Quantcast

«

»

Jan 08 2014

Wingnut on Wingnut Crime: King v Paul

Rand Paul is planning to file a class action suit on behalf of some 250,000 people against the NSA over its data mining operations. It’s a mostly pointless gesture (there are already at least two such cases going on behalf of specific plaintiffs, with district court rulings, and a class action suit will almost certainly be dismissed), but Rep. Peter King is spewing his usual stupid and hypocritical outrage over it.

“We can have honest differences about what [NSA’s] policies are, but what Rand Paul is creating is hysteria,” King said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Monday. “When Rand Paul is comparing [NSA Director] Gen. [James] Clapper to [leaker Edward] Snowden, saying Clapper belongs in jail with Snowden, talking about how all phone calls are being listened to, trying to create this paranoia among Americans that the NSA is spying on everyone, the fact is he has not been able to cite one abuse by the NSA.”

King said the Kentucky Republican “creates this illusion” of spying in an attempt to play off Americans’ fear in an “offensive” way.

“The same reason he was saying he was worried about the CIA using drones to kill Americans in Starbucks. He is playing on some sort of … fear mongering, isolationism,” King said. “Rather than using intelligent arguments, as people could well do, he is resorting to fear, he’s appealing to the lowest common denominator. And I find that very offensive.”

Really? Resorting to fear is offensive to you? Let’s find out:

The congressman pointed to a report that NSA surveillance was key to stopping a New York City subway attack planned by Najibullah Zazi, asking what Paul would do if the plot had been carried out.

“The fact is there would have been hundreds, if not thousands, of New Yorkers killed, and Rand Paul just ignores that,” King said. “So I’m saying, if we listen to him, an attack like Zazi’s could have been successful, hundreds if not thousands of people would be dead, and what would Rand Paul say then?”

Gosh, I’m sure glad Peter King is above “resorting to fear,” aren’t you? And as usual, he’s lying. Najibullah Zazi being caught had absolutely nothing to do with the NSA’s data mining programs. He was caught because the British government found an Al Qaeda email address on a laptop they had seized after capturing another terrorist in 2009. That email address was already being monitored when Zazi sent an urgent message to it that revealed his plans. None of that requires suspicionless data mining, it’s conventional police work that was done with particularized suspicions and, I’m guessing, warrants as well (which would be trivially easy to get in such a case).

So King is both a liar and a hypocrite. Who could have guessed?

10 comments

Skip to comment form

  1. 1
    John Pieret

    Gosh, I’m sure glad Peter King is above “resorting to fear,” aren’t you?

    But when King creates an illusion to play off Americans’ fear, it isn’t in an “offensive” way because it’s … um … er … in his way.

  2. 2
    Modusoperandi

    None of that requires suspicionless data mining, it’s conventional police work that was done with particularized suspicions and, I’m guessing, warrants as well (which would be trivially easy to get in such a case).

    1. The NSA doesn’t do “suspicionless”.
    2. Their suspicions are “particularized”. Particularly, they’re suspicious about everyone (1. Al Qaeda uses phones. 2. You use phones. 3. Therefore…”).
    3. “Trivially easy to obtain warrants” (and Laws, Treaties and Constitutions) would hinder them, handcuffing their ability to make a really really really big haystack that might or might not contain what could be a needle. Are you willing to take that kind of chance? America and Freedom and America are fighting an existential threat, not some angry yahoos who can’t even set their underwear or shoes on fire. International Communism was nothing compared to this threat. Any boundary to the Security State’s power is too much.
    4. And also Snowden’s a jerk, Manning’s weird, The Guardian is foreing, and the Wikileaks guy is both weird and foreign.

  3. 3
    scienceavenger

    I’m running out of popcorn, and the GOP primaries haven’t even started yet.

  4. 4
    busterggi

    “Your hysteria is touching my hysteria, I’ll call mom if you don’t stop”

  5. 5
    Moggie

    Peter King? The guy who was an enthusiastic cheerleader and fundraiser for the terrorist IRA when they were killing people in the UK? Now he thinks terrorists should be stopped at all costs? Oh, silly me, the IRA were good white Catholic boys, and they weren’t killing Americans, so obviously they were ok.

  6. 6
    infraredeyes

    Yeah, what Moggie said. King was all for blowing up subways when it wasn’t his subways.

  7. 7
    roggg

    King’s argument isn’t even internally consistent. On the one hand he claims there is no abuse, and allegations of spying are just fear mongering. On the other hand he claims if Paul had his way and the NSA wasn’t spying on everyone, people might die!

  8. 8
    Friendly

    “Rather than using intelligent arguments, as people could well do, he is resorting to fear…”

    Irony meter — pfft. Gone. Instantly. With a brief, sharp, flaming retort (“retort”? “arguments”? see what I did there?!?).

  9. 9
    chilidog99

    As much as I dispose King, he’s got Rand Paul pegged.

  10. 10
    democommie

    Steve King, the other batshit congresscritter out there in Iowa; do you suppose he suffers from “Peter envy”.? I mean, that level of stupocrisy is hard to top.

    “As much as I dispose King,”

    I know what you mean. I just had my morning oatgruel (with butter, a banana, some roasted almonds and a little maple syrup–yum!) and I’m gonna loose a huge “King” sometime in the next few minutes.

Leave a Reply

Switch to our mobile site