It seems as if the NSA cannot go one day without insulting the intelligence of the American public and desecrating the legacy of the Founding Fathers.
This time, NSA deputy director Richard Ledgett had the nerve to invoke the Father of the Constitution in defense his agency’s unconstitutional spying. Speaking on a video-link to a TED Conference in Vancouver on Thursday, he said that “President Madison would be proud” of the way the NSA operates and that its only problem is poor handling of public relations.
Newsflash, Mr. Ledgett: Your problem is that you are violating the highest law of the land, the Constitution. That is the problem your agency needs to fix rather than trying to dupe the public with some new propaganda lines.
This is precisely why our OffNow coalition is so necessary. The NSA simply refuses to see the error of its ways. Even after Snowden proved to the public that its agents tend to lie, the NSA still refuses to back down. Only by forcing their hands will they ever be stopped. That is precisely what we do at OffNow with our 4th Amendment Protection Act.
As for Ledgett’s assertion about Madison: it is absolutely preposterous. Madison introduced the amendments that would become the Bill of Rights in Congress, including the prohibition of unwarranted searches and seizures. He consistently held that the federal government was to remain limited. He would have never supported an unregulated, ubiquitous, cloak-and-dagger spying agency shredding the 4th Amendment. On top of that, he asserted that the states would hold the federal government in check in Federalist #46.
Should an unwarrantable measure of the federal government be unpopular in particular States, which would seldom fail to be the case, or even a warrantable measure be so, which may sometimes be the case, the means of opposition to it are powerful and at hand. The disquietude of the people; their repugnance and, perhaps refusal to cooperate with officers of the Union, the frowns of the executive magistracy of the State; the embarrassment created by legislative devices, which would often be added on such occasions, would oppose, in any State, very serious impediments; and were the sentiments of several adjoining States happen to be in Union, would present obstructions which the federal government would hardly be willing to encounter.
If the NSA is trying to come up with better propaganda to sucker the public, it isn’t off to a good start. Claiming that James Madison would have supported the NSA isn’t going to fool anyone. Meanwhile, the Tenth Amendment Center and the OffNow Coalition will continue to promote the actual words of James Madison and use them as a guide to fight back against the NSA.