Ground fog and damp this way-too-early Saturday on California’s north coast — seemingly the most-dead time zone of all, that period of deep quiet and isolation marking a weekend’s pre-dawn hours.
Everybody else most-likely asleep, like normal folks.
In the wake of a federal appeals court ruling last week the NSA’s mass collection of phone records is illegal, up crops this morning the coincidental name of a most-noted DC asshole, James Clapper, director of National Intelligence, and a “too cute by half” kind of guy, with yet another attempt to redefine his lying to Congress two years ago.
Clapper wasn’t fibbing, he’d just “absolutely forgotten” a vital NSA program, one that’s criminal.
(Illustration: James Clapper caricatures, out front and above, by Jon Weiner, found here).
During a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in March 2013, Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon ‘…asked Clapper whether the National Security Agency collects “any type of data at all on millions of Americans.” Clapper responded, “No, sir.”‘
Not too long thereafter, Eddie Snowden proved Clapper a liar.
And the asshole has been dodging turd-questions ever since, whining first about ‘misspeaking,’ blubbering down to the current, ‘forgetfulness.’
Speaking of which, from The Hill last evening:
“This was not an untruth or a falsehood. This was just a mistake on his part,” Robert Litt, the general counsel for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, said during a panel discussion hosted by the Advisory Committee on Transparency on Friday.
“We all make mistakes.”
Litt on Friday said that Clapper merely did not have a chance to prepare an answer for Wyden and forgot about the phone records program when asked about it on the spot.
“We were notified the day before that Sen. Wyden was going to ask this question and the director of national intelligence did not get a chance to review it,” Litt said.
“He was hit unaware by the question,” Litt added.
“After this hearing I went to him and I said, ‘Gee, you were wrong on this.’
“And it was perfectly clear that he had absolutely forgotten the existence of the 215 program.”
Instead, Litt said, Clapper had been thinking about separate programs authorized under Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which the NSA has used to collect massive amounts of foreigners’ Internet data.
The law explicitly prohibits the government from gathering the same kind of data about Americans, unless it is “incidental.”
“If you read his answer it is perfectly clear that he was thinking about the 702 program,” Litt said.
“When he is talking about not wittingly collecting, he is talking about incidental collection.”
Load of crap, Bob, speaking for Clapper, and thinking for him, too.
Clapper and his former boss, the noted fancy-pants-delusional Keith Alexander, have both been caught lying and just twitch their noses, and move on — (at Forbes).
Last September, Clapper blubbered at an intelligence summit in Washington that it was “…very disappointing to have my integrity questioned…” due to his lying to Congress.
Via CBS News at the time:
Clapper’s explanations for his answer have shifted over time.
At first he defended his comments and said he meant the say the NSA was not going through Americans’ email.
Later, he said that his response was “the least untruthful” he could give Congress.
Finally, he wrote a letter to Congress last June saying his answer was “clearly erroneous” and said that he had been thinking about the substance of the phone calls rather than the “to” and “from” information, which is known as metadata.
No wonder the entire US intelligence apparatus has the clap…