If the tea party is looking for constructive things to do, how about singlemindedly joining the fight to rein in the #NSA ? (Oh, did I say that?)

h/t Bruce Schneier

Ryan Lizza: Why Won’t Obama Rein in the N.S.A.?

H. Peter Anvin December 13, 2013 16:09

I think the condition in the if clause is false. They do whatever their funders tell them to do.

Curtis Olson December 13, 2013 16:32

My theory is that the federal gov’t has grown so big that it transcends individual leaders and representatives.  If you try to squeeze anywhere to reduce its funding or its power, you are met with great screams of pain and agony.  It is this way across the entire federal gov’t.  But as we’ve seen in the latest budget negotiations, both sides are trying to squirm out of the sequester cuts (they were just too painful to the federal gov’t) and those were a few billion out of a several trillion budget.  The entity itself has grown beyond the power of the people or the leaders to control it.  I can’t blame Obama on this one.  That’s my theory.

H. Peter Anvin December 13, 2013 16:46

It’s not even the Federal Government here… it is the fact that the intelligence and security services have formed an effective “shadow state.”  J. Edgar Hoover’s collecting blackmail on politicians was an early part of that.

Curtis Olson December 13, 2013 16:53

So who holds them accountable if they get caught crossing the line or breaking the law or just doing a really poor job at what they’ve been tasked to do?  Who should hold them accountable?

H. Peter Anvin December 13, 2013 16:57

You know the answer.  They have successfully shielded themselves from any responsibility.  They are by and large no longer part of the democratic state.

Curtis Olson December 13, 2013 17:01

No disagreement there, but I think that many (most?) other federal agencies are fast heading in the same direction.  The only thing I can think of that will have any chance at halting this progression is starving the beast, cutting back funding.

Imported from Google+ — content and formatting may not be reliable