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Obama on Surveillance: "We Can and Must Be More Transparent"

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the proof-is-in-the-pudding dept.

Government 537

Today President Obama held a press conference to address the situation surrounding the NSA's surveillance activities. (Here is the full transcript.) He announced four actions the administration is undertaking to restore the public's confidence in the intelligence community. Obama plans to work with Congress to reform the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to give greater weight to civil liberties, and to revisit section 215 of the PATRIOT Act, which is the section that allowed bulk collection of phone records. (Of course, "will work with Congress" is a vague term, and Congress isn't known for getting things done lately. Thus, it remains to be seen if anything substantive happens.) Obama is ordering the Dept. of Justice to make public their legal rationale for data collection, and there will be a new NSA official dedicated to transparency efforts. There will also be a new website for citizens to learn about transparency in intelligence agencies. Lastly, a group of outside experts will be convened to review the government's surveillance capabilities. Their job will include figuring out how to maintain the public's trust and prevent abuse, and to consider how the intelligence community's actions will affect foreign policy. In addition to these initiatives, President Obama made his position very clear about several different aspects of this controversy. While acknowledging that "we have significant capabilities," he said, "America is not interested in spying on ordinary people." He added that the people who have raised concerns about privacy and government overreach in a lawful manner are "patriots." This is in stark contrast to his view of leakers like Edward Snowden: "I don't think Mr. Snowden was a patriot." (For his part, Snowden says the recent shut down of encrypted email services is 'inspiring.') When asked about how his opinion of the surveillance programs have changed, he said his perception of them has not evolved since the story broke worldwide. "What you're not seeing is people actually abusing these programs." Obama also endorsed finding technological solutions that will protect privacy regardless of what government agencies want to do.

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Better idea, shut it down - it's illegal.... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524413)

Nuff said.

Re:Better idea, shut it down - it's illegal.... (2, Insightful)

justcauseisjustthat (1150803) | about a year ago | (#44524507)

I second that motion.

OBAMA STATEMENT VALID (0, Troll)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about a year ago | (#44524553)

For differing values of "We".

Re:Better idea, shut it down - it's illegal.... (0, Troll)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year ago | (#44524755)

I second that motion.

I second that EMOTION! seriously, passions are running hot on both sides... hopefully Obama's steps today will provide a "cooling off period" so we can step back and look at this from all angles.

Re:Better idea, shut it down - it's illegal.... (5, Insightful)

killkillkill (884238) | about a year ago | (#44524639)

Seriously. I don't want them to be transparent and tell me how they are collecting my communications. I want them to NOT COLLECT my communications without a warrant that has been issued upon just cause.

Re:Better idea, shut it down - it's illegal.... (5, Insightful)

intermodal (534361) | about a year ago | (#44524781)

Agreed. The problem is, Obama's idea of transparent is to attack Lavabit.

Re:Better idea, shut it down - it's illegal.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524775)

That so stupid. Who cares if its illegal, its immoral. If it is legal, then we should change the law to make it illegal. Its not a freaking parking ticket that you're haggling about the interpretation of.

We Can and Must Be More Transparent (5, Insightful)

l0ungeb0y (442022) | about a year ago | (#44524417)

Except that we all know he's actually talking about the PEOPLE being made more transparent, NOT the Government.

Re:We Can and Must Be More Transparent (2, Interesting)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year ago | (#44524483)

Except that we all know he's actually talking about the PEOPLE being made more transparent, NOT the Government.

Either that, or he's operating on different definition of transparency. The secret kind of transparency.

Just like "imminent" threat means "any/vague" threat according to the drone memo.

Re:We Can and Must Be More Transparent (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about a year ago | (#44524599)

That's not what he was saying, he was talking about the government. But this is a case where actions do speak louder than words.

Re:We Can and Must Be More Transparent (5, Interesting)

Frobnicator (565869) | about a year ago | (#44524653)

Less than 48 hours ago with Jay Leno he said, and repeated: "We don't have a domestic spying program."

Today he admits that some spying is taking place, but they are "not interested in spying on ordinary people", and the domestic spying program has safeguards to help keep it from being abused.

That is quite a backstep.

Re:We Can and Must Be More Transparent (5, Insightful)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year ago | (#44524735)

Less than 48 hours ago with Jay Leno he said, and repeated: "We don't have a domestic spying program."

The program is still classified, so it does not exist. Just like drones bombing several countries do not really exist.

and the domestic spying program has safeguards to help keep it from being abused.

It looks like Snowden was the only safeguard NSA had.

Re:We Can and Must Be More Transparent (4, Insightful)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | about a year ago | (#44524677)

Transparency? I care more about the fact that they seem to be violating the constitution; whether or not that's done transparently is utterly irrelevant to me.

The TSA's flagrant disregard of the constitution and people's rights is plainly visible to everyone, and yet I still feel that their actions are wrong. Transparency is simply not the main problem.

By "we" I mean you. (2)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524419)

"The ruling class will pretend to be transparent though. Ummm, hey, look, here's some Khardshian TV show crap, forget I said anything."

Experts (5, Insightful)

Bolloney (2734387) | about a year ago | (#44524421)

"Lastly, a group of outside experts will be convened to review the government's surveillance capabilities. Their job will include figuring out how to maintain the public's trust... " So they're hiring a PR firm?

Re:Experts (5, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year ago | (#44524459)

So they're hiring a PR firm?

Likely, yes.

I don't believe a single thing about this is going to change, they're just trying to manage the message and sell it to us.

But given how many public statements about this have been contradicted within a week or two by other facts, I fully expect this to be more of the same -- "Honestly, we're not doing it. OK, maybe we're doing it, but we're doing it under strict control. OK, maybe we're doing other things that we don't want to admit to. Hey look, a pony".

Re:Experts (5, Funny)

PPH (736903) | about a year ago | (#44524585)

I nominate Edward Snowden to head the group. He's about as far 'outside' as one can get right now.

Secret Courts (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524423)

When the secret courts are open to public review and observation there might be more transparency and trust. Till then it's just smoke and mirror talk.

Re: Secret Courts (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524727)

So true. Speech can never close a credibility gap. What can a proven liar possibly say to convince you he's being honest?

In that situation it's best to remain silent. Anything they say is further evidence of their deceitful nature.

Yea... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524427)

BULL SHIT.

I don't believe it (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524431)

at all.

Re:I don't believe it (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44524757)

Well, you only form the [NSFW] 73% majority [theonion.com] .
As long as the richer 27% still have faith, you're beat.

Hope and Change (4, Insightful)

Lawrence_Bird (67278) | about a year ago | (#44524433)

was replaced by Fear and Lies on January 20, 2009. Anyone who thinks anything Obama says (or does) will result in your privacy being respected and warrantless surveillance ended is delusional.

Re:Hope and Change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524543)

Everyone who voted for Romney were warned things would get worse, now look what you caused !

Re:Hope and Change (2)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year ago | (#44524567)

Anyone who thinks anything Obama says (or does) will result in your privacy being respected and warrantless surveillance ended is delusional.

Ah, if only there were some other branches of the government that were tasked with supervising and controlling the executive branch. Too bad we don't have any.

Anyone who believes Obama is in charge is an idiot (-1, Troll)

PhuckIndian (2943641) | about a year ago | (#44524575)

The hidden Zionist master have the final say, including the decision to enslave and torture all goyims.

Re:Anyone who believes Obama is in charge is an id (3, Informative)

i kan reed (749298) | about a year ago | (#44524641)

At first, I thought this comment might be a joke mocking the conspiratorially minded, but nope, check the comment history and this guy is basically just crazy and racist.

Freedom of Speech protects Libertarian speech (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524811)

All I see from the comment history of that guy is lines after lines of TRUTH. May be you are the one that is the PC police and intolerant.

Re:Hope and Change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524591)

Please please please could someone tell me just what you believe is being done with this information?
Sure, I can accept the premise that the governemnt is lying about what they can do, what they are doing, and why.
But I'm trying and failing to think of something bad being done with it that would still be secret.

What do my fellow Slashdotters think is happening with the data gathered by these surveillance programs?
Who do you think is being harmed, and how?

Re: Hope and Change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524773)

Would it harm you if I videotaped you having sex with your wife? Breach of privacy is a harm in and of itself. It's the whole point of the 4th amendment.

Re:Hope and Change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524637)

was replaced by Fear and Lies on January 20, 2009. Anyone who thinks anything Obama says (or does) will result in your privacy being respected and warrantless surveillance ended is delusional.

GW Bush signed the patriot act.....not obama.....the patriot act created these programs.....

Re:Hope and Change (2, Insightful)

Nadaka (224565) | about a year ago | (#44524689)

And Obama promised to repeal it. And then he turned out to be a closet conservative republican with a tan.

Re:Hope and Change (2)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#44524779)

So, after the first act of molestation, anything goes? How about an even-handed review of both of these knuckleheads?

Abandon all Hope, all ye who voted here. (4, Insightful)

Valdrax (32670) | about a year ago | (#44524803)

GW Bush signed the patriot act.....not obama.....the patriot act created these programs.....

Who cares? After 4 1/2 years, you can firmly say that Obama has taken ownership of that problem, especially after the "compromise" reauthorization in 2011. Obama ran on a campaign that in part was supposed to be about putting an end to war on terror abuses. Instead, the only "wrongdoers" Obama has pursued with any vigor in connection with war on terror crimes and state surveillance are government whistleblowers.

I voted twice for Obama. And now, I just feel like I've been voting against "the wrong lizard" [williams.edu] the whole time (because I don't believe for a second that Romney or McCain would have been better on 4th Amendment rights). I'm getting incredibly disillusioned with American democracy, and it's the fault of the people for spending far more time getting worked up on partisan circus issues than real, substantial matters of policy. I'd say we need a revolution, but I'm even more terrified of the most eager revolutionaries than I am of the lizards in charge.

I just don't know what to do anymore.

Re:Hope and Change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524687)

Setting up a one world government is not going to be easy especially when trying to tie the hands of your adversaries with 'lawyerspeak' and forgetting along the way that the will of the people is the heart of the matter.

Results (5, Insightful)

Major Ralph (2711189) | about a year ago | (#44524437)

My confidence in this actually accomplishing anything is zero.

Obviously a Marketing Problem! (2)

Aguazul2 (2591049) | about a year ago | (#44524807)

We plan to change nothing about what we're doing, but how can we change people's perception of it so that they give us no hassle? Obviously a marketing problem! Invoke the science of persuasive and reassuring words! Obama has really messed up siding with the NSA. Goodbye any good feeling he might have generated abroad for America. It's all gone a bit sour, sorry.

Re:Results (1)

intermodal (534361) | about a year ago | (#44524809)

It accomplishes quite a bit, I believe. But none of their stated goals, and none consistent with the United States Constitution. They've gone way beyond plausible deniability at this point.

Awesome (4, Insightful)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year ago | (#44524439)

Their job will include figuring out how to maintain the public's trust and prevent abuse

Isn't it a little late for that?
Short of stopping indiscriminate surveillance, but that does not seem to be in the cards.

MoJo on Obama (0)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#44524487)

Fuck off. Take you spying and your drones and fuck off.

Re:Awesome (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about a year ago | (#44524741)

Their job will include figuring out how to maintain the public's trust and prevent abuse

Isn't it a little late for that?

Realpolitik time: The U.S. government isn't going away, regardless of its moral authority. Our lack-of-trust and non-participation in the broken democracy we have here would only lessen our ability to effect change. Unless you, personally, are ready for open revolution, you've got to work within the framework that already exists. Obama has more or less only gone as far as he promised on rolling back government abuses as he suggested he would in 2008. Go look at the debates against McCain, where he suggested drone strikes in lieu of wars(citing existing such actions in Pakistan), his carefully limited assertions about warrant-less wiretaps. If people didn't know what they were getting, they have no one to blame but themselves.

It's never too late (1)

martas (1439879) | about a year ago | (#44524763)

For marketing and PR, that is. Public opinion can be turned around on anything, given sufficient effort. Notice how Bradley Manning slowly went from "hero" to "creepy loser" in public forums over the years?

Sell crazy some place else... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524443)

We're all stocked up here.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxOwHutnXNA

Too late (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524445)

Trust is shattered. This is just a PR "we will fix this" stunt.

Dont kid yourselves Obamabots (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524449)

Obama is part of the abuse.

Fox in the henhouse (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524451)

So, he's going to let outside interests. Lobbyists. People with a stake in the game. Money to be made. Oversee the program, and make sure it doesn't get abused. Hah.

Transparency is good (3, Insightful)

arcite (661011) | about a year ago | (#44524455)

The Government watches the people, the people watch the government. Everyone's happy. A world with fewer secrets is a safer world.

Re:Transparency is good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524713)

Smoke and mirrors, plain and simple. Try to appease the people, so they put down the pitchforks. Because the people mad now can stir up enough trouble.

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524457)

We promise only to point the giant computer at the bad guys people, come on, work with me here.

captcha:fixing

Landlines (2)

MarkvW (1037596) | about a year ago | (#44524467)

If they're listening to US landlines without a warrant, then they are willfully violating the Constitution.

I worry that Bush and Obama have knowingly permitted this.

The O in Obama stands for Zero Credibility (5, Insightful)

Blue Stone (582566) | about a year ago | (#44524469)

"What you're not seeing is people actually abusing these programs." - Obama.

You're not seeing the abuse, therefore it's not happening. Good one. Alternatively, the system IS the abuse, and we're all very well aware of it now, thanks to that courageous Mr. Snowden.

By the way, it's not OK to spy on Americans, but it is fine to invade the privacy of everyone else on the planet? Hmm. As a non-American, I can't say I agree.

Re:The O in Obama stands for Zero Credibility (4, Insightful)

roc97007 (608802) | about a year ago | (#44524593)

As an American, I'm not sure I agree either.

Re:The O in Obama stands for Zero Credibility (1)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year ago | (#44524645)

By the way, it's not OK to spy on Americans, but it is fine to invade the privacy of everyone else on the planet? Hmm. As a non-American, I can't say I agree.

Not to worry, since one's affiliation online is not obvious, they are apparently allowed to assume that their target is non-American by default. Americans don't really have more privacy than you do.

Re:The O in Obama stands for Zero Credibility (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524705)

"What you're not seeing is people actually abusing these programs." - Obama.

You're not seeing the abuse, therefore it's not happening. Good one. Alternatively, the system IS the abuse, and we're all very well aware of it now, thanks to that courageous Mr. Snowden.

By the way, it's not OK to spy on Americans, but it is fine to invade the privacy of everyone else on the planet? Hmm. As a non-American, I can't say I agree.

Snowden was a tool....coward ...and traitor.

He abandoned his country...family....and job.

THERE HAS NEVER been an expectation of privacy on the Internet.... it wasn't designed that way.

Non-american's always know better than American's about America..... :) NOT!!!!

And yes....we can spy on you.
And...PLEASE....PLEASE....don't try to tell me your government doesn't have a similar secret program.,

Re:The O in Obama stands for Zero Credibility (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | about a year ago | (#44524789)

THERE HAS NEVER been an expectation of privacy on the Internet.... it wasn't designed that way.

I'm sure it is simple for the government to spy on people's communications, but since when does something being simple make it okay? It would be fairly simple for the government to break into your house and install surveillance equipment everywhere, but I'm sure you wouldn't like that.

Non-american's always know better than American's about America....

As an American, I think we need to throw out all these worthless warmongers.

Re:The O in Obama stands for Zero Credibility (1)

TrekkieGod (627867) | about a year ago | (#44524767)

By the way, it's not OK to spy on Americans, but it is fine to invade the privacy of everyone else on the planet? Hmm. As a non-American, I can't say I agree.

Well, the US Constitution is what makes it not OK for the US government to spy on Americans. There's no law we're beholden to that makes it wrong to spy on anyone else. There could be ratified international treaties, and we should respect those, but governments can back out of a treaty anytime they choose. It's the job of other countries counter-intelligence agencies to try to prevent it.

This isn't nationalism, btw. I feel the same way about other countries spying on Americans. I expect them to try, and I see nothing wrong with it, if they've determined they have reason to. When I see stories about the Chinese stealing classified info from US military computers I don't think, "damn you, China!" I get angry with our own agencies and think, "we really should know better than leaving classified information in computers connected to unsecured networks! We need to do a better job of protecting our secrets."

And we must Stop Using US Services (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524479)

because you obviously don't have any intention to stop spying.

Re:And we must Stop Using US Services (2)

geoffrobinson (109879) | about a year ago | (#44524535)

And what country do you suggest we use?

Re: And we must Stop Using US Services (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524649)

We need to use three different countries. Generate two one time pads, xor your data with both. Store each piece in different countries with different ideologies.

Data capacity these days is enough to pull this off.

There are lots of details to work out, but it can be done if someone is enterprising enough.

Re: And we must Stop Using US Services (1)

iggymanz (596061) | about a year ago | (#44524717)

what's the point? you can be compelled to provide decryption, and quite severely punished if you do not

All PR, no actual change? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524481)

Sounds like he wants to spend a lot of resources on explaining to people why mass surveillance is needed rather than stopping it.

Too late (4, Interesting)

Red Jesus (962106) | about a year ago | (#44524491)

I want my email [slashdot.org] back. Show me a plan that restores my Lavabit access and I'll take this effort seriously. This isn't a game.

Transparency (5, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | about a year ago | (#44524493)

Transparency is not the issue. Constitutionality is.

"you're not seeing is people actually abusing..." (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524499)

Maybe he's right, but because of the way they have handled this I just going to keep wearing by Skeptics Hat.

Re: "you're not seeing is people actually abusing. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524681)

He's lying. What about the DEA and IRS.

A lost case (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524501)

I seldom call someone stupid. But if someone that voted on Obama, still thinks any good of him, then I would call that person stupid. It's very clear that the man is lost.

Fox in the henhouse (5, Insightful)

TrumpetPower! (190615) | about a year ago | (#44524503)

I'd have a lot more trust in Obama if he weren't the one responsible for ramping it up to the level it is today. (If not, remind me again where the buck stops?)

Also, of course they're not interested in "ordinary" people. The instant they're interested in you, you're no longer ordinary.

Imagine Snowden was some political candidate's nephew. And imagine that, instead of leaking details of the entire operation to the press, he leaked details of the other candidate's campaign strategies (or sexual exploits) back to his uncle. You know, like the Watergate breakins?

If a junior flunky can do that sort of thing and get away with it, what makes you think it's not standard operating procedure?

The NSA has the power to utterly control the entire political process with an iron grip -- and that's before we start to worry about political dissidents being extraordinarily renditioned.

If Obama truly wanted to "address the situation," he'd completely dismantle the NSA. But, somehow, even if he truly wanted to, I rather doubt the NSA would let him....

Cheers,

&

Re:Fox in the henhouse (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524707)

What do you think happened to David Petraeus? He was probably doing things as the CIA leader they didn't like.

They have already used, and as of at least yesterday, still use the IRS to target political opponents despite claiming they stopped it.

Re:Fox in the henhouse (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524771)

To be honest, I'm surprised they haven't linked snowden to some sleeze item to turn the masses against him. It works every single time.

Kind of impossible (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524505)

Why would I trust these people to restore trust?
Too late.

Thought... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524513)

Wouldn't it be easier and far cheaper... TO STOP SPYING ON THE TAXPAYERS!

I know... totally insane... but there it is.

More Americans renounce their citizenship (2)

PhuckIndian (2943641) | about a year ago | (#44524515)

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/americans-giving-passports-jump-sixfold-105958873.html [yahoo.com] Americans renouncing U.S. citizenship surged sixfold in the second quarter from a year earlier as the government prepares to introduce tougher asset-disclosure rules. Time for Lulzsec and other convicted freedom fighters who get slapped with million dollar fines to defect to China, the bastion of human rights.

Our Intelligence has just been Insulted (1)

ClassicASP (1791116) | about a year ago | (#44524519)

I think I just felt everybody in America groan, roll their eyes, and flip him the bird.

Re:Our Intelligence has just been Insulted (1)

lasermike026 (528051) | about a year ago | (#44524563)

I second that.

What Obama didn't say... (5, Insightful)

firewrought (36952) | about a year ago | (#44524525)

  • Full investigation and prosecution of NSA officials.
  • Repeal of retroactive warrants, retroactive teleco immunity, secret NSL orders, and other extra-judicial bullshit.
  • Immediate legislation to broaden the definition of domestic surveillance and establish strict penalties for companies who cooperate with it.
  • Amnesty/whistleblower protection for Snowden. Oh, and his passport back.

Re:What Obama didn't say... (1)

stewsters (1406737) | about a year ago | (#44524747)

I would vote for whoever made that happen.

Doubt it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524537)

In 2008 part of Obongos platform was making the government more transparent. It's only gone in the opposite direction. Can't believe anything from the mouth of a politician.

Believe it when I see it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524539)

Tired of politicians and their bullshit. Walk the walk, don't talk the talk.

Has Guantanamo closed yet?

"What you're not seeing is people actually abusing (5, Insightful)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#44524541)

> "What you're not seeing is people actually abusing these programs."

That's like saying, it is OK for the government to keep a loaded gun pointed at the head of every citizen because they haven't shot anyone.

Re:"What you're not seeing is people actually abus (1)

space_jake (687452) | about a year ago | (#44524647)

I think he means, "What you're not seeing is *the* people actually abusing these programs."

Then Why Is It? (4, Insightful)

Bob9113 (14996) | about a year ago | (#44524545)

"America is not interested in spying on ordinary people."

Then why is it? Why is it storing the metadata on every call and every HTTP request everyone makes? Is everyone not ordinary, or is America doing things in which it is not interested? I'm guessing it is option 3: You have redefined spying as "not spying" in your twisted little lawyer brain, to which I say, "Screw you, you forked-tongue traitor."

chicken & egg (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524557)

"What you're not seeing is people actually abusing these programs."

yeah, cause it's really easy to catch abuse without transparency or oversight...

Ignoring the U.S. Constitution = not abuse? (4, Insightful)

TheDarkener (198348) | about a year ago | (#44524561)

When asked about how his opinion of the surveillance programs have changed, he said his perception of them have not evolved since the story broke worldwide. "What you're not seeing is people actually abusing these programs."

So I guess bypassing the Fourth Amendment doesn't count as abuse.From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Search_and_seizure#United_States [wikipedia.org] :

"A search occurs when an expectation of privacy that society is prepared to consider reasonable is infringed."

Anybody saw this? (1)

oldhack (1037484) | about a year ago | (#44524565)

Were his pants on fire?

Subterfuge And Subversion (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524569)

Mr. Obama career and life are not about honesty and transparency.

Rather, Mr. deals in acts of subterfuge and subversion toward all.

The first week of August continues his loosing record on many topics.

Like a rabid dog, Mr. Obama is seeking victims to appease his anger and vent his frustrations over his failures. His Terror State is teetering at its very foundations. His 'Terror Event' is non event; even his beloved CIA could not pull off their Plan B in Mogadishu to save his credibility.

The true nature of the NSA and Mr. Obama are on the table for all to see.

Tweaking Mr. Obama's Terror Laws, the AFUOMF and the 'Patriot Act' and his coup de grace FISC and Dept. of 'Justice' are a scam. The necessary and urgent moves by the American people are the destruction of Mr. Obama's Terror State by removing the 'Laws' which Mr. Obama desperately needs to satisfy his Regime and his own sexual cravings.

Not gonna go there... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524571)

"There will also be a new website for citizens to learn about transparency in intelligence agencies." ...where your IP address can be stored to a list of trouble makers, and we can inject a trojan on to your computer to monitor you.

Why believe an admitted Liar? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524589)

Why are we supposed to believe anything any of them say? The head of the NSA has already admitted to lying under oath, Obama has been caught in lie after lie. So we already know their Oaths mean nothing to them. They have no Honor, no sense of what's right, and could care less what the Constitution says.

Patriotism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524597)

How is doing something for the greater good of the population not patriotic? Indeed, Obama's actions have established that Snowden's actions were patriotic, because he is doing the same thing - creating greater transparency for the good of the public.

How to tell when the President is lying.. (1)

whizbang77045 (1342005) | about a year ago | (#44524605)

His mouth is open.

I'm not reassured. (4, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | about a year ago | (#44524619)

This quote really bothers me:

What you're not seeing is people actually abusing these programs.

On the surface, it sounds like a fair point. To my knowledge, there haven't really been allegations of people digging into these records for specific unethical and abusive purposes. However:

(a) I would question whether the collection and warehousing of this data is, in itself, and abuse.
(b) It's pretty much impossible for us to know whether these programs are being abused, since there is no public oversight.
(c) If there were reports of abuse, I'm not sure we'd know about it, since it's apparently illegal to talk about this program.

All told, I don't feel particularly reassured. Even if there's no malicious abuse of the system, I would bet money that there's some casual abuse going on. As Obama is fond of saying, sunlight is the best disinfectant. If the NSA has done nothing wrong, then they have nothing to hide.

Re:I'm not reassured. (1)

Jiro (131519) | about a year ago | (#44524665)

If the NSA has done nothing wrong, then they have nothing to hide.

What?

I think you'd understand what was wrong with that statement if it was said of anyone except the NSA.

Bow! Yield! Kneel! (3, Insightful)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about a year ago | (#44524621)

> "What you're not seeing is peopleactually abusingthese programs."

Given alarm bells don't go off if someone listens to content without a warrant, i.e. no physical mechanism to prevent, much less track this, how would he know?

Any one of a hundred senators or other powerful people know people in the NSA and could have an otherwise seemingly honest agent actually spying for them -- on business dealings, or opposing candidates. This doesn't even begin to address the supposedly "lesser-protected" metadata on who calls whom, which would have been more than enough to figure out who all the founding fathers were and round them up.

And even if every agent and powerful person were honest today, what about 10 or 50 years from now? I keep bringing this up, but a G. Gordon Liddy type wouldn't think twice about listening in on the opposition.

Yo dawg I heard you like bureaucracy.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524683)

So we gonna put in some regulations to monitor the people who might do bad things with the system for monitoring people who might do bad things.

Why all the hate? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524719)

They can spy on me all they want, as long as they can't deny or cancel my Obamacare.

Yes We Must! (1)

Sla$hPot (1189603) | about a year ago | (#44524721)

Lets see it happen

court warrant (1)

beefoot (2250164) | about a year ago | (#44524751)

What's wrong with applying a court warrant to wire tap a suspect?

Good Timing (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524753)

"Now that it is politically imperative, we must do the thing, and the other things. We must have the courage, the tenacity, the morale fortitude, to do whatever it is that will make me popular again. This is not about right or wrong, but about the morale certainty that of what is the right thing to do, which is that course of action that I now advocate. And I will continue to advocate, using great speeches and the soaring power of words, whatever it is that will cause applause. In fact I will continue, tirelessly, night and day, to talk my out of this, and the other things. So pay very close attention, to my words. Nothing else, just what comes out of my mouth. Thank you, good night, god bless America, thank you all, and god bless America."

Laugh (1)

koan (80826) | about a year ago | (#44524791)

If you want privacy do not use the internet, do not use cell phones, etc..
You get the picture, if all their efforts are focused on digital surveillance how long until their human surveillance reliability atrophies.

Just keep in mind "going dark" in today's World sends up a big flare.
Other than that why are we talking about "privacy" it no longer exist at least in the "dictionary definition" sense.

WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44524795)

We need to be more open. Also, we need to desperately pursue and punish the man who let people know that there was even something to be open about. Until Snowden gets a presidential pardon and is welcomed home with a parade, this is 100% unadulterated bullshit. This is merely damage control. They don't want to be open and the proof of that is the tremendous fury they are showing in pursing the man who made them be open.

What a bunch of total bullshit (1)

Adult film producer (866485) | about a year ago | (#44524805)

There's no reason to believe this guy. Consulting the public is just a PR move... nothing more, nothing less.
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