Obama's little-noticed gift to the USA on his way out the door, in January 2017.
Just before he left, Obama signed an executive order that made it much easier for the FBI to investigate Trump and his co-conspirators.
Thanks also to Loretta Lynch and James Clapper for their part of this.
These tweets are part of a much longer thread -- the whole thing is worth reading.
Jan. 12, 2017
The new rules significantly relax longstanding limits on what the N.S.A. may do with the information gathered by its most powerful surveillance operations, which are largely unregulated by American wiretapping laws. These include collecting satellite transmissions, phone calls and emails that cross network switches abroad, and messages between people abroad that cross domestic network switches.
The change means that far more officials will be searching through raw data. Essentially, the government is reducing the risk that the N.S.A. will fail to recognize that a piece of information would be valuable to another agency, but increasing the risk that officials will see private information about innocent people.
Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch signed the new rules, permitting the N.S.A. to disseminate raw signals intelligence information, on Jan. 3, after the director of national intelligence, James R. Clapper Jr., signed them on Dec. 15, according to a 23-page, largely declassified copy of the procedures.
The tweets above are included toward the end of this very long thread, accessible at this link even to those not on Twitter (but you should be). It's all worth reading:
It is fair to assume it included mining ongoing intel from our own resources at the NSA, etc., as well as from allies.
That would have the effect of putting relevant work-product of any allys spying in Muellers hands.
Meaning, even if we werent eavesdropping on Trumps convo w Putin, his late-night phone calls, his admins back-channel contacts with Russians, etc... someone was.
Whether it was the UK, Germany, Estonia, Spain, Israel, Australia or whomever, EVERYONE spies on Russia...
...and Mueller had an open folder just waiting to be filled with whatever tasty
Okay, Im spinning like a top here so let me bring this in for a landing:
Trump has spent the last two years trying to obstruct an investigation into 2016 events...
...and little did he know, his biggest problem would prove to be what he was doing in 2017-2018.
Mc Connell's threat to politicize does not seem sufficient a reason.
Moscow Mitch doesn't want (a) his part uncovered, and (b) anything to interfere with his attempt to secure perpetual rule by the radical right.
and there was no one to protect them. No one with power in the House, the Senate, or the Justice Department.
The unified GOP could have smashed any whistleblower to pieces before the public understood what was happening.
Now we have a chance.
without breaking the law?
No, it was more important to stay in place, protect Mueller, and wait for the Dems to take over. If the Dems had lost in 2018, then there would have been very hard choices to make.
because it wouldn't have stopped the GOP and its electors from installing him. ON TOP of that, it would have told the Russians more than we needed them to know.
Time will tell, but Obama's decision seems justified to me.
...a little unknown bomb that would explode at just the right moment
based on that assumption. Damn!
And therefore the disclosure would look divisive. I think if he had it to do all over again, he'd release the information.
From the threadreaderapp link:
Obama knew what he was doing.
He opened a hydrant knowing the FBI would someday need that water to put out a national inferno.
The one where they walked out so grim and not saying a damn thing?
Bet that's when they learned there was active counter-intel re trump.
and the suggestion that they were reeling from learning that trump was the target of counterintelligence makes perfect sense now.
Things are going to get real. I wonder how far the water splashes and who gets wet. It could be a real eye opener.
but I also think that this whole thing should have been stopped dead in its tracks before the goon squad took control of the government. It is going to be much more difficult to reverse the damage now that he has the nuclear codes and they have purged so many people and replaced them with loyalists to themselves.
w what he had. WTF do you expect he shouldve done w mitch there to threaten and stymie him? Pres Obama=ZERO SCANDALS...and finished masterfully. Where were those god fearin' platitudinal repubs?
that are running wild while dump creates the side show out front.
I will take years to clean that up.
I voted for Obama twice and I cried when he won both times. As I said, I understand the position he was in. Had the MSM and others in politics focused more on the possibilities that the Republican candidate was actually a Russian asset, rather than showing us empty podiums and talking about how unusual DT was, we might not be in this position right now. And, yes, I get the "would've, could've, should've" aspect of all this. We are where we are and have to deal with it.
Yes. We sure do have to deal with it. Ugh.
He...puts the flabber...in my ghasted as it were.
They were busy stuffing their pockets with that sweet Russian lucre.
Why was writing a public letter about investigating Hillary and her e-mails right before the election NOT revealing secrets but keeping us all in the dark about a Russian asset running for president was?
I just listened to Joy Reed read that NYT article and what really seems kind of stupid is that the FBI seems hestitant and unsure how to proceed when it came to realizing what a real traitor Trump is. Why? Seems to me that very hesitant people were in charge and that at its core, the FBI was pushing for Trump and against Hillary.
I really think that the bottom line is that the FBI was/is filled with RepubliCON party loyalists who were more interested in winning elections then in upholding the US constitution.
Damage...he has tarnished everything forever more.
Game of Thrones is seeing some sunshine and they are weighing whether they want to truly be part of this WHEN ITS OPEN AND OBVIOUS. At least I hope so. Just unbelievable. Old Mitch couldve stopped this instead of threatening Pres Obama w some sort of blackmail. Mitch......ooooooooo....you.....YOUUuuuuuu.
But we can't forget the sanctions--They led to a lot of trouble for
spanky and the clowns.
Our government is not allowed to spy on American citizens communications, but one of the other 4 countries in 5 eyes can and then share that information with us. So we didn't really spy on Kushner communicating with MBS or Trump communicating with Putin but let's say the U.K. did. The U.K. can reveal what they found to our intelligence agency. That back channel that Kushner talked about creating with Russia may not have been so private.
gets shared by all the agencies. The FBI, which can only use it for counter-intelligence purposes, doesn't have to wait for the NSA to guess what it might need.
I love that we can focus on the Good Guys in this national melodrama, not the Orange Stain and his ilk. We know we'll be okay and should focus on the coming of the sunrise. Don't waste time on evil.
You are a true patriot and hero of the Republic. Miss you and your beautiful family so much.
evidence was also scattered among multiple parties in order to preserve it.
...and bag everything for the shredder and incinerator, thinking they had destroyed the evidence and stopped the investigation, because he and Obama had spread pieces of it it all over. Mueller by his own inclination is doing something similar afaict. People wonder what he's doing: well, aside from a conveyor belt of indictments, I think he's sending material out to the State of NY and such jurisdictions quite expeditiously.
We are in a world of trouble it is true, but we have friends and patriots among us still, and for that I am very grateful.
From https://www.aclu.org/blog/national-security/privacy-and-surveillance/president-obama-will-soon-turn-over-keysPresident Obama Will Soon Turn Over the Keys to the Surveillance State to President-Elect Trump
Ashley Gorski, Staff Attorney, ACLU National Security Project
& Patrick Toomey, Senior Staff Attorney, ACLU National Security Project
November 21, 2016 | 12:15 PM
On January 20, President Obama will hand Donald Trump the keys to the surveillance state. Not only will Trump have the NSAs incredibly powerful technological tools at his disposal, but hell also have the benefit of the overbroad and unconstitutional surveillance authorities embraced by the Obama administration authorities that give tremendous discretion to executive branch officials.
These spying powers have long been cause for concern because they violate our core rights to privacy, freedom of expression, and freedom of association. But when wielded by a man who invited Russia to hack his political opponent, who reportedly eavesdropped on his own hotel guests, and who has called for expanded surveillance of Americans and especially American Muslims, they are all the more frightening. Fortunately, there are several ways to fight back against the surveillance state, including concrete steps you can take to protect yourself and your communications.
Here are two of the sweeping surveillance powers that President Obama is going to hand over to President Trump:
Executive Order 12333 is the primary authority under which the NSA conducts surveillance, and it encompasses a dizzying array of warrantless, high-tech spying programs. While much of this spying occurs outside the United States and is ostensibly directed at foreigners, vast quantities of Americans communications are nonetheless vacuumed up in the dragnet. Thats because, in todays interconnected world, Americans communications are frequently sent, routed, or stored abroad where they may be collected, often in bulk, in the course of the NSAs spying activities.
Many of those who complained mighty or were at least uncomfortable with the NSA and its super data farm in Utah, its tapping into domestic data streams of every communications organization in the US.....are now overjoyed they were doing just that. I am one of those myself. Hopefully an ally has more than just the meta-data. Though that may be super incriminating in and of itself.
...as Trump tears it down in public every day.
purposes. Sometimes, yes, a US citizen is talking to a foreign counter-intelligence target, so that person gets recorded, too.
From the link in the OP:
agency, operation has convinced his base already. They will not change. Only when their idols, Hanratty, El Drugbo, et al are in some sort of legal jeopardy will I feel some ease. When these right wing self serving pigs (sorry pigs) have to start defending themselves with their own ill gotten $$ will they realize what they got themselves into. However, this could be such a massive undertaking for law, the courts and justice that many will slip away into the confusion.
I don't get it.
But it's good those powers were broadened. I'm just perplexed by Trump and Flynn (head of the NSA) letting this EO slide.
who would have advised him? Jared? Ivanka?
Trump is ignorant, so there was someone around telling him what EOs of Obama's to rescind. I guess they missed one? Maybe they just focused on immigration and war powers and health care. OR...maybe it is rescinded now. But by the time Trump would have discovered it, the FBI was already on it and transferring it to Mueller, who didn't need an EO.
him in some kind of order.
They weren't thrilled with him getting elected, but they thought they could manage him with some help. Those conservative generals were unlikely to object to an executive order making it easier for the FBI to do counter-intelligence.
I doubt the generals would, except those pertaining to war powers. At least I'd think so. There are a lot of EOs...about immigration and all sorts of things. The generals wouldn't even review those. But I don't know.
I'd think the first thing you'd do upon taking office is to get someone to review all EOs signed in the final months of hte prior administration. But the Trump team didn't know what they were doing.
And let me preface it by saying that I have cast more votes for Democrats that most activist Democrats have eaten meals, and voted for Obama twice. I am emphatically not a Trump supporter, and despised everything about Bush.
Now that we have that straight. When Bush persuaded Congress to expand the ability of the government to spy on the American people we decried that as an abuse of power, but when Obama expanded the ability of the government to spy on the American people by executive order we cheer that because, in addition to spying on us, such spying might, repeat might possibly, bring down Trump.
Let's take that to its logical conclusion. Let's authorize the FBI to burn Washington DC to the ground because doing so might also burn down the White House and cause the death of Donald Trump. Let's authorize the Secret Service to plant a bomb at Andrews Air Force Base because by destroying that base we might also destroy Air Force One and Trump along with it.
An expansion of spying on the American people by government is an abomination and an abuse of power, even if it is Obama who does it, and even if it is done for the purpose of destroying Donald Trump.
President who is faced with making such a decision.
In my opinion, it's history that will judge. We are too mired in this constitutional crisis to see the forest for the trees.
which is collected on transmissions outside the US, but might route through here, for counter-intelligence purposes. The difference is that they don't have to rely on other agencies to know what to send to them for counter-intelligence purposes.
is that everyone knew how smart he is and he didn't have to sign his name and say "Taa-Daaa!"
Obama IS a stable genius.
People that aren't doing something illegal or close to it don't have that complaint.
And Trump immediately reversed that, allowing Boente to remain in place in the critically important Eastern District of Virginia (EDVA). Until President Obama comes and tells me differently himself, I'll always believe that Obama and Boente agreed to make it look like Obama didn't trust Boente, so that a simpleton like Trump would, instead of investigating himself, just assume that Boente was on his side.