Glenn Reynolds: ‘It’s not surprising that in such an atmosphere, CIA operatives would feel comfortable snooping on the Senate’Posted: August 3, 2014
CIA responded to Obama’s acquiescence when it spied on the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Public Servants Acting as Public Masters
For USAToday, Glenn Reynolds writes: “Nothing could be further from the truth. I mean, we wouldn’t do that.” That was CIA Director John Brennan’s answer in March when Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., charged the CIA with breaking into computers used by Senate investigators looking into CIA misconduct.
“Call me old-fashioned, but I believe that people respond to incentives.”
It turns out that the CIA would do that — and, in fact, had done so. Brennan’s reassurances were false, and CIA spooks had been hacking into the committee investigators’ computers looking for documents they thought the investigators shouldn’t have, violating a promise not to. So, first Brennan broke a promise. Then, he either lied, or showed that he doesn’t control his own agency, which in many ways would be worse.
[Glenn Reynolds‘ book The New School: How the Information Age Will Save American Education from Itself is available at Amazon]
Brennan has apologized, but his apology won’t be the end of things. We’re already seeing bipartisan calls for his removal, from Sens. Mark Udall, D-Colo., Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., and Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky. The White House is hanging toughso far, but we’re now hearing comparisons made to the speed with which Brennan’s predecessor, Gen. David Petraeus, was cut loose over an extramarital affair. Does this mean that the White House views spying on, and lying to, members of Congress as less serious than an affair?
The answer to that, alas, is probably “yes.” Contempt for Congress, and for separation of powers and historical understandings about the roles of the executive and legislative branches, has been a hallmark of the Obama administration. It’s not surprising that in such an atmosphere, CIA operatives would feel comfortable snooping on the Senate, and that a CIA director would feel confident issuing blanket denials when questioned.
And what’s the worst that’s likely to happen to Brennan? …(read more)
- Two Democrat Senators Call for Resignation of Obama’s CIA Director (freedomoutpost.com)
- CIA read emails of Senate staff (capitolhillblue.com)
- 2 Dems: Brennan should resign (politico.com)
- CIA Director John Brennan Lied To You And To The Senate. Fire Him (popularresistance.org)
- CIA confesses: Yeah, we hacked the Senate’s computers (hotair.com)
- CIA admits to searching Senate computers (legalinsurrection.com)
- CIA Admits To Infiltrating Senate Computers, Apologizes (dailycaller.com)
- Democratic Senator calls for CIA director’s resignation for spying on Congress (hotair.com)
- Feinstein: CIA snooped on secure Congressional network (hotair.com)
- Obama has “full faith” in DCIA who doesn’t know what CIA is up to (powerlineblog.com)