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Amazing NSA excuse



On Fri, Jun 13, 2014 at 2:56 AM, jim bell <[email protected]> wrote:
> http://theweek.com/article/index/262945/the-nsa-has-a-shocking-new-excuse-for-destroying-evidence
> "One thing that makes reporting on the NSA so difficult is that you have to
> deconstruct their statements like Derrida to figure out what they're
> actually saying.
> ...
> "The NSA's legal squirming is bad enough. But an agency writing itself a
> blank check to allegedly destroy evidence based on the sheer size and
> complexity of the possibly illegal program in questionis another thing
> entirely. There shouldn't be an "unless your dragnet surveillance program is
> reallybig" exception to the Fourth Amendment.

A lot of the issue is why *your* records, metadata, and maybe even full
take, are on government disks if *you* have not been the subject of a specific
warrant against you under the Fourth. That's not supposed to happen
(ie: it's illegal, regardless of whatever postprocessing, access, expiry
and oversight rules there may be) and that bothers people, a lot...
the slippery slope, grandness, secrecy, and handwavy assuredness of it all.
People want genuine discovery on these programs so they can make the call.

The govt likes to wave examples of specific cases, but seem to be
debunked by media security analysts as not particularly constituting
the claimed 'immediate and grave danger[s] to the national security"
[docket 244 page 6], such that ordinary quality investigations and
specific warrants might suffice. People want to see the cases and
define immediate and grave for themselves.

People don't seem to mind vacuuming up overseas background
noise as spy-vs-spy gamesmanship, but question how that may
now be resulting in various things like drone killings without public
trials. People wonder what they did, and where it could lead if unchecked.
Then the stingrays, parallel construction, Lavabits and much more.

A difficult balance to be sure. And the media columns only have space
for glossing both sides. The docs behind the above referenced news
article are available if you want to read what the news is talking about...

https://www.eff.org/nsa-spying
https://www.eff.org/cases/jewel
https://ia600508.us.archive.org/10/items/gov.uscourts.cand.207206/gov.uscourts.cand.207206.docket.html