Why Wasn’t I Told About This?

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, NSA Director Keith Alexander, the former chief judge of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC), and the deputy director of the FBI held a classified briefing for members of the Senate on Thursday afternoon, however anyone who attended the briefing would have noticed that there were a lot of empty seats.

Less than half of the Senate actually attended this all-hands-on-deck briefing, much to the dismay of Intelligence Committee chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-CA).

Only 47 of 100 senators attended the 2:30 briefing, leaving dozens of chairs in the secure meeting room empty as Clapper, Alexander and other senior officials told lawmakers about classified programs to monitor millions of telephone calls and broad swaths of Internet activity. The room on the lower level of the Capitol Visitor Center is large enough to fit the entire Senate membership, according to a Senate aide. [...]

“It’s hard to get this story out. Even now we have this big briefing — we’ve got Alexander, we’ve got the FBI, we’ve got the Justice Department, we have the FISA Court there, we have Clapper there — and people are leaving,” [Feinstein] said.

I wasn’t told about this program and I demand an explanation, but I have a plane to catch.

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  • LibertyLynx

    Too bad they didn’t just read the Wall Street Journal in March 2008: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120511973377523845.html

    These people are complete clowns.

    • LibertyLynx

      FYI: That very detailed article explaining the NSA program was written well before Obama was elected. It’s almost as if Snowden and Greenwald made slides based on that article. :-/

  • DHaradaStone

    It’s a small point, but this story by the Hill illustrates the subtle ways the media, — often, but not always, unwittingly — replicate and disseminate misinformation. As far as we know, the NSA is not “monitoring” millions of phone calls. It is downloading and storing metadata but not listening to calls. But this has become as much an established “truth” in the MSM as the now debunked notion that the NSA has “direct access” to the servers of Google and Facebook.

  • 1933john

    If one doesn’t attend a briefing, then one can say they weren’t briefed.
    Standard GOP shit-speak.

    • LibertyLynx

      It’s true that some major idiots on the right are using this as an excuse. But it’s not limited to the right. There are idiots on the left too. This is all encompassing. Eg Greenwald has been using Dem Sanchez as his poster child for faux outrage.

      My personal opinion is that sometimes, we need to take a step back, stop pointing at each side and screaming: “YOU SUCK” and see that many normal people are drown out by morons and extremists on both sides.

      My political views are purely economic and based on free market principles. But I am not a rigid ideologue and subscribe to nothing idiots like Glenn Beck spew. I do not eat kitten tacos or kick puppies. I just embrace free trade, free markets and a smaller social safety net that focuses on the elderly and truly disabled. I do not wish to be lumped in with extremists nor am I comfortable embracing some of the larger social policies Dems have put forth. I think there are many like me. We feel pretty alienated. We like math and gay people :-P Each side shouts us down and this weird divided country is what we have now. I think sane people from both sides need to start going against the ideologues and seek greater discourse with the opposition. Dreaming- I know.

      • KarenJ

        speaking of Glenn “buy gold” Beck, Business Insider and Fox News reported yesterday that gold was taking a beating in the market: http://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/2013/06/14/is-there-any-hope-left-for-gold-bugs/

        • LibertyLynx

          Gold is a bubble ;-) Has been but it’s been very slow to blow and I refuse an attempt at predicting when the massive correction will happen. But we’re being set up for a major one.

        • LibertyLynx

          Should probably try to stay on topic. But interesting, gold bugs do love Snowden. It’s a Ron Paul cabal of paranoia.

      • Lazarus Durden

        Thank you! I may not agree with all the principles you’ve stated, but I could definitely engage in a civil discussion, and we’d probably find we’re not so far apart on a lot of issues. It doesn’t have to be an all or nothing game.

        Completely agree with your sentiment.

  • trgahan

    The lack of attendance by people with higher security clearances than us indicates: A) The senators already know there is no there there; B) they see openly siding with GG and Snowden as a political liability; and C) they have no desire to change anything about how the NSA does its job.

  • D_C_Wilson

    You can bet McCain and Graham will be on the bobble head shows tomorrow morning demanding that the administration provide them with more information about this program.

    • LibertyLynx

      No. They both support Obama on this and Graham has gone out of his way to defend it. More like some crazy fringe Dems and fringe GOP.

      http://littlegreenfootballs.com/article/42138_CNET_Says_NSA_Admits_Listening_to_US_Phone_Calls_-_but_Thats_Not_What_the_Video_Shows

      • Victor_the_Crab

        And Greenwald the Douche couldn’t be more happy about it.

      • D_C_Wilson

        You think a little detail like them supporting the program will get in the way of appearing on the bobble head shows and whine about Obama not being open enough?

        • Zen Diesel

          How dare you besmirch the good names of Southern Belle Lindsey Graham and the Angriest Old Leprechaun McCain. They are finest green room Senators we have in this country….lol.