The NSA tries to secure most surveillance powers before Obama makes a statement about the future of American surveillance
As the Guardian reports, the Obama White House wants to (or at least pretends that it does) reform the NSA’s surveillance apparatus.
Obama recently met with privacy advocates, among them the ACLU, to discuss American mass surveillance.
Guess who is launching a charm offensive targeted at the American public against limiting the scope of mass surveillance in any substantial manner.
If you do not let us spy on all of you at all times, then the terrorists win
The NSA recently argued in an interview on NPR that if they do not continue indiscriminate mass surveillance, then, loosely paraphrased, the terrorists win.
Speaking about the surveillance of the phone records of all Americans (non-Americans are fair game anyway for the NSA), outgoing NSA deputy director John C. Inglis said that one money transfer from San Diego to militant islamists al-Shabaab in Somalia had been prevented. Note that he talked about a money transfer that might have financed that group’s activities, but not a specific terrorist attack.
Let that sink in for a while. To prevent one unspecific terrorism-related activity, the private communication of all Americans (not to mention everybody else on the planet) has to be destroyed, according to the NSA. I think that the price Americans and other citizens of the world have to pay for this illusion of security is too high.
Freedom and absolute security are mutually exclusive
It is a truism that in a free society, there can never be one hundred percent security against all risks of life, including terrorism. Attempting to watch and predict every individual’s next move at all times inescapably leads towards an authoritarian dystopia.
It would be a shame if the country whose national imagination prides itself to be “the land of the free and the home of the brave” would end up as ‘democratic’ as the German Democratic Republic (GDR) was.
One Stasi was enough. Please America, stop this madness.