispy Kremes the Greenwald will do everything within his vast powers of self-promotion to turn this fool into a martyr, personally persecuted be the Evil Obama Administration."

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 11:19 AM

50. thanks for the OP. I hadn't been alarmed previously, just pissed.

I have been pissed at the information gathering for some time.....more pissed that some capitalist feels they have the right to gather my personal info to redistribute it to other capitalists with an end game of making money off me by knowing way too much personal info. I was extremely alarmed that insurance companies could collect data without my knowledge to make life and death health decisions based on tha collected data. But that's propbably just me.

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Response to Sheepshank (Reply #50)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 10:40 AM

164. Just remember -- the capitalists DO have the right to collect all that info for themselves. You

sign up for facebook, get a phone, go to the doc, etc., and to do that, you sign their agreement. That has always been the case, because businesses are NOT constrained by the Constitution -- only the government is. A predatory business is only constrained by trespassing laws, property laws, etc., not the Constitution.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 11:20 AM

51. Finally. A voice of reason.

Bravo!

Ever since messages were delivered between 2 parties (whether by human or animal or mechanical or electronic carrier), some entity (King, Council, President, Titular Head) finds a way to intercept them.

And ironically, there is this bizarre assumption out there that there isn't a need-to-know level of security still considered "inherently governmental" that no contractor would be aware of.

The DU poutrage of the day is tiresome.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 11:50 AM

52. Huh?

You offer repeatedly that we are ultimately powerless and always have been in regard to keeping government from ignoring the 4th Amendment and then you offer that we should push for repeal of the Patriot Act. Why? If your first hypothesis is correct, why should we waste effort on a fool's errand?

Since time began the first inklings of any social change has been outrage and anger. That is simply the way it works and even though initial reactions and over emotional analysis leads to ugliness and countless mistakes, it still gets the ball rolling. EVen though time and more sober reasoning usually temper and more effectively focuses the initial outrage and anger, anger and outrage always have their seats at the table in regard to social change. Always!

Lastly, life is aout timing. If we as a society do not act forcefully now and reject the total surveillance state, how could we ever possibly effect change in the future when the mechanisms of oppression are even more firmly entrenched? No, I reject your proposition because the key here IS outrage and anger. The fact is that we who spend time here and engage in political debate are not your typical American. We are up to our necks in the minute details of politics and political events when the vast majority of Americans hardly have their feet wet. Granted, we here at DU have known about and suspected the worst for years in regard to domestic spying, but that is truly irrelevant to the discussion of changing the status quo because millions of Americans are not as informed as we are here and striking while the iron is hot is always advantageous. At least it has been for the MIC and the surveillance state after 9/11 and countless wars before that. In short, it is a good thing that there are histrionics and over dramatization of these events because it greatly stimulates a truly national discussion where the truth can hopefully be distilled and acted upon.

Cheers!

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 11:56 AM

53. I'm in the same position you are.

I posted an OP about that and my reasons for not continuing to work at the NSA a couple of days ago.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #53)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:09 PM

57. The funny thing is that even after leaving all of that shit behind eight years ago...

I'm still getting emails about job offers to cleared individuals... I just got another one that I'm ignoring today.

I've let my clearance lapse on purpose. However, because this clearance process and the national security state apparatus are so bloated, automated and utterly self-perpetuating, no one really gives a shit to check and see if I'm still cleared or not.

I read your piece, and I feel you, bro.

That was a good piece.

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Response to MrScorpio (Reply #57)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:20 PM

60. Once I left the USAF, I left that entire business behind.

I didn't work in the field long enough, or at a high enough level for anyone to come asking if I wanted to work for them. Since I've been self employed since the mid 1970s, nobody has asked for any information on my security clearance, except for one time:

I got an assignment to write an article for a tire company. They had supplied the special tires for the "MX Missile Transporter," so my article would be about their tires in that particular use. To do the article, I visited the test center for that Transporter at the Nevada Test Site. That was an unusual situation, and the visit was delayed for a couple of weeks, while my clearance was rechecked. It was OK, and I made my visit, complete with camera gear, etc.

I did get a briefing about what could and could not appear in the article, of course, but I got a full tour of the facility, and even a ride in the Transporter, which was way cool. My military clearance level was enough, I guess for them to let me poke around. I kept well within their guidelines in the article, which was sent to them for review before publication.

I had another article idea involving that piece of equipment, and gathered all the info I needed for it. I proposed a "test drive" article for Road & Track, which did an annual test drive of some weird vehicle at the time. Sadly, that article didn't get written, because it got into areas that were classified at a higher level. I was disappointed, and so were the editors at Road & Track.

Life's interesting.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #53)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:11 PM

58. Top Secret Clearance here also..


I got out of the federal contracting game for various reasons..

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:08 PM

56. Agree with you on the Patriot Act

"Next, what you need to do is focus on one thing. That thing should be an effective way of reducing the size and scope of the security state. I suggest that everyone focuses like a laser beam on repealing that god-damned PATRIOT Act. The only people for whom that thing is doing any good are the contractors, who are cashing in big time because of it and the politicians, whose careers depend upon getting the American people to cheer them on while they slip the contractors a nice, friendly hand-job under the table when they're having their lobster bisque and arugula."

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:12 PM

59. Also, just for shits and giggles

How are we here at DU supposed to know that you are still not involved with the spook community? How are we to know that you are not simply fulfilling your tasked assignment of infiltrating DU to conduct disruptive operations and member profiling? Are you here to pacify our outrage? In short, where is your life history that we can minutely dissect in a search for late library books, prideful boasts and scandalous liaisons? How can we possibly evaluate your OP without knowing if you have ever cheated on your taxes or cheated on your wife?

I hope I am getting modus operandi correct in regard to the best practices technique of attacking the messenger.

Just teasin'! Mostly!

Cheers!

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:58 PM

63. k+r

great insights...

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 01:39 PM

67. "Tweeting from their toilets millions of times a day . . ." --- That would be me.

Couldn't help it, this place gave me a case of the drizzling shits after President Obama was re-elected.

I don't know when you went into the military, but I joined the Army in July of 1975.
My first Commander in Chief was Gerald Rudolf Ford.
The only President of the United States that was not elected by the people.

Richard "Tricky Dick" Nixon created a real Constitutional crisis when he ordered the wiretapping of the Democratic party's headquarters in the Watergate Hotel complex in 1972 and then he tried to cover it up after the burglars were caught.

I would vote for President Obama again if I could.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 02:41 PM

69. interview

Dear MrScorpio,

I would be interested in interviewing you tomorrow morning for a public radio program about your post here. Would you be interested or available? Email me at tyler.thetakeaway@gmail.com.

Thanks!

Tyler

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Response to tyler.thetakeaway (Reply #69)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 03:09 PM

71. No, I'm not doing any interviews

For one, I've been out of the loop for too long. I haven't had anything to do with this stuff for the last nine years. What I wrote in my OP is only based on that and not on what's going on today, which I pretty much figure is far bigger and more complex than I have any capability of accurately describing in an interview.

Secondly, I'm not an expert. Also, I was not engaged directly in any of these activities while I was in uniform. That wasn't my job. Now, although I was assigned and associated with this stuff, everything that I've written is based on my experiences as an outsider.

I appreciate the offer, but I have to decline.

All I'm saying is that what is known should be common knowledge to anyone who has had anything to do with this biz... And that's a lot of people.

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Response to tyler.thetakeaway (Reply #69)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:19 PM

76. Tyler, you picked a great person/post to approach. Glad you were able to wade through the chum

that's been littering the front page this week and get to this gem.

Even though Scorpio has turned you down, good on you for finding a reasonable, KNOWLEDGEABLE (emphasis on that because the loudest ones here often don't come close to wearing that badge) person to try to engage.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:12 PM

75. HUGE K&R!! "the crying and drama queening about it is just getting way out of hand."

Brother, you ain't lying. I said something very similar yesterday http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=2989838

Don't be fucking naive.

Such simple words but you may as well be speaking Aramaic to some of these people. I know the shrieking is par for the course around here. This is, sadly, what DU does now and has done for the last few years. But I'm so sick of it. It is so moronically counter-productive I honestly can't understand the fucking POINT of it besides enabling a few lonely and probably very bored (boring?) people to get the recs they need to feel as though they are doing something with their lives.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:27 PM

77. Best comment about this whole clusterfuck that I've read yet .

Thanks.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:34 PM

79. Just because you drank the Kookaid and need to still justify it...

The current national security spends most of its resources making sure it is a growth industry and it will kill anyone and anything that stands in the way.
It costs 5 times more than we can afford to pay for a bloated, defective system when our standard of living, our chances at financial security and happiness are none unless you are good at deluding yourself and that makes for a great society.
It is failing in it core responsibilities miserably.
It is interfering with legitimate businesses, politics, schools, churches, news etc.

It already threatens too many people and takes away too much privacy and more importantly free speech.

One more stolen election and we are in tyranny here in the US not just overseas where all our diplomacy involves weapons, brute force and interfering with other democracies.

Also with the number of people involved, and private corporations there is no way to have secure intelligence. Everyone who shouldn't know what is going on does and too many who need to know what is going on to preserve our Constitutional way of life haven't a clue.

I hate living in a country that uses drones that kill all over the world. Who exports terror on a whim Who sets up Ben Ladens, Husseins, Castros and then makes our life miserable and costly when they go rogue and they say we have to invade entire countries. That manage to kill a bunch of biologists, election machine people and Senators to get what they think is best for the country. We did not elect them.

We are stupid to trust them. We were stupid to let Prescott Bush etal set up the CIA, we were stupid to let Bush Sr, CIA become president, we were stupid to let Bush Jr steal the election, stack the courts, let 911 happen and use it to set up Homeland Security.

They control the child pornography, prostitution trades, they control the drug trade, things they should be eliminating they control almost everything and have made a bloody mess of it all.

All the above has been proven we just pretend it isn't because doing something about it is uncomfortable and difficult but Freedom isn't free and we have given it away for some magic beans, the illusion of security.

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Response to kickysnana (Reply #79)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:59 PM

86. I'm not justifying it, I'm merely breaking the news to you that it exists

This thing (and a lot of other shit that this country does) is merely the price of allowing ourselves to be represented by those who are running a super power.

Of course, it utterly evil. What, no one has ever told you that running a super power is messy business before?

The question I'm asking is, what are you going to do about it?

How are you going to make the corruption and unfairness less corrupt and unfair?

You don't have to trust them, but you damn well sure better use whatever powers of democracy and citizen involvement that still exists to change things for the better.





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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:40 PM

80. Snowden's a patriot and you're a jerk.

 

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Response to xtraxritical (Reply #80)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:49 PM

83. Jesus loves ya, baby nt

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:46 PM

82. DOD Secret here at Boeing.

Some shit I can talk about; some shit I can't and won't.

I have some amusing stories about the DOD guys on campus, though. Not sure that I want to interject them here.

You have my ear about this, because most DUers do not understand the culture or the dynamics of these affairs.

I will say one thing, though. Snowden's story is fishy. There's something screwy about it. With what I know about clearances, having been through it myself, I am not ready to buy into all he has said.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 07:51 PM

84. My only problem with your OP...

 

Lobster bisque and arugula really don't go well together.

Other than that - spot on.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:14 PM

88. It you can't get a sip from a fire hose, squandering money to build a spy Niagara Falls is wasteful.

 

You said,
"Next, what you need to do is focus on one thing. That thing should be an effective way of reducing the size and scope of the security state. I suggest that everyone focuses like a laser beam on repealing that god-damned PATRIOT Act. The only people for whom that thing is doing any good are the contractors, who are cashing in big time because of it and the politicians, whose careers depend upon getting the American people to cheer them on while they slip the contractors a nice, friendly hand-job under the table when they're having their lobster bisque and arugula."

But how is it possible to reduce the size and scope of the security state without calling attention to it?

How is it possible to reduce the size and scope of the security state diverting attention away from an important issue and trivializing what is being done.

It's old news? Nothing to see here? Just move along?

No thank you.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:23 PM

89. Thank you for a fascinating read.

And I'm amazed at the wealth of experience I can tap into, simply by logging on to Democratic Underground.

Best wishes.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:02 PM

92. More false equivalency bullshit.

Facebook is not going to whisk anyone off to an unknown location ...forever.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:03 PM

93. I agree that at some level this is nothing new....

but the time has come for the American people (and I think we will be getting an earful from our allies and others around the world) to decide what kind of country they want to live in.

The 4th Amendment is written in what I consider to be fairly clear and understandable English. Unfortunately just as the Supreme Court forgot the part of the 2nd Amendment that reads "A well-regulated militia....." the Supreme Court, our purchased leaders in Congress and the White House have chosen to ignore the 4th Amendment because they are terrified of having the other side say they didn't do enough to protect the country.

Yes we suffered a tremendous loss of life on 9-11. But does that mean we have to give up our Constitutional rights? I think not.

We have allowed the beltway to rob us of more and more privacy for the past 50 years. No one seemed too concerned. I have nothing to hide but I loathe the fact how many times I call my sister or my friends is available to a totally unsupervised vast public-private surveillance complex.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:44 PM

101. The problem is that it's perfectly legal and shouldn't be.

If they government needs info, they can get a warrant.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 09:48 PM

102. Hats off to Mr. Scorpio. Kick. Rec.



Keep Calm and Carry On. Thank you.

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Response to Hekate (Reply #102)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:48 PM

111. my motto, too n/t

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 10:44 PM

110. I was in SIGINT, TS/SI clearance. I'm rolling my eyes at the misinformation.

And the naivete. And the "shock." Histrionics.

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Response to DevonRex (Reply #110)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 11:02 PM

114. You feel my pain, bro.

You feel my pain.

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Response to MrScorpio (Reply #114)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 11:45 PM

116. Every bit of it.

There's no use talking sense, either.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:09 AM

119. Thanks for writing this OP. Very informative, very rational. Patriot Act Repeal, K&R.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:33 AM

127. Ah, the cult of national security.

All hail the security of the United States! The Security Apparatus is holy and sacred and must be protected!

And remember, all zealots and priests of the Cult of National Security must take the holy oath of Omerta, and pledge that they will die before betraying the secret knowledge of criminal acts to those who have not been initiated into the cult.

Thank you, Kool-Aid and refreshments are being served in the foyer.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:45 AM

128. Well said.

Thanks for laying it out there.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 12:51 AM

129. thank you

nt

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 01:06 AM

130. People who worked in this kind of program are anethisized

to its dangers and should not be trusted.

No surveillance of ordinary people. The government should be required to have real probable cause based on reasonable suspicion before it gets ANY kind of subpoena. That's the guarantee in the Constitution.

I don't care how long this has been going on, the Constitution is very, very clear on this. And I do not believe that the old cases permitting the subpoenaing of pen registers would cover this kind of apparently blanket acquisition of records of electronic transmissions.

If a reporter believes that his phone calls might be under surveillance, he will be unable to report on stories he would otherwise report. If a person running for public office thinks that his or his aides phone calls will be under surveillance, he might hesitate to call a donor who would "pay" for supporting him, say with the loss of a government contract.

This may seem normal to the creeps that run these programs or work for them. But then . . . we know what kind of people they are or have become.

It's a sorry moment in our history when people justify this stuff. If the program is not being abused, I think that it would not be so kept so secret.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #130)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 01:17 AM

133. 'This may seem normal to the CREEPS that run these programs or work for them."

I cannot believe you said that. Do you realize what you just said to the poster?

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Response to DevonRex (Reply #133)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 02:16 AM

140. I did not say that to the poster. I said that in general.

Do you disagree? The people who work in surveillance are creeps. Sorry. But they are. It's really weird work.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #140)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 03:32 AM

153. You seem to be under a misconception.

As far as this particular program goes it's not done by people at all until the end stage. When a pattern is found by a computer program of the encrypted phone data then a warrant is requested and granted. At that point a program unencrypts the data and only then will the analysts work on it to determine if an investigation is in order.

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Response to DevonRex (Reply #153)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 03:43 AM

155. That's even worse.

Because the data is there ready to be unencrypted and the analyst has no human relationship with the person about whom the data was collected. The analyst creates the context within which he analyzes the information. Thus, the analyst brings his or her interpretation to information that is incomplete and draws conclusions from it. Thanks to work I have done, I know how utterly inaccurate such conclusions can be.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #155)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 03:46 AM

156. Seriously bad leap there. LOL.

You have no clue. But that's OK.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #130)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 01:41 AM

134. You get no disagreements from me

However, that naivetť the I mentioned... That's thinking that such a program could exist and that won't be abused.

The abuse doesn't even restrict itself to it's own application, in that how it's being used and who it's being used against, but also the mere fact the influence that such a power would have over those who are responsible for administering it, those who would profit by it and the power that it would extend to those who are free to use it.

Surveillance is a trump card for the already powerful... I mentioned in my OP about how everything is corrupted.

How do you think they got that way?

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Response to MrScorpio (Reply #134)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 02:14 AM

139. They got that way because people became afraid to speak up,

afraid of losing a job, of being unemployable, of having a "bad record," of the corporate spider web that traps everyone.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 01:56 AM

136. Do you have any suggestions

as to how progressives can work toward doing away with the Patriot act? Petitions, demonstrations, or belief in our next candidates for public office?

How do people work toward inhibiting the overreach of these departments while they have us checkmated with surveillance?

My father had very high clearance. I got used to monitoring, but I never liked it. I saw something I wasn't supposed to and was harassed pretty bad, lets just say I believe I have a form of PTSD from my experiences. As a result the subject of surveillance is something that I feel very strongly about. I'm sure some people around here noticed my intensity. The same must be true for ex prisoners or people harassed by police.

Their is a dark side that comes with secrecy and abuse-- at some point all of the 'collateral damage' reaches critical mass. Cause and effect. I don't think people are that naive, just waking up to the levels of corruption, and not wanting to go along with this program. This is a process that is unfolding, and people HAVE to be allowed to vent, then calm down, collect the facts and then hopefully stay focused on the best course of events. I say this because this is my process also.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 02:16 AM

141. I'm not panicking. I'm just letting my representatives know that they currently do not

represent my values. That is our basic American right, and I will continue to do so. No panic here.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 02:27 AM

144. thank you! great OP

except I'm not sure the guy is stupid, he has seemed
sincere and reasonable.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)


Response to Name removed (Reply #145)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 03:04 AM

150. Are you being facetious?

I really can't tell.

What you wrote just seems so over the top.

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Response to MrScorpio (Reply #150)


Response to Name removed (Reply #151)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 03:40 AM

154. Well, I guess that you weren't being facetious

Cool. I can deal with that.

Now that I've got your attention, tell me this: How would you propose to separate the government from it's ever growing and utterly unmanageable relationship that it has with the corporate telecommunications infrastructure?

What your best solution for ending the way these corporations compartmentalize their operations within key congressional districts as a guarantee that the members of those districts are free to act against the entrenchment of those corporations?

If and when we're a successful at reducing the size and scope of the American global infrastructure, what is your best solution for preventing another state from filling the vacuum left by the US, which would incite a backlash on our part and potentially create the conditions that would start some kind of telecom cold war?

Which intel agencies do you think should be shuttered and which ones should remain extant and why?

What sort of penalties do you think that any who uses the surveillance process as it stands should suffer? Can they be successfully prosecuted within current guidelines before these guidelines can be changed?

How much experience do you have with SIGINT, HUMINT and other Intel related activities?

Did you give any thought to how vulnerable your electronic equipment was to signal emission access before you bought it? Did you give any thought to who would have access to those emissions and why?

How much money do you think should be appropriated to conduct surveillance ops? A nice round number would do.

How would you go about limiting the excessive amount of clearance approvals?

What's a good time line to realistically achieve a rollback of the currently excessive global and domestic surveillance infrastructure?

Should cleared individuals be included in whistleblower regulations? If in the process of whistle blowing, what if they cause serious harm to national security?

What is "National Security?"

DO you want more?

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 08:45 AM

163. I don't completely agree with you....

but, the last half of your OP is spot on and I'm in total agreement with that part.

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2013, 04:24 PM

168. There's an entire generation

that lacks the years of experience in The Beltway with a high security position.
They may not have been eligible to vote a decade ago when this was initially
being discussed. I suppose they qualify as "fucking naive, hyperbolic drama
queeners.

Given this revelation is a mere week old I hope they are tearing out their hair,
crying and getting in touch with their inner drama queen over the "sensationalized
common knowledge" they failed to grasp as a teen or preteen. Frankly, that goes
for any fucking naive idiot that wasn't paying close enough attention in 2001
when the FISA Act was amended.

There will be plenty of time for them to chill when they become old farts. Just like
the old farts with their years of high security clearance, sitting on the Intelligence
committee and asking if they can privately "Google."

Hopefully they will be shuck up enough to work towards ridding us of The
Patriot Act as the OP suggests, along with voting for The Democratic Party
as they have in the last two national elections.

Peace

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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Thu Jun 13, 2013, 12:47 AM

176. I'm an old Army spook.

TSC doing ditty bopping for the ASA in east Africa.

Don't attack a giant unless you are sure your first blow will take him out. That will probably be the only chance you will get.

Snowden swung his axe and the giant didn't fall. He has few options now, none of them good.


Corruption?

Two things that could help, repeal the PATRIOT Act, and take the money out of politics. We need public financing of federal elections.

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