Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

No Upper Bound On Phone Record Collection, Says NSA

timothy posted about a year ago | from the don't-write-a-blank-check-to-the-government dept.

Communications 238

PCWorld reports that "[A] U.S. surveillance court has given the National Security Agency no limit on the number of U.S. telephone records it collects in the name of fighting terrorism, the NSA director said Thursday. The NSA intends to collect all U.S. telephone records and put them in a searchable 'lock box' in the interest of national security, General Keith Alexander, the NSA's director, told U.S. senators." But don't worry; it's just metadata, until it isn't. (Your row in the NSA database may already be getting cozy in its nice new home in Utah.)

cancel ×

238 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Foil hats? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964717)

Shinny side out or in?

Re:Foil hats? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965405)

Sorry dude, foil now attracts drones. Shoulda fucking listened when you were told earlier.

Re:Foil hats? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965781)

The foil hat blocked the extreme low frequency transmission you insensitive clod!

Re:Foil hats? (5, Funny)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#44965683)

The shiny side should face what you're trying to protect.

If you don't want them reading your brain waves, the shiny side goes on the inside to prevent the brain waves from leaking out.

If you don't want them using mind control beams on you, the shiny side goes on the outside to keep the mind control beams out.

If you're worried about both, then you need to go double layer with a shiny side facing both in and out.

If you think the molemen might be involved, then you should put a layer in the bottoms of your shoes, and maybe in your underwear.

Intends to? (5, Insightful)

mosb1000 (710161) | about a year ago | (#44964729)

The NSA intends to collect all U.S. telephone records and put them in a searchable 'lock box' in the interest of national security

No, they don't intend to do this at all, they already do collect all of it.

Re:Intends to? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964757)

They already collect it, but it is not in the lock box yet. Currently they are in Israel and god knows where else. But don't worry, they are planning that there will be a lock box.

Re:Intends to? (3, Interesting)

geekmux (1040042) | about a year ago | (#44965059)

They already collect it, but it is not in the lock box yet. Currently they are in Israel and god knows where else. But don't worry, they are planning that there will be a lock box.

Ah, I see. Well, then, please allow me to translate what the NSA is really trying to say here.

Uh, we kinda had our previous "lock" box hacked, and all of the records were stolen. But don't worry about Congress getting pissed when we declassify that, it's just metadata. We're cool. We're simply going to make an announcement that we need another 30 billion dollars this year and every year to build a new "lock" box...that will be hacked from the inside next time, not the outside.

Far fetched? We're here talking about NSAs new perpetual data collector, probably titled something arrogant like Project Sheeple...going where no tax dollars have gone before, all in the name of Terrorism. We promise.

VoIP? (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year ago | (#44965099)

What about VoIP? Is that a workaround for now?

Re:VoIP? (2)

Phreakiture (547094) | about a year ago | (#44965235)

I am not sure why you would think it might be . . . .

Re:VoIP? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965503)

The government will surely send national security letters to VOIP providers for their records. Even if they are overseas and do not cooperate, the person on the receiving end of your phone call surely has a company that will cooperate. Unless you are making VoIP calls between providers that are not providing records, it will likely get logged.

Re:VoIP? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#44965695)

depends what voip. if it's encrypted and proxied around then yeah, sure. or if you're just flooding your link to the other guy all the time then they can't at least tell that you were talking at a particular moment.

really, encryption and flooding the links are the only answers.

if you mean skype, just forget about it, it's not any more private than calling over a landline.

Re:Intends to? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964855)

so? what's the big deal.

Re:Intends to? (2, Funny)

Dunbal (464142) | about a year ago | (#44965589)

Yeah it's just metadata. Like if I rob a bank electronically and put the money in my bank account. It's just metadata, numbers, an electronic "bank balance". It's only real when I go to the ATM... right.

Metadata Equals Surveillance (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964745)

But don't worry; it's just metadata

Metadata Equals Surveillance [schneier.com]

Re:Metadata Equals Surveillance (4, Interesting)

whoever57 (658626) | about a year ago | (#44965667)

Perhaps some enterprising jounalist, or the EFF could make some FOIA requests for phone records from the NSA, Whitehouse, etc.. Let the government say that the data is private!

Re:Metadata Equals Surveillance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965727)

How difficult is it to automate transcripts of audio conversations, compress the textfiles and forward them to any predictor and population shaper / culling algorithm?

Tinfoil hats for all (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964765)

Turns out the tinfoil hat wearing conspiracy theorists were pretty much spot on.

Re:Tinfoil hats for all (5, Informative)

coastwalker (307620) | about a year ago | (#44964979)

Not only that but all that cold war stuff was a complete waste of time - we are the Soviet Union.

Re:Tinfoil hats for all (2)

gewalker (57809) | about a year ago | (#44965147)

Well maybe, but at least we have better consumer goods that we by from communist China.

The Cold War is over (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965523)

the bad guys won.

Re:The Cold War is over (3, Interesting)

fsagx (1936954) | about a year ago | (#44965641)

the bad guys won.

That's who was playing!

Re:Tinfoil hats for all (2)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#44965539)

Not only that but all that cold war stuff was a complete waste of time - we are the Soviet Union.

If the US really is the USSR, then that is very unfortunate for you, comrade. Under the terms of Article 58-12 [cyberussr.com] of the Soviet penal code I now have no choice but to denounce you, comrade, for violations of Article 58-10 [cyberussr.com] , and possibly Article 58-4 [cyberussr.com] of the Soviet penal code by engaging in libelous propaganda against the glorious achievements of the American revolution by comparing it to what is now a failed state. The normal punishment would be deprivation of liberty for not less than 6 months, but since the United States is currently engaged in combat against the Taliban and al Qaida, it is possible you may be subject to punishment under Article 58-2 [cyberussr.com] for which the punishment is:

the supreme measure of social defense-- shooting, or proclamation as an enemy of the workers, with confiscation or property and with deprivation of citizenship of the union republic, and likewise of citizenship of the Soviet Union and perpetual expulsion beyond the borders of the USSR, with the allowance under extenuating circumstances of reduction to deprivation of liberty for a term of no less than three years, with confiscation of all or part of one's property [6 Jun 1927 (SU No 49, art 330)].

.

Re:Tinfoil hats for all (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965739)

We will continue the surveillance until we are free.

Re:Tinfoil hats for all (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965029)

Tinfoil doesn't block sound waves. It's all funny until you start hearing voices in your head and are unable to disprove your crazy thoughts about government mind control and you take a shotgun to your local Navy yard. It would be hilarious if the govt is doing the same thing companies already are with sound waves.

http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/gadgets/high-tech-gadgets/brain-advertisement1.htm

Maybe the tinfoil hat crowd is a bit paranoid, but I think their paranoia is justified. Kinda like the whole NSA thing this article is about.

Re:Tinfoil hats for all (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965069)

It doesn't take a tinfoil hatter to realize the obvious. Give the government the power to spy on people, and with no real accountability, and then it does it? What a surprise!

Re:Tinfoil hats for all (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965257)

But Glorious Leader Obummer promised us hope and change! And the liberals still don't get why they are mocked for believing that tripe.

And no, I would not have voted for Romney before some libtard attempts to toss out that red herring.

Re:Tinfoil hats for all (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965397)

No need to get so worked up, you'll be old enough to vote someday.

Row data? (2)

Deflagro (187160) | about a year ago | (#44964791)

I'm more worried about what's in the columns.... Metadata my ass.

Boiling a frog (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964795)

Remember when they at least *pretended* not to engage in domestic surveillance?

Yeah, like the other "Lock Boxes" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964807)

Hopefully the lock on the box is a little better than the one that we had been told the Social Security money was going into.

Government doesn't have the best track record for keeping track of the keys to it's lock boxes, nor guarunteeing the locks themselves are even in place. Among other general failings ...

This is gonna be awesome! (4, Informative)

http (589131) | about a year ago | (#44964809)

I've never seen a civil war up close before.

Re:This is gonna be awesome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964971)

Did you think you were going to see one with Occupy Wall street?You're not going to see one now either.

These guys are very successfully boiling this frog. [wikipedia.org]

It appears a that nothing short of an abrupt shutdown of Facebook or Twitter for subversive speech will mobilize the masses. Even then, who knows?

Re:This is gonna be awesome! (5, Insightful)

intermodal (534361) | about a year ago | (#44965017)

It's not a pretty idea. But even more frightening is what history tells us about the end-result of governments that believe in their own unlimited powers.

Re:This is gonna be awesome! (2)

0racle (667029) | about a year ago | (#44965075)

Never going to happen in the US.

Re:This is gonna be awesome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965191)

very true. But there is something other countries can do: anytime any NSA/CIA/FBI employee/agent of any level comes to their shores, they should summarily arrest under a ton of espionage charges and sentence to 1000 years in prision -- all in a single day. It really takes a courageous low level employee to do detain, arrest and charge.

Re:This is gonna be awesome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965269)

Because you actually believe other countries do not spy on their own citizens and citizens of other countries? How cute and naive...

Re:This is gonna be awesome! (0)

darrellg1 (969068) | about a year ago | (#44965631)

Where did anyone say they believe other countries don't spy? Got a quote? No? FUCK OFF HIPPIE. Your ilk are the reason we're in this mess.

Re:This is gonna be awesome! (1)

hort_wort (1401963) | about a year ago | (#44965231)

Never going to happen in the US.

The fluoride does a pretty good job, yes?

Re:This is gonna be awesome! (5, Insightful)

istartedi (132515) | about a year ago | (#44965435)

I've never seen a civil war up close before

. Never going to happen in the US.

Yeah. There's no precedent for that.

Re:This is gonna be awesome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965623)

Yeah, but can you maybe wait a bit before you start it? MLB playoffs are about to kickoff. NFL just got rolling. My favorite shows are back with new episodes.

Searchable lock box? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964829)

Is "searchable lock box" more than a little bit misleading? It is in fact a database. Its closest equivalent in meatspace is a filing cabinet. Calling it a lock box is so much of a misnomer, that whoever calls it that, lacks the education to describe it, and should defer talking about it to someone who does. Let the media filter it down to the average Joe's level instead. I wish I could believe that the people in charge of approving these things know what they're approving. Obviously they don't.

Uhh, yeah right. We'll believe the NSA blindly (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964837)

Given we "the public" know they have networking gear installed to snoop all telecomm traffic, the NSA is already logging all of the call data and metadata. The question is, how often is low value data deleted? You can bet high value data is stored indefinitely.

Think about it. The director of the NSA says "run a query on X number" and show me everything we know. The staff runs the metadata query and shows the list. You know the next command from the director will be, "play those calls."

Anyone dumb enough to believe the NSA isn't recording the entire call is either A) a moron, B) living under a boulder 5 miles in a cave or C) most trusting person in this galaxy.

get over it (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964863)

If storing all communications is physically possible, then it's going to be done. And if not by NSA, then somebody else. Get used to it. Does anyone seriously doubt that many other European countries aren't doing the exact same thing? I feel I need to qualify European, because that's the point. This is shocking for a "developed" country to do, but my point, is it really that shocking?

So... what next? I'm not saying it's right, or should ever be institutionalized policy to spy on all communications, but it's what will happen 9/10 times, whether it's policy or not, in any but the purest government. (for the sake of argument, pretend for a moment that the term "purest government" isn't an oxymornon.)

Re:get over it (5, Insightful)

AlphaWoIf_HK (3042365) | about a year ago | (#44965095)

Get used to it.

No, and that sounds like a terrible idea.

PC World link? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44964869)

Boy I love it when something is quoted from an online article without a link!
http://www.pcworld.com/article/2049860/nsa-surveillance-court-says-no-upper-limit-on-phone-records-collection.html

Was that so hard?

Re:PC World link? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965007)

Boy I love it when a link is posted as text without an anchor tag!
Linky [pcworld.com]
<a href="http://www.pcworld.com/article/2049860/nsa-surveillance-court-says-no-upper-limit-on-phone-records-collection.html"/>Linky</a>

Was that so hard?

Stalin-type Purges (5, Informative)

silentbozo (542534) | about a year ago | (#44964875)

How long before the next incoming majority party decides to use the NSA data to clean house? Just to make sure that their government is free of ties to terrorism, foreign governments, and corruption, of course... and to ensure that everyone is loyal and pure of ideology.

Re:Stalin-type Purges (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965091)

The current one is already doing that. The incoming one wants to continue doing it, which is why you don't see Ted Cruz standing up and reciting Dr. Seuss to defund the NSA.

Eh (3, Insightful)

Qzukk (229616) | about a year ago | (#44964879)

Don't worry they can only fit a few hundred terabytes in the little box they drew on the blueprint marked "Datacenter" that they let everyone see to prove they weren't storing a whole lot of data there. Don't mind the dozens of all black blueprint pages marked sub-basement [redacted] through sub-basement [redacted] I'm sure none of their data center capacity would ever be classified. They've been nothing but fully transparent these last few years, after all!

New word for Webster's (1)

Nov8tr (2007392) | about a year ago | (#44964895)

I think these guys deserve a new word in Webster's Dictionary. Scumbag just isn't enough any more. It's just not inclusive enough or even descriptive enough. Any ideas!

Re:New word for Webster's (5, Insightful)

dyingtolive (1393037) | about a year ago | (#44964955)

I don't think they need a new word. Just use a perfectly good old word. How about "tyrant"?

Re:New word for Webster's (1)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about a year ago | (#44964995)

I prefer "treasoner"; it is more accurate.

Re:New word for Webster's (1)

Arker (91948) | about a year ago | (#44965063)

That's not a valid word, you are trying for 'traitor.'

At least in the US, that charge would not apply here.

I could see a few billion counts of civil rights violation however.

Re:New word for Webster's (1)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about a year ago | (#44965161)

"That's not a valid word"

No. I said what I meant. Treason is the act of betraying ones country. If you can't figure out that betraying every U.S. citizen is the same as betraying the country I can't really help you understand the word. .. and if you mean it quite literally isn't a valid word, you might want to look more closely at the quotes I put around it.

An example of the metadata... (5, Funny)

QilessQi (2044624) | about a year ago | (#44964939)

The frequency and amplitude of the phone conversation, sampled at 1-millisecond intervals.

Just metadata.

Fuck The NSA (2)

zenlessyank (748553) | about a year ago | (#44964953)

That is all.

NSA Directory Keith Alexander in a nutshell (5, Interesting)

dkleinsc (563838) | about a year ago | (#44964963)

He wants all information about everybody he can get his hands on. That's basically his job.

That's why it's the President's job is to say "That's illegal. Don't do it. If you do it, I will have you fired, arrested for wiretapping, and charged for your crimes. I will do that to the next NSA Director who breaks the law. And the next. For as many as it takes, until I get an NSA Director who understands that the law supercedes what they want.", and follow through on what he said.

President Obama has failed to do this. So did President Bush. That's because they don't want to do their job, they'd rather (for whatever reason) have an NSA breaking the law.

Re:NSA Directory Keith Alexander in a nutshell (-1, Troll)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about a year ago | (#44965025)

"He wants all information about everybody he can get his hands on. That's basically his job."

A major reason why they get away with this kind of bullshit is because people like you are uneducated enough to make ridiculous statements like that.

Re:NSA Directory Keith Alexander in a nutshell (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965747)

What insightful, provocative, and helpful discussion you've encouraged. Yes, you've got it all right. Let's go to a bunch of online forums and berate the other posters! Surely that is the most valuable course of action to take.

Re:NSA Directory Keith Alexander in a nutshell (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965221)

I was about to say 'you folk' then it reoccurred to me that I could just say 'most people'.

Most people expect the president to be presidential and do the right thing.

Most people do not seem to have considered for a moment though, particularly Obama supporters, the possibility that Obama's shit might actually stink.

Why does this matter?

Well try this tin foil hat on for size: You think the NSA surveillance state has an impact on free speech and the press? The loudest of regular people (reporters) are 'chilled'? There have been countless analysis-style articles and discussions regarding the impact of the NSA surveillance state on free speech and the press, but no one out there is talking about the impact of the NSA surveillance state on politicians; politicians are pretty commonly known to be slimy and the ones who have the most success seem to be the most corrupt of all.

So why in the world would any president, or politician for that matter, want to go up against the NSA surveillance state? Is the risk worth the reward? Well I would say yes but then again I'm not a politician and this is exactly why: going up against the NSA surveillance state would be political suicide; not because the people wouldn't support a non surveillance state position, but for the fact that Alexandar and pals might just 'leak' something if it mitigates any threat of shutting down the NSA surveillance state.

Re:NSA Directory Keith Alexander in a nutshell (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965673)

And the people failed to do there's decades ago when they let their Congress critters pass the FISA legislation and keep their jobs. Point being, you can point at any number of reasons things are the way they are. There's no value to doing it. The value comes in taking actions that can improve the status quo. Find a problem and do something about it.

Bill to rein in NSA (5, Informative)

SirGarlon (845873) | about a year ago | (#44964973)

For those who don't know, Senators Wyden (D-OR), Udall (D-CO), Paul (R-KY) and Blumenthal (D-CT) say they will introduce a bill today [arstechnica.com] to rein in the NSA.

Re:Bill to rein in NSA (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965037)

I'm surprised that Paul's in on something with the Dems- and I'll believe that it's something worthwhile when I see it. The Dems are the ones that inflicted all this rubbish on us, including unleashing the NSA and others on us in the manner we're now needing to "rein in". Never forget, while it was Bush that signed the damned Patriot Act, it was the Democrats with a supermajority in Congress that VOTED IT IN IN THE FIRST PLACE.

Re:Bill to rein in NSA (2, Interesting)

Nadaka (224565) | about a year ago | (#44965193)

Yea... no.
The Democrats may have willingly and knowingly continued the program, but it was started by republicans.

Re:Bill to rein in NSA (2)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#44965381)

And his claims of Democrat super majority is bunkus. The Republicans controlled the House and could have stopped the bill had they wanted. But not one Republican senator voted against it and only 3 Republican reprensentatives exicitly voted Nay as well. Both parties hold responsibility.

Re:Bill to rein in NSA (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965195)

This isn't an issue with either Republicans or Democrats specifically, so enough of that nonsense.

Re:Bill to rein in NSA (5, Informative)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#44965359)

Hahaha what? You seem to be willfully ignoring that the Republicans controlled the House during passage 229 to 205. You also seem to be ignoring that the Patriot Act was authored and introduced by a Republican Representative. You also seem to be ignoring the fact that of the 66 nays in the House that 62 were Democrats. And that Republicans voted Yea at a 3:2 margin in the House. You also seem to ignore that not a single Republican voted Nay in the Senate. The Nay was that of Democrat Russ Feingold who also warned about the Section 215 powers. The only abstention in the Senate was also a Democrat.

So to act like the passage of the Patriot Act would have been any different with a Republican controlled Senate is ludicrous when nary a single Republican senator voted against it.

Re:Bill to rein in NSA (3, Insightful)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#44965403)

And to add, the Senate was 48 D to 51 R which is not a "super majority" by any measure let alone a Democratoc super majority when both Houses were under Republican control. Nice attempt at revisionist history, though.

Re:Bill to rein in NSA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965395)

I'm surprised that Paul's in on something with the Dems

It isn't a Dem. vs. GOP issue. It's Fascists vs. Americans--on our own soil.

Re:Bill to rein in NSA (4, Informative)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | about a year ago | (#44965483)

it was the Democrats with a supermajority in Congress that VOTED IT IN IN THE FIRST PLACE.

Maybe in some alternate reality. In the real world the 107th Congress was at the time of the passage of the Patriot Act

House: 219 R / 211 D / 2 I with Republican Denny Hastert as Speaker
Senate: 50 R / 50 D with Republican Strom Thurman as President Pro tempore and Dick Cheney as tie breaker

How exactly would that be a Democrat super majority?

Re:Bill to rein in NSA (2)

Deflagro (187160) | about a year ago | (#44965083)

Yea and when it fails to go anywhere, they can just say "oh well, we tried". Eventually the people might wake up and realize they haven't been in control for a very long time. Your vote means nothing and even if you replace one scumbag for another, they are all part of the same broken system. I'm guessing whoever runs the global network of federal banks is the real overlord.

They will eventually have to make a show that it's all shut down or controlled while just upping the secrecy level by creating an actual secret government agency. They already have secret courts so it's not that far a leap.

Re:Bill to rein in NSA (1)

msobkow (48369) | about a year ago | (#44965691)

Yeah, that'll work.

After all, the NSA has done such a stellar job of following the laws enacted to date.

Wake up: The only way to stop the NSA is to de-fund them. And even then, there are probably "slush funds" from the FBI, CIA, and DEA that they could tap into.

National Paranoia, not National Security (3, Insightful)

HermMunster (972336) | about a year ago | (#44965045)

Very few of American's are terrorists. Any claim otherwise is paranoia. That is not national security. It is national paranoia.

Also, it is illegal. These people are the military. The military should have no oversight of the civilian public.

The NSA is part of the DoD under the Pentagon. That makes them a military entity even if most of those working there are civilians. We have lots of civilians working in all areas of the military. They all are bound by military law and military code of conduct.

These unconstitutional actions need to end.

Re:National Paranoia, not National Security (1)

Nadaka (224565) | about a year ago | (#44965219)

Quite a few Americans are terrorists. They are called Tea Party members or NSA employees.

Re:National Paranoia, not National Security (0, Flamebait)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#44965325)

Quite a few Americans are terrorists. They are called Tea Party members or NSA employees.

I think the Tea Party are mostly toolbags, but fuck you. Seriously, fuck you. That kind of hyperbole only serves to pull focus from the problem of the NSA - assholes like you are aiding the NSA, not fighting them.

Re:National Paranoia, not National Security (0)

Nadaka (224565) | about a year ago | (#44965343)

The tea party tactic of obstructing the government funding in order to bully their agenda into place is EXPLICITLY terrorism. The creation of terror for political gain.

Re:National Paranoia, not National Security (0)

jcr (53032) | about a year ago | (#44965619)

If you're "terrified" of not getting to live on other people's earnings, then fuck you.

-jcr

Re:National Paranoia, not National Security (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965681)

Wow, you sure showed that strawman what's what!

Re:National Paranoia, not National Security (0)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#44965637)

The tea party tactic of obstructing the government funding in order to bully their agenda into place is EXPLICITLY terrorism. The creation of terror for political gain.

Baloney. You've watered down the word "terrorism" to mean everything and nothing. Nobody is "terrified" about the government funding. That's just political brinkmanship.

You really are part of the problem with that kind of crap.

Re:National Paranoia, not National Security (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965223)

Very few of American's are terrorists. Any claim otherwise is paranoia. That is not national security. It is national paranoia.

Also, it is illegal. These people are the military. The military should have no oversight of the civilian public.

The NSA is part of the DoD under the Pentagon. That makes them a military entity even if most of those working there are civilians. We have lots of civilians working in all areas of the military. They all are bound by military law and military code of conduct.

These unconstitutional actions need to end.

The NSA is spying on communications as a method of industrial espionage and protecting corporate interests.

Re:National Paranoia, not National Security (2)

Anubis IV (1279820) | about a year ago | (#44965701)

I hate to be in a position where I'm defending them, but what laws did you have in mind? Mind you, I'm not suggesting they're not breaking laws (clearly they are, such as the US Constitution, as you said), but I am suggesting that they aren't subject to a lot of the laws that the armed forces are subject to, which is what it seemed like you were implying.

For instance, the Posse Comitatus Act that limits Presidential power is specific in referring to the armed forces, rather than the military or the DoD as a whole (originally it referred to just the Army, but related laws and amendments have since included the other branches of the armed forces as well). Similarly, the civilians in the NSA don't fall under the jurisdiction of the UCMJ [cornell.edu] , which seems to only apply to the armed forces. Those are two of the big ones that most of us think about when we think about laws that keep the military in check, and neither of them seem to apply here.

Obviously, there are other laws that they are subject to, and their military personnel, one of whom is the director of the NSA, would still be subject to military law, but it seems to me as if they've done a decent job of insulating themselves from quite a few of the laws that we'd like to have apply to them.

At the end of the day though, I'm firmly in your camp and agree that the things they're doing need to stop, regardless of whether or not those particular laws apply.

Can someone please lend me $1,880,000,000 urgent! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965109)

That's how much money the government is borrowing every day of the week!

Almost two billion dollars a day!

With no plan to ever pay it back!

It's so nice of ?whoever? to keep lending us money to buy all these cool computers!

We love snooping on you!

Stupid Republicans (1, Flamebait)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year ago | (#44965143)

So Ted Cruz just fauxilibustered for like 24 hours trying to convince us that Obamacare is Nazism on steroids. If he had any sense of strategy he would have been pointing at the NSA and saying that they are going to slurp up every bit of medical data that Obamacare creates, that the NSA is going to have your most intimate medical details on file at their fingertips.

Even if you don't tell anyone that you've got herpes the NSA will know it. They will know when you are pregnant, when you miscarry, when you decide to have an abortion because your fetus tests positive for down syndrome. They will know the results of any DNA parentage tests even when you don't tell your own family.

Re:Stupid Republicans (1)

Culture20 (968837) | about a year ago | (#44965743)

Even if you don't tell anyone that you've got herpes the NSA will know it. They will know when you are pregnant, when you miscarry, when you decide to have an abortion because your fetus tests positive for down syndrome. They will know the results of any DNA parentage tests even when you don't tell your own family.

... so be good for goodness' sake!

why should we care about these assurances? (2)

circletimessquare (444983) | about a year ago | (#44965145)

i don't trust what the nsa says, does anyone?

they do everything in secret

they've been shown to have reneged on every assurance they've given so far

the nsa is a dagger pointed at the heart of our bill of rights, and operates with impunity of any oversight or control

the entire program needs to be wound down and focused on actual surveillance of actual terrorist targets, not this vacuum cleaner for everything

do we still have the backbone to press our representatives to ensure this is done?

Weren't we warned? (3, Insightful)

Sir Holo (531007) | about a year ago | (#44965155)

"He who sacrifices freedom for security..." – B.J.F.

"The tree of liberty must..." – T.J.

"In the councils of government, we must..." – D.D.E.

On a more positive note, at least the gears of legislation seem to be responding.

NSA=commie (4, Funny)

sjames (1099) | about a year ago | (#44965175)

Wasn't it always the dirty commies that spied on their own people and didn't care if they liked it or not?

Why does the NSA hate democracy?

Re:NSA=commie...not (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965273)

The NSA LOVES democracy. They depend on the majority of the masses to say "Y, save us from those terrorist!"

Re:NSA=commie...not (1)

sjames (1099) | about a year ago | (#44965315)

I literally don't know anyone who wants them to continue their domestic spying.

Re:NSA=commie (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965389)

NSA=commie

I think a more direct comparison would be:

NSA = KGB

Utah facility (1)

Elvenbane (813997) | about a year ago | (#44965189)

The Utah facility looks mighty impressive as I drive past. It is an impressive set of buildings.

Show of hands (4, Insightful)

PPH (736903) | about a year ago | (#44965227)

Who wants this crap to continue "in the name of fighting terrorism"? The alternative seems to be we lose 3000 people every dozen years or so. Big deal. I say we write off our losses every once in a while and stop shitting ourselves.

(Your row in the NSA database (1)

dpilot (134227) | about a year ago | (#44965255)

I wonder how much information the NSA has on Little Bobby Tables... Can they really sanitize their inputs, when it's all dirty?

Makes me think of an old Arlo Guthrie Song.. (1)

RevSpaminator (1419557) | about a year ago | (#44965361)

And friends, somewhere in Utah enshrined in some hard drive, is a study in black and white of my metadata.

I'M MAD AS HELL (1)

darrellg1 (969068) | about a year ago | (#44965463)

What kind of balls does it take to stand up in front of everyone and say they want to treat every citizen as a suspect? The real surprise will be when nobody reports this and there are no consequences.
There's a civil respose: Create a new political party by and for regular people. Vote these shitheads out of office.
Uncivil response: I'll let you guess.
What is it going to take? Stop paying taxes and send a note to our govt. saying we will no longer fund this crap? Put a F U in the "amount paid" box on our 1040?
And then there's those two fucking bitches who objected to further questioning and shut it down. Let's sit outside their house with directional microphones and stream it live to a website called Senators Gone Live! When they complain about their privacy, we get to slap them as hard as we fucking can.

Frank Zappa was right : (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965531)

"The illusion of freedom [in America] will continue as long as it’s profitable to continue the illusion. At the point where the illusion becomes too expensive to maintain, they will just take down the scenery, they will pull back the curtains, they will move the tables and chairs out of the way and you will see the brick wall at the back of the theater."

Umm, *don't* "bring it", plz (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about a year ago | (#44965565)

"George Washington just called Paul Revere and they conferenced in, you're not gonna believe this, freakin' Benjamin freakin' Franklin!"

"A celeb involved in this rebellion? Wtf. Well, n/m, let's round 'em up. I feel a promotion coming on!"

I am still waiting for ... (1)

whoever57 (658626) | about a year ago | (#44965579)

I am wating for Senator Dianne Feinstein to make her phone records public.

What's that you say, phone records are private? HYPOCRITE!

Not merely illegal, but unconstitutional. (5, Insightful)

jcr (53032) | about a year ago | (#44965593)

Andrew Napolitano explains very clearly [lewrockwell.com] why the FISA "court" is an unconstitutional institution, and not a court of law at all.

Even if the FISA court was a legal forum, no court in this country has the authority to override the 4th amendment.

-jcr

3rd party (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44965767)

Americans really need some diversity in the political field. A 3rd party would be a wind of change to the current black and white setting.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>