HuffPo: NSA Talking Points Issued By House Intelligence Committee Instruct Lawmakers on Defending ProgramsSubmitted by LapHog on Fri, 06/14/2013 - 11:17
The Huffington Post has obtained talking points instructing members of Congress on how to defend two controversial surveillance programs operated by the National Security Agency. The talking points originate from the Democratic side of House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, where Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.) serves as ranking member.
See the whole article by clicking here.
But for a very nice one-by-one takedown of the talking points, see this very worthwhile TechDirt article, from which the following excerpt is taken:
The government has been passing around some "talking points" to politicians and the press trying to spin the NSA surveillance story. We've got the talking points about scooping up business records (i.e., all data on all phone calls) and on the internet program known as PRISM. Both are embedded ">below. Let's dig in on a few of the points, starting with the business records/FISA issue:
The news articles have been discussing what purports to be a classified, lawfully-authorized order that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA Court) issued under an Act of Congress – the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). Under this Act, the FISA Court authorized a collection of business records. There is no secret program involved here – it is strictly authorized by a U.S. statute.
"There is no secret program here"? Bullshit. Why, then, have so many people, both in the Congress and the public been shocked at the extent to which the NSA is snarfing up data? This is a secret program, enabled by a secret interpretation of the FISA Amendments Act, by the FISA Court, which the DOJ and the NSA insist the public is not allowed to know. Yes, it's a secret program. Saying otherwise is simply lying.
Full article here.
Update: Gives new context to Loretta Sanchez's interview on CSPAN, eh? "But it's all legal!" she said, mitigating her shock at how broad the program really is by dutifully recalling her scripted lines...