Forgot your password?
United States Privacy

Former Head of NSA Calls For Obama To Reject NSA Commission Recommendations 316

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the not-what-you're-thinking dept.
An anonymous reader writes that USA Today reports "Retired general Michael Hayden ... called on President Obama Monday to ... reject many of the recommendations of the commission he appointed to rein in NSA surveillance ... 'President Obama now has the burden of simply doing the right thing,' ... 'And I think some of the right things with regard to the commission's recommendations are not the popular things. They may not poll real well right now. They'll poll damn well after the next attack ...' ... The commission ... said the recommendations were designed to increase transparency, accountability and oversight at the NSA. Hayden ... oversaw the launch of some of the controversial programs ... He defended them as effective and properly overseen by congressional intelligence committees and a special court. 'Right now, since there have been no abuses and almost all the court decisions on this program have held that it's constitutional, I really don't know what problem we're trying to solve by changing how we do this,' he said."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Former Head of NSA Calls For Obama To Reject NSA Commission Recommendations

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 31, 2013 @09:17AM (#45827983)

    Painful truths:
    NSA workers are not traitors that should be killed. Please look at the scum who cut off children's heads in CAR to understand what real tyranny is.

    NSA will be changed but domestic surveillance will probably go to the DOJ (who has a stellar track record)

    This has all happened before 20, 40, 70, and I think 150 years ago. It will probably happen again.

    Now, please, can we talk about changes without devolving into fake revolutionaries? You're pissed off. We all get it. Now let's do something useful other than scream.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 31, 2013 @09:23AM (#45828031)

    I really like the part about "there have been no abuses". Perhaps Hayden would like to tell the US public the truth. Let's see how long it takes before he gets a bullet to the face, let alone a prison sentence.


  • by ImOuttaHere (2996813) on Tuesday December 31, 2013 @09:53AM (#45828197)

    The next attack will happen with or without illegal, unconstitutional domestic spying. I don't want you magic tiger protection rocks sir.

    I can't imagine how (some? many?) Americans take a face value any comment that says NSA spying will prevent attacks on Americans when it was not needed in 2001. There was plenty of clear intelligence information leading up to the events of 9/11. No vast spying on Americans was needed to warn the Bush administration [] that something big was about to happen.

    "Here is a representative sampling of the CIA threat reporting that was distributed to Bush administration officials during the spring and summer of 2001:

    -- CIA, "Bin Ladin Planning Multiple Operations," April 20
    -- CIA, "Bin Ladin Attacks May Be Imminent," June 23
    -- CIA, "Planning for Bin Ladin Attacks Continues, Despite Delays," July 2
    -- CIA, "Threat of Impending al Qaeda Attack to Continue Indefinitely," August 3

    The failure to respond adequately to these warnings was a policy failure by the Bush administration, not an intelligence failure by the U.S. intelligence community..."

    It makes me wonder why the NSA is pushing so hard to keep unconstitutional spying programs in place. What are they really doing? What are they needing to justify? What snake-oil are they trying to sell the American people? What are they really afraid of? Who are they attempting to control?

  • by PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) on Tuesday December 31, 2013 @10:07AM (#45828287)

    It took a very brave man, Edward R. Murrow ( [] ), to have the courage to stand up Senator Joseph McCarthy's communist witch hunt. Obama just isn't the man to do that. But you really can't blame him for that. Not everyone can be a superhero, and that is what the country needs to restore the NSA to what it once was. Old Cold War NSA retirees probably cry themselves to sleep every night when they think about what the NSA has now become. The NSA used to be very discrete, effective and restrained. Now they have gone entirely overboard and out of control. They need a military style stand-down to take an assessment of themselves. Discretion is the better part of valor. I'd like to see an NSA that we could be proud of again . . . not afraid of.

    Take a look at the Navy SEALS . . . the best fighting force in the world . . . but the US Army command does not send them off everywhere at a whim. And most of their operations we probably never hear about . . . because they are used very discretely and restrained. The NSA has expanded their surveillance to a point that the world is bound to discover what they are doing . . . because they just can't keep such massive operations secret any more.

    If the Navy SEALS came under the command of the NSA, the NSA would deploy the SEALS everywhere to shoot up everyone. And instruct them to search through the dead bodies, to see if any of the dead were, in fact, terrorists.

  • Re:No abuses? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by kilfarsnar (561956) on Tuesday December 31, 2013 @10:55AM (#45828647)

    "Right now, since there have been no abuses..." NSA employee spied on nine women without detection [] NSA broke privacy rules thousands of times per year, audit finds [] No abuses, General?

    See, that's the problem right there. We know he has lied to us. He has no credibility. If he told me the sky was blue, I'd look up to be sure. As we all know, once you have lost trust, it doesn't matter if you're right or wrong; no on will listen to you. It's not just Hayden. So many government officials and spokespeople have lied to cover their asses, or hide wrongdoing, I just can't take their word for anything anymore.

  • by Dan667 (564390) on Tuesday December 31, 2013 @11:19AM (#45828891)
    I wonder if this idiot general realize people are beginning to be more afraid of the nsa than terrorists. And I would say the level of incompetence the nsa has shown in being able to manage this enormous power with a single individual able to walk off with their intelligence crown jewels indicates no one should have these types of power. More innocent people are at risk from nsa and government incompetence than anything they think they are doing. The tsa is security theater not adding any actual security, and now the nsa is now is showing a level of intelligence theater whose only value may be their agents abusing to spy on their girlfriends.
  • by berashith (222128) on Tuesday December 31, 2013 @11:40AM (#45829097)

    are you saying that it is ok for them to defend attacks that may originate outside the borders by spying on people within the borders, but then have no responsibility for not stopping things as it isnt their job? If it isnt their job, then dont do it, problem solved. If they say the goal is to stop attacks, and they need complete autonomy in their behavior, then they are 100% failures every time something happens. You cant play both sides of the coin.

    As they havent been stopping things, and things are a decided rarity, how about they quit their nonsense and start following the real laws of this country ( not the ones that arent constitutional and cant be challenged ) .

  • by Em Adespoton (792954) <> on Tuesday December 31, 2013 @12:39PM (#45829859) Homepage Journal

    I guess that's where we differ in politics between a border. And of course that's a brilliant idea, let's run with yours for a moment. So, Obama is going to do as he pleases, mess up the mid-term, and the following presidential election...just to do what he wants. Right-o...then again, I've seen that in Canada for the Conservative Party...killed them outright...look at the Kim Cambell fiasco. []

    I think that says more about the difference between the Canadian multi-party system and the US-bipartisan system (and the voters' roles) than it does about how they might kill the Democratic party. In Canada, people have no issues with completely dismantling a party and starting a new one that reflects the views of the people. I don't see that happening in the US any time soon.

    There's a reason there's no concept of "lame duck" in Canada, and Mulroney/Campbell demonstrated it nicely when they attempted to play American politics.

  • by Deep Esophagus (686515) on Tuesday December 31, 2013 @12:58PM (#45830121)

    It's too bad the American people are so divided, so beholden to their preferred "team", or else they might notice how thoroughly they're being fucked regardless of which party is in power.

    My kingdom for mod points! Amen, preach on! As a centrist, I manage to piss off my friends on the right and left just about every day when I point out the fallacies in their partisan logic. My Facebook profile lists my political preference as "They are all lying weasels, every last one of them".

    Our country's fondness for sports has made team affiliation creep into everything. Mac or Windows? Republican or Democrat? Plastic or paper? Die, heretic! We just aren't happy, apparently, if there isn't a "them" for "us" to oppose. And when there is a "them", we'll do and say anything, however outrageous, to bring "them" to utter destruction.

This place just isn't big enough for all of us. We've got to find a way off this planet.