Frightful Oversight

March 19, 2014

eyeClear and chilly again this early Wednesday on California’s north coast — mid-week weakly here.
No earthquakes during my morning bath, but there’s been two little shakers since I got up earlier, and the movement continues.

Fascinating life in the nowadays, huh? War in the Crimea, a big passenger jet still missing after nearly two weeks, and as the old adage, ‘So Goes GM, So Goes Death and Destruction,’ we see the lying behind the curtain.
And even worse — America’s frightful government.

(Illustration: M.C. Escher’s ‘Eye‘ found here).

Last week, the shit between Congress and the CIA popped into public view when Sen. Dianne Feinstein reamed out the agency because it “violated the separation-of-powers principles embodied in the United States Constitution,” among other crimes, and ‘accused the CIA of ­secretly removing documents, searching computers used by the committee and attempting to intimidate congressional investigators by requesting an FBI inquiry of their conduct — charges that CIA Director John Brennan disputed within hours of her appearance on the Senate floor.’
Apparently, in the long-winded investigation of the CIA’s role in torture, the agency spied on Congress — computers used by a Congressional committee looking at the CIA were hacked by agency assholes.

This shit is all public record — yet one thrill has been lacking. Although the following occurred last Thursday, I didn’t read about it until yesterday, and that could be one indication of the overwhelming bullshit rolling around DC.
An incident of profound affect/effect — via Roll Call:

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi praised Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a fellow California Democrat, on Thursday for her “courage” in standing up to the intelligence community, though stopped short of saying whether she believed the CIA had, in fact, spied on Senate Intelligence Committee computer files.
“I salute Sen. Feinstein,” Pelosi said at her weekly news conference of the chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee.
“I’ll tell you, you take on the intelligence community, you’re a person of courage, and she does not do that lightly.
“Not without evidence, and when I say evidence, documentation of what it is that she is putting forth.”
Pelosi added that she has always fought for checks and balances on CIA activity and its interactions with Congress: “You don’t fight it without a price because they come after you and they don’t always tell the truth.
“Whatever else there is should be examined in terms of what happened and who let that happen,” she continued.
“This may be one of the healthiest things we can do because I know one thing: Whatever it is, the intelligence community writes a report on that, they leave, they write a book on it, all of a sudden it becomes conventional … gossip that that’s what happened there and we really have to have the ground truth.”

Is Congress afraid of the CIA/NSA/FBI, whatever? The DOE?
Nancy uttered a huge mouthful of peppered shit if you just consider the ramifications of it all: “You don’t fight it without a price because they come after you and they don’t always tell the truth.
Just ponder that. A high-ranking member of the US Congress saying our chief governing body is scared of an organization under its oversight and control — WTF?

Mike Masnick at TechDirt on Monday described it correctly:

And yet… Pelosi’s comments certainly seem to hint at even more nefarious activity by the intelligence community against politicians who dare to actually do the job of oversight.
The point of that ACLU post linked above is that, even if it’s not happening, the fact that we can’t definitively rule it out is a serious problem for democracy.
And just the fact that some of the most powerful members of Congress, who are theoretically in charge of oversight, are now publicly admitting that they’re scared of how the CIA fights back when they take them on, suggests that the intelligence community really is rotten to the core.
And Congressional oversight, as it stands today, is clearly not able to deal with the issue by itself.

Any situation is really, really bad when you’re frightened of your own watchdog.

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