The Open Dimension

Commentary on social issues; politics; religion and spirituality

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Location: Laguna Hills, California, United States

I am a semi-retired psychotherapist/psychiatric social worker and certified hypnotherapist. Originally a practicing attorney, I changed careers during the 1980's. My interests include history, constitutional law, Hindustani classical music, yoga, meditation and spirituality.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

November 10, 2013, OpEdNews

How Evil Can the CIA and NSA Get? How to Restrain US Intelligence Agencies
By Rob Kall

Just how evil have the CIA, NSA, the FBI, military intelligence and other agencies become? Let's start with the fact that their heads, Clapper and Alexander, have lied to congress, with the protection of the President and the heads of the intelligence committees.
As the anniversary of the JFK assassination approaches, more information is coming out. We have two great articles in today.

I've gotten to know a number of JFK assassination researchers and experts. The gist of the message is that the CIA was involved in the killing. That shouldn't be surprising. The CIA has been involved in killing other presidents and other governments in other lands. It's not that big a stretch to imagine the CIA killing a president. .

We know that the CIA collaborated with war criminal Dick Cheney to persuade Colin Powell to give his famous WMD speech to the United Nations in 2003. We know they have repeatedly helped dictators to take power by undermining democratically elected regimes throughout the world. Maybe we should call the CIA the Corporate Intelligence Agency.

We've learned from disclosures by whistleblowers-- American Hero whistleblowers-- that the intelligence community is out of control, violating our constitutional rights. Let me be clear. Violating our constitutional rights means they are breaking the law. The CIA, NSA and the rest of the intelligence orgs have their backs covered by people like senator Dianne Feinstein and president Obama-- people who have basically made these agencies unaccountable to the American people.

The criminality and the abuses of the CIA and NSA should be investigated, as they were by the Church committee, decades ago. This should be a bi-partisan issue. It won't be surprising to see the Democrats who enable Obama's abuses, his maintenance and expansion of Executive Powers expanded by Bush and Cheney, covering Obama's butt. But there will be enough legislators, soon, so we should start seeing legislation.

What kinds of legislation can we expect to see soon?

-restraining the NSA, putting tighter limits on their spying on the American public and the world, and on widely used websites like facebook, google and twitter. This should be a bi-partisan issue.

-Legislation further expanding the rights associated with FOIA requests-- rights by the people asking the questions. This should be a bi-partisan issue.

-Open Government and transparency expansion-- this should be a bi-partisan issue.

What Kinds of Government Responses can we expect to see soon?

-Obama is expanding the classification of government workers involved in security work-- so they are not allowed to engage in whistleblowing. Pretty soon, postal delivery workers will be given security classifications.

-protection of the spy agencies by heads of congressional intelligence committees. These elected officials are profoundly, pathologically misguided in their defending NSA, CIA, etcetera, and literally misleading the public, telling us that they really know what these agencies are up to. They should be charging Clapper and Alexander with lying to congress, and prosecuting them.

What can WE do?
I'm not a big believer in the potential for electoral politics to make a difference. But this is one issue that I think legislators could get on board with. So, let your congressperson and senator know you want them to

-demand that the heads of the committees, who have allowed their committees to be lied to, be removed as committee heads and replaced with people committed to getting to the truth, and to charging and prosecuting people who lie to congress.

-pass legislation restricting spying on Americans, restricting collecting massive amounts of data with a "collect it all" attitude.

-pass legislation requiring government agencies to post all their data and numbers and interactions with individuals and corporations on-line in uniformly accessible ways, to increase government openness and transparency

-pass legislation making it easier to get faster, less redacted, more complete Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, so agencies MUST respond and provide requested materials, and lower the number of years when classified materials have their secrecy expire.

-pass legislation restricting use of secrecy classification, because abuse of classification is being abused and out of control

-Support for development of digital technologies that make access to open government better, easier, deeper.

-pass legislation honoring Edward Snowden and Bradley Manning as heroes who have served America nobly

There's no question that every nation needs intelligence agencies. But the USA's agencies have gone out of control. We need intel, but we need to be able to trust the agencies that dig it up. We don't have that now. Serious changes must be made.