Deep Politics Forum

Full Version: Early NSA and others coverage
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The 1976 Time-Out piece The Eavesdroppers.
A personal aside...but relevant to the subject. About 25 years ago I was one of the 'events' on the Venice Beach Boardwalk in Venice, CA. I was one of the very few political tables. Most things were very strange..but I guess for most, I was as strange as the dancing quadriplegic or the chainsaw juggler et al. Anyway, my table had lots of radical political information on [then] current topics and generally about Deep Political Events. I had concrete information, books, T-shirts [Venice, remember!], buttons; and engaged in many discussions and no shortage of angry debates - one fist fight. One man who hung around at the table a looooooong time without talking I finally engaged in conversation. He was currently at a VA hospital, psychiatric division on day leave. After much prying into his reticence to talk he told me he had worked at the NSA. To make a long story short, he didn't want to talk, so I did...and told him what I thought the capacity and activities of the NSA were [global interception of phone calls and other communications]. He nodded and said 'yes'!. Then he told me he was a lowly tender of the computers - on 24 hour shifts and out of boredom and curiosity sometimes plugged into a computer and listened into what was being recorded...mostly these were everyone's conversations with Grandma et al. If they hit a 'good one' [usually defined as having sexual content] they'd call others to listen. He was caught telling someone about this who had no security clearance and ipso facto was transferred to a psychiatric hospital and dosed with Thorazine and other such zombie drugs. So, this program of TOTAL vacuuming of electronic communication is very old and ONLY LIMITED by the technology of the time...not by any laws, ethical considerations, the Constitution or such trivial concepts or things. NB - I asked him to return the next day he had a pass out....but he never came....he had been watched, I believe, and was no longer granted leave.