Category : spying

Salon has a new article about the NSA spying scandal (icky day pass thing required). It adds to earlier reports by whistleblower Mark Klein, and it includes the same type “secret room” that requires top secret access:

The details provided by the two former workers about the Bridgeton room bear the distinctive earmarks of an operation run by the National Security Agency, according to two intelligence experts with extensive knowledge of the NSA and its operations. In addition to the room’s high-tech security, those intelligence experts told Salon, the exhaustive vetting process AT&T workers were put through before being granted top-secret security clearance points to the NSA, an agency known as much for its intense secrecy as its technological sophistication.

“It was very hush-hush,” said one of the former AT&T workers. “We were told there was going to be some government personnel working in that room. We were told, ‘Do not try to speak to them. Do not hamper their work. Do not impede anything that they’re doing.’”

The importance of the Bridgeton facility is its role in managing the “common backbone” for all of AT&T’s Internet operations. According to one of the former workers, Bridgeton serves as the technical command center from which the company manages all the routers and circuits carrying the company’s domestic and international Internet traffic. Therefore, Bridgeton could be instrumental for conducting surveillance or collecting data.

They’re listening in on a backbone, so that means they’re catching a massive amount of internet traffic. It’s no doubt being filtered and entered into a database for later search and retrieval. Scary stuff. The government should not be allowed to do this without explicit congressional approval. But this is George Bush’s America, and he’s considered to be above the law by his allies. Personally, I think this is either insanity and paranoia or a deliberate step towards dictatorship and totalitarianism.

The ACLU is claiming that the NSA wirtapping program is illegal under the Constitution. Silly ACLU; they think we still have a Constitution. What we really is have is a ruling cabal of fascists pretending they believe in freedom:

The parties in the ACLU lawsuit, who include journalists, scholars and lawyers, say the program has hampered their ability to do their jobs because it has made international contacts, such as sources and potential witnesses, wary of sharing information over the phone.

Ann Beeson, the ACLU’s associate legal director, said the administration’s arguments in defense of the program don’t square with the Constitution.

“The framers never intended to give the president the power to ignore the laws of Congress even during wartime and emergencies,” she said last week during a conference call with reporters.

She said no state secrets need to be revealed to litigate the case because the administration has already acknowledged the program exists. The Center for Constitutional Rights has filed a similar lawsuit on the eavesdropping in federal court in New York.

Everytime the government uses the old “state secrets” line, democracy dies a little more. “State secrets” is their version of a “Get out of jail free” card. Like the “national security” red herring, it works everytime. I expect this case to dismissed soon.

We no longer live in a Constitutional Republic. Democracy was fun while it lasted.

This is not getting out of hand. It’s way beyond that now. We are watching our rights, our privacy, our Constitution, our nation — crumble before our very eyes. So this is what the death of democracy feels like. For me it feels like numb, helpless outrage. Are you ready for the latest outrage?

Here it is, from Capitol Hill Blue:

Now that he is officially sworn in as the new head of the Central Intelligence Agency, Gen. Michael Hayden plans to build a vast domestic spying network that will pry into the lives of most Americans around the clock.

President George W. Bush told Hayden to “take whatever steps necessary” to monitor Americans 24/7 by listening in on their phone calls, bugging their homes and offices, probing their private lives, snooping into their financial records and watching their travel habits.

Can I prove this in a court of law? No. Do I know it is happening? Yes, without a doubt. Enough sources within the CIA, FBI, NSA and Pentagon have come forward in recent days to warn about Hayden’s plans for an expanded, consolidated spy network aimed at Americans, not terrorists, and violating numerous laws that prohibit such activities against citizens of this country.

“What Hayden plans to do is not only illegal, it is immoral,” says a longtime CIA operative who may retire early rather than participate in what he sees as an illegal extension of the spy agency’s activities.

The article goes on to mention that resignations are at an all-time high at The Agency. The reporter, Doug Thompson, wishes he could prove this to us. I guess we have to take his word for it for now. But would I be surpised if every word were true? Not one bit.

I wish I could prove this. I wish one, just one, source on the inside was willing to come forward and allow his or her name to be used but those who might be tempted see what happened to Mary McCarthy, the CIA employee fired and under threat of prosecution for leaking information about CIA torture camps in Europe.

But I know it is happening. People I’ve known for years and trust tell me it is happening and the past record of spying, lies and deceit by the Bush administration point to just such an operation.

This nation is under attack. We, the people, are under attack. And the enemy in this case is not an Islamic radical hiding in a cave in Afghanistan but a cabal of truly evil men and women at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and on Capitol Hill aided by carefully-picked, law-ignoring appointees at the Hoover Building on Pennsylvania Avenue, a black glass-walled building at Fort Meade, MD, and a complex in Langley, Virginia.

Not the normally sedate language we’re used to reading in the press. But he’s right. We are under attack. Let me say it again:

We Are Under Attack. By Our Own Government.

So, we catch any terrorists yet?

…Or have we only managed to infringe on the rights of 300 million Americans?

The NSA surveillance program is not about catching terrorists. Don’t ever let anybody tell you otherwise. It’s not going to work if they don’t listen to the calls themselves (they do). Their data mining is worthless unless they attach to it other information such as your social security number, medical records, financial records and criminal history.

No, the reason why they’re monitoring all of us is because the paranoid, fascist, psychopaths in charge of the country think that there are 300 million potential terrorists out there. Of course, when they say “terrorist” they mean anybody who doesn’t agree with the Bush clan. That means, Democrats, libertarians, academics, certain members of the media, teachers, those crazy Hollywood liberals, anybody who uses the internet, and of course, grandmothers. Ooohhh!! What a scary bunch!

Of course, with Bush’s polls in the lower 30s, you can add a good chunk of his Republican base to the list. As his numbers continue to spiral downwards Bush will get more and more paranoid and he will actually turn on his base and attack former friends. It should be amusing to watch.

The whole immigration debate is a good example of how Bush will be forced to choose one side of his base over the other. Corporations love illegal immigration because it provides cheap labor. Social conservatives hate illegal immigration because they don’t like brown people and they think those brown people might be stealing their jobs (and they’re probably right, since the corporations love cheap labor, like I said). So, who will Bush side with? He’s gonna piss off somebody; that’s a given. But in the end, I think Bush will side with the corporations since they are his bread and butter. The social conservatives thought he was one of them; they thought wrong. Again.

Personally, I could give a fuck as long as they don’t build a Great Wall of Terror between the US and Mexico. That would just be stupid. Yes, illegal immigration is a problem, but let’s not overreact here. What we need are more workers visas for Mexico. Most illegal immigrants actually return home after sending a bunch of cash back to Mexico. This creates economic problems in Mexico, of course. I really don’t know what the ideal solution is; I just hope GW doesn’t annex Mexico.

Trying to get your records from the NSA…

…is not easy. However, I wish this guy a lot of luck in his endeavour. I hope he appeals and wins. I think the justification he needs to use is pretty obvious: It’s his data.

Okay, check this gallant argument out:

The Bush administration has asked federal judges in New York and Michigan to dismiss a pair of lawsuits filed over the National Security Agency’s domestic eavesdropping program, saying litigating them would jeopardize state secrets.

In papers filed late Friday, Justice Department lawyers said it would be impossible to defend the legality of the spying program without disclosing classified information that could be of value to suspected terrorists.

National Intelligence Director John Negroponte invoked the state secrets privilege on behalf of the administration, writing that disclosure of such information would cause “exceptionally grave damage” to national security.

The administration laid out some of its supporting arguments in classified memos that were filed under seal.

So lemme get this straight. Not only is Bush saying that the spying program is so secret that they can’t tell us what it’s for, their legal justifications are themselves secret. WTF?!

That says to me that this adminstration is so desperate that they would sink to nothing more than a lowly tug-of-war over power. And that is not a good sign.

The possibility of a Bush coup has occurred to me on more than one occasion. They’re such a slimy bunch I consider it a disturbingly likely scenario. I hope it won’t come to that. But their line of argument (which is that their argument is classified!) is patently ridiculous. I smell a rat. What are they hiding from us?

What if the truth of why they’re spying on us is too horrible for them to ever reveal? Just like the true reason we went to war in Iraq. Or the truth of the 2001 anthrax attacks? Who knows? Not me. But I have my suspicions. I mean, the Bush gang hasn’t exactly been the most trustworthy; ever, really. They pulled some dirty tricks to get into power in the first place, like what they did to John McCain in 2000.

I hope it’s hot in DC this summer. Sweltering hot. I hope the full power of the awful stink in Washington is revealed to everyone there, because the only people who seem to be in the dark about Washington corruption are the Washington insiders who are so often turning out the lights. In this case the Bush Administration is not only turning off every light it can find, it’s also smashing them so we can’t turn them back on. The shards of the lights of truth will surely cut the Constitution to shreds if we let that beast continue to attack the light. You know what I’m sayin’?

Is it any wonder why I hate and distrust our government? Raw Story has details about yet another nail in the coffin of democracy. At least they’re being honest and saying, “nope, we’re not gonna even try to investigate.” I suppose that’s slightly better than the sham investigation of intelligence failures leading to the Iraq War, led by Mr. Coverup, Pat Roberts.

Roberts is nothing more than a tool of Bush cabal, helpfully blocking serious investigations into matters of the utmost importance. His toadying has helped Bush stay above the fray and continue to make policy when he should be fending off impeachment charges. Without Roberts standing in the way we would have much clearer picture of why we went to war in 2003. Of course, we already know the general outline. Bush is building an American Empire. Iran is next.

The fact that the FCC will vigorously investigate the Janet Jackson SuperBowl nipplegate fiasco, but refuses to even try and investigate the worldwide NSA-spying ring, shows just how depraved they really are. The FCC has clearly been packed with hardcore Bush loyalists (as has nearly every part of the government), who care nothing for our constitutional principles. Covering Bush’s ass is their only role.

It seems nothing has changed since Michael Powell left. Not that we can say that Clinton was at all innocent in this deadly game. His recent schmoozing with Bush Sr. shows that he is very much a party to this criminal enterprise and I’m sure he helped lay the groundwork for the present travesty when he was in office. The only difference is that Clinton operated with some subtlety, whereas the Bush clan seems to have taken off the gloves. A question to ponder: Why is the Bush cabal so desperate? They don’t even do a half-assed job of covering up their crimes. Of course, they rarely get nailed for it, so I guess there’s your answer right there. They own the government, top to bottom. 9/11 bought it for them, and they intend to keep it. But why are they so determined to cause trouble? How did such a driven group of fascists manage to attain power in America, anyway?

Well, it certainly has nothing to do with the fact that Americans are overworked, stressed out, or vegged out in front of the TV, does it? A recurring theme in my posts, for sure. But an important point if you wish to understand why we’re in the middle of a constitutional crisis.

Wired has pried open Door 641A and taken a good long look. Here is a document from whistle-blower Mark Klein (pdf) who previously worked for AT&T as a technician. He fears the secret room was splitting the fiber optic cables carrying our internet data and sending the other half to the NSA for monitoring. He figured the project started with the Total Information Awareness program, which was supposedly defunded. Well, now the NSA is holding our electronic leash. Boy, they sure do wish to control us, don’t they? What’s with the desperation on their part? The whole government spying deal was supposed to be a conspiracy theory…. one that just about everyone believed. Well, now it’s true and it has been revealed as such and it’s staring us right in the face.

What are we gonna do about it?

What could they possibly want such an enormous information-burden for? There’s no need to spy on ALL of us! The government already knows what risk factors to look for when it comes to identifying terrorists, criminals, revolutionaries, you name it. Why would they decide to cast the net so far and wide unless their goal was to criminalize all of us?

Do you know the best way to get a person to act like a criminal?

Treat them like one.

… That’s my suspicion anyway. You know, a firefighter only has a job when fires are burning. In the same way, a cop only has a job if there’s crime and a warrior only has a job if there’s a war on. Are you pickin’ up what I’m layin’ down?

It wouldn’t be the first time; politicians are known to create problems so they have something to solve… after the election… assuming they are elected. And if they aren’t, why solve it? Why not create problems for your opponent? Then he does the same thing for you. Pretty soon, while you’re squabbling like dogs, the public is drowning in a sea of problems that you were supposed to solve, not create!

That’s how we get the super-bad problems like the War on Drugs problem. The problem of the fact that demagogues and idiots made a war on drug-users, is far worse than the problem of simple drug use and abuse. The War on Terror is similar in that it will never end, it is not intended to end, and even though war has been declared on an object (drugs) or tactic (terrorism), the things that suffer most in the war are people — mostly innocent bystanders in a war between shadowy groups who both fight and support each other. The collateral damage is mostly the result of people getting caught in the middle of those two groups (the government and the criminals) and paying the ultimate price in a war that did not need to be fought.

We are ruled by a political class that rule us as if they were kings, walking amongst the mere mortal peasants. They are sheltered from the world’s injustices and deprivations. They are inducted into a society of the well-to-do because there is no other social class for which they are fit. They have never really grown up, and so we peasants must suffer through the elite’s tiresome games, such as the war on drugs and the supposed war on terror, which seem to be much more of a war on the people. Another thing both of these demagogic wars have in common is that they are designed to erode our freedoms and our privacy by justifying it with the old saw, “need the tools to catch the bad guys.” Cops and Robbers for adults. Innocents are arrested so that the cops can have their fun. Meanwhile the criminals get away with it. The justice system spits them back out on the streets. After all, we’d have to lay off cops if there was no crime. The cycle goes on endlessly. Meanwhile, the rest of us are caught in the middle of this evil maelstrom, rocked about on waves of uncertainty and strife.

They’re building a system of control, people! Wake up before it’s too late!! They want to include all of us in their little game! Run and hide if you want, but they can still catch you; they have the technology. Fiber optic splitters to steal our communications, and televisions to assure us that it’s alright, no need to worry….

[szghk]

bszzzzzzshshh! |/<>\| [crackle]

[wavy lines]…. you are feeling…. sleepy. Content. Open. Let us in…..

Things are fine. We’re here to protect you… from the terrorists. The terrorists hate your freedom. They’re coming for you; only we can protect you from an enemy that exists all around you. Any one of your neighbors could be a spy or a terrorist or a commie, or even Irish. Be sure to turn them in at your local FBI office.

We’re listening anyway, so you might as well.

Coming up next, a pitbull dances with a lobster and a hyena! Wait ’til you see this!. ., After these messages.–

Schneier on Privacy

Wired has an article by Bruce Schneier on the topic of surveillance and privacy. He makes the argument that NSA spying is tyranny and that privacy is such a basic human need that the framers of the Constitution & Bill of Rights didn’t think there would be a need to spell it out beyond the language of the 4th amendment.

Cardinal Richelieu understood the value of surveillance when he famously said, “If one would give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest man, I would find something in them to have him hanged.” Watch someone long enough, and you’ll find something to arrest — or just blackmail — with. Privacy is important because without it, surveillance information will be abused: to peep, to sell to marketers and to spy on political enemies — whoever they happen to be at the time.

Privacy protects us from abuses by those in power, even if we’re doing nothing wrong at the time of surveillance.

We do nothing wrong when we make love or go to the bathroom. We are not deliberately hiding anything when we seek out private places for reflection or conversation. We keep private journals, sing in the privacy of the shower, and write letters to secret lovers and then burn them. Privacy is a basic human need.

A future in which privacy would face constant assault was so alien to the framers of the Constitution that it never occurred to them to call out privacy as an explicit right. Privacy was inherent to the nobility of their being and their cause. Of course being watched in your own home was unreasonable. Watching at all was an act so unseemly as to be inconceivable among gentlemen in their day. You watched convicted criminals, not free citizens. You ruled your own home. It’s intrinsic to the concept of liberty.

I want to be the master of my domain, but it appears that George Bush would prefer to be master of my domain (and his). Isn’t it ironic that a guy who is supposedly so concerned with the plight of those poor, downtrodden Iraqis, is quickly – nay, desperately - building a fascist state far more frightening and controlling than anything Saddam ever had? How strange. It’s almost as if every justification for invading Iraq was a lie. But that couldn’t be true? The mainstream media still treats him like a president, worshipfully talking about his every decision as if it was delivered from on high. Certainly they would treat him like that if it turned out he was a tyrannical psychopath bent on world domination through control of oil supply (and oil routes). Unless the media is in on the plan….

This is the loss of freedom we face when our privacy is taken from us. This is life in former East Germany, or life in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. And it’s our future as we allow an ever-intrusive eye into our personal, private lives.

Too many wrongly characterize the debate as “security versus privacy.” The real choice is liberty versus control. Tyranny, whether it arises under threat of foreign physical attack or under constant domestic authoritative scrutiny, is still tyranny. Liberty requires security without intrusion, security plus privacy. Widespread police surveillance is the very definition of a police state. And that’s why we should champion privacy even when we have nothing to hide.

Yes, he basically called Bush as bad as Saddam. While that may not be the case (yet), it’s not for lack of trying. Don’t fool yourself into thinking Bush shares the democratic ideals that he so often claims to defend. No, Bush is a fascist to his core, just like Saddam. There’s no rule that says that just because you were born in America that you automatically believe in freedom and democracy. Everyone believes in freedom…for themselves. Whether they believe in freedom for everyone else is a completely different question. Bush’s NSA spying plan is a slap in the face of 300 million Americans and the ideals of Libery, Freedom and Democracy for which thousands of men and women have died throughout American history. He has made a mockery of our democratic traditions while relentlessly expanding the power of the presidency by making Congress nothing more than a rubber stamp parliament. He’s let his corporate buddies run wild, with lobbyists writing laws and lawmakers not even reading them before voting in favor of them. He’s launched wars of conquest and invasion. He’s started spying programs that violate the letter and the spirit of the Constitution. This man is a menace. He should be impeached immediately, and imprisoned thereafter.

Such a man deserves death for his crimes. There are others, you know. We’ve only scratched the surface of this administration’s malfeasance.

NSA Spying – The big picture

Reporter Greg Palast has an insightful post on his website that takes a wider view of the NSA spying scandal. Here’s a taste:

Worried about Dick Cheney listening in Sunday on your call to Mom? That ain’t nothing. You should be more concerned that they are linking this info to your medical records, your bill purchases and your entire personal profile including, not incidentally, your voting registration. Five years ago, I discovered that ChoicePoint had already gathered 16 billion data files on Americans — and I know they’ve expanded their ops at an explosive rate.

They are paid to keep an eye on you — because the FBI can’t. For the government to collect this stuff is against the law unless you’re suspected of a crime. (The law in question is the Constitution.) But ChoicePoint can collect it for “commercial” purchases — and under the Bush Administration’s suspect reading of the Patriot Act — our domestic spying apparatchiks can then BUY the info from ChoicePoint.

He’s right. The government simply outsources or contracts out work that it doesn’t want to or (in this case) can’t do. I’m extremely concerned about the privacy of my medical and financial records, as I know most Americans are. But it’s worse than that. Much worse:

And now ChoicePoint and George Bush want your blood. Forget your phone bill. ChoicePoint, a sickened executive of the company told us in confidence, “hope[s] to build a database of DNA samples from every person in the United States …linked to all the other information held by CP [ChoicePoint]” from medical to voting records.

And ChoicePoint lied about that too. The company publicly denied they gave DNA to the Feds — but then told our investigator, pretending to seek work, that ChoicePoint was “the number one” provider of DNA info to the FBI.

This is just fucking evil. There’s no excuse for this. There’s no, “Oh we need it to fight the terrorists!” bullshit. Those excuses simply do not fly. This is evil. This is Orwellian. This is downright SATANIC!

It’s bad enough to try and get our , but the fact that they want their databases to talk to each other is extremely frightening. If they succeed at this, the government will know everything about you from the day you’re born to the day you die. There won’t be any discussion of 4th amendment rights, because there won’t be a 4th amendment. What if there’s no more privacy left to defend?

Repost from Slashdot

Before my earlier posts on the spying scandal slip behind the wall of the 24 post limit on Slashdot, I wanted to repost a couple here.

Here’s one from when AT&T was accused of forwarding all traffic to the NSA:


Now, are they talking about forwarding ALL AT&T traffic to NSA? I find that really really hard to believe. How much data is that? Can someone point to some known tech that can handle that….ALL that data? I’m not asking for “secret-I-bet-they-have-cold-fusion-computers” BS tech that someone *thinks* the NSA has.

You had it right in your first sentence. AT&T is forwarding all of their call data to the NSA. The NSA doesn’t need any super-cool tech in order to intercept this data since AT&T (and the other telecom companies) simply send this data directly to them. Don’t get me wrong, though – the NSA has some amazing technology. All of this data is processed, filtered, tagged and entered into a massive database.

I’m currently reading Body of Secrets: Anatomy of the Ultra-Secret National Security Agency [amazon.com] by James Bamford. It’s not light reading, but it’s fascinating….and extremely disturbing. The fascinating part is that we’ve been here before. This exact scenario already happened in the 60′s and 70′s, until information about it was leaked (by the NY Times, no less) and it was investigated by the Church Committee [wikipedia.org] circa 1975. It was called Project SHAMROCK [wikipedia.org] then, and it involved the phone companies and Western Union delivering huge magnetic tape reels to the NSA on a regular basis. The project was so secret that only a few people within the NSA where even aware of it.

Until the Congressional investigation, hardly anybody within the White House or Justice Department had even heard whispers of it. Congress, of course, was completely out of the loop. This obsession with secrecy goes back to the very founding of the NSA. The NSA operated with no Congressional oversight for decades (it was called “No Such Agency”), and its existance probably wasn’t even constitutionally legal/valid, but the information that it provided to other agencies (mostly the CIA and the Joint Chiefs of Staff) was so good that by the time Congress found out about it, it was indispensible. Today the NSA is the largest of the intelligence agencies (yes you read that right – larger than the CIA), although its exact budget is classified.

Second, this is just an accusation. There’s one guy that has some documents that say that’s what AT&T is doing. For all we know, this guy could be wearing tin-foil hats and singing to his dog about the aliens.

The only loonies around here are the people who think that the government isn’t spying on Americans every single day. Now, that doesn’t mean that they are listening to you in real time, and hanging on your every word. But all/most of your calls are recorded, digitized and handed to the NSA. From there, it is probably entered into a massive database. From there they can filter out unimportant calls and use data mining techniques to pull up relevant information. They use the ECHELON [wikipedia.org] computer software to sift through information, which probably works similar to Google, with keyword searches and a list of search results.

If you still don’t believe me, why don’t you have a conversation with a friend, where you discuss planting bombs around town. See how long it takes the feds to show up.

The stuff in italics is another poster who I am quoting. Here’s another from later on in the thread:


That would only require AT&T to spend millions of dollars on additional infrastructure. AT&T being a business, they would fight the order tooth and nail. Has that happened?

Doubt it. The companies involved the first time around (during the Cold War) apparently did it for free. The government simply appealed to their patriotism (the military was the group that actually asked them – would you say no to the military?) and apparently never compensated them, though that may not really be the case. There was probably some tit-for-tat going on. Besides, any company wants to be on the government’s good side, right? They probably see it as a cost of doing business. See the recent Google Goes to China fiasco for more insight into that mindset. As long as it’s not prohibitively expensive (read: difficult to make a profit) most companies probably wouldn’t have a problem with it. It’s all to save us from Teh Terr’rists after all.

I don’t doubt that the NSA has massive surveillance resources, but they’re not the fuckin’ Illuminati for christ’s sake. They’re a government organization staffed by human beings, and as such they probably don’t have their shit together enough to do all the shadowy things you think they’re doing.

You’re right, they’re not omnipotent, but they’re not idiots either. They own and operate what is probably the largest supercomputer on the planet. They operate in the shadows, with virtually no oversight from Congress, and the current administration is obsessed with secrecy and spying. Whether they can spy successfully is an open question, but there’s no question that they are trying. I think it’s actually much more likely that you are the deluded one. They are probably doing way more stuff than I have mentioned so far, and probably doing it well. Their foreign surveillance work is top-notch; we didn’t become the sole superpower by sucking at signals intelligence, that’s for sure. I would encourage you to do some research on the matter before falling back into that “teh guvmint is incompetent and they sux”-style of “logic.” I’ve provided facts, links and insight. Now it’s your turn to follow up.

Sorry for the indulgence, but I thought I made some good points. :-)

More spying news

The Baltimore Sun has a story about a pre-9/11 NSA program to spy on Americans. According to the paper, the earlier program was more protective of our privacy, but it was ultimately rejected because of bureaucratic squabbling. The is notorious for their turf wars, probably because it’s easier for a secretive agency to disguise the fact that they’re crawling with little dictators who are more interested in protecting their personal status and budget than they are about protecting Americans. And our liberties must trail a distant third in this sad little game.

You can find more at slashdot. Meanwhile, the lawsuits are already flying. Forbes has a story on the EFF’s early victory in a lawsuit against AT&T. They also comment on the weasel words used by Bell South & Verizon in their denials concerning the illegal spying program, “…But the telephone companies’ denials give them plenty of wiggle room.” Damn right. I hope you like being lied to, folks, because your government is lying to you, your phone company is lying to you, and your media is lying to you. Luckily, there are bloggers like me to save the world. ;-) My audience of 2 will be very grateful, I’m sure.