The NSA Responds To Bernie Sanders Whether It Spies on Congress

Tyler Durden's picture

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?

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VD's picture

why The Fed is in charge of it all, bc The Fed is owned by the 1% (PDs et al.) so obvious it's hard to see.

nope-1004's picture

Members of Congress have the same privacy protections as all U.S. persons:  NONE 

 Everyone and anyone is a target.  That's how blackmail works, in a corrupt government.


outofideas's picture

That answer is pretty much "That is a nice banana republic you have there congresman, it would be a shame if something happened to it" type of answer.

ghengis86's picture

Notably, a much stricter rule was set for US government communications found in the raw intelligence. The Israelis were required to "destroy upon recognition" any communication "that is either to or from an official of the US government". Such communications included those of "officials of the executive branch (including the White House, cabinet departments, and independent agencies), the US House of Representatives and Senate (member and staff) and the US federal court system (including, but not limited to, the supreme court)".


of course they spy on everyone, including senatros.  And then hand it over to Israel and probably other foreign interests as well.

ZerOhead's picture

Edward Snowden for President

And an early death for all Constitutional traitors!

Troll Magnet's picture

I'd take Ron Paul or Gary Johnson in 2016.

remain calm's picture

Another words Bernie, "we can see you jerking off while you watch porn via the webcam on your computer".

ZerOhead's picture

I hear Snowden is a few bucks short over there in Russia...

Is there any way we can send him cash without our testicles being crushed or it being sucked up by the scumbag fucking lawyers who will not work for him pro bono?

A million people at $10 bucks a pop will make him and the subsequent rush of other NSA defectors rich and us free again.

We all owe it to him.



gherman's picture

I summon... FONESTAR!

nmewn's picture

ROTFL!!!...there ya go...our resident BitMillionaire surely believes in good causes, problem solved!

Manthong's picture

Maybe Bernie and bunch of his privileged colleagues should be concerned about being on the wrong side during the inevitable Night of the American Long Knives.   

NoDebt's picture

Hey, Congress!  How you feeling about those FISA court protections now?  Pretty confident, would be my guess, right?

ghengis86's picture

now, if we could get a senator to ask the NSA if they spy on Pres Choomwagon and the Supremes.  that would be fun

espirit's picture

It's like lighting a fire that will consume you, Bernie.

Think Fukushima.

Dudes an idiot, outlived his usefullness, or both.

Richard Chesler's picture

Raises hand slowly...

Does that include Diane Frankestein?


MrPalladium's picture

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

Stuart's picture

This is NOT what the original founders of the constitution had in mind, when they wrote "We The People..."

Oh regional Indian's picture

The founders were masonic, slave owning, England and french loving men who were sent to conquer the new atlantis.

The story of the US as known by most is one of the modern era's truly great lies. Kind of like India's "freedom" from the UK.


Believe nothing...


MeMadMax's picture

Obama is laughing all the way to his latest NSA intellegince meeting...

GetZeeGold's picture





The NSA did categorically deny it......right?

Withdrawn Sanction's picture

"The founders were masonic, slave owning, England and french loving men who were sent to conquer the new atlantis."

True, but that does not mean they were wrong about everything.  A more intelligent reaction is to sort the wheat from the chaff.

A more humane reaction is to place oneself in the founders' shoes and ask how you would have dealth w/slavery for example. They came into this system (they did not invent it) and had to deal w/it as it was.  Did they do a good job w/it?  No, but what would you have done in their place?  The question is relevant, b/c we are confronted w/a different manifestation of same problem today.  We are in a slave pen, which is steadily getting smaller.  How do you propose we deal w/it, and are you leading and living your life consistent w/your proposal(s)?  

Incidentally, although most know this, it's worth re-emphasizing that the call to "believe nothing" is still a belief system.  Good luck w/that.

Oh regional Indian's picture

WS, most of what you say is true. But believe nothing is a catchall to say believe nothing but what your own, inner, finely honed sense of discrimination tells you.

Thing is, truth IS stranger than fiction by far and thus for most people, is okay to in-joy, but for Enter-Attain-Ment only.


i-dog's picture

Good to see you commenting, ORI. I don't buy into your word-plays, but you nearly got the plot right! An event in 1773 caused certain people - using Masonic connections - to take over the New World ... in order to gain a base from which to again attempt to take over the Old World (oh...and now the whole world).

Ranger4564's picture

You're welcome to justify whatever belief system you want, but your argument has no merit. I agree with the parts where you ask one to step into that situation, but a truly intelligent person would be more an independent thinker and less constrained by their culture. Look at science or the enlightenment period for good examples of individuals who appear to have truly broken free of cultural limitations. Think for yourself is not an empty phrase... and believe nothing is not a belief system equivalent to believe everything you're told.

If you truly live through life believing almost nothing and questioning everything with every bit of new information that enters your awareness, you will find old 'facts' being dismissed. If you hold some 'truths' to be sacred, then you've lost grip of reality and are merely living in your preferred fantasy.

Additionally, much of what we know came from sources which may have been under the control of nefarious characters. Just because it can be read and corroborated by many sources doesn't mean that information was not manipulated / distorted.

Milestones's picture

For an exploration of this notion read historian Charles Beard's book from 1917 "An Economic Interpetation of the U.S. Constitution" An eye opener for most Americans (Whoops--Merkans)                Milestones

Boris Alatovkrap's picture

AmeriKa, land of serf, home of the naive.

GetZeeGold's picture



Under the same protection.....that doesn't sound good.

logicalman's picture

Land of the fee, home of the slave.

Papasmurf's picture

The answer is obvious since they insisted he accept a Blackberry since it is "secure".   He also has a rooted iPad.

WillyGroper's picture

A better question would be how many calls they've made to their accountants.

Next, they'll be squeezed like the rest of us via blackmail. Is that PC?

DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Oh, I feel so much better knowing that I have the same protection as Congress-critters.  I wonder if each and all of them have compromised to the NSA info...


old naughty's picture

as ORI indicated yesterday" "he could be gaming the egamers"

Do WE want the truth?

WE can't handle the truth !?

DoChenRollingBearing's picture
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Element's picture

Stop messing with my text reader, bastard.

spankfish's picture

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Mad Muppet's picture

I sadly expect Do Chen will soon have some serious labor problems, tax problems, etc. Big Brother has a long arm, and many evil servants. But then, they can decrypt most commercial encryption software anyway, right?

rehypothecator's picture

I recognize that. Those digits occur in the decimal expansion of pi.  And in the decimal expansion of sqrt(2).  In fact, they occur at the same starting digit location in the cube roots of two integers, which, however, I'm not at liberty to discuss.

odatruf's picture

Fuck, you hacked my ZH password!


edotabin's picture

"Oh, I feel so much better knowing that I have the same protection as Congress-critters"

Yeah, we just don't get the same medical coverage.

Either way, the most telling thing is what Bernie will do with that answer. Most here are just concerned citizens behind a keyboard.  Bernie can actually do something almost immediately.  Let's see.

InnerG's picture

Make sure to hold your breathe

Crash Overide's picture

His name was Fonestar...


...and he changed the world by sending Eddy Snowden some Bitcoins.

-Chapter 2 Earth history pre-crash of 2014-

Never One Roach's picture

In other words, Bernie:


"Up your nose with a rubber hose!"

kill switch's picture

Well it's now obvious that we have no representative government when the NSA spies on all reps.... They all have shit to hide.....That's why we have no progress in the representatives in this corrupt system.... voting is know relevant...

cynicalskeptic's picture

Well, it explains why all those Republicans in Congress that were vehemently denouncing the loss of rights under The Patriot Act and all ended up voting FOR it in lockstep under Bush.  

It also explains why the wholesale spying started long BEFORE 9/11.  Had to collect the dirt on everyone, find the skeletons in thier closets, BEFORE the voting on all the legislation that gutted the Constitution.

oddball's picture

Also insider trading is legal for ALL these assholes.  


"NSA, we blackmail you, but we let you and your cronies 'profit' from the experiance."™ 

PT's picture

... and I would bet that there are quite a few innocent people out there who, unbeknown to them,  couldn't get a job because there wan't enough dirt on them.

Not long ago here we had a whistleblower's fraudulent past brought into the spotlight (just in time for the media to ignore her complaints).  My first thought at the time was, "With so many good people out there, how did they end up hiring a fraud?  Why didn't they discover her past before she tried do bring some dirt into the light?" 

Wahooo's picture

It explains Bush and Obama.

freefall's picture

I'm in for $10 if there is a secure (oh geez where did that word come from?!) way to get it to him.

bunnyswanson's picture

Greenwald would probably pass it along to ES.  Does Greenwald come onto ZH?