The Watch

The Watch is concerned about the increasing pressure towards feudalism in the United States from corporations, social regressives, warmongers, and the media. We also are concerned with future history concerning our current times, as non-truths which are “widely reported” become the basis for completely false narratives.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Hayden Watch

Hayden Watch

President Bush has nominated Mike Hayden to be the next head of the CIA. "Mike Hayden is supremely qualified for this position," Bush proclaimed in his press conference.

Much as I hate to do it, I have to agree with President Bush on this one; I agree that Hayden is supremely qualified to violate the Constitutional rights of all US citizens...

Interestingly, here's what Mr. Hayden said in a speech in 2000: (I got this helpful transcript from the NSA website itself!)

"Those of us who have been around awhile recall hearing about the Church and Pike investigations of the mid-1970s. After lengthy investigations, the House and Senate committees concluded that NSA had not given appropriate weight to privacy considerations in conducting its signals intelligence mission."As a result, Congress passed a law called the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act regulating electronic surveillance in the United States. Both houses of Congress established permanent intelligence oversight committees to ensure compliance. Moreover, President Ford issued an Executive Order which both authorized and set limits on the conduct of intelligence activities. As a result, the legal and policy context for intelligence activities was forever and dramatically changed.

"Now, if you've seen "Enemy of the State" you might believe that the intelligence gathering mission offers the greatest threat to the privacy of network users. Like many people, you may not be aware of the laws and regulations under which the NSA operates, and the rigorous oversight applied to those operations to ensure our compliance."So how do we reconcile the government's need for foreign intelligence information with the need to protect individual privacy rights? We do this through a series of procedures outlined in the Executive Order, approved by the Attorney General and the Secretary of Defense, and vetted with the Congressional intelligence oversight committees.

"The procedures recognize two important facts: first, there are times when a government needs to collect information about its citizens. The circumstances under which this is allowed to occur either inside or outside the U.S. are extremely limited and well-regulated. Basically, there must be probable cause that a person is an agent of a foreign power and a court must issue a warrant authorizing the surveillance inside the U.S."

It's actually quite a good speech. You can read the entire speech at the following address:

Similarly, in April 2000, Mr. Hayden testified to the House Select Committee on Intelligence:

"The Seventies were a watershed for the Intelligence Community. Congressional investigating committees, led by Senator Frank Church and Congressman Otis Pike, found that Government agencies, including NSA, conducted a number of improper intelligence activities directed against U.S. citizens. The revelations of these committees resulted in new rules for U.S. intelligence agencies, rules meant to inhibit abuses while preserving our intelligence capabilities. In other words, a concerted effort was made to balance the country's need for foreign intelligence information with the need to protect core individual privacy rights.

"A wide-ranging, new intelligence oversight structure was built into U.S. law. A series of laws and Executive Orders established oversight procedures and substantive limitations on intelligence activities. In the aftermath of the Church and Pike committees' revelations, Congress passed the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) which created a procedural structure with a special court for considering and approving certain surveillances that occur in the U.S. and thus have the potential to affect rights guaranteed by the Constitution. The House and Senate each established intelligence oversight committees. President Ford issued an Executive Order that established for the first time a formal system of intelligence oversight in the Executive Branch. Oversight mechanisms were established within the Department of Justice and within each intelligence agency. The President also established an independent Intelligence Oversight Board.

"The result today at NSA is an intelligence gathering system that operates within detailed, constitutionally-based, substantive, and procedural limits under the watchful eyes of Congress, numerous institutions within the Executive Branch, and --through the FISA --the judiciary. The privacy framework is technology neutral and does not require amendment to accommodate new communications technologies."

Wow. Also a good speech. You can read the whole thing at:

WAIT A MINUTE! Hayden's speeches in 2000 appear to conflict directly with his most recent speech on January 23, 2006, where he defended the warrantless spying program of the Bush Administration:

QUESTION: "Sam Husseini from IPA Media. You just now spoke of, quote, "two paths," but of course the FISA statute itself says that it will be the exclusive means by which electronic surveillance may be pursued. Are you not, therefore, violating the law?"

GEN. HAYDEN: "That's probably a question I should deflect to the Department of Justice, but as I said in my comments, I have an order whose lawfulness has been attested to by the attorney general, an order whose lawfulness has been attested to by NSA lawyers who do this for a living. No, we're not violating the law."

QUESTION: "The legal standard is probable cause, General. You used the terms just a few minutes ago, "We reasonably believe." And a FISA court, my understanding is, would not give you a warrant if you went before them and say "we reasonably believe"; you have to go to the FISA court, or the attorney general has to go to the FISA court and say, "we have probable cause." And so what many people believe -- and I'd like you to respond to this -- is that what you've actually done is crafted a detour around the FISA court by creating a new standard of "reasonably believe" in place in probable cause because the FISA court will not give you a warrant based on reasonable belief, you have to show probable cause. Could you respond to that, please?"

GEN. HAYDEN: "Sure. I didn't craft the authorization. I am responding to a lawful order. All right? The attorney general has averred to the lawfulness of the order. Just to be very clear -- and believe me, if there's any amendment to the Constitution that employees of the National Security Agency are familiar with, it's the Fourth. And it is a reasonableness standard in the Fourth Amendment. And so what you've raised to me -- and I'm not a lawyer, and don't want to become one -- what you've raised to me is, in terms of quoting the Fourth Amendment, is an issue of the Constitution. The constitutional standard is "reasonable." And we believe -- I am convinced that we are lawful because what it is we're doing is reasonable."


Turns out that the NSA people have "lernt" everything wrong regarding the Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution, which reads:

"The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

So, actually, while Mr. Hayden was spewing propaganda at his January 23, 2006 press conference, he actually revealed that as head of the NSA, he completely and utterly failed his Constitutional test, stating that searches and seizures must be reasonable and do not require "probable cause". This re-writing of the Constitution by Mr. Hayden is extremely dangerous, and is why I oppose his nomination to head of the CIA. This man is dangerous to our liberty and freedom. As head of the NSA, he has been spying on Americans without warrants and in clear and knowing violation of FISA. SHAME!!!

In 2000, Hayden repeatedly admitted that the NSA had participated in a number of improper intelligence activities against Americans in the 1970s and that Congress had responded by limiting NSA's activities via FISA. In 2000, Hayden admitted that FISA prevents the NSA from spying on Americans without a warrant and that a series of checks and balances from all three branches of government "forever" (his word) precluded NSA from warrantless spying.

In 2006, without any changes whatsoever to the FISA law, Hayden insists that he and the NSA can now "end-around" FISA because of an executive order, and that the NSA can thumb its nose at the judicial and legislative branches of government, creating a new lower standard of "reasonableness" that is not part of any check-and-balance system in the government. Without Congressional or judicial oversight, Mr. Hayden and the NSA can spy on whomever they want -- including political opponents of the corrupt Bush Administration. SHAME ON YOU, MR. HAYDEN!!! You are not an American. You are a despot. I despise you!

Long Live the Republic!

-John Locke


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