Tuesday, May 16, 2006

This Week in Whistleblowing

Some time this week, I don't know when, a former NSA analyst will be testifying behind closed doors to the Senate Armed Services committee, in which he will lay bare what he knows about the NSA's illegal and unconstitutional activities that involve millions of Americans.

Russell Tice, whose resume lists him as a specialist in space operation systems and "all source collection analysis" testified several months ago before the House Government Reform Subcommittee about the retaliation he had suffered after trying to warn supervisors about suspected security breaches. He stated then that he had more information he wished to share, and offered to meet with them again in private session.

That meeting is taking place this week.

All we know so far is this: "Tice said his information is different from the Terrorist Surveillance Program that Bush acknowledged in December and from news accounts this week that the NSA has been secretly collecting phone call records of millions of Americans. "It's an angle that you haven't heard about yet," he said."

Hmm... a former space operations specialist and all source collection analyst says, "I think the people I talk to next week are going to be shocked when I tell them what I have to tell them. It's pretty hard to believe."

Hmm... you don't think we're being monitored by those handy, anti-theft OnStar systems, do you? You know, those devices in all Cadillacs and certain other GM vehicles that knows when your airbag has deployed and e-mails you when it needs oil... the same devices that can be used to monitor your current conversation and position on a map? Yes, those.

I don't know the more sinister aspects of this, but when you look at how the Republican party uses smear tactics and personal attacks to marginalize their opponents, and how they blame all their failures on the Democrats, it's not hard to imagine that every liberal politician, pundit, personality, organizer and activist is being monitored on a regular basis.

And all this because our President wants to track Americans who are "aginst" him. It's all taken personally and he can't resist the desire to strike back, to draw blood, to get the last word. Just like the vulnerable bully at school, nobody gets away with talkin' shit about him, and just like the war in Iraq, no sacrifice is too great to avenge his weak and failing reputation.

So keep your ears open. I've sent an e-mail to Keith Olberman, the only newsman I trust anymore, asking him to keep his ear to the ground. I have faith that if there is any inkling of information out of these private hearings, Keith will mention it on his show.

Update, thanks to Randi Rhodes: Mr. Tice will be testifying Wednesday the 17th. I will update this site if I hear anything.

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