I watched Chris Matthews on Hardball yesterday and, as usual, most of his blather was nonsensical speculation about tactics which he and his cronies expect to be used in the election of 2016. He has no concern regarding the implications of that election on the well being of the nation, you understand, but is excited nearly to the point of orgasm over who will be running and what "issues" they will be running on. The man is an idiot.
They did do a segment on the NSA eavesdropping, and the entirety of the concern had to do with the degree to which the programs are effective in keeping us safe from being blown up by Chechen terrorists who deploy pressure cooker bombs at marathons. Oh, wait, they actually didn't mention that episode. Fucking morons.
President Obama also defended the programs, again by telling us how effective they are at protecting us from Chechen terrorists who deploy pressure cooker bombs at marathons. What he actually said was "terror plots," of course, because when talking about the NSA he's pretending that Boston didn't happen. He also said that the programs are "transparent" because a secret court in an undisclosed location with an unelected judge whose name is super secret approves 100% of the warrants secretly submitted to him without the knowledge of the persons who are the subject of the warrants. He has a vastly different definition of "transparent" than I do.
The issue, of course, is not whether or not the NSA programs are effective. The issue is whether or not they are legal, and that is a question that no one is asking. If they did ask the question it would not, of course, be answered because the answer is pretty clearly "no." Or, "Oh hell no."