I caught some segments this morning on the NSA spying report and I'm really annoyed at the level of journalism. They show a segment about the report's findings, then bring on an NSA supporter and ask some questions and then don't really followup with any questions. They might bring on someone to tell the other side and it's the same thing. Here's what I'd like to see asked.
When someone says it's just metadata, we're not collecting names it's just numbers; they should be asked can't you associate names with it? Otherwise how do you catch terrorists? It seems to me you're trying to have it both ways. You're saying the information is vital for security but it's not really important so you shouldn't worry about giving it to us.
And here's something I've always wondered, are sms messages metadata? They're limited to 160 characters because they're a hack so that they are included in phone metadata, so does the NSA count the content of sms messages as metadata or content?
I heard today people worrying about the suggestion from the report that the metadata should be held by private companies and not by the government and say that this would be less secure. The metadata original comes from the phone companies, they already have it. You're not giving it to someone new.
When someone says Edward Snowden should have used the established whistleblower procedures; they should be asked about Thomas Drake, William Binney and J. Kirk Wiebe. Three former NSA officials who followed proper channels and became whistleblowers and nothing changed and were all investigated for it and Drake was prosecuted under the Espionage Act.
These questions don't seem so difficult to me.