WASHINGTON – National Security Agency officials announced today that public outrage over the recent revelation that they have broken their own privacy rules thousands of times per year since 2008 is all due to a simple misunderstanding. The NSA claims the misunderstanding stems from the fact that the public views these privacy rules as laws, while the NSA see them as “cute, but optional.”
An NSA audit conducted in May 2012 found 2,776 incidents of unauthorized collection, storage, access to or distribution of legally protected communications during the previous year.
U.S. Deputy Attorney General James Cole has continued to argue that oversight plays a large role in this rogue, rule-breaking government agency, in spite of overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
“Every now and then, there may be a mistake,” said Cole. “Maybe one here, two or three thousand there. The mistakes aren’t really illegal because, between you and me, the laws don’t really apply to the NSA.”
Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) has continued to defend the agency’s surveillance practices, arguing that the thousands of unauthorized incidents were “unintentional.”
“I know this looks bad,” said Feinstein. “But you have to realize that the NSA does not break its own rules on purpose. These illegal collections are all just accidents. Thousands and thousands of accidents. Nobody’s perfect, right?”
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) angered many Senate Democrats this week by continuing to speak out against NSA surveillance programs, forcing other senators to admit that he has a point.
“I never thought I’d see the day when I’d side with Rand Paul against Dianne Feinstein,” said a visibly shaken Democratic senator who wished to remain anonymous. “This is the guy who said ‘call me cynical, but I didn’t think [Obama’s] views on marriage could get any gayer.’ This is that guy.”
One NSA employee told Newslo via email that although he knew that his agency was a “bloated embarrassment,” he had no idea the extent to which his colleagues had violated their own rules.
“Since I found out about this audit, I’ve started applying to other jobs,” said the anonymous NSA employee. “Even Anthony Weiner’s campaign is probably better run than this bureaucratic joke.”
Another former employee told Newslo that her recent resignation from the NSA was partly due to the agency’s “illegal bullshit,” but also due to a federal policy that encourages employees and contractors to report suspicious indicators from their colleagues – such as divorce or financial troubles – in order prevent security threats from within. In a brochure titled “INSIDER THREATS: Combating the ENEMY within you organization,” the Defense Security Service advises employees, “It is better to have reported overzealously than never to have reported at all.”
“I got reported on because I told some twenty-something analyst that I had to have a colonoscopy,” wrote the anonymous former employee in an email. “When I found out I was actually being considered as a possible security risk, I told my bosses that they could kiss my still-sore ass goodbye.”