The New York Times has a follow up on the NSA spy story. It's written in NYTease (pronounced new-yor-tease), so I will translate it for you.
WASHINGTON, Dec. 23 - The National Security Agency has traced and analyzed large volumes of telephone and Internet communications flowing into and out of the United States as part of the eavesdropping program that President Bush approved after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks to hunt for evidence of terrorist activity, according to current and former government officials.
Yes, we know we already reported this exact story, but you didn't return the outrage against Bush we were looking for. Actually, his poll numbers are up (thank you Big Media brother Jersey Journal for finding a way to paint a negative - localize, newspapers, localize.) Let's all just take another shot at this. We'll add a few technical words like "switches", some anonymous sources that may or may not be the same anonymous sources from last time, and it will seem like a whole new article. All the usual suspects can then write hundreds of articles about this article, we'll talk about it on the Sunday talk shows, and with all of your determined help, we can bring down this evil conservative and the majority of Americans who recently elected him. again.
The volume of information harvested from telecommunication data and voice networks, without court-approved warrants, is much larger than the White House has acknowledged, the officials said.
But since the White House has not acknowledged the volume of the information, this is entirely speculation on our part... er, we mean the "officials" part. Yes, we know an "official" could be Howard Dean, Nancy Polosi, or any other moonbat with an agenda, but that's the fun of anonymous sources, you don't even get a chance to assess the worth of the informant. Don't worry, we did that for you. Trust us. Please notice that we used the phrase "without court-approved warrants" again. It's very important that you say that repeatedly to all your friends and family.
As part of the program approved by President Bush for domestic surveillance without warrants, the N.S.A. has gained the cooperation of American telecommunications companies to obtain backdoor access to streams of domestic and international communications, the officials said.
Of course, this was disclosed back in the 90's with that whole Echelon thing, but we're gambling that you know nothing about it because Clinton was in office and we didn't want to make a big deal about it. Again, we are making sure you know that this was without warrants, remember?
As part of the program approved by President Bush for domestic surveillance without warrants, the N.S.A. has...
Again, we urge you to pick up the message that the whole "without warrants" thing was a crime committed by Bush while America slept, no other president has ever done anything so felonious and impeachable.
What has not been publicly acknowledged is that N.S.A. technicians, besides actually eavesdropping on specific conversations, have combed through large volumes of phone and Internet traffic in search of patterns that might point to terrorism suspects.
What we mean by "What has not been publicly acknowledged..." is that we haven't yet admitted to ourselves that this was all public knowledge since the 90s to begin with. When we say "NSA technicians... have combed through large volumes...", we mean that computers have done voice recognition for the words 'nuke', 'dirty bomb', 'destroy New York' and other things that Americans, or just people spending a quiet winter in America, should be able to freely say to others on the phone while calling terrorist state countries.
The current and former government officials who discussed the program were granted anonymity because it remains classified.
...and because Federal employees giving out classified secrets in the middle of a war might be the only crime connected with this story. Besides, the more you don't know about this story, the better. We already said we aren't going to talk about it because we're tired of answering for our, uh, breaking scoops that oddly always seem to try to destory Bush, and you should just believe anything we say. We're the Gray Lady! We're the bible of Big Media. All the news fit to print.
Bush administration officials declined to comment on Friday on the technical aspects of the operation and the N.S.A.'s use of broad searches to look for clues on terrorists.
Yes, we know this contradicts what we said above about "The volume of information harvested...is much larger than the White House has acknowledged," but come on, we're allowed at least two complete contradictions per article, at least when they deal with conservatives.
Congressional inquiry say they are eager to learn more about the program's operational details, as well as its legality.
Again, we want you to get the message that this is illegal. We aren't saying it is, but we want to drive that home anyway. (Thank you Big Media brother Statesman Journal for finding a way to present it as actually being illegal. Non-scientific self-selected online polls always work in a pinch, especially if someone tips off Moveon.org.)
This so-called "pattern analysis" on calls within the United States would, in many circumstances, require a court warrant if the government wanted to trace who calls whom.
You can call it "pattern analysis", we call it "crimes against humanity." We know that the sentence we used was entirely opinion, but we're very experienced at running opinion in straight news stories.
We also realize that "pattern analysis" on calls in the outset by a machine isn't to trace who calls whom but rather pick up on threats against the country which then gives probable cause to find out the who calls whom part, but the obligation of the New York Times is to destroy republicans not present a fair accounting of fact.
...Total Information Awareness system, developed by the Pentagon for tracking terror suspects, and the Department of Homeland Security's Capps program for screening airline passengers. Both programs were ultimately scrapped after public outcries over possible threats to privacy and civil liberties.
No need to thank us for the countless articles against these programs. We had lots of help from our fellow Big Media cronies and the ACLU.
"All that data is mined with the cooperation of the government and shared with them, and since 9/11, there's been much more active involvement in that area," said the former manager, a telecommunications expert who did not want his name or that of his former company used because of concern about revealing trade secrets.
Uh, this is from some guy we know. We found him by, well, we just found him. Yes, we know he didn't actually give us any "trade secrets" in that quote, but we're not naming him anyway because that kind of transparency would just get us in more trouble.
Several officials said that after President Bush's order authorizing the N.S.A. program, senior government officials arranged with officials of some of the nation's largest telecommunications companies to gain access to switches that act as gateways at the borders between the United States' communications networks and international networks.
Yes, the information about this half-century old program has been available for a decade or two, there are even 350,000 pages on it in Google, but it wasn't until President Bush got elected (again) that we really cared.