Yesterday, in what we characterized as an episode of a "real life magic-mushroom, banana dictatorship envisioned by George Orwell" gone full retard, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders asked the NSA point blank whether it has "spied, or is the NSA currently spying, on members of Congress or other American elected officials?" Today, via the Bezos Post, we got the answer: "Members of Congress have the same privacy protections as all U.S. persons," the spokesman said, which thanks to Edward Snowden, we now know for a factor are precisely none (for those still unconvinced, please see: "The Complete Guide To How The NSA Hacked Everything"). "We are reviewing Sen. Sanders’s letter now, and we will continue to work to ensure that all members of Congress, including Sen. Sanders, have information about NSA’s mission, authorities, and programs to fully inform the discharge of their duties." In other words, of course.
More from WaPo:
The answer is telling. We already know that the NSA collects records on virtually every phone call made in the United States. That program was renewed for the 36th time on Friday. If members of Congress are treated no differently than other Americans, then the NSA likely keeps tabs on every call they make as well.
It's a relief to know that Congress doesn't get a special carve-out (they're just like us!). But the egalitarianism of it all will likely be of little comfort to Sanders."
Of course, it is no surprise that the US superspies spy on Congress. After all they spy on everyone. But the bigger question is if the NSA is itself, by implication, above the checks and balances of the US legislative apparatus, just who is in charge of determining the targets of the most powerful spying agency in the history of the world? In other words, who watches the watchmen? And just how is any of this even remotely legal?