National Security Agency (NSA) Director General Keith Alexander testified about the NSA spy program before the House Select Committee on Intelligence. In the hearing, FBI Deputy Director Sean Joyce sat next to Alexander. After the hearing ended, you can hear Alexander say to Joyce, “tell your boss I owe him another friggin’ beer.” Joyce’s boss is FBI Director Robert Mueller who has unconvincingly, in the mind of any reasonable person, been completely lame on several important issues/scandals – namely NSA’s collection of phone numbers, emails, text messages and Instagrams, and on the IRS targeting conservative organizations. Mueller hadn’t a clue who in his organization was leading the investigation into illegal IRS actions. See the video and transcript below.
It takes little imagination to figure out why Alexander feels he owes Mueller a “friggin’ beer.” The more evasive Mueller was when under questioning, the easier for the NSA to sweep the whole thing under a rug that has to be incredibly filthy by now.
In the hearing where Alexander was under a microscope of sorts (Chairman Mike Rogers droned-on in praise of the General), Alexander was asked if the NSA had the “ability” to listen in to the phone calls of Americans. His answer was no, we do not have that “authority.” As Judge Andrew Napolitano explained, “ability” and “authority” are two completely different issues. Alexander was not asked to clarify. Napolitano said the answer should have been, yes, we have the “ability,” but we do not have the “authority.”
NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden said he and others could listen in to any phone call they wanted to listen to, including any member of Congress, even the President of the United States. He didn’t say he exercised that ability, but said it could be done easily.
Alexander: Thank you, Sean.
Joyce: Good to see you.
Alexander: Tell your boss … tell your boss I owe him another friggin’ beer.
Joyce: Tell him to give it to me.
Alexander: (laughs) You want him to give it to you?