I don’t know what Barack is trying to tell us.
What is he saying?
I do know he is blowing smoke up our ass. But I don’t know what he’s trying to tell us, really tell us.
Metadata, metadata, metadata, blah, blah, blah. We don’t listen to your conversations, we don’t track names, we don’t peer into the content. No kidding. Do you realize what an incredibly formidable task this would be? The NSA would need warehouses as large as the Nevada desert filled with earphoned snoopers listening around the clock to all phone calls in order for American intelligence to listen to all content, literally. This is a simple matter of logistics. Of course they don’t listen to all conversations, but courtesy of the modern computing power housed by intelligence agencies, computers are able to do all the hard work and sieve through all the compiled metadata in order to create algorithms and other digital deduction based on behavior patterns which saves them the need to staff warehouses full of human real-time snoopers.
Yes, this is classified information, but it is not secret. Obama reiterates that he tells a select club of politicians who are sworn to secrecy but the information is not secret because we do tell some people. Just not everybody, and assuredly not the public. Let’s deconstruct the concept of secrecy he infers.
What the hell is Barack saying? Who knows. Lots of smoke and eternal plausibly deniable half-truths. But trying to make sense of it and sieve through his data makes it very difficult to extrapolate what he is genuinely explicating. What is he saying that applies to us, as American people. What is his great unsaid truth?
Perhaps we should examine Barack Obama’s metadata!
Presumably, President Obama is speaking to a pool of reporters and cameras, but he continuously gazes to his left when justifying the nuts and bolts of the governmental evasion. This is how Obama explains from the technocratic perspective, the impersonal truth for the elites. The humdrum machinations of high-level secrecy that he knows we are listening to, but which he wants to shroud in unacknowledged “otherness” so that we thus experience a sense of forbidden insider knowledge by virtue of our eavesdropping role. He doesn’t look at us during these exchanges. He looks to his left, at the elites, but knows we are listening. He is planting smoke up our ass, this is his trickery!
However, there are a couple of instances when he does steer his expression to the right. This is when he is talking to the American people directly. This is his reassuring pose. This is when he tells us that he really doesn’t hold our intelligence in high esteem because essentially our only concern is the substance of our precious telephone calls. He doesn’t believe we are capable of being concerned about, much less understand, the oblique tools of metadata retrieval and interpretation. So he doesn’t talk to us about that. To us, he talks about phone calls, and how no one is listening to us. He does this twice.
And again, near the end, another glance to the right in which he looks at us again to assuage our petty fears about phone calls.
Barack attempts to not only soothe our worries, he is also attempting to manage and define our fears. Our government tells us what to be concerned about out from one corner of their mouth, and they also explain why we should not be concerned about it out from the other corner. American political leadership is a two-headed beast.