By Matthew Rothschild on January 30, 2014

James Clapper, Director of National Intelligence, is lucky he is not under indictment for lying to Congress last year.

But there he was, before Congress again on Wednesday, testifying to the Senate Intelligence Committee, and making the outrageous suggestion that Glenn Greenwald is a criminal for publishing the Edward Snowden documents about the NSA's widespread violation of our Fourth Amendment rights.

"Snowden claims that he's won and that his mission is accomplished," Clapper said. "If that is so, I call on him and his accomplices to facilitate the return of the remaining stolen documents that have not yet been exposed, to prevent even more damage to U.S. security."

By pointing a finger at Greenwald, Clapper showed utter disdain for our First Amendment protections and displayed a total ignorance of the ruling in the Pentagon Papers case.

Justices Hugo Black and William O. Douglas called the injunction against the release of the Pentagon Papers a "flagrant" and "indefensible" violation of the First Amendment.

And Justice Black added: "Only a free and unrestrained press can effectively expose deception in government. And paramount among the responsibilities of a free press is the duty to prevent any part of the government from deceiving the people."

Clapper knows a thing or two about deceiving the people.

Last March, in response to a question from Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon, Clapper testified that the government was not "wittingly" collecting information on millions of Americans. Clapper later said that his comment was "the least untruthful thing" he could have said. His recantation is tantamount to a confession of criminal wrongdoing.

The Justice Department should indict Clapper, not Greenwald.

And we all need to be cognizant of Clapper's -- and Obama's -- flagrant hostility to our First Amendment and Fourth Amendment rights.

Photo: Flickr user Medill DC, creative commons licensed.

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Capitalism is the enemy, and the ideology of growth and dominion over the Earth.

 

South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham recently joined many of his Republican colleagues, declaring that...

John Kerry used two weak arguments to justify President Obama’s war-making.

By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.


Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).

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