Dispatches

Inside the Mind of James Clapper

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Featured photo - Inside the Mind of James Clapper Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, testifying on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014, before the Senate Intelligence Committee (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

I’m going to have a story published later today about a new document, but until then, this new interview with (and profile of) Director of National Intelligence James Clapper by the Daily Beast‘s Eli Lake is worth spending a few moments examining. Last week, Lake published one excerpt of his interview where Clapper admitted that the U.S. Government should have told the American people that the NSA was collecting their communications records: as pure a vindication of Edward Snowden’s choice as it gets, for obvious reasons. But there are several new, noteworthy revelations from this morning’s article:

Thanks to rogue contractor Edward Snowden, the machinations of the shadow bureaucracy Clapper heads have for the last eight months been exposed one news story at a time. Clapper is often the guy who has to call newspaper editors to tell them not to print stories that they usually publish anyway.

This process of pre-publication notice to the government of NSA stories has been wildly misreported in some places. I’ve long expressed contempt for this process where it results in the suppression of information that should be public; where it essentially elevates U.S. officials into publication partners by engaging in protracted “negotiations” with them over what can and cannot be published; and especially where it means news organizations knowingly allow government officials to lie by withholding the actual facts.

For all the NSA stories published over the last eight months all around the world, the U.S. government was notified prior to publication (usually very shortly prior) by the news organizations’ editors (never, to my knowledge, by the journalists, at least not by me). News organizations do this for two reasons.

The first is legal: the U.S. Government insists that the publication of classified information, especially that which relates to “communications intelligence”, is a felony (see 18 U.S § 798), so every media lawyer vehemently argues that allowing the government an opportunity to make the case for why something shouldn’t be published is necessary to show a lack of criminal intent, i.e., to avoid criminal prosecution even while publishing top secret documents; the other is journalistic: it makes sense that journalists making choices about what to publish and what to say about documents would want more, rather than less, information when deciding.

I can’t speak for what The Washington Post or New York Times have done, but for the NSA articles on which I’ve worked – at the Guardian and with more than a dozen media outlets around the world - the government has argued in most cases that the story and accompanying documents should not be published. And in almost every single case – 99% if not more – those arguments have been rejected in their entirety and the stories and documents were published anyway. In fact, for the dozens and dozens of stories and documents on which I’ve worked, I can only recall a single case where anything the government said resulted in anything being withheld that we had decided to publish, and that was a trivial aspect of one part of one document which, unbeknownst to us, could have revealed the identity of an NSA employee (the Guardian and New York Times, without my involvement, both withheld some details on their story about NSA/GCHQ compromising of encryption standards, though primarily – as I understand it – because publishing the handful of compromised standards we knew about would mislead people into believing the other compromised standards (the vast majority of which weren’t revealed by the documents) were safe).

In every single other case, the government’s arguments for non-publication were rejected, usually because they were vague and unpersuasive. So while it’s true that the government’s input has been permitted prior to publication – just as journalists seek the input of anyone about which they’re writing – Lake is correct that in most cases (in my experience, almost all) that official input demanding suppression was rejected, exactly as it should have been.

To this day the U.S. government doesn’t know the full extent of what Snowden revealed or whether more documents that have yet to be published in the press have made their way into the hands of Russian or Chinese intelligence agencies.

It’s been rather amazing to watch not only the standard roster of government-loyal American journalists, but also those who fancy themselves some sort of cynical critics, uncritically regurgitate the government’s evidence-free assertion that Snowden took and then gave to journalists 1.7 million documents. It amazes me because: (1) anyone at this point who is willing to equate evidence-free government assertions with Truth is drowning in some extreme levels of authoritarianism, by definition; and (2) the government clearly has no idea what Snowden took, as report after report has made crystal clear.

Covering nearly an entire wall of the waiting area outside Clapper’s office is a wooden relief sculpture dedicated to the U.S. Constitution. It contains a flag, a rendition of the constitutional assembly, and a copy of the document itself. It also has a plaque that reads, “What is the magic of the Constitution? The magic is how it states: We, the people. For the first time in history, government was about the people, not about the leader.”

Yes, that’s right: James Clapper has converted the wall outside of his office into a flamboyant homage to the very same U.S. Constitution that he vandalizes on a daily basis. That is the greatest act of either deliberately overt contempt for the public or pathological self-delusion since Barack Obama advocated a legalized system of “preventive detention” in 2009 while he stood in front of the U.S. Constitution at the National Archive. Someone may want to explain to Clapper that a primary impetus for that Constitution, and for the American Revolution generally, was hatred of the King’s “general warrants” whereby people could be subject to searches without a whiff of evidence of wrongdoing.

Clapper also acknowledges that the very human nature of the bureaucracy he controls virtually insures that more mass disclosures are inevitable. “In the end,” he says, “we will never ever be able to guarantee that there will not be an Edward Snowden or another Chelsea Manning because this is a large enterprise composed of human beings with all their idiosyncrasies.”

That is indeed true, and it’s good news: more Chelsea Mannings and Edward Snowdens are inevitable, and there is nothing the U.S. Government can do to stop them. That’s good news because it means government officials will have to operate on the assumption that what they do in the dark will become public (an excellent deterrent) and because that type of transparency is inherently healthy in a political culture where secrecy is rampant and the institutions designed to check it (Congress, the media, the federal judiciary) have all profoundly failed.

This also underscores why the U.S. Government has been so vindictive in trying to punish the likes of Manning and other whistleblowers. Since they have no means of preventing these sorts of leaks, their only hope is to create a climate of fear and intimidation: if you are thinking about exposing our bad acts, look at what we did to Chelsea Manning or Tom Drake and think twice. That’s why it’s been so vital – and, for the U.S. national security state, so devastating – that Edward Snowden has remained out of their grasp: rather than getting to parade him in front of the world in an orange jumpsuit and shackles, U.S. officials are forced to watch as he is hailed as an international hero, receives award after award, and participates freely in the debate he triggered. That, in turn, allows the template he used to be a positive one, one that will undoubtedly inspire future whistleblowers.

[Democratic Sen. Ron] Wyden in a statement told The Daily Beast, “It’s true that no one knows what is going through a witness’s head when they are sitting at the witness table, other than the witness himself. Unfortunately, over the past several years a number of senior officials have repeatedly made misleading and inaccurate statements about domestic surveillance at congressional hearings and in other public settings.”

The lie Clapper criminally told to the U.S. Senate in March, 2013 has received the bulk of attention, but as Wyden makes clear, NSA and other senior officials have been repeatedly lying about U.S. surveillance to the Congress, to courts, and in public over and over about all sorts of things. That’s what makes the slavish equating by the U.S. media of “unproven NSA claims” with “truth” so embarrassingly subservient and irrational. It’s also what makes the eagerness of American journalists to demand Snowden’s imprisonment – contrasted with their fear of doing the same for Clapper – such a powerful illustration of their true allegiances and function.

Others are less charitable. Last month Sen. Rand Paul, the libertarian Republican from Kentucky, said if Snowden was to face justice, he should “share a jail cell with James Clapper” for lying to Congress.

“Well Senator Paul says I should get to know [Snowden] by being in the same prison cell with him, which I don’t think is a good idea,” Clapper told The Daily Beast last week. “Probably wouldn’t be in Mr. Snowden’s best interest.”

This statement – half creepy prison fantasy and half threat – is unsurprising. The need for U.S. officials to publicly express a desire for violence when it comes to Snowden has asserted itself over and over.

Recall how House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers and former CIA/NSA chief Mike Hayden “joked” at a hearing that Snowden should be put on the U.S. government’s “hit list” and murdered. Last month, BuzzFeed quoted several anonymous Pentagon and intelligence community officials as they laid out their fantasies for how they would like to murder Snowden (“Going back to his flat and he is casually poked by a passerby. He thinks nothing of it at the time starts to feel a little woozy and thinks it’s a parasite from the local water. He goes home very innocently and next thing you know he dies in the shower”). Former CIA chief James Woolsey said “he should be hanged by his neck until he is dead” if convicted of treason, while former UN Ambassador John Bolton revealed an even more detailed fantasy: “My view is that Snowden committed treason, he ought to be convicted of that, and then he ought to swing from a tall oak tree.”

Not only does this underscore the warped pathologies among the glorious leaders of America’s National Security State, but it also highlights the inanity of believing that these kinds of people can and should be trusted with invasive spying powers to be exercised in the dark.

The charges against his integrity bother Clapper. “I would rather not hear that or see that,” he said. “It’s tough on my family, I will tell you that. My son is a high school teacher and he has a tendency, or he is getting over it, to internalize a lot of this.” Those who know and have worked with Clapper also say it’s unfair to call him dishonest. Rhodes said President Obama values Clapper because “he’s a straight shooter who doesn’t put any spin on the ball.”

It’s hardly surprising that President Obama regards a proven liar as a “straight shooter”. That’s the same President who regards torture-and-rendition-advocating John Brennan as his high moral priest when deciding who should be put on his “kill list”.

But what’s remarkable here is the self-pity on display from Clapper. He’s gone around the country over the last month branding journalists as “accomplices” for the crime of reporting on the NSA without the slightest regard for the effects that this thuggish behavior has on those journalists, their families, and the news-gathering process.

But what’s even more amazing is that Clapper considers himself some sort of victim rather than what he is: the completely undeserving beneficiary of a system of “justice” in which ordinary and powerless people are imprisoned for trivial offenses at greater numbers than any other nation in the world, while those who wield political power, like him, are free to commit crimes without even losing their powerful jobs, let alone being prosecuted for them. James Clapper should look in the mirror every morning and be extremely grateful for the corrupted political system that has shielded him from the consequences of his crimes even as he tries to criminalize others for doing things that the U.S. Constitution guarantees them the right to do.

Instead, he sees himself as the victim. He has medals on his chest and an important national security state position. It is simply outrageous that some people suggest that he has no right to commit felonies, and it’s infuriating that his adult son has to hear some people (almost none in the media) suggest that his criminal conduct should have the same consequences as when ordinary citizens commit less serious crimes. That’s the refusal to accept any personal responsibility, the view of powerful U.S. officials that they are and must be entirely above the law, the obsessive self-regard, that more than anything else has destroyed Washington’s political culture.

* * * * * *

Yesterday, the German paper Bild am Sonntag reported that after President Obama ordered the NSA to cease its eavesdropping on the communications of Chancellor Angela Merkel, they responded by increasing their surveillance of her closest ministers and advisers. Aside from providing yet another illustration of the out-of-control entitlement that drives the U.S. Surveillance State, note that the report is based on “a high-ranking NSA employee in Germany”, which means that this is yet another NSA source to come forward to disclose the agency’s once-secret acts.

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  1. thanks for this story Glenn….more revealing of the nefarious deeds committed in the name of “we the people” by the sociopaths in charge….Clapper should be indicted for his clearly felonious actions, including lying to Congress many times over…and then after he is convicted, he should be locked up in one of those Military Prisons, he is so fond of putting others in.

  2. As a psychotherapist, I have come to understand that many in our government are not only pathological liars, but are functioning sociopaths. In our general population one in ten are functioning sociopaths, however, the numbers are higher in government, because functioning sociopaths are attracted to high lever careers. They will say and do anything to get their way with total disregard for whomever or whatever gets in their way.

  3. I swear, politicians and corporate executives always look so glib and miserable. All that money and power and they still can’t walk around with a smile on their faces. But I guess that’s all just a tell in all that they do only makes the lives of those of us that can break out in a smile from time to time, all the more dreary and uncertain.

  4. Clapper lied to congress; isn’t that felony? He takes the lie back and all is forgiven? Prosecute that lying bastard as any of the “rest of of us” would be prosecutred. How nice if we were all allowed to say, “i don’t know why I said or did that” and get out of being prosecuted. Don’t get me wrong, I think that there are too many laws on the books period but i am sick and tired of Wallstreet, politicians and government officials not getting prosecuted when public citizens are arrested for practically just blinking their eyes. Kudos to your new website. You guys are the best and thank you for exposiing truths everyday. You are the heroes along with all whistleblowers. Thank you all!

  5. “…publishing the handful of compromised standards we knew about would mislead people into believing the other compromised standards (the vast majority of which weren’t revealed by the documents) were safe”

    This explanation never passed the smell test. Any reader savvy enough to know what the heck encryption standards are about can comprehend a simple instruction not to assume all other standards are safe.

  6. if this is the case, then why have most of the documents that have been published been so heavily redacted, or 90% of the pages withheld?

  7. Glen D says…”No, the classical liberal remains in favor of a limited state. What you refer to is anarchy – which is to actually stand for nothing at all, if you actually understand anarchy that is.
    I say Glen D…
    Anarchy simply means “self governing” I can say that authoritatively because I are one..an “anarchist” that is..
    The word anarchy comes from the ancient Greek ???????, anarchia, from ?? an, “not, without” + ????? arches, “ruler”, meaning “absence of a ruler”, “without rulers”).
    that from Wiki…
    In the political hypocrisy, employing too man agents of deception, that rules here today…we need to reproduce a whole society of “self governing” disciplined, clear headed “Truth” tellers. If we had a community of journalists that could publish those truths freely…we would currently be enjoying an honest investigation of our very own Reichstag fire we call 911. Once that really happens there will be no excuse for the massive surveillance of our citizenry that we have today. The NSA would have to remove the machinery that spies indiscriminately…and return to a civilized state as we were intende to be…d and protected by the Constitution as it was originally created to guarantee..instead of .now being shredded in the gears of the un-anarchistic state apparatus made manifest shortly after 9/11. ( patterned after the Nazi government of yore).
    Can (will) the “Intercept” news agency Please instigate a real investigation of that horrendous event? It smells like an inside job to me…just like the Reichstag fire was, not so long ago.
    Immanuel Kant on anarchy…
    The German philosopher Immanuel Kant treated “Anarchy” in his Anthropology from a Pragmatic Point of View as consisting of “Law and Freedom without Force”. Thus, for Kant, anarchy falls short of being a true civil state because the law is only an “empty recommendation” if force is not included to make this law efficacious. For there to be such a state, force must be included while law and freedom are maintained, a state which Kant calls republic.[49][50]
    As summary Kant named four kinds of government:
    A. Law and freedom without force (anarchy).
    B. Law and force without freedom (despotism).
    C. Force without freedom and law (barbarism).
    D. Force with freedom and law (republic).

  8. Our government put Martha Stewart in jail for lying to the FBI over some stock deal but James Clapper…

    I would feel much safer with Martha on the street and James in the pen.

  9. This is a great piece of writing informative and interesting perhaps invetigative journalism is not dead

  10. His confession these people should never appear again proves how misaligned he is with the majority of the people in the world. A true hypocrite. If you are are a secret services person viewing this post, please note, you are unlwelcomed on this planet … The keep it nicey nice.

  11. “Thanks to rogue contractor Edward Snowden, the machinations of the shadow bureaucracy Clapper heads have for the last eight months been exposed one news story at a time. Clapper is often the guy who has to call newspaper editors to tell them not to print stories that they usually publish anyway.”

    Wow, that must be like…torture to him. /me wonders if he likes listening to Skinny Puppy…

  12. Ok – lying to Congress is the felony Clapper committed. I wonder what the legal penalty is for unconstitutional spying.

    “How is this not a huge scandal? Intentionally deceiving Congress is a felony, punishable by up to 5 years in prison for each offense. Reagan administration officials were convicted of misleading Congress as part of the Iran-contra scandal and other controversies, and sports stars have been prosecuted by the Obama DOJ based on allegations they have done so.”

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/jul/03/clapper-lying-snowden-eu-bolivia

  13. “It’s hardly surprising that President Obama regards a proven liar as a ‘straight shooter.’”

    Of course not. Obama himself is a MAJOR inveterate pathological liar.

    One clear case was in 2010 when he wrote the leaders of Brazil and Turkey explaining what deal he would accept with Iran over its nuclear energy program. When those leaders obtained precisely that deal, he instantly reneged on it. Which is precisely why the leader of Brazil published the letter Obama sent him.

    Then of course there’s the utter nonsense uttered by the White House over the sarin gas attack in Syria, virtually all of which has been disproven since.

    Don’t bother listening to what Obama says – watch what he does. Which right now means he’s supplying more weapons to the Syrian insurgents, and building aircraft runways in Jordan in preparation for the war on Syria everyone thinks was stopped several months ago when Vladimir Putin out-maneuvered Obama by getting Assad to agree to dump his (mostly non-existent because un-weaponized) “chemical weapons.”

    • Syria was always just a stepping stone to Iran. The plan has always been Iran – America hasn’t spent the last few decades surrounding it in military bases without reason.

  14. A much worthier news headline would be: Clapper inside a jail cell. Why isn’t he? Justice not quite so blind when it deals with ‘elite’?

  15. It would be great if I can read the article without powerful magnifying lens. On most sites, my iPad allows full resolution Zooming, but this webmaster has this feature disabled. There is no direct contact link to “the intercept’s” webmaster I can contact. I hope this reaches the right person.

  16. Clapper lied to Congress aka the American people about massive violation of the 4thAmendment. This not only makes him a criminal but also a traitor to the United States and “we the people”

  17. Thank you Glenn. Your clarity of purpose is not only shedding light on these dangerous troubled times (and the Western worlds’ bad actors, as here), but providing a master class in Journalism, as well. Your service is invaluable.

  18. Great article. Thank you for writing it. I wish there were hundreds more like it. However, I really wish people would focus on how and why these types of abuses and illegal activities are happening. They are happening because the government of the United States has been hijacked by an organized criminal syndicate known as the Republican/Democratic Party. This criminal oligarchy is actively working against the best interests of the American people. They stack the judiciary with judges who they know will advance their totalitarian agenda. They pass laws having nothing to do with justice and everything to do with protecting themselves. They create mass bureaucratic agencies to hide behind in order to pass regulations that protect corporations from competition while hurting, if not destroying, the little guy. They’ve created a culture across the country in which law enforcement feels free to abuse, main, and murder American citizens at will with impunity. They’ve co-opted the media with money and threats to the point that the MSM is nothing more than an American Pravda. The list goes on and on. Until Republicans, Democrats and the criminal apparatus they have created are completely destroyed and dismantled, things are only going to get worse. Just writing comments on this site has likely put me on a list. It’s only a matter of time until these government enemies lists are used to round us up for reeducation. Maybe not today or tomorrow but if things don’t change it WILL happen.

    • Sounds like you would enjoy “Zerohedge.com” & “ShadowStats.com”.
      These folks at FirstLook & Intercept & ReaderSupportedNews & DemocracyNow
      are doing a great job of helping us to figure out these complicated times.
      69th birthday plus 100 + years of community journalists & humble printers & their hand-me down books give us a unique perspective on modern events.
      Cheers.
      JJW

  19. USA should rename to USSR (United States Surveillance Republic) – fits like a glove!!!!

  20. James Clapper may have done some good things for our country during his long time career in government, whatever good he may have done, has been totally eclipsed by these leaks and lies that have been uncovered. He has totally ruined the credibility of that office. Whenever I hear a government official with one of the federal agencies I cant help but think less than 20% of what this guy is saying is truth. It shouldn’t come as a surprise to me though as I have recently educated myself on the long tenure of the great J. Edgar Hoover. Mr. Hoover is probably James hero and idol and he thinks of him often as he slips a stiletto heel over his pantyhose covered foot, smacking his red lipstick covered lips together. The atrocities committed by both of these men probably completely overshadows any of the people they are supposedly “protecting” us from.

  21. ” It is simply outrageous that some people suggest that he has no right to commit felonies”

    I think it should read “he has a right”; it’s outrageous people think he has a right to commit felonies. typo?

    • Not a typo, Michael. Clapper has committed a felony and he thinks it outrageous that some people suggest he has no right to commit felonies and should be held to the same standard as any other person.

  22. If you ever visited an elderly relative in a nursing home, you have already figured out what is going on in Clapper’s brain.

    • An appropriate punishment for his crimes would be to sentence him to life without parole in a small-town nursing home where all the poor folks go.

  23. Outstanding article. I wish there were 2500 comments instead of 219 because that would mean this piece has massive public exposure.

    It pains me to see Clapper, Holder, Sibelius, Rice, Clinton and Obama all tell flat our LIES to our citizenry and Congress and then carry on without negative consequence.

    Everyone is talking about the biggest problems we face as a nation: our run away debt, unemployment, poverty, ‘income equality’, ‘global warming….er…climate change’, America’s loss of influence at home and abroad, nuclear threat and a dozen other emergencies we facing.

    In my opinion our biggest problem is that we are living in a LAWLESS nation. Our Republic was founded upon the RULE of LAW, not group consensus (Democracy) and certainly not by despotic, imperialistic edict.

    Obama and Co have done more to damage and dismantle our country from within than any enemy ever attempted from without.

    Obama and his minions and goons literally make me sick. And listening to Clapper whine about his ‘trouble’s's as a result of his lawless LIES is akin to listening to Alec Baldwin complain about being labeled a hateful homophobe for his behavior.

    Clapper should be in a jail cell for life, along with Holder, Obama and the rest of the White House Mafia. He is the luckiest SOB in the country that he has a CIC who wants him to do and say what he has been doing and saying.

    Transparent? My butt. Despotic? Precisely. Lawless? Irrefutable.

  24. What’s that nonsense you’re peddling?
    Clapper’s mind? But he ain’t got any.

  25. WHY WHY WHY is this scum not in an orange jumpsuit in Club Fed for PERJURING himself before Congress?!?! More telling, where’s the indictment, Congress?? NSA must have some really juicy blackmail material on all those bastards.

  26. I went to the buzzfeed link:

    “One Army intelligence officer even offered BuzzFeed a chillingly detailed fantasy.

    “I think if we had the chance, we would end it very quickly,” he said. “Just casually walking on the streets of Moscow, coming back from buying his groceries. Going back to his flat and he is casually poked by a passerby. He thinks nothing of it at the time starts to feel a little woozy and thinks it’s a parasite from the local water. He goes home very innocently and next thing you know he dies in the shower””

    The problem with this is, it’s not ‘fantasy’ … this s**t goes on every day in reality (speaking as a former military special operations intelligence professional on the so-called ‘wrong side’)

  27. Great article Glenn. I’m glad you guys are now up and running. I hope you will continue to slap Clapper, Rogers, Feinstein, Brennen, Hayden and the biggest criminal of them all, President Hope and Change, every day and twice on fucking Sundays. They are pigs who should be crated up and shipped with their Bushie Predecessors to the Hague.

  28. “And in almost every single case – 99% if not more – those arguments have been rejected in their entirety and the stories and documents were published anyway. In fact, for the dozens and dozens of stories and documents on which I’ve worked, I can only recall a single case where anything the government said resulted in anything being withheld that we had decided to publish…”

    This is the kind of hyperbole that makes people not take you seriously. You do realize that for “99% if not more”, you’d have to have published at least 100 stories for which governmental input was sought?

    • This is the kind of hyperbole that makes people not take you seriously. You do realize that for “99% if not more”, you’d have to have published at least 100 stories for which governmental input was sought?

      There’s this new invention. It’s called “fractions”. They’re really cool: they enable quantities to be described between whole numbers, such as 42.7 or 18.3 or . . . . 99.7.

      What’s really cool about them is that it means that something can be higher than 99% without actually being 100%.

      If I’m not being taken seriously by people who are unaware of such things, I’ll find ways to cope.

      • actually i dont want to knitpick, but a percentage above 99% has to be either 100% or alternatively the denominator of the fraction has to be higher than 100, which is probably, what the poster above meant.
        my guess is, that the denominator is /a lot/ higher than 100 right?

      • Glenn, your work is outstanding! I wish to thank you for it and inspire you to keep at it.

        It’s mindless folks like fritos, who are easily confused by non-issues and miss the main focus all too quickly . . . they are the ones still thinking of 9/11 as not having been planed and executed with US insight and guidance because their grasp of real world conditions have been so greatly warped, they don’t even know how brainwashed they really are!

      • Re the statement “And in almost every single case – 99% if not more – those arguments have been rejected in their entirety …”.

        Let’s do a series of examples: 1) You had two stories to publish and you accepted the government’s argument and withheld one – you can say that you rejected 1/2 or 50% of the government’s arguments, 2) You had ten stories to publish and you accepted the government’s argument and withheld one – you can say you rejected 9/10 or 90% of the government’s arguments, 3) you had fifty stories to publish and you accepted the government’s argument and withheld one – you can say you rejected 49/50 or 98% of the government’s arguments, 4) you had 100 stories to publish and you accepted the government’s argument and withheld one – you can say you rejected 99/100 or 99% of the government’s arguments, 5) you had 101 stories to publish and you accepted the government’s argument and withheld one – you can say that you “rejected 99% or more of the government’s arguments. To be able to say “99% or more” you need to have published/written at least 100 stories and only withheld one. I hope these examples are sufficient to clarify the supporting math.

    • What a dope. Stuff like the above really makes me doubt the quality of American high school education.

      Glenn set him straight, though.

      BTW, great article, Glenn. The dual or even higher multiples of systems of justice in the U.S. is a national disgrace. Today I read of a woman in Austin who was forcefully arrested for jaywalking and had the book thrown at her in addition to being beaten silly. Yet, Clapper remains free.

      Oh, fritos, I hope my use of the words “dual” and “multiples” doesn’t perplex you.

      Longfisher

    • I think there is a disconnect on what is being counted:

      - Snowden document related stories by Glenn (“dozens and dozens”)

      - Snowden document related stories by everyone (there has been WAY more than a hundred, 8 months on)

      - Government responses to numerous points, per page, within sometimes multiple documents within each published story. The total number of arguments by the government against Snowden artifacts, world wide, must be many thousands at this point.

      It seems to me, “99%” works for all but the first example. I can see how Glenn’s paragraph can cause this confusion – to a nitpicker – but especially to an apologist.

    • Hey fritos (or should I call you “junk food”), nice distracting of the main issues. I’m sure your NSA handlers will be proud of you! To all others see the other article “How Covert Agents Infiltrate the Internet to Manipulate, Deceive, and Destroy Reputations”. Thanks for proving this fritos.

  29. “a system of “justice” in which ordinary and powerless people are imprisoned for trivial offenses at greater numbers than any other nation in the world, while those who wield political power, like him [clapper], are free to commit crimes without even losing their powerful jobs, let alone being prosecuted for them.” — hit the nail on the head

  30. clapper, woolsey, bolton and all the other authoritarian scum not only should be hung, they will be hung. these amoral, sociopathic monsters will one day be called to account for their treason against our republic. their day of reckoning is fast approaching.

    • Your statements seem vaguely familiar. Hmmm. Oh, yes, they’re mirrored in the article above when Glenn cites government officials advocating Snowden’s murder.

  31. This is a mighty disappointing article.

    You write:

    “Yesterday, the German paper Bild am Sonntag reported that after President Obama ordered the NSA to cease its eavesdropping on the communications of Chancellor Angela Merkel, they responded by increasing their surveillance of her closest ministers and advisers.”

    Self-parody, right, Glenn? You struggle free of the clutches of the mighty MSM in order to aver the Truth from your eagle’s eyre, only to cite Bild am Sonnentag, Germany’s racy image-ridden (Bild alright) equivalent of the New York Post? In this same issue, the Bild features as its lead piece some alleged German jihadist in Syria holding up a cartooned severed head. Scroll down some and you get pics of falling bikinis, blasts of boob, und “Elina träumt von Sex
    in der Öffentlichkeit”. Mm, mmm. Talk about source material, ja!?

    You write:

    “Aside from providing yet another illustration of the out-of-control entitlement that drives the U.S. Surveillance State, note that the report is based on “a high-ranking NSA employee in Germany”, which means that this is yet another NSA source to come forward to disclose the agency’s once-secret acts.”

    Well, no, Glenn. The Bild am Sonnentag article does not explicitly name an NSA official as the source. Just “a senior [un-named] U.S. intelligence official” makes the allegation, the kind of sourced allegation that you have repeatedly decried in the past for lacking attribution and consequently accountability. See for yourself. Here is the Bild article (in German):http://tinyurl.com/mqq8jng . Und here is my google-assisted translation of said piece: http://tinyurl.com/q8e37zx

    We don’t know if there is any truth to the piece at all. Bild is not Spiegel. And focus of the point seems bent on hectoring German counterintelligence for their seeming impotence in the face of NSA manholing. Indeed, the piece reads like a “girly man” skit from SNL in the early ’80s. How you could rely on it as “another example” of anything is beyond me.

    I’m perplexed by these Intercept links to MSM sources (Froomkin did the same the other day), as I thought you guys were going to offer up prime rib Truths that the MSM is too cowardly to touch. Instead you guys serve up re-fried beans, reciting the MSM (and reframing to your advantage) in order to merely bolster your non-revelations. And the ‘Inside the Mind’ dogma trick is trite and embarrassing.

    $250m, huh? Hokay.

    • Very pertinent comment. As soon as that part came up I stopped reading immediately and went to check whether the Bild mentioned was related to /that/ Bild. I couldn’t believe it. Especially since Poitras is in the TI, it shouldn’t be too hard to forward the article to her, to which she certainly would’ve pointed out how unrealiable the Bild is.
      But Greenwald is only human after all, hope he reads your comment and updates the piece either with independent corroborations of the Bild’s claim or by pointing out the unreliability of that piece of information.

    • This is a mighty dissapointing reply – to a great article – dear sprockethawk.

      Why?…
      seemingly the media sources you trust, are not the ones listed in the TOP 25 of the “World Press Freedom Index 2014″ (http://bit.ly/1bUJA2S) by Reporters Without Borders (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reporters_Without_Borders)

      Most likely the media sources that formed your opinion, are located in a country where free, “investigative journalism is under threat”. Countries where Freedom of information is too often sacrificed to an “abusive interpretation of national security needs”. Like the United States of America – sadly ranked 46 on the list of 180 countries; behind Romania or El Salvador. Or perhaps you rely on media from Japan (59), Israel (96) or Brazil (111).

      Yes, Bild am Sonntag is not the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, yet…it IS a German Newspaper and in Germany (ranked 14) the Freedom of the Press – which is of inestimable value to humanity – is currently not under threat. What cannot be said of countries such as Botswana, Kuwait, USA, Ecuador or Chile.

      People absorbing news by sources from these countries (all amazing countries with splendid culture and rich history) are strongly advised to use alternative means to find reliable, free media sources from the TOP25 of said list. Via the www’s “still free corners”.

      Stay thirsty for free media, my friend.

      • excellent comment, Alex….but then it’s possible that Sprockethawk is working for the NSA him/herself….as a disinfoshill, with the purpose of discrediting the messenger, so that we will not trust the message, these kinds of activities are quite common these days. as detailed in Glenn’s article after this one….”communications teams” whose jobs are to promote the government propaganda machine against the efforts of journalists like Glenn.

  32. Clapper -”My son is a high school teacher”

    and guess who’s there to record, collect and digitize every single bit of information that comes out of the school children’s heads to use against them in any way possible.

  33. Glenn….the depth of the depravity of this shadow government has yet to be plummed. No doubt I my mind that it includes conspiracy to commit mass murder.

  34. I am endlessly slobernocked by these guys. That of course after having dragged myself off the floor from being knocked down. They show no understanding why people might be upset about what they are engaging in and certainly show very little compassion or mercy for anybody but themselves. They are willing to slander people and claim they are nuts and have no standing to state the obvious and they throw around claims of people being traitors. The last couple of years have been very hard. It is the mother in me that worries about all of you guys wrapped up in this. I know splitting hairs can be tiring but I also know it will have to be resolved and hanging around too many lawyers can have that second sense stimulated. First they take no responsibility for any of their own numerous failings which is more than a little annoying. They pretend that nobody brought these issues before them and the courts. So that just puts the whole thing about channels into major doubt. Somehow Clapper wants to be known as the great patriot and so personally put upon by all of these inconvenient truths. You are right they are ridiculous with the Star Ship Deck and all the endless advantages they give themselves. They are I think even dangerous to themselves. We all know how the domestic surveillance ends with and that is with 2.4 million incarcerated and a whole lot of people without their cars. It is all connected through the technology. The only question is which agency or which set of goons. That Angry Earth Swallowing Octopus about sums it up. Keep your chin up Glen and Edward and the rest of you and keep fighting the Borg.

  35. Bravo Glenn! Keep up the good work! We need lots of more of this. It’s funny how fragile our police state is. It simply cannot withstand the light of day. Keep the sun shining on em Glenn!

  36. Great to have you back on song Glenn. I’m amazed at the team you guys have assembled.

  37. This reminds me of the old Warner Bros. cartoon featuring Ralph the sheepdog and Wile E Coyote, where both were employed to do opposite things. They would both punch-in to a timeclock at the begining of the day. WileE would try to snatch the sheep. They would both punch out.

    We must remain safe for the Constitution to work. Both from internal and external enemies.

    I am convinced that Liberals including those writing here would have no trouble sending storm-troopers and violating rights and doing as bad or worse if it was one of their pet “rights”, say “gay marriage” or “abortion”. Yes, show the Pakistani children, but not the shredded bodies of the unborn. And send the storm troopers to confiscate guns – violating the 4th amendment, since the 2nd amendment is merely some ink-blot, abstract, group right. Have the supreme court say all this is OK (for abortion, gun control, but not terrorism).

    For this, I do not have a solution, other than the Constitution was designed to have competing powers fight. Clapper was told to keep us safe. You were told to expose information. Both are proper and legitimate – and CONTRADICTORY. The whole point of separation of powers – and that INCLUDES state v.s. federal government (i.e. sending the stormtroopers to the red states breaks the ideal) is that we cannot limit power except by having disparate parts fight each other.

    Tell me, if Clapper granted you – and your partner – immunity as a “journalist under the first amendment”, wouldn’t you accept it? Not fix any part of the law or the injustice it represents, but merely declare you to be just as elite as him?

    My only difficulty with you and this site is you advocate large, tyrannical government, yet belive it can be that and it can be limited to do the things you consider good.

    I believe the opposite. A small government that permits evil. Let new york and california have gay marriage, but iowa ban it. Anything else requires a Clapper. Either the one we have doing what he is told or one approved by Greenwald doing what Greenwald wants. Anyone can have the constitution painted in front of his office. But its meaning is not the power to do good. Its meaning was defined by Lord Acton shortly after – Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

    You either want to give power to the government or the people. Period. People can be evil, but can’t collectively do violence without some justice being available. Government will become evil. And that is the lie. That if we just elect the right man, that he will use all this power – the guns, the bombs – for good. I’m not sure whom Greenwald would shoot, bomb, or imprison. But I have not seen any article he is for tearing down the power and structure of government. So is is merely a different victim, one who he would not see as such.

  38. “outside Clapper’s office is a wooden relief sculpture dedicated to the U.S. Constitution.”

    This would be his Trojan whore, no doubt.

  39. “outside Clapper’s office is a wooden relief sculpture dedicated to the U.S. Constitution”

    This would be his trojan whore, no doubt.

  40. I’m gonna guess NSA’s number is the biggest one they can create. All docs Snowden could have crawled on. Sounds great.

    But that only demonstrates they haven’t a freaking clue and just blew their doc rate for a cheap PR claim. Of 1.7 million documents, NSA hasn’t a clue how many Snowden has taken. 0 of 1.7 million. OK, include the ones that the press has published, and we’ll justly call it their handicap.

    They’ve given away all kinds of intel by declaring themselves competent and Snowden a traitor. Who hipped me to radio wave penetration but the hysterical hissies at NSA saying Russia had Snowpee’s bag? Or how about cables being unreliable and that’s why all were yanked in Hawaii. Plugins for idiots? I know Cable. Cable don’t lie. It’s the plugs. SNAP! Thanks again, secret agent man. Then we finally got the spy catalog from the Spook Store, and now I want to know who’s been sharing with our media community. This shite is all last season’s.

    • For anyone that is interested in learning about the hardware that the NSA, GCHQ, and others use for spying on us, check out the recent presentations (video) by Jacob Applebaum. I had been focused on the NSA/GCHQ software insertions/backdoors, encryption breaking, man-in-the-middle servers, and such. Learning more about the hardware side of the spying, as revealed by Jacob, will make you paranoid. Guaranteed.

      If you are given $50 billion dollars a year (more if you add in the FBI, CIA, and the other federal snooping agencies), you can have people design, build and sell you whatever spying equipment that you want. Classified documents revealed by Jacob show, for example, dozens of ways their spying hardware is used against us, the citizens (Not terrorists) of the world. Scary, Scary, Scary is the only way I can describe what Jacob has revealed. Watch is presentations. He is Smart. He is an American citizen like Laura Poitras and, like her, would be at great risk if he returned to the USA. Both are award winning journalists.

      • Just realized that I spelled Jacob’s last name wrong. His name is Jacob Appelbaum.

    • “NSA hasn’t a clue how many Snowden has taken”

      He never “took” anything, he merely copied.
      The criminal state still has everything it ever had.
      Don’t play into the “theft” meme.

  41. Great article. I’m really enjoying the work so far – and surprise, I’m a classical liberal (or even a neo-liberal – gasp!) and no leftist. But I find the focus here on critical and deep reporting on these issues to be necessary and compelling so thanks!

    I do have one question – and I’m sure Glenn you have better things to do than respond to me, so my feelings aren’t hurt. I listened to Robert Baer comment on the Snowden thing and he mentioned that given Snowden’s info sec violations when he was in Geneva, combined with what he did at Booz and then the eventual flight to Russia, that Snowden’s actions fit the profile of someone doing espionage for the Russians. I have not been able to shake this tiny suspicion – but also know that I have a very narrow view of all this. Can you comment on this or even better, would you address this question more substantively in a future article? You might even want to interview/source Robert Baer (he’s former CIA but not political and quite smart) as his questions seemed penetrating and fair to me. But again, let me be clear – I’m curious, not convinced.

    Again, thanks for the great work and another great article. Clapper is an example of the elitist and privileged behavior and attitudes of our NatSec professionals and this kind of criticism is crucial if we are to have any hope of holding him to account.

    • Glenn will see you, but I would question why he has to write the “Why Snowden is NOT a Russian Spy” novella. That is for the prosecution to pretend. He’s got better fish to fry.

      I’ll give this a try. The man was fleeing for warmer latitudes but Obama and crew concluded that having Snowden land just a rockskip from Gitmo might make them look pretty lame, what with the law to restrain them from droning him.

      So it was a better option to play the Russian doll game. By bringing down the Bolivian president’s plane it was quite plain no one was going to let him land and not pay a high US price for it. So, leaving him no place to go and no paper to do so with left Snowden to play pong with two imperialdickheads by pinging them off each other. He had to have some kind of status, so he’s a temporary asylum seeker in a nation he probably equates to NSA. But he knows they prefer him alive. He made the best to two bad sports.

    • Do you even know if it’s true that Snowden actually fits the profile of a Russian spy? For all we know, the guy who said that has a political view and is trying to sell some BS. In fact, have you ever heard of a spy that provides information to the media and makes his identity public intentionally? One who has to hide and maintain a low profile in the country he’s supposedly spying for? The fact is that it wasn’t even Snowden’s idea to go to Russia. He was ready to face an extradition process in Hong Kong. It was Julian Assange’s idea to fly through Russia and Cuba in order to get to Ecuador.

      • Jose – I sourced a noted intelligence expert who is pretty non-partisan and highly critical of the U.S. govt and its policies – Robert Baer, a career intelligence agent. That’s my source. Perhaps I wasn’t emphatic enough though – I don’t think he’s right, but he drew a profile that put a small question in my mind. I try to keep in mind that I (we) see a very narrow view of these things. Fyi, the “facts” you cite do no damage to Baer’s hypothesis and you don’t seem to even have the facts right.

        This response suffices for all comments here actually. I’m being reasoned and evidence based – you are all being ideological. Baer cited the fact that Snowden had committed security violations in Geneva in previous work and he speculated that this would have been an ideal place for the Russians to recruit him(apparently in the intelligence world Geneva is known as a hotbead of Russian intelligence activities). He then worked for Dell and then intentionally went to Booz to gain greater access – Snowden has admitted all this or it’s public record (the Geneva stuff). The fact that this was disclosed to the press does not mean that this wasn’t an intelligence driven campaign. As well, Baer claimed that there were reports of Russian intelligence interactions with Snowden while in Hong Kong – I haven’t been able to confirm those statements.

        I wonder, do you folks here just assume Snowden’s good will? I suspect he’s on the up and up- it looks like that to me, but I am open to other hypotheses and Baer posited one that isn’t crazy. My measured question here was aimed at Glenn G to see if he had strong evidence to refute Baer’s claims. The fact that he ended up in Russia is enough to raise the question – that is if one is using reason versus ideology to evaluate all this. Sigh, I thought maybe reasoned discourse would happen here – it seems that’s too much to ask for.

        • Fyi, the “facts” you cite do no damage to Baer’s hypothesis and you don’t seem to even have the facts right.

          Events occurred exactly as I said. If you have a way to dispute it, let’s see it. There’s zero evidence that he had been in contact with Russian intelligence (that’s clearly made up), and there’s zero evidence he wanted to go to Russia, or that he wanted to stay in Russia when he arrived there. Things that are plausible in your imagination cannot be taken seriously as premises to an argument. You need actual facts and evidence to argue.

    • Your statement of Snowden’s “eventual flight to Russia” is suggestive of Russia being his endpoint. Sorry. Snowden was on his way to Latin America (his planned and preferred endpoint). The USA, my country, revoked his passport and stranded him at the Moscow airport for 39 days. My country spent that entire time pressuring (actually threatening) countries who were sympathetic to his plight. Once he was stranded at the Moscow airport, the USA directed their threats to Russia/Putin. Thankfully, Russia/Putin offered him temporary asylum. If his passport had not been revoked and he had left Moscow, I believe that he would have never reached Latin America. He would have been “rendered” or killed/assassinated. I believe Russia is the safest place for him (on earth) as proven by the fact that he is still alive and speaking out against the mass surveillance state that he revealed.

      • Right on, all the above responses to the Snowden is a Russian spy smear and falsehood. People forget so quickly what happened. Additionally we have to look at the man himself. The challenge is to show any ANY indication from him that he is a duplicitous sneak now that he’s arrived in Russia. That despite his presentations he is somehow playing a game on the side. This kind of thinking reflects the paranoid and twisted nature of whoever is making the accusation. Snowden has made very plain his motivation, his objectives, and his patriotism. All this scurrilous demonizing is the stench emanating from those who smear for whatever opportunistic purposes they may have.

    • “I’m a classical liberal (or even a neo-liberal – gasp!)”

      Well, which one is it?

      The classical Liberal believes in what is now known as libertarianism, freedom for people to interact without the intervention of the jackboot of the state.

      The Noe-Liberals believe in using the force of the state to acheive goals that they believe are “Liberal”.

      You can’t have it both ways kid.

      You either worship at the altar of the State or you don’t.

      • No, the classical liberal remains in favor of a limited state. What you refer to is anarchy – which is to actually stand for nothing at all, if you actually understand anarchy that is.

        Calling me kid and talking down to me reveals your obnoxious nature, not any defect in my reasoning. Keep it up, do you think you are the first adult-child anarchist I’ve encountered? I was a libertarian for a long time – a CATO/Reason type but the prevalence of anarchists in the libertarian movements and the lack of understanding of the “public good” evident in even supposedly classically liberal libertarian circles had me stop identifying this way. I find the dialog happening at Bleeding Hear

  42. Thanks for your article, Mr. Greenwald. Mr. Clapper hasn’t delighted in the recognition & the sunlight of your revelations. Keep them coming on every level. These are not our chosen employees, sent on a particular mission to subvert the US Constitution, protect war criminals & odious criminal acts. These are not creatures who deserve protection nor anonymity. Bring it on!

  43. We need totally new political system, one with no power to do these egregious acts. Let’s start over.

  44. Please enable a “sort” button to place in temporal sequence. Sometimes it is good to read the latest comment first, but there must be an option to read in sequence without scrolling upward.

  45. Thanks for piling up the examples of disregard those with oversight and authority to employ the world’s most massive surveillance system have for common decency. The ghoulish snickering about seeing Snowden and others suffer or die was more than disturbing.

    It is evidence of disturbed minds. Minds who thought no one would ever know how far they’d gone astray, but now that we do, they are losing them. Of course they are attempting to recruit our lesser angels, but I see them for the extortionists they are.

    I think even “you know who” knew to keep the blood lust out of the boardroom, much less the public hearing until the plebiscites were cinched. Jeesh, Rogers, are you trying to get the team BUSTED?

    If these aren’t the mindsets of those one would NEVER trust with their own children, how bad does it have to get? One of them performs a public execution?

    Then who’ll be laughing? Only those who still want to live.

  46. Clapper’s kid is only taking it internally because he can’t utter the truth.

    My father dropped Napalm. He had to live with it because I couldn’t let him forget it. Clapper is exploiting his son like the traitor he is. My father followed orders, but he didn’t make me suffer the BS rational or defend him or play victim to his critics.. He knew it was a crime, too.

    Too bad Clapper’s kid’s got such a bad example of command leadership for a dad. He should get it off his chest. I hope he doesn’t teach GOVERNMENT!!

    This sounds really cruel, but I’m a BRAT. So I call Clapper Crap on dragging family into his breastwork to defend himself at their cost, the stinking coward!! And I’m calling out his kid because he did so to show Clapper what he was demanding of his own son. Intrusive surveillance in the public interest.

    Tell me how you feel about your father, kid. I know…it’s complicated.

      • Clapper went there (see interview quote) when he tried to elicit sympathy as a father of a High School teacher who may be or is being questioned by students, peers, and others about the criminal actions of his father. Clapper lied to Congress and told them and us many more lies. Children are often asked about their parents work, actions, etc. Mine are. Why should we expect his teacher son not to experience the same questioning as our children? Because his father is a Security guy? WTF?

  47. “we will never ever be able to guarantee that there will not be an Edward Snowden or another Chelsea Manning because this is a large enterprise composed of human beings with all their idiosyncrasies.”

    In other words, “Human acts of conscience are illogical to us. Until we can install a perfect computerized system of total control, we will have to expect a certain percent of malfunctions, otherwise known as whistleblowing, disclosure, and dissent.

  48. I recall Nixon nearly got Charles MANSON off demonstrating unlawful command influence.

    Why wouldn’t Snowden justly take a free walk? Do NONE of those imperialdickheads making menacing statements like sociopaths remember their duty is to respect and defend the Constitution? Instead, they just pizz on it.

    They dictate their laughingly transparent paranoid projections of what they deservedly have coming upon Snowden and the journalists who have BRAVELY served the public interest. These “people” who generate hate filled propaganda for this grifting media to proffer in this disgusting effort to salvage their own sinking causes are disgraceful.

    In “Dirty Wars,” I recall Hayden admitting they knew this “whole openness thing” was eventually going to backfire on the military. Obviously, they built the net it to do just that. Spy on EVERYTHING, no matter the blow back. That’s why they presume they are bullet proof. They were just following orders.

    Really not pleased about “House of Cards” making light of real life Vosages factories for hackers gone haywire. Barrett Brown is a real human being, unlike those pundits trying to pass for journalists on TV. Those frauds should be ashamed of themselves. But if it gets Brown a hearing, I guess can swallow some vomit.

      • I think he might have been referring to Manson being declared guilty at the time of his trial by Nixon through a pretrial statement Nixon made which inferred guilt. Calley is another matter. Calley was a sacrificial lamb for higher ups whose conviction may have been too embarrassing. Manson was a matter of the executive influencing a jury.

  49. Has anyone made the obvious joke about his last name? Authoritarians are just like the clapper — they receive the order and perform the task without thinking. Clap on…clap off…whatever.

    • I read somewhere that Clapper’s ancestor invented the indoor toilet, but the name was “changed at Ellis Island”

    • As a second generation Asian-American, I like to think of his name the way my mother would pronounce it: “Crapper.” Seems appropriate.

  50. The ironic symbolism is bafflingly hilarious.

    But even if Clapper was a champion of civil liberties, his weird and tacky Shrine to the Constitution would be a bizarre detail. Between this and Keith Alexander’s Star Trek office, it paints a very odd portrait of these types of people.

    Men who spend time dreaming up Disney-style installations while crushing civil liberties don’t seem like humble civil servants to me. Too busy polishing the brass eagles and changing the filter on the fountain to abide by their oath, I guess.

    • They seem to live under the same delusion as agoraphobes — so separated from life outside their power structure and beltway culture that they look upon all the outside world with fear and loathing. In short, they’re a bunch of pantie-waist cowards who’ve never had to contend with reality or face the challenge of tackling life without the support and backing of an authoritarian establishment.

  51. For those who can, I suggest that you at least browse the links within Mr. Greenwalds’ articles whenever you can. I most often gain a wealth of information that I somehow missed during my years of formal education—especially historical references like this:

    a primary impetus for that Constitution

    Do you know about James Otis, his struggle against the British Empire, and the making of the Fourth Amendment?

    Or:

    https://privacysos.org/node/1088

    • Super recommendation. Like you, I try to follow all the links and read the related articles, …

      I would like to add another recommendation that everyone have a copy of The Constitution of the United States of America and a copy of the Declaration of Independence close at hand when they are reading or responding to articles. I am a member of the ACLU and received a small booklet from them of the USA Constitution. I found and printed my copy of the Declaration from an online source. The Constitution must be online too. I find my copies invaluable. I reference them often.

      My continuing challenge is learning more about the UK system of laws. I was surprised that Judge Laws who heard the David Miranda case did not allow cross-examination of the UK government witnesses. He also did not allow Glenn to join David as a co-claimant. The Miranda ?trial? was a real come-to-Jesus education for me. Unbelievable.

  52. Leviathan continues to grow unabated.

    There are over 7,000,000 US citizens living abroad and over 220,000,000 expatriates living in lands other than their original home. Renunciation of US citizenship reaches new records with every report.

    Some of us are taking action to protect our Liberty and Privacy by leaving the States. I’ll be documenting my adventure of exploring the current Lands of the Free in video and writing.

    The Boot-Strap Expat
    http://thebootstrapexpat.com/

    • That must be why I’m so hot to get to Germany. I was there when Barbara Jordan called for impeachment. I thought we were so HOT strutting our people power. Now, I feel a need to apologize.

  53. It shouldn’t fall to one individual to determine the proper balance between government powers and civil liberties. Clapper, as DNI, doubtless sees his mandate as the collection of information to provide to civilian and military agencies. From this perspective, the mechanisms to protect civil liberties appear as obstructions that make the job more difficult. While it would be nice if the DNI could take a wider view, he does not necessarily know of all the players who use this information, let alone the balance between their need for certain information and the dangers of having too much information.

    The proper balance can only be determined with input from the elected representatives of the people – the Congress. Clapper can therefore be held responsible for withholding information from Congress, which subverts the proper functioning of democracy. But Congress should be held at least equally responsible for failing in their oversight duties. Most of the members of the intelligence committees allowed themselves to be subverted and become simple enablers of whatever the NSA decided to do. The Administration is equally responsible for not providing proper guidance – even after the extent of NSA overreach was revealed by the Snowden documents, the Administrations only response was to promise a series of cosmetic reforms to the system.

    Finally, too many voters express little concern about the extent of the surveillance and no concern about what is done outside the US. That may change once examples of the misuse of the collected data begin to be revealed. But complacence about secret activities of the government also implies a responsibility.

    So Clapper has lots of company. Even if he is ultimately disgraced, much blame should also be assigned to a corrupt Congress, an Administration in thrall to the military, a judiciary that has enabled secret government by refusing to review it and a complacent public. Finally, America’s allies have spinelessly complied with everything that was asked of them, with no apparent concern to whether the rights of their own citizens were being violated.

    Apologies if I left anyone out.

    • Have we any representatives in government willing to call for expulsion hearings for members of the Intelligence and Judicial Committees of both parties? It would surely be fairly balanced between both. Not suggesting they will all lose their chairs, but some are big fat fibbers!

      If a guy can take same heat for having had sexual relations and fibbing, what’s peeping on the whole freaking world and denying it gonna get Congress? A pass? I can’t imagine a nation worth giving a Clapper about if this stands are just.

      Is there no one to relieve us of these turbulent peeps?

  54. dear glenn,

    2013 may not have been a great year for the nsa, but it’s been good for the cia. they’ve won back egypt, and are now making tremendous gains in ukraine and venezuela, while syria remains at an impasse.

    what is going on in ukraine and venezuela are possibly the two most important stories of the new year so far. unfortunately, nobody is doing them justice. the situations are complicated as, although the uprisings have the cia’s fingerprints all over them, there is real discontent mixed in there making it difficult to understand anything from the noise.

    is there any chance that the team at the intercept can look into these stories? a good place to start would be to look at who died and at whose hands.

    keep up the good work

    • “is there any chance that the team at the intercept can look into these stories?”

      Makes me misss Michael Hastings even more. He would have been so perfect for firstlook.

    • That’s a total mess. In one case, where two demonstrators, one from each side, were killed February 12 (12-F as it’s now known), Venezuelan homicide investigators actually identified the assailants, and at least a couple of them turned out to be from the Venezuelan intelligence service. I understand most of the assailants are captured and awaiting trial. One escaped. Now, Maduro’s government claims that Venezuelan intelligence had explicit instructions not to go out on the streets. Of course, some are saying that’s total BS. The other explanation is that the Venezuelan government has no control over its intelligence services.

    • Don’t suggest all CIA does is in our stain, but if we like to think CIA can control Red Terrors, you haven’t read up on your birthing of nations. This is the fault of NSA’s openness policy and truth being spoken to power. The wild wide open western net of liberty is making sense of what freedom should be. It’s really bloody and ugly and I’m not sure instant messaging can speed it up. Are you?

  55. I feel sorry for Clapper’s and Obama’s kids because sooner or later there going to that there fathers
    have killed a lot of innocent people.

    It is these powers within that are the biggest threat to us the american people. Our life’s are far more affected by there actions than any terrorist group could ever have.

    • Welcome to my world…

      When I played RISK, I understood the back stories. I’m a BRAT.

      I finally resolved that if the UN was going to let Napalm remain legal, I could not call my father a criminal, even though we both were sick over it. He resented having to do it, though he did it well. I resented having to pretend to anyone it didn’t smell of high hell. Dad told me he fought to defend my right to object. That still couldn’t heal a cut that deep. He died of a broken heart.

      When Napalm is illegal, I may finally get some peace.

  56. So depressing. I just talked to my dad and he told me that he doesn’t mind being spied upon or the government keeping track of him because he’s not doing anything wrong and has nothign to fear.

    What do you even say to that?

    • I feel your pain, but it can be done. One carefully explains the history of the Bill of Rights, “general warrants” and the Star Chamber.

    • You suggest to him that he wish, hope, and pray for an absence of the phenomena known as “false positives.”

    • What do you even say to that?

      What I say when I encounter this pus is as follows:

      “Then you are an obedient sheep who should be deeply ashamed of yourself. That means you’ve never expressed a dissident political view in your life.

      Shame. On. You.”

      • Yea its scary that so many people are like that. I mean, I actually think he wants a police state. I guess some people feel safe. I can’t imagine being so scared of terrorists (as long as they’re foreigners) that you would trust the government so completely.

        • Yeah, I think people like that don’t understand on a personal level how a government such as ours impacts their freedoms.

      • That is great Mona. I like that a lot, thanks.

        Would you be willing to explain what Clapper’s “felonies” are? I’m guessing his authorization of warrantless spying?

    • You tell him that’s how Hitler came to power, because people didnt care enough to say something about the crimes the Nazis were committing.

    • Ask him for all his passwords for all his accounts and that you just need to have access to his bank accounts cause you Womt do anything wrong, for his security. Remember your father has been subjugated to decades of conditioning.

    • What do you even say to that?

      You don’t say anything.

      You write a tweet that you think [your father's first name] is planning a terrorist attack from a terrorist safe house at [his home address].

      Show him the tweet before tweeting it.

      Ask him if he wants the NSA to open a dossier on him.

      Offer to delete the tweet for $20.00.

      Repeat until he gets it though his head that the NSA is a hammer looking for nails. It doesn’t matter how he becomes identified as a nail, his guilt or innocence is irrelevant.

      Repeat a lie often enough and it becomes true.

      • Or just say, “Fine, Dad. Let’s put a web camera in your room and broadcast all your bedroom activities. I mean, just to make sure you’re on the up and up.”

    • What you say to that is this: If he’s done nothing wrong, then why does the government need to monitor his every movement and communication?

    • I tell people that even if their life is that dull and they do not mind being spied upon they must think of all the implications. The congressman or judge that may have skeletons in the closet and would be open to blackmail. Or tell him to post a video of himself mastrabation on youtube. After all he doesnt care if the government tunes in anytime they want.

    • he’s not doing anything wrong and has nothing to fear.

      There must be some group he dislikes – let’s call them Libertarians. Tell him that he doesn’t get to choose what is right or wrong. The Libertarians have petitioned the government for access to everyone’s records and will review them and make recommendations on who should be eligible for social security. He probably will be less sanguine about that – so ask him if there should be measures in place to prevent it.

    • That is not unusual. When informed of a violation of trust within a family, many members have difficulty coming to grips, whether its unlawful observation, seizure or penetration.

      For some, suggesting a government you’ve sacrificed blood, sweat and tears to protect is not worthy of that service, that it is actually violating your freedom, is too much to sacrifice. Denial is a great water break before the tears start to fall.

      But it is just the first step in coming to grips with grief. We need to appreciate how hard it is to accept this. Watergate went this way, too. We re-elected the crook because we didn’t want to believe it in the midst of horrifying war. But that bargaining only made it worse. He was still a crook.

      How about those who say they always knew about this and everyone else should have too and they hate negligent us for letting it happen as it’s everyone else’s fault…except the one who did this to us. That’s the Anger Phase masking as control where none is available. Those are the comments that are hard to read because we are beating our victim selves up about this.

      I hate domestic violence. It causes such paralyzing grief. That’s how perps often get away with it. Right, Mr. Bates?

      Sorry, NSA, there is no acceptance for this. I’m not letting this little piggy go. Not until he squeals. Jimmy Saviles in the House, get lost before Mr. Bates gets you!!

    • “So depressing. I just talked to my dad and he told me that he doesn’t mind being spied upon or the government keeping track of him because he’s not doing anything wrong and has nothign to fear.

      What do you even say to that?”

      You lovingly point out to him how terribly sorry you are for his great tragedy: that he was born 800 years too late, being a natural born vassal, one of natures serfs.

    • JLS: It is not important what your Dad thinks about the government, (because he’s doing nothing wrong & need not fear). What is important is what the government thinks about him. Has he ever done anything that the government thinks is wrong? Has any of his friends or friends of his friends done anything “wrong” that he doesn’t know about? The game-plan is to build nets & networks. Suspicion by association becomes guilt by association. It is not important what we as individuals think of the national security survailence state. What is important is what the state thinks about us. Ever give a donation to the ACLU, Sierra Club, Green Party, Greenpeace? They’re makin’ a list, checkin’ it twice. Gonna find out who’s naughty & nice….. Santa’s claws are coming to town.

  57. “I think he deserves credit for rethinking the calculation over secrecy,” said Steve Aftergood, the director of the Federation of American Scientists’ Project on Government Secrecy. “I think post-Snowden, he quickly realized that declassification and disclosure would serve the interests of the intelligence community.”

    He deserves no credit for being forced to rethink secrecy.

    Participation in in this spying and and security stuff should not be hereditary. It seems that the second generation is more than a little biased about what the constitution means.

  58. The NSS controls US presidents, even more so now than during JFK times b/c the gov’t/ corp. national security matrix has metastasized so much. Heaven help the commander in chief, limited to a maximum 8 years holding levers of power, who strays too far from the ranch. It’s much healthier to stay conciliatory and not be transformational.

  59. In the morning folks, is there any evidence to date as to whether Grenn Greenwald monitors the comment section here at TI?

    • @mrvco 24 Feb 2014 at 2:08 pm

      Not sure what you mean by “monitor”. He has popped into the threads from time to time to respond to various comments, but likely doesn’t have time to monitor on an ongoing basis.

      • That is a big 10-4. Occasionally Glenn buzzes us, but we bees be busy moderating ourselves like a proper hive might mine. Yes, we’ve got a great big convoy so stay between the lines.

    • In the morning folks, is there any evidence to date as to whether Grenn Greenwald monitors the comment section here at TI?

      Yes. Aside from the multiple replies I’ve left (and my involvement will increase as my time constraints decrease), this reply should constitute such evidence.

      • This just struck me today very forcefully–please bear with me. What this site is doing, what any decent internet site is doing, is informing, educating, widening. But more specifically than this all of it has this edge–we are trying to examine and encourage ALTERNATIVES and wake people up, or spread awareness and knowledge, that there ARE alternatives. There is alternative reporting to the mainstream, alternative knowledge/interpretation of events, alternatives to predatory capitalism (is there a beneficent capitalism?), alternatives to mainstream medicine and the pharmaceutical companies, alternatives to fossil fuel and nuclear energy, alternatives to denying and propagandizing against climate crisis, alternatives to being homeless, uneducated, sick, alternatives to spying and invading privacy . . . I believe much of the world is waking up to alternatives at this time, and saying, Yes, there ARE alternatives to what we have now, this current corrupted and dead system of profit first, humans last . . . I think this now is our job as humans to more and more widely spread the need for productive, humane, advanced alternatives.

      • Strange question given you are here. I greatly appreciate your efforts and presence here. Even though I’m ideologically in a different place than you, I applaud what you are doing and in particular this issue to hold Clapper accountable. All one need to do is imagine a person lying to federal law enforcement similarly and seeing what charges could and would be brought to bear if a U.S. atty chose to. And this is a govt official operating under much stricter laws that require him to testify honestly and completely to congress. What’s even more galling is that he always had the option to answer by saying “We will have to discuss that in a classified briefing”. To me this is the most telling part of his obfuscation. He was so concerned about the American people knowing what the NSA was up to even by implication or inference that he thought a lie was a better choice. The disrespect he has for the people, our governing institutions and his own oath and obligations is staggering. Yet none of that occurs to him. Sigh. Again, thanks for the great work!

  60. ” … note that the report is based on “a high-ranking NSA employee in Germany”, which means that this is yet another NSA source to come forward to disclose the agency’s once-secret acts.”

    Or it’s the US government leaking to underline that the German government still has no reasonable expectation of privacy. When Victoria Nuland said “Fuck the EU” in that leaked phone conversation, Germany is who she was talking about. This was just a more politely-worded expansion on that sentiment.

    • When Victoria Nuland said “Fuck the EU” in that leaked phone conversation, Germany is who she was talking about. This was just a more politely-worded expansion on that sentiment.

      Someone on twitter linked to this Moon of Alabama post re the Ukrainian situation:

      A “high-ranking NSA employee in Germany” talking to Germany’s most pro-U.S. broadsheet is not a whistle blower but an official issuing an authorized leak meant as a threat.

      The notice to Merkel: Pay up and don’t even think of brokering a deal with Putin behind our back.

      It seemed just as plausible to me, if not more so, than the whistleblower description.

    • I look forward to this new puppety reality show:

      “Stupid Policy Makers and the Stupid Things They Say When They Think We’re the Stupid Ones” by Lonesome Roads Deconstructions.

      I think that might be worthy of a puppet or few.

      I hear Will Lewis is great at fencing British tabloid production tape. What NSA can’t get, Murdoch can. (That’s the reality show I really want to see.)

  61. I am excited about the Intercept and very interested to watch it grow.

    Glenn Greenwald wrote:

    “…(the Guardian and New York Times, without my involvement, both withheld some details on their story about NSA/GCHQ compromising of encryption standards, though primarily – as I understand it – because publishing the handful of compromised standards we knew about would mislead people into believing the other compromised standards (the vast majority of which weren’t revealed by the documents) were safe).”

    This explanation still doesn’t make much sense. I understand that Glenn was not involved in this decision, (although soon enough–and we a getting damn close to that moment–Glenn will have made the same choice simply through lack of action), but the explanation is ambiguous about what the basic facts are.

    Is there evidence that other encryption standards are compromised besides the ones alluded to in the original articles?

    If yes, then the argument about people being misled is rather disingenuous. The argument could be restated as–’We are withholding this information because we are withholding other information.’ It is insincere to argue that we are being saved from misinformation by the same people who are causing that misinformation.

    If there is no other evidence that additional encryption standards are compromised, then this *We can’t teach kids about sex because they might do it wrong* logic has as much a place in the newsroom as it does in the classroom. Journalism should be about education, not indoctrination. Give us the facts and save the bad parenting for your own children. The distinction between journalism as science and journalism as a canvas for propaganda is at its heart a battle about rationality and democracy versus father knows best authoritarianism.

    “You can’t handle the truth!” should not be the motto of a journalist.

    If this were a story about a safety flaw in a specific make and model of automobile, would anyone take seriously an argument that the make and model should not be revealed because there might also be problems with other cars?

    Fear and institutional ignorance about technology should not be a reason to withhold information from an article.

    ————-

    One of the things a PR company does is write articles promoting a client’s messages, and gives them to journalists to publish under their own name, either in whole or in part. It is essentially a bribe paid by the PR company to a journalist. The journalist appears to fulfill the obligation to thier employer without actually doing any work, and the PR company gets its client’s messages out in a forum that has more credibility than advertising.

    You would think that such a paltry bribe would get little traction, but people are both really, really lazy and really, really competitive so this tactic works surprisingly well.

    Google is thought of as an tracking/advertising company, but one of the keys to Google’s success has been a page taken from the PR playbook. Google bribes Information Technology workers in the same way a PR company bribes journalists.

    Programmers and IT workers–Google is willing to do parts of your job for you because you are acting like a spy for Google. You are bribed with pennies for the simple act of funneling your companies data to Google. You are the Evil version of Snowden. The Anti-Whistleblower. Everything that Google collects is the baseline for State Surveillance.

    Management–If this is not your doing, confront your employees and ask them why they are accepting compensation from Google for spying on your company and your customers. If this is your doing and you see your readers not as customers, but as the product you are selling…I will have to save my arguments for next time–but suffice to say, morality is rarely kind.

    • What Glenn seems to be saying is the NYTs said the NSA was fine with those codes being exposed, but NYTs said they and NSA agreed if the codes were revealed it would lead folks to find the other glaring holes NSA demanded be left in the net. Holes which I think were just reported at Apple.

      If we understand Glenn when he says NSA always says NO-THING can be pressed, then NYTs is finding excuses to protect the compromising of security. They bought NSA’s BS. They lied to us about security to protect insecurity. That is not serving the public interest. This is not my father’s NYTs. I think that big hole has recently been reported regarding Apple. NYTs rings of tubular smells.

      NSA has no grounds to be standing on such a lie, anyway. Can’t trust their signal for shite.

    • All encryption software and hardware is now suspect based on revelations by Snowden, Appelbaum and others. TrueCrypt, open source encryption software which I use, is now undergoing an audit funded by crowdsourcing. I anxiously await the audit results. I hope they find no inserted code or compromised binaries, and take actions to ensure TrueCrypt is secured for the future.

  62. Clapper and americans need to fear is a walk through their house, their laundry room, their closet, their driveway–nothing is MadeInUSA anymore. US was the envy of the world at one time because of our productions. Their B$CEOs sol or ‘harvested’ the country out, to use the words of Mitt-Robmoney-Cayman$! what freedom is left? The Alquaida/Taliban routine is old now. These are old men.

  63. I should like to highlight another part of the article, which I hoped you would comment on:
    “And maybe the worst part for Clapper is, he still doesn’t get why Snowden did it. Clapper sees himself as the man who’s opened up the intelligence community to public scrutiny, who keeps the Constitution on his wall, and who’s endured the endless congressional grillings—all while keeping Americans safe. How could Snowden, a fellow intelligence analyst and contractor, not see that? “Maybe if I had I’d understand him better because I have trouble understanding what he did or what he’d do,” the director said. “From my standpoint, the damage he’s done. I could almost accept it or understand it if this were simply about his concerns about so-called domestic surveillance programs. But what he did, what he took, what he has exposed, goes way, way, way beyond the so-called domestic surveillance programs.”
    1- I think, unfortunately, there are still lots of people which don`t understand why Snowden leaked the information and therefore believe that he is a traitor.
    2- One of the great merits of the Snowden leaks to my mind Is that they “go way beyond the so-called domestic surveillance”. So does the surveillance itself. This is an international issue!

  64. Glenn, your writing has so much information in it, I have to sloow down my reading to take it in! Clapper is a piece of work ain’t he? Scum always floats to the top! Thank you for the detailed information in every article you write!

  65. We need to have a mass dissemination of the school address where Clapper’s son teaches, so we can shower him with letters asking him the sorts of questions that Greenwald raises. Every member of every family of the NSA/CIA/and other national security agencies should know in what low regard their family member employee is held, and exactly why. Let them rationalize the cognitive dissonance if they wish, but they need to be confronted with major public cognitive dissonance. There is a culture of complacent concurrence that must be confronted.

    • I concur. Public Outrage and “Shaming” are obviously powerful tools..I personally believe this same tactic should have been used after the school “Administrators” were caught spying on students via their computers in their Own Homes a couple years back…and am DAILY amazed at the almost TOTAL lack of any real “Outrage” at all over these and other daily crimes…

      But what is really..telling..in fact is probably “The” reality and “The” reason as in “The Reason America Is ABSOLUTELY Now A ‘Friendly Fascist State’” is the TOTAL lack of willingness for “Solidarity” in the forms of “Tax Strikes” and “Boycotts”.

      If even 30% of a local “Community” were to Boycott EVERY Business even “Associated” with a local “Fusion Center” for example..the changes would be very rapid.

      But the sad..tragic reality is this:

      “CONVENIENCE” is….IS..that “Element” which is pushing America into Fascism.

      Especially under the guise of RFID et al Surveillance.

      The New Model is “Coercion, Control And Mass Surveillance FOR PROFIT” and it is “The” reality behind the “Transition” from “Democratic Republic” to “Corporate Fascist Surveillance State”.

      And “Convenience” is the dirty secret behind that “Policy”.

      People desire this false “Convenience” at this time..”Above All Else”.

      Thus they will NOT…EVER..”Strike”..or “Boycott” because that is simply “Too Inconvenient”.

      And then we come to the final truth:

      “CONTINUED PAYMENT = APPROVAL!”

      You Pay? You APPROVE!

      Period!

      We’re not going to make it.

      We’re just Not!

      The Combination of Financial/Convenience based Fascism with the now ubiquitous mechanisms of carefully crafted Denial and Rationalization..are simply too ensconced in the daily “Thinking” of “Americans”.

      Its now only a matter of the continuing “Escalation” of the “Cold Civil War” and the “Friendly” fascist reality into “Hot” actions.

      That is all.

    • I don’t have language sufficiently emphatic to denounce this idea. And, I sincerely hope that no one follows through on this hare-brained notion. James Clapper’s son is not James Clapper. I genuinely don’t know why that needs to be pointed out. Clapper acknowledged that his son struggles, but we really don’t know the parameters or nature of that struggle. And, that struggle might be entirely different than Clapper reports, or you imagine. Clapper’s not known for his honesty, and you’ve demonstrated significant deficits in empathy. Maybe we should all identify who your parents were and see if we can find some noxious thing your father did and hold you to account for it, eh?

  66. A minor error to correct.

    The wooden sculpture on the outside wall of the NSA chief’s office is dedicated to the Clapperstitution, not the Constitution.

    The Clapperstitution officially replaced the Constitution at some unknown point after 9/11. The details of the transition, yet to be released, are believed to be contained somewhere in the estimated 1.5 quadrillion memos stolen by stealer Edward Snowden.

    The First Amendment of the Clapperstitution prohibits a non-suppressed press. It expressly permits the surveillance apparatus of the government to infringe upon fringe members of the press who press forward with publishing secret government documents documenting the crimes of secret government surveillance agencies.

    These changes to the fundamental rights of the press may be difficult to comprehend at first.

    However, Americans should make every effort to understand that our democracy is stronger when a tiny group of surveillance state criminals operating in the dark decides what We The People need to know to keep us safe from a tiny group of surveillance state criminals operating in the dark.

  67. UN Ambassador John Bolton revealed an even more detailed fantasy: “My view is that Snowden committed treason, he ought to be convicted of that, and then he ought to swing from a tall oak tree.”

    But merely one example of several people claiming that Snowden is guilty before he has even been formally charged. The last I understood the US Justice System leaves a person “innocent until proven guilty”, but clearly by their statements, this is not the case. Not to mention the fact that they are not judges, nor hold credentials to even be one if they tried. It’s a battle for them to continuously shoot the messenger, but they are failing badly… and with each interview that Clapper and other NSA/Federal officials give, they stick their foot deeper down their own throats, because they give people like me ammunition to make them look horrible. And they have the nerve to call themselves “National Intelligence”? Thats laughable!

  68. What an amazingly well written piece. I think more people need to give thought to the blunt remarks these authoritarian “leaders” have made about murdering Snowden. As GG so perfectly put it, “Not only does this underscore the warped pathologies among the glorious leaders of America’s National Security State, but it also highlights the inanity of believing that these kinds of people can and should be trusted with invasive spying powers to be exercised in the dark.”

    Are these the type of people you really trust with having your every intimate detail of your life? They have access to everything you’ve ever said over a phone or online. That gives them some pretty potent cherry picking options if they ever feel the need to paint you as a bad guy or disappear you.

    • It is rather amazing writing, isn’t it? And yet, the number of mainstream corporate opinion outlets that will reference it or discuss it will be approximately zero. There’s very little chance I’m wrong about that.

  69. This was wonderful. I feel like the crap that is out there (articles by journalists) is hazardous to our health (physical and psychological) and when I read this article, I was able to breathe, as I am with all your writing. In this culture, they make you feel as if honesty is wrong, immature, and now dangerous. I remember in the late 1990s I began to read that there were people out there who believed in being honest and that honesty is a “provincial” value. When I read this column, in addition to feeling so much love and respect for you, I kept thinking of Michael Hastings.

  70. That Clapper is still holding his position shows the duplicity of the USA.

    To give advice when not asked is fraught with danger. It virtually says I know more than you. It is an arrogant and presumptive action that usually does not go well for the advice giver.
    What can be seen thunderously gaining pace in the USA, is a climate of fear and intimidation on journalists and whistleblowers. In this climate the government requires all to knee and obey their wishes. Dissent will not be tolerated. Examples of harsh punishment (Chelsea Manning) are put forth to deter others.
    The brave will act righteously even against overwhelming odds and take the consequences of their stand. Bold men act from higher principles than self preservation, knowing their cause to be right.
    The constitution of the United States has passed from a binding document to a guide line and now the PTB disreguard not only the content of the instrument but its spirit. In this environment, false charges against an individual can be upheld by a tainted judiciary.
    A fair fight would see Mr Greenwald exonerated from any false charges that might be put by a scandalous rogue government.

    I fear that the USA at this point in time is a dangerous place for people of conscience. The government has shown that it will kill without blinking, murder even American citizens, all in the so-called name of national security.
    Mr Greenwald with his integrity and first class mind would stand before the gates of hell and call out any and all. He would wipe the floor with his attackers.
    Clapper is calling him an accomplice and this says to me that they will go Mr Greenwald for his meeting Mr Snowden.
    If Mr Greenwald goes to his home country, (how outrageous is Obama’s administration) where he should be able to rely on his constitutional rights and is grabbed by thugs, I fear a fair trial may not be forth coming.
    Should Mr Greenwald decide to go home I would applaud and support him. Should he stay in Rio till assurances are given by the USA, I would applaud and support him.
    He does not like titles but Mr Greenwald is a prince among men.

    • All 3 branches of the federal government are broken beyond repair.
      They were created by our constitution at a time when representation was the only practical way to implement democracy. That time has passed. We can now do it directly ourselves.
      Until we replace our horrible constitution with something that eliminates elected representatives, guys like Clapper will remain in power. Really, he should be executed as a traitor.

  71. Watching the watchers and getting arrested and beat up for it. They can watch us but we can’t watch them. Unfortunately for them, the panopticon they created, is, well, a panopticon. Duh.

    Shawn Randall Thomas, a New York photographer, was approached by NYPD officer Efrain Rojas when he noticed Thomas filming another officer’s interaction with a turnstile jumper in a subway station. “Approached” is putting it mildly. Rojas confronted Thomas and got physical when the photographer refused to stop filming. (via Techdirt reader Tony Loro)
    A New York City cop beat up and arrested a man for video recording him inside a subway station from 30 feet away Saturday night, walking up to him and getting in his face all while claiming the man was invading his personal space…

    Thomas also obtained footage from another man who had recorded Rojas with his knees on Thomas’ back as he lay face down on the sidewalk just outside the sub station, seconds after Rojas had bashed his face into the pavement, busting his lip.

    The injury was so bad that they had to transport him to the hospital twice during his 24-hour incarceration where doctors described him as a victim of assault.
    As if the impromptu “use of force” wasn’t enough, Thomas was also charged with the following:
    [Thomas] is still facing charges of resisting arrest, trespassing, disorderly conduct and obstructing government…

    http://bit.ly/MUztSH

      • “…It’s big and it’s bland…full of tension and fear…
        …They do it over there, but we don’t do it here…”

        “Beep, beep!” David, that’s my Bowie!!

  72. All of this makes me quite uncomfortable – especially the complete dislocation between Clapper’s deeds and the constitution he so flamboyantly displays outside his office. I guess that’s what happens when you serve a president who rules by signing statement.

    Here’s a little lesson from another republic that slid into government by presidential signing statement – and the ambitious Prussian authoritarian who made it all happen:

    “The idea of a ‘presidential government’ was within the letter of the Weimar constitution, but violated its spirit as the constitution had explicitly stated that chancellor and his government were responsible to the Reichstag. [General Kurt von] Schleicher did not wish for a putsch which would abolish democracy in one blow as that would offend the deep-settled attachment to legality held by many Germans, but instead favored a step-by-step process of destroying democracy which would within the letter, but not the spirit of the law, or alternatively at least maintain the appearance of acting within the law.” [“Kurt von Schleicher,” Wikipedia]

    Given that this corrupting of the constitution opened wide the door to making You-Know-Who Chancellor (and then dictator), this makes thinking about the US imperial president’s love affair with secrets – secret laws by secret courts for the purpose of secret spying on virtually everybody – a creepy experience. Even creepier is that it’s all made “legal” by presidential fiat.

    • Speaking of plebiscites…

      After WWI, the Saarland was made independent under the League of Nation’s protection and allowed to live alone. But this land had been German and French so many times, they were bound to want to go home. The coalmines were ruled to be French, so if they went back to Germany, Hitler would have to pay.

      The people of the Saar were beseeched by socialists and communists to remain independent of both France and Germany. in 1934, the year before the vote, a fascist march on Paris blew up into an orchestrated riot that brought on a militant emergency state occupied by the rioters. the next election would overturn the third Republic.

      The Left could see the Reich idea rising in an antisemitic and socially hostile France and Germany. But few of the depressed and desperate could resist Hitler’s wooing of the Saarland and soothing of all their wounded German souls. He threw them the biggest party in Koblenz anyone had ever seen since Nuremberg.

      Hitler allowed communists, who made the majority of West Homburg’s town council, run the Railroad Customs House at the Saarland’s border. That is until the Saar voted to go German and then he had the communists and socialist all deported. One of those false fronts on the Western Wall.

      There is a reason people were torn, they are left with few options and lied to repeatedly.

      • My guess is most Saarlanders wanted to avoid oppression, so they went with the biggest bully on the gangsters’ block, and yet still got shell shocked. Like they hadn’t known relentless war since the stone angles to the dragon’s teeth. Who would you have gone with?

  73. Glenn, you say: “It’s been rather amazing to watch not only the standard roster of government-loyal American journalists, but also those who fancy themselves some sort of cynical critics, uncritically regurgitate the government’s evidence-free assertion that Snowden took and then gave to journalists 1.7 million documents. ”

    You know who has the ability to clear this up? You. If that 1.7 million documents claim is incorrect as you indicate, why don’t you provide the actual number of documents/files that are in Snowden’s possession and that you received? I can’t help but feel you know but are guarding the actual number. If so – why? How is it in our best interests to not know how many records were taken? We already know that there were between 50k-60k GCHQ documents/files. So I suggest you spare us your continued indignation on this matter and clear the record – how many total NSA/GCHQ/et al documents did Snowden leak?

    Also, there is ambiguity between what Snowden had access to versus what he actually took. The Guardian itself says: “Snowden is believed to have accessed about 1.7 million documents” [http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/feb/09/edward-snowden-used-simple-technology-nsa] According to the NYT, “Intelligence officials told a House hearing last week that he accessed roughly 1.7 million files.” So blame Bloomberg for this matter, it was their fault they chose to describe it as “downloading….1.7 million intelligence files.”

    • You know who has the ability to clear this up? You. If that 1.7 million documents claim is incorrect as you indicate, why don’t you provide the actual number of documents/files that are in Snowden’s possession and that you received?

      You know who is screeching about already addressed questions? You. Glenn has repeatedly written that he received, not 1.7 million, but in the tens of thousands. That’s a 970,000 + number less than 1.7 million. He has also written several times that he doesn’t know with absolute certainty how many Snowden actually had. Snowden himself has said that the 1.7 mill downloaded accusation is horse shit.

      The Guardian itself says: “Snowden is believed to have accessed about 1.7 million documents”

      Notice that the Guardian “itself” isn’t saying shit in that quote. All that the author of that piece is writing is that the same old usual suspects have made that 1.7 mill claim. The Guardian is no more a source of that than is the New York Times or any other major news outlet. In other words, your use of that quote was more misleading hyperbole from you, nothing more.

      • Not that it matters but I’ll correct my math anyway. Tens of thousands of documents is 1.6 million+ less than 1.7 million documents rather than, as I wrote above, 970,000+ less than 1.7 million.

      • Kitt – you sure are on the defensive considering the simplicity of my question and the FACT that Glenn Greenwald and Snowden have not clarified how many documents were taken. “In the tens of thousands” is not specific at all, especially considering that we already know there at least 50k-60k documents were taken and were merely focused on GCHQ. I don’t know where you get this “970,000 + number less than 1.7 million.” And I hope that makes sense to you because its gibberish to me. If you don’t care how many documents he took, then that’s your prerogative. But I think there is a direct correlation between the number of documents revealed and the focus of the leaks. If Snowden took over 100,000 files, I seriously question his efforts to scrutinize all he took.

        You seem to imply that just because Snowden said that figure was horseshit that my question isn’t legitimate. Why not? I’m not accepting the 1.7 million figure at face value. Otherwise I wouldn’t be asking this question to Glenn. As for your last part about “The Guardian is no more a source of that than is the New York Times…” that may not be correct. Snowden took X amount of files, and gave either X or Y amount of those records to Glenn and Laura Poitras. In turn, X or Y or Z of the records went to the Guardian. The brass at the Guardian THEN decided to team up with the New York Times and Pro Publica. How many did they give to them? I don’t know and hence the question. If you don’t like my question, ignore it because you clearly lack the information to answer it. Also google the word “hyperbole” since you clearly misapplied it here.

        • How much less is tens of thousands than 1.7 million? It’s 1.6 million + less than 1.7 million. Glenn has answered your question in approximation to ten folds and ten folds below the 1.7 mill. There is no reason that he should be required to give you or anyone an exact number since he has ball parked it to be enormously below the trumped up number. So has the Guardian. So if you want to harp on the 1.7 million number, keep harping on the US government and the NSA specifically to explain themselves. They tell you, “Everything that he touched, we assume that he took.” I can see what a ludicrous way that is to decide on “what he took.” Perhaps you can’t.

          I’m not being on the “defensive” for calling you out for your blusterous rehash. I’m calling you out for your blusterous rehash, and for being a boorish jerk about it while pretending that you’re being “hard hitting,” or some such high toned nonsense as that.

          • I hope you aren’t ever in a position to teach math. Wow! Also, just want to point out that the only one here resorting to name-calling is you. My question is quite straight forward and is based on the ever-changing figures.

            In July, GG had 9k – 10k [http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/journalist-says-explosive-reports-coming-from-snowden-data-a-912034.html]

            In August, this changed to 15k-20k [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/07/glenn-greenwald-edward-snowden-documents_n_3716424.html#]

            Also in August, David Miranda was found to be carrying 58k documents [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/30/guardian-david-miranda-documents-government-deal_n_3842506.html#].

            In October, NSA chief Gen. Keith Alexander said Snowden shared between 50,000 and 200,000 documents with reporters, but that’s just the documents he leaked to the press, not all the ones he took. [http://mashable.com/2013/12/16/how-many-documents-did-snowden-steal-nobody-seems-to-know/]

            Why does it matter to people like me? Because I scrutinize both sides of the story. When the initial leaks came out, Snowden told the Guardian: “I carefully evaluated every single document I disclosed to ensure that each was legitimately in the public interest,” he said. “There are all sorts of documents that would have made a big impact that I didn’t turn over, because harming people isn’t my goal. Transparency is.”

            How can one not be skeptical of the claim that he carefully evaluated at the minimum – 58,000 documents – at that number is undoubtedly higher as these are just the British files.

            I don’t care if you get your feelings hurt by my fair question. This is a legitimate answer that Glenn Greenwald is in the position to answer.

        • There’s probably a good reason why Glenn and Snowden have not provided exact figures, and I’m going to guess it’s not to throw anyone off. The documents are probably just hard to count, so you have to provide approximate estimates. Snowden said it’s about an order of magnitude less than the 1.7 million they are claiming.

          Some documents are Powerpoint presentations. So do you count those as one document, or do you count each page as a document? There was one article I recall where the documentation was described as some sort of software system.

          • Typically, a single document could contain multiple pages or powerpoint slides. For example, the Verizon primary court order would be one document. An Inspector General’s report or court decision would be “documents.” But you raise a good point, it can be ambiguous. I’m not expecting them to count pages/slides/words, but use an objective counting method such as the number of files taken. Saying its a “mganitude less” is not good enough. 100,000 documents would be 17 times less than what Snowden supposedly “accessed” but that is still a ridiculous amount of information, and I think it calls into question Snowden’s self-proclaimed careful evaluation of every single document.

        • https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/02/19/uks-equating-journalism-terrorism-designed-conceal-gchq/

          On the UK’s Equating of Journalism With Terrorism
          By Glenn Greenwald 19 Feb 2014, 5:24 AM EST

          Glenn Greenwald
          19 Feb 2014 at 9:07 am

          if he is a Brazilian and was carrying “approximately 58,000 highly classified UK intelligence documents” then surely he is a spy and should be locked up somewhere?

          Totally. that he’s Brazilian is the key point. They particularly deserve it, as you suggest.

          Should the editors and reporters of the New York Times – who also possess the same 58,000 documents – be locked up, even though they’re not Brazilian?

          It would appear Mr Greenwald says that there were 58,000 documents.

          • No, Glenn does not say that there were 58,000 documents. He is continuing his sarcasm started with “If he is a Brazilian …”. The 58,000 number, which is completely fake, was a claim that surfaced six months ago re David Miranda’s detention on 8/18/2013. The 58,000 document number applies only to the GCHQ documents that the UK folks (see the statement by Oliver Robbins, UK Deputy National Security Adviser) stated were taken by Snowden. Any number provided by the NSA, GCHQ, Mike Rogers, and others continues to be false and misleading. They don’t know, and Snowden, Glenn, and Laura should continue to keep then guessing. If they are spending time “guessing”, they will have less tome to spy on us.

        • especially considering that we already know there at least 50k-60k documents were taken and were merely focused on GCHQ

          Are you sure the source for this is not the GCHQ itself? Not a source I would be willing to trust.

        • I don’t care if you get your feelings hurt by my fair question. This is a legitimate answer that Glenn Greenwald is in the position to answer.–Nate

          Excellent example by you of what a phony you are being in your comments and replies. No where in my replies to you did I say anything about having my “feelings hurt.” What I did write can be found by reading what I’ve written.

          I hope you aren’t ever in a position to teach math. Wow!

          Why? Are you under the assumption or impression that some ten thousands is not 1.6 million less than 1.7 million? Also, I don’t give a shit about what you call “name calling.” Just the two last things alone that I’ve quoted from you and am commenting to you about in this comment show you to be an mealy-mouthed jack ass. Calling you that doesn’t lessen the impact of how full crap you are.

          You think your 1.7 mill shit is important. Important compared to what? What Glenn is writing about is important. Here’s another article just out by Birgitta Jonsdottir It’s about The Criminalization of Journalism. Your anal obsessions about information long dealt with is a waste of time.

    • If that 1.7 million documents claim is incorrect as you indicate, why don’t you provide the actual number of documents/files that are in Snowden’s possession and that you received?

      The government claims it is ok to keep secrets. Why should Glenn give the NSA that satisfaction of knowing how many documents he has? It is extremely funny to watch the NSA and tyrannical government squirm because they don’t know despite the fact they call themselves “national intelligence”.

    • Nate: “If that 1.7 million documents claim is incorrect as you indicate, why don’t you provide the actual number of documents/files that are in Snowden’s possession and that you received?”

      Why should Glenn give the government that satisfaction of knowing how many documents he possesses? It is a lot more fun to watch the government squirm… They are squirming because the thousands of news articles that claim above a million just goes to show that it IS a huge deal to them. Besides, I love watching the NSA and Federal spokespeople put both feet in their mouth… and they call themselves “National Intelligence”… real winners we have here. Looks like this is one secret they won’t have the answer to any time soon.

      • Max POVV3R: “Why should Glenn give the government that satisfaction of knowing how many documents he possesses?”

        What incentive does he have not to clear the record!? I mean, the documents have already taken so why not disclose the amount. To keep it a secret – and I’m not yet convinced that is the case – would be hypocritical given that part of Snowden’s purpose was to shed light on the contents of the documents.

        Max POVV3R: “They are squirming because the thousands of news articles that claim above a million just goes to show that it IS a huge deal to them.”

        And they should be squirming, but if you dig into the details, there is a distinction between “having access to” and “taking” 1.7 million records. If you got my password to my computer, you’d have access to thousands of files but I’d want to know what was copied and taken.

        • If you got my password to my computer, you’d have access to thousands of files but I’d want to know what was copied and taken.

          And if those documents contained evidence of crimes, of rampant violations of the tenets of the Constitution, then wouldn’t be in the interest of the person who has them to keep you guessing?

          The obsession with the number of documents is a sideshow meant to deflect, which is why the number, in all its malleable glory, continues to climb (presumably like the eyebrows of the ‘common folk’ who it is meant to impress).

          Our attention should remain steadfastly on the documents that have been released along with the stories written about them. If one were really interested in evaluating the legitimacy of what Snowden took, then I would think he would be more obsessed with reading and understanding released documents, as opposed to spending time fussing about the number yet held in abeyance, per Snowden’s request to the journalists who received them.

          Well, the four US citizens that have thus far lost their lives to drones, and the one that is still being bruited about for inclusion on the Kill List, might disagree with that take.

          • “The obsession with the number of documents is a sideshow meant to deflect, which is why the number, in all its malleable glory, continues to climb (presumably like the eyebrows of the ‘common folk’ who it is meant to impress).”

            It is almost like you know a single thing about me! /s/ You don’t, so spare me the first steps towards a strawman. I have read all the leaked documents and the stories that accompany them, I’ve read two federal court rulings, including the one from Judge Leon that concluded the metadata program was “likely unconstitutional.” I have read portions of the report of Obama’s hand picked panel, I have read the entire PCLOB report. I read the DOJ justification for the Section 215 program, FISA reviews, the congressional reports, redacted Inspector General reports, just finished the “Snowden Files” by Luke Harding of the Guardian and am now reading the Puzzle Palace by James Bamford. I am here because the whole thing interests me so you can shove your ad hominem attack on my intentions where the sun don’t shine. You know nothing about my interests, which include among hundreds of other things, assessing Snowden’s claim that he scrutinized every document he took.

            The real deflection is yours, since you’ve dismissed my question outright. My opinion is already formed based on the released documents and I support their disclosure, but that is not relevant to my question.

    • Where is your evidence that “We already know that there were between 50k-60k GCHQ documents/files”? Real evidence, not claims, by UK government toadies. The statements and testimony by Caroline Goode (MPS), Oliver Robbins (Deputy National Security Adviser), and others is fraught with falsehoods, wild accusations, innuendo, … and is completely unsupportive of any number other than 75. And the 75 documents number is very likely those personal documents of David Miranda.

      Laura Poitras and Glenn already had the Snowden documents in their home locations (Berlin and Rio). Additionally, the encrypted 40GB on the external HDD taken from David Miranda, most likely contains work-in-progress on Laura’s upcoming documentary, Not any GCHQ files. Finally, since Laura is well versed in protective encryption and can turn to Jacob Appelbaum if she ever needs advice, we can assume that the encrypted 40GB file is strongly encrypted and likely has a password/passphrase that is uncommonly long like 15 characters or so. Each of the 15 character length positions allows over 70 characters (upper case, lower case and symbols). Breaking a code of 70 to the 15th power, even with a quantum computer guessing 1 trillion times/sec, would require over 100,000 years. I use a 16 character long string to protect my TrueCrypt financial files. Goode states that the 40GB encrypted file was a TrueCrypt file. It is entirely likely that Laura did cascading encryption of the TrueCrypt encrypted file which, unless the GCHQ/NSA has corrupted TrueCrypt source/binary, makes it even harder for those agencies to decrypt any of her or Glenn’s encrypted files. If the GCHQ/NSA had “backdoored” TrueCrypt, the weasel worded statements by Goode and Robbins would not have been as “weasly”.

      Google the UK blogger, Naomi Colvin, who, in August 2013, did some very enlightening analysis of the statements by Goode and Robbins.

      • Sure, I’ll do your evidence finding for you.

        http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2013/12/03/248581912/guardian-editor-weve-published-1-percent-of-snowden-files

        > In testimony before Britain’s Parliament, Alan Rusbridger told lawmakers that about 58,000 files obtained from Snowden, or “about 1 percent,” had been used by the paper for its stories.

        Rusbridger is the Editor in Chief of the Guardian.

        Furthermore, Luke Harding mentioned this figure several times in his book “The Snowden Files.” He did not question the accuracy of the amount.

        • Also, according to Luke Harding:

          > The heavily encrypted Snowden files Miranda was carrying formed the basis for Greenwald and Poitras’ numerous articles for the Guardian and for other international publications, including France’s Le Monde, Germany’s Der Spiegel, the Washington Post and the New York Times. One of the files was an index, compiled by a piece of specialized software, to Greenwald’s 58,000 GCHQ documents. There was also further encrypted material. A passphrase to the index was scribbled down and carried in Miranda’s wallet.

          > ‘How many British documents are no these?’ [Ewen] MacAskill asked. Snowden said, ‘about 50,000 to 60,000.’

          • Quoting and believing what Luke Harding put in his book is enlightening and now gives me additional reasons to stop responding to your repeated postings on the number of documents taken by Snowden. The 58,000 document number is widely reported and first surfaced in UK witness statements in late August 2013. The 58,000 number was first reported as the count of GCHQ documents not the total documents taken. If you thoroughly research the 58,000 number, you will become convinced as I and others that it has no basis in fact – no supporting evidence. Enjoy your research.

            BTW, Luke had NO contact whatsoever with Snowden yet wrote a book. Money is always a strong incentive for people to write a book when all their knowledge is second hand and here-say.

        • If 58,000 is “about 1 percent”, then Snowden took 100 * 58,000 or 5.8 million documents. Your other postings claiming a 58,000 number are undoubtedly wrong and highly questionable – unless you misread or misinterpreted your own referenced quote. Your reference has a date of 12/3/2013, six months after Snowden’s revelations and Glenn’s first article on same in The Guardian.

          I would not be surprised if Alan Rusbridger repeated back the 58,000 number that had been spread far and wide in the 3 months since the 58,000 number first surfaced in late August 2013. Remember, the UK ministers had previously threatened to close down The Guardian. That threat angered me and I am not connected with The Guardian other than as a reader of their published articles. I would definitely have told Parliament “Yes, 58,000 is the right number” even if it was not my belief. They threaten and lie to me. Why should I not repay them in kind?

          • Dude, you’re a fucking idiot. I give you evidence from the place that received the documents and you dismiss it!

  74. Root causes are important. And until we root out the Deep State, nothing will change. The Project is trans-party and multi generational.

    This is the best piece I have ever seen on the Deep State, what it is, and how it works.

    There is the visible government situated around the Mall in Washington, and then there is another, more shadowy, more indefinable government that is not explained in Civics 101 or observable to tourists at the White House or the Capitol. The former is traditional Washington partisan politics: the tip of the iceberg that a public watching C-SPAN sees daily and which is theoretically controllable via elections. The subsurface part of the iceberg I shall call the Deep State, which operates according to its own compass heading regardless of who is formally in power.

    http://bit.ly/1k3DcZ4

    • Thanks for the link to the article on the Deep State. Definitely worth a slow and careful read.

    • I second James Goetsch’s remarks. The article is a must read for every American. The author describes and explains an extremely complicated and powerful collection of diverse entities using real examples that lend weight to his rationale and conclusions. Be aware that this is a long article not a “sound bite”.

    • Great link. I watched the Moyers and Co. episode on this which also should be available at Bill Moyers’ site. Both the essay and video basically go over the same material. This is absolutely worth the time to watch and/or read.
      Also check out appearances by Heidi Beghosian (sp.) and Dr. Henry Giroux. And don’t forget the fellows who wrote “Dollarocracy. ”
      There is some good stuff out there if you look.

  75. Perhaps I’ve missed it in the article or, if I haven’t, perhaps I’ve missed someone else make this point amidst all the effusive praise, but I don’t see any declaration that First Look or the Intercept will -not- be sending Snowden leak-based articles to government officials prior to publication.

    I do see the claim by Greenwald that at the Guardian, “it was the editors, not me,” who sought government approval – and I have no reason to doubt this claim – but what I don’t see is what one would think would be the obvious follow-up to that: “Now that I’m the editor, we won’t be seeking government approval for our articles.”

    • I do see the claim by Greenwald that at the Guardian, “it was the editors, not me,” who sought government approval – and I have no reason to doubt this claim – but what I don’t see is what one would think would be the obvious follow-up to that: “Now that I’m the editor, we won’t be seeking government approval for our articles.”MarkK

      Glenn didn’t use the word “approval” in his description of the process. He explained giving “notice.”
      He also went on to explain that “News organizations do this for two reasons.” Then he listed the two reasons. One being legal: “the U.S. Government insists that the publication of classified information, especially that which relates to “communications intelligence” is a felony.” The other is: “journalistic: it makes sense that journalists making choices about what to publish and what to say about documents would want more, rather than less, information when deciding.”

      So I would gather from that that Glenn, as editor, will continue to give notice.

      • Approval was the wrong word choice, you’re right. “Notice” would’ve been correct.

        So your guess is that Glenn will continue to give notice, something with he described just one paragraph earlier as something he’s “long expressed contempt for”?

        (Full quote at end of post)

        So what’s the point of mentioning it, let alone of attempting to differentiate himself from those government-compliant editors that he labored under before, if he’s going to do the same thing?

        “I’ve long expressed contempt for this process where it results in the suppression of information that should be public; where it essentially elevates U.S. officials into publication partners by engaging in protracted “negotiations” with them over what can and cannot be published; and especially where it means news organizations knowingly allow government officials to lie by withholding the actual facts.”

        • , something with he described just one paragraph earlier as something he’s “long expressed contempt for”?

          You have to open the links and you have to read what is inside the links. Glenn did not “express contempt for” notifying. He explains specifically, and with examples, in detail what he is contemptuous of. And he explains, as I quoted, the reasons for notification. Also, if you read his next post above this one you’ll see that he/they notified GCHQ. And the result was, as expected, a rote reply which he quoted in full. What that does is cover the legal aspect and also allows GCHQ or NSA to either add useful information or to make asses of themselves. They almost always, always, always choose the latter.

          Seriously, if you’re going to read these posts comprehensively you have to read at least some of the links and you have to pay attention to detail. There is, for example, a huge difference between ‘approval’ and ‘notice’. I wouldn’t be reminding you of that in this comment to you, but your reply shows that you were still missing the key points of what he wrote.

  76. Why Mr. Clapper thinks that Mr. Snowdon do not enjoy his company? Low self-esteem?

    I shocked my mum once by telling her that kids choose their parents before they were born. I asked her for what reason she has chosen her parents. I still wait for an answer.

    As it was quite a silly idea and question she might have forgotten it.

    (The silly answer to that theory: Forgiveness)

  77. Thank you Glenn for continuing exposure of governmental machinations which contravene the US Constitution. The image of the President subservient to the surveillance state suggests they have power over him. It would not surprise. As it is the president is a sad example of political power.

  78. Here we go again!

    For this WWII veteran, I am STRONGLY reminded of the period of the late 1930′s when a fellow by the name of Schicklgruber was running Germany. He loved to talk, but he HATED to listen rather akin to Obama, eh!) and the result was somewhat predictable. By the time he had finally been brought to account (by his own hand, it is said), somewhere between fifty and seventy-five MILLION people were dead, the country he ruled had been eviscerated, and the much of the Western World was in shambles.

    The reason(s)? 1. Arrogance; 2. Lies; 3. Failure to abide by the law or common sense; and, 4. Malice toward all.

    While the current environment is quite different, the four items above are repeated over and over again……by Russian dictators, by Chinese and Korean autocrats, by spineless European diletantes……..
    AND…….by American despots!!!!……some of them Democrats who preach the right gospel but, like their Re-pugnican counterparts, FAIL MISERABLY in the “performance” department.

    The AmerIcan People have certain “inalienable” (an adjective largely misunderstood once the election is won) rights. Foremost of these (according to our founding forefathers) is FREEDOM OF SPEECH!!! If I want to call the president a “bastard” (and I often do), that is my RIGHT!…..and he often IS!

    But “freedom of speech” cannot be abridged at the “convenience of the government”!! So much for the theoretical. When the “Clappers” and the “Obamas) of the age (not unlike the Hitlers and Mussolinis of a preceding time) attempt to intervene (largely in the effort to COVER THEIR OWN TRANSGRESSIONS), they CROSS THE LINE and become their own……and Our…..WORST ENEMIES! That is when the American people, in their righteous indignation, must CAST THEM OUT…..DECLARE THEM PERSONAE NON GRATAE……and find true LEADERS who will govern within the parameters so eloquently described in our founding documents.

    and while we’re at it……..LET’S GET GLENN GREENWALD BACK IN AMERICA WHERE HE BELONGS……and if Obama doesn’t like it, the (as we used to say back in WWI)…..let’s SHOVE IT UP HIS ASS !!!!!!!!!

  79. Oh, to be able to enjoy the delicious irony and schadenfreude of Edward Snowden’s receipt of the Nobel Peace Prize! It just might actually give some meaning back to the prize.

    • If a Noble Peace Prize Winner throws another Nobel Peace Prize Winner in jail, does it make a sound?

  80. James Clapper is the living symbol of the futility of expecting surveillance reform to emanate from within the executive branch because no matter what rules and guidelines Obama institutes, the penalty for violations will always be NOTHING. Reform will come from Congress or not at all

  81. Thanks, Glenn, for your dogged pursuit of justice in the face of hostile corrupters of law.

  82. One final thought… At the very end of the article:

    And maybe the worst part for Clapper is, he still doesn’t get why Snowden did it.

    Of this, I have no doubt. If he did understand, he wouldn’t need to be saying that the NSA probably should have been more open sooner. And, his admitted inability to understand is the most honest (and the most damning) sentiment the man has acknowledged since this whole episode began.

  83. The reported increased surveillance on German ministers, which is at odds with Obama’s public pronouncements, to cease spying on allies, is after all, in character for the US president. How many times has he announced the pullout of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, only for us to discover that they are still there, albeit characterized as drone bases, secret prisons or some other “special operation”.

    …And then there is Bush saying “America doesn’t torture”, Obama repeated the same claim in 2008 on “Sixty Minutes”, only for now to have America’s Clapper and Co. boasting of what violence they would do to Snowden, should they get the chance.

  84. “In the end,” Clapper says, “we will never ever be able to guarantee that there will not be an Edward Snowden or another Chelsea Manning because this is a large enterprise composed of human beings with all their idiosyncrasies.”

    Bullshit. There is a very easy way to guarantee no more Ed Snowdens: stop trashing the U.S. Constitution you swore to uphold and defend, and stop lying every time you open your goddamn mouth…

  85. Journalistic enterprises in the U.S. (and most western democracies) can be divided into two categories. First, there is the establishment media consisting of the large corporate interests (or those that aspire to that status) that are largely aligned with the government simply for their own self-interest. Then there are the independent news media (most often bloggers) that do not have that loyalty to power and are often disparaged as fringe.

    The problem is that the establishment news sources, which partner with the government, reach many times more people than the independent sources. Because of that disparity, the government has little fear of losing control over what the bulk of the public knows (or thinks it knows). Nothing highlights the power of the Snowden revelations more than the fact that the establishment media hasn’t been able to contain the impact without completely losing what little credibility they have left.

    The bad news is that the government will never (never!) relinquish it’s authority to spy on everyone and the public will eventually lose interest. There are only two types of people in the world: the rulers and the ruled. And the former wants to know what the latter are doing at all times.

  86. I think you all are mighty tough on poor Mr Clapper.
    In the photo above the article, it is clearly seen that two scars show where his horns have been removed making him a pole clapper.
    Does nobody have sympathy for the devil?

    • In the photo above the article, it is clearly seen that two scars show where his horns have been removed making him a pole clapper.

      Not sure what a pole clapper is, but I think you’re right about those scars. I believe we have Snowden to thank for that.

      Does nobody have sympathy for the devil?

      Well, no. While he may have had his horns clipped, we’ll have to keep pruning to ensure they don’t grow back. There’s also the hooves, tail and bleatings to deal with as well. ;-}

    • But who prays for Satan? Who, in eighteen centuries, has had the common humanity to pray for the one sinner that needed it most?
      Mark Twain

  87. Important News Yet (for some reason) only reported in FT on 2/16:
    “German chancellor Angela Merkel has thrown her weight behind calls for Europe to develop internet services that are walled off from the US. Ms Merkel said she would press French president François Hollande to back the push for EU-based alternatives to the current US-dominated internet infrastructure when she holds talks in Paris on Wednesday.
    “We’ll talk with France about how we can maintain a high level of data protection,” Ms Merkel said in her weekly podcast.
    Some tech experts have warned that proposals to build alternative networks in Europe and force internet companies to store data about Europeans locally fail to take account of how the internet operates, or the continued legal obligation of American companies to turn information over to the NSA no matter where it is stored. US tech companies have also warned that a move to build secure regional networks would fragment the internet, turning it into a series of isolated regional data systems.”

    English version FT is blocked to non-subscribers:
    http://www.ftchinese.com/story/001054853/en

  88. What’s telling for me is the implied ‘creepy’ threat of Clapper jackin’ Ed in a prison cell. No, this punk ass would hire someone else inside to do his work.
    Clapper works and succeeds in life playin’ a tough guy who isn’t- Just like the thugs Brennan and Cheney. All of their careers were built on deep menacing tones and animal magnetism (they believe, anyway). You know, cowardly bullies. A good sock to the piehole and they’d all cry.
    I volunteer to share the cell in my man Snowden’s place.

    • His comments reminded of of the exact same arrogance we see so often in local cops in America.

      • Ramos snapped on plastic gloves, made two fists and then held them in front of Thomas’ face as he said, “Now see these fists? They’re going to fuck you up.”

        –Murderer cop to defenseless homeless schizophrenic man

      • Seriously. The guy sounds like a meatball sheriff. That he still hasn’t been fired and that the media takes anything out of his mouth other than propaganda and falsehoods is sad. The people in the security state have become completely anti-American. Not just un-American. They straight up hate the people and their rights.

      • You mean like this: Austin’s police chief apologizes for bizarre defense of officers who arrested jaywalker
        Art Acevedo claimed he was trying to put jogger Amanda Jo Stephen’s arrest near the University of Texas ‘into context,’ when he referred to officers in other cities ‘actually committing sexual assaults on duty.’

        Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/austin-top-apologizes-defense-officers-arrested-jaywalker-article-1.1699041#ixzz2uG8e0TfT

    • The cancelled George Zimmerman boxing match against DMX could be replaced with Snowden vs. Clapper.

      Hold the fight in the NSA’s Utah data center and promote it as the Kerfuffle in Bluffdale!

  89. “Aside from providing yet another illustration of the out-of-control entitlement that drives the U.S. Surveillance State, note that the report is based on “a high-ranking NSA employee in Germany”, which means that this is yet another NSA source to come forward to disclose the agency’s once-secret acts.”

    This brings up something that I’ve been thinking about. I wonder how many Snowdens got caught trying to get information to the public and have been “disappeared,” perhaps under the NDAA, into a black site somewhere and are languishing away with no hope of ever seeing any sort of due process? It seems almost certain that Snowden wasn’t the first and only to attempt it. Maybe he was just the first to get away with it.

  90. A note on the last item, regarding our continued surveillance of German officials:
    How is this not news? Of course, most of the readers here happened across it by now I’m sure. But at this point, in desperation, I’ve even done site searches on the big three MSM (MSN, CNN, Fox) and the story is nowhere to be found. It’s been a day since the story broke and almost as long for the more legitimate but less popular American media (Reuters) and they are far too quick to blame tensions on Germany’s past.
    The US is caught red-handed stealing information from not only high ranking government officials but business leaders of Germany, directly contradicting everything the US has said on the issue. The mainstream media of the US apparently feels this is a non-issue, and the serious press implies that it’s just Germany being sensitive.

    Seems like the nearly complete subversion of the American press is almost as large of a story as the spying.

    Also, as far as I can gather, only two possible ways to be punished for lying to Congress: asking the DOJ to initiate grand jury proceedings for perjury (fat chance) or impeachment. Obviously, impeachment is the only realistic route, as the DOJ would certainly find nothing worth investigating.
    Which brings the immediate and huge question; why has no one brought forth an article of impeachment against Clapper? Plenty of House members are quick to say he was guilty of perjury (I believe an obstruction of justice charge would be hard to challenge as well), so why not charge?
    We need to start pressing our House Reps about this.

  91. ““Well Senator Paul says I should get to know [Snowden] by being in the same prison cell with him, which I don’t think is a good idea,” Clapper told The Daily Beast last week. “Probably wouldn’t be in Mr. Snowden’s best interest.””

    Pride, arrogance, middle school machismo. Notice how Clapper doesn’t even pretend to be concerned with the breaking of the law but here shows how personal he takes it. That tells a lot about the culture of entrenched Washington elites.

      • Absolutely not a fair fight. Clapper’s nothing more than a mouthy old liar, with the guy he’s dissing half a world away. No fool like an old fool.

        In two weeks Clapper will be 73. Snowden just turned thirty.

        I’ll take Snowden, and give odds.

  92. The reported increased surveillance on German ministers, which is at odds with Obama’s public pronouncements, to cease spying on allies, is after all, in character for the US president. How many times has he announced the pullout of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, only for us to discover that they are still there, albeit characterized as drone bases, secret prisons or some other “special operation”.

    …And then there is Bush saying “America doesn’t torture”, Obama repeated the same claim in 2008 on “Sixty Minutes”, only for now to have America’s Clapper and Co. boasting of what violence they would do to Snowden, should they get the chance.

  93. If there were one place I truly would want not to spend too much time, it would be the mind of James Clapper.

    Pretty much exhausted myself with Lake’s piece on twitter last night. Have nothing more to add, other than a hat tip to Wiltmellow for the insight:

    Yet Lake writes a hagiography which allows the institutional symbol — Clapper in this case — leeway in protecting institutional interests. This symbiosis isn’t a coincidence.

    The James Clappers of the institutional world need the Eli Lakes to legitimize them. About the time an average (?) citizen might begin to stress out on what Clapper is up to, along come Lake to explain Clapper and soothe any sense of peril. If the NSA didn’t have Eli Lake of The Daily Beast they’d have to invent and recruit him.

  94. Glad to see you address Mark Ames’ fellatatory piece. The bit about how we should all feel sorry about poor Clapper and his family reminded me of when Obama’s spokesman Robert Gibbs commented on the killing of al Awlaki’s 16-year-old son:

    I would suggest that you should have a far more responsible father if they are truly concerned about the well being of their children.

    FTFY version of the rest of the quote would look like this:

    “I don’t think becoming a Constitution-shredding liar is the best way to go about doing your business.”

    If a 16-year-old boy can be killed, then surely Clapper’s adult son can manage.

    Also, too, this:

    The need for U.S. officials to publicly express a desire for violence when it comes to Snowden has asserted itself over and over.

    It isn’t just Snowden they are looking to do violence to. You’re right there in the crosshairs with him. I know you know that, but please don’t discount the reach of these maniacs. I realize that you need to come home sometime, just be sure that you have carefully weighed the advice of everyone who has something worthwhile to say on the matter prior to doing so. We need you outside of their grubby, clutching hands.

  95. That is indeed true, and it’s good news: more Chelsea Mannings and Edward Snowdens are inevitable, and there is nothing the U.S. Government can do to stop them. That’s good news because it means government officials will have to operate on the assumption that what they do in the dark will become public (an excellent deterrent) and because that type of transparency is inherently healthy in a political culture where secrecy is rampant and the institutions designed to check it (Congress, the media, the federal judiciary) have all profoundly failed.

    I sure hope you’re right, Glenn. How you doin’, ol sport?
    I couldn’t be more proud of you.

  96. The Greenwald in high dudgeon as usual. As he should be be! As should we all. If only that were so.

  97. The image of Clapper, standing before his diorama of the constitutional assembly, and reflecting on why he is so misunderstood–that would make a great scene in a play (Wallace Shawn could write it and star in it–he would nail it). There could be a nice interchange, perhaps, between him and his high school teacher son as well.

  98. Pure supremacist bluster for the group think. “He wouldn’t do well.” What’s Clapper going to do, out argue him or stick a shiv into him with his prison dining room fork?

  99. The “high-ranking NSA employee in Germany” is probably a friendly leaker, as before, who wants to put Germany in its place (“Zeig denen wo der Hammer hängt”).

  100. For years, public officials have rarely been punished for their crimes. Wall street and banks see bailouts while regular families lose their homes and live under survaillence. The American public has been subjected to this for so long it seems natural. We need new people in office that will do what they are paid too, and that is to represent us and not corporations. I will believe things have a chance to change peacefully when I see a true campaign reform bill pass congress. Unfortunatly I doubt those in power will ever give up that power untill physicaly forced to. We need the slow drip of information to be kicked up a notch. Then we need to have some public trials to be immediately followed by the repealing of the laws that the elite have used to protect themselves with.
    !

  101. ‘I’m going to have a story published later today about a new document, but until then . . . ‘ best hook ever :)

  102. If Clapper can lie to Congress, and get away with it, can any criminal lie to the courts and tell them “the least truthful answer” has he set a precedent that can be used in the future?
    Rewarding the liars and punishing those who tell the truth sets a horrible example for our youth.

  103. I’d say there’s some people Clapper should be locked in a cell with, and I can assure him it wouldn’t be in HIS best interest.

  104. What kind of mixed up mumbo-jumbo is this? …“he’s a straight shooter who doesn’t put any spin on the ball.”

    Is that person mixing metaphors about rifle barrels, musket balls and baseball pitchers…or…what? Assuming that by putting “spin on the ball” as a metaphor to pitching in baseball, well, that’s not being a “shooter” that’s being a pitcher. One uses one’s arm, not a rifle, in pitching. My guess is that the person’s mouth ran off in front of their brain. I’m Just wondering.

    Eli Lake also got carried away with the melodrama of using artillery speak: “Snowden, however, was a gut shot for Clapper.” But I’m pretty sure that Eli Lake took that “gut shot” lingo right out of one of Clapper’s whiny diatribes from an earlier interview attempt that Clapper had made in an appeal to the sympathies of the “little people.”

    • musket balls and baseball?

      Basketball, I think.

      Too much spin and the ball spins out of the basket.

    • Could be bowling, you put spin on those balls as well. Mixing metaphors is fun!

      • Other than the fact that bowlers are called, well, bowlers and not shooters.

        Anyway, it probably is a mixed metaphor given that “straight shooter” seems to have its origins in marksmanship rather than athletics, at least as far I can tell.

  105. But what’s even more amazing is that Clapper considers himself some sort of victim rather than what he is: the completely undeserved beneficiary of a system of “justice” in which ordinary and powerless people are imprisoned for trivial offenses at greater numbers than any other nation in the world, while those who wield political power, like him, are free to commit crimes without even losing their powerful jobs, let alone being prosecuted for them. James Clapper should look in the mirror every morning and be extremely grateful for the corrupted political system that has shielded him from the consequences of his crimes even as he tries to criminalize others for doing things that the U.S. Constitution guarantees them the right to do.

    As I read Lake’s hagiography of Clapper, I wondered about the separate role of State agents like Clapper and the role of institutions like NSA. Specifically I wondered if the culture/structures of the institution or the individuals who preside over the institution make more of a difference.

    In some ways — especially highlighted in Lake’s piece — those who personify the institution (usually as leaders of some sort) must defend the institution itself. For instance, I presume Clapper had no role in the prosecution of Drake yet here we find Drake’s prosecution (persecution) by the institutions of government wholly improper — contrary to the best interests of the country.

    The Constitution, (despite Clapper’s apparent diorama) is inert. It cannot act.

    Instead it gives guidelines of how the institutions of government should act. The extent to which an institution dedicates itself to those guidelines falls entirely upon leadership.

    Officials torn between duty to an institution and personal culpability can quietly resign.

    Or institutional agents can repudiate the institution itself as Snowden did.

    Or these agents can protect the institution and institutional interests which is what Clapper seems to be doing. So sure, he considers himself the victim because instead of doing the proper thing, he places the interests of the institution above those of his own apparent conscience/ reverence for the Constitution.

    In only one case does the individual continue to receive pay.

    Clapper as an individual doesn’t matter. He is doing what he gets paid to do. Anyone in his institutional role would say exactly the same things.

    Truly:

    James Clapper should look in the mirror every morning and be extremely grateful for the corrupted political system that has shielded him from the consequences of his crimes even as he tries to criminalize others .

    Yet Lake writes a hagiography which allows the institutional symbol — Clapper in this case — leeway in protecting institutional interests. This symbiosis isn’t a coincidence.

    It is intentional — a product, perhaps, of groupthink.

    Said Eichmann of his role in another institution — and speaking for almost all institutional agents in the 20th and 21st centuries:

    Now that I look back, I realize that a life predicated on being obedient and taking orders is a very comfortable life indeed. Living in such a way reduces to a minimum one’s need to think.

    An epitaph for the country.

    [please, preview function]

    • Anyone in his institutional role would say exactly the same things.

      No, they wouldn’t. Not if they had any personal integrity and/or respect for the rule of law. As you said above:

      …instead of doing the proper thing, he places the interests of the institution above those of his own apparent conscience/ reverence for the Constitution.

      He works for the Constitution, and by extension the American people; not the President, not the CIA. Placing some notion of “preserving the institution” above preserving the Constitution is not proper behavior for anyone in public service. It is a perversion, a misuse and abuse of power. And it has to stop.

      • No, they wouldn’t. Not if they had any personal integrity and/or respect for the rule of law.

        That’s my point. The institution promotes (hires) according to institutional guidelines/ethos. Compare the fate of Drake with the fate of Clapper.

        One is prosecuted the other promoted.

        Institutional structures exclude — deselect — those who show too much independence (“personal integrity.”) That is the problem with NSA but also with Comcast and Microsoft, etc.

        The people who thrive are those who adopt and internalize the institutional culture. Within the institution, they move upward through compliance and thoughtlessness — the very opposite of personal integrity.

  106. Which reminds me, I hope one of your new magazines will be devoted to Dissent, reform and activism and its relation to the American political system. Defining how to achieve the democratic mechanisms that can fill the void of the lame political parties in addressing some of the things that need reforming as you alluded to in this column.

    • Popular Resistance does a pretty good job of that, thanks to Kevin Zeese, Margaret Flowers and others who are still keeping the spirit of Occupy alive and fighting the good fight.

      Check it out at PopularResistance.org

  107. Bravo on the report!
    Must emphasize this truism:”…That’s why it’s been so vital – and, for the US national security state, so devastating – that Edward Snowden has remained out of their grasp: rather than getting to parade him in front of the world in an orange jumpsuit and shackles, U.S. officials are forced to watch as he is hailed as an international hero, receives award after award, and participates freely in the debate he triggered. That, in turn, allows the template he used to be a positive one, one that will undoubtedly inspire future whistleblowers.”

    • I want to add my emphasis as well. This is perhaps the single most powerful aspect of the Snowden vs The National Security State phenomenon.

      At some very primitive level humans need to identify with “winners”. Authoritarians coerce compliance through the threat of violence. They control populations by what is essentially a normative state terrorism, which has been the norm for so long — arising from the primordial, from long before humans were even human — that people don’t even see it as control-by-threat-of-violence. To be fair, ordinary, peaceable citizens mostly view the state’s monopoly on the use of violence — police, military, and spooks — as the enforcement backstop to the “rule of law”. But when the rule of law becomes — as it has today — little more than a mask concealing and enabling the covert reemergence of tyranny, then state violence, freed from the constraints of law, becomes state terrorism directed at the population in general, and in particular at dissenters and other challengers to the power of the tyrant class.

      Assange is essentially under “house arrest”, Manning is “buried” in some state dungeon. Various whistle-blowers and journalists are under imminent threat, their constitutional protections being eroded by corrupt “lawfare”. These examples of what happens to those who challenge the state, reinforce, as intended, the notion that the state is all powerful and unstoppable, and that anything other than obedience must be unthinkable.

      But as Glen has observed, and you have so alertly chosen to emphasize, Snowden’s success in exposing the crimes of (ie “attacking”) the national security state and “getting away with it” stands as an unprecedented victory over the national security tyranny. It severely diminishes the effectiveness of state tyranny because Snowden-on-the-loose replaces the illusion of state invincibility with a new notion of state helplessness, clumsiness, cluelessness, and impotent viciousness. Or to put it terms of the primitive: Snowden is the winner, and the NSA is the loser. This shows the state to be weak. This shows the state to be vulnerable. This emboldens ***MILLIONS*** of angry proles to challenge state power. This endangers as nothing else can the security of tyrannical power. Which explains the savage fury of the Woolseys, Clappers, Boltons, etc who feed at the trough of tyranny, worship violence, and need above all else the secrecy that conceals their criminality.

      The same technological revolution that made possible the criminality of “Total Information Awareness”, simultaneously made impossible keeping those crimes a secret.

      Tyranny is not a shy and delicate flower. It does not willingly give up power. It will be interesting indeed to see how this plays out.

      Immensely good work Glen. Keep it up. I hope you live through it.

  108. There’s no need for public transparency in government. The Clappers and Frank Underwoods in the different branches of government are sure to keep each other honest.

  109. Great read, but I think that you made an error:

    “Not only does this underscore the warped pathologies among the glorious leaders of America’s National Security State” should have read “the glorious leaders of North Amerikorea’s National Security State? ;)

  110. Brilliant piece, Glenn. Though I’m glad you didn’t wade too deeply into the mind of Clapper, as describing that fetid territory is best reserved for Stephen King.

    • He’s too boring. James Clapper is a member of the Meritocracy, who get promoted because it gives their superiors a ‘comfy’ feeling…like that of a pre-pubescent child masturbating.

  111. Just keep reporting on the files Glenn. Your other observations would require a Ukraine type uprising to clean it all up, unfortunately.

    • “Your other observations would require a Ukraine type uprising to clean it all up, unfortunately.”
      Yes, but this country is too full of cowards,..unfortunately.

  112. I think you have a potential series in your hands here. Just pick the words of any major Deep State figure and confront it to reality or their own claimed moral principles. Most of them are narcissistic sociopaths, and not that well closeted ones either. The immense power they wield completely isolated from any accountability ensures that, for all the PR in the world, their words will always betray them.

  113. I don’t understand why they (Administration) allow Clapper to do interviews and speak anymore, he fails to give Ammunition to those who support the program, but rather continues to provide examples of USG hypocrisy. Which don’t get me wrong, is a good thing, but their is this thought in the back of my mind the reasoning may be somewhat more sinister. With the already damaged clapper being kept around as a possible scapegoat, if/when even more egregious constitutional violations come to light, that demand some sort of prosecution. Is he being kept around to take the ire of an entire nation, at some point to come?

    • It seems clear that the reason Clapper is not fired — despite the negative press his continued presence generates — is that it would be taken as an admission of guilt in the part of the national security state. It would also be a total and undeniable vindication of Edward Snowden.

      • Yes, I agree completely but why not keep his profile low during this period like Gen. Alexander, why have HIM speaking and doing interviews with his now (heavily) tarnished profile. They don’t have to prosecute him, but he certainly doesn’t make for an effective Pro-Security front-man. Do you think lowering his profile in itself come across as a partial admission of Guilt?

        • but why not keep his profile low during this period like Gen. Alexander, why have HIM speaking and doing interviews with his now (heavily) tarnished profile.

          We should never underestimate the ability of those who wield power to ignore – willfully or otherwise – the impending if not actual subornation of that power. The fact that there is still a significant portion of the MSM that continues to support their lies also works in their favor, though that seems to be changing. Whether or not Clapper is “tarnished” seems to be a factor of the eye of the beholder, and his/her predilection for authoritarianism.

          A careful review of the expulsion of people around the world who closely resemble Mr. Clapper in terms of their, ahem, “respect” for “the people” – Mubarak and Yanukovych for instance (though not an exact analogy) – is informative. They will not willingly give so much as an iota of their power up. It must be pried from their cold and grasping hands. Preferably without violence, though that decision rests, unfortunately, largely with them as well.

      • “It would also be a total and undeniable vindication of Edward Snowden.”
        Many government officials have been forced out, have left or are leaving prematurely from their government jobs including General Keith Alexander, head of the NSA.
        Mr. Snowden has been vindicated several times over already. It is the suppression of the facts by the conspiring mainstream media that lead the general public to ignore these vindications.

    • Clapper’s goose is cooked. Either way; if he knew and condoned all these felonious acts then he is doomed, or, if the secret government blackmailed him to comply by threat of death to commit these atrocities, he will die if he exposes his motivation.

  114. When this country became host to an institutionalized culture of rewarding liars, we lost the soul of our reason for becoming a nation. This fetid subversion emanates from Wall Street. Remember when Bush’s Secretary of the Treasury Paulsen went to Congress tearfully on bended knee? For what? To bail out and thereby rampant criminality. So, is it any wonder that this sort of mentality penetrates especially to our execrably vaunted “intelligence” bureaus?

  115. GG, quite happy that you have a forum for your “opinion” pieces (inasmuch as “so-and-so is a [cretin/liar/nincompoop/fill in the blank ] because of [laundry list of documented evidence as long as my... well...]” can be called “opinion” vs “substantive argument”) as opposed to the straight journo stuff.

    I think somebody should email a copy to Clapper. Oops, not necessary! Maybe to his son…

  116. Thanks Glenn Greenwald, you are the man! Without journalists like you I would have no hope for turning things around in this country, but luckily we still have some people out there that are willing to do their job correctly and objectively.

  117. At some point this Clapper guy needs to go to jail (and share a cell with no one). Nice job, Glenn, of painting us a picture of how a nuclear-armed bratty kid acts. Must be awkward over the holidays, with your son asking “how do I explain to my students that they have no rights, partially because of my father?” I feel so bad for the clappers.