I previously quoted former NSA official Russell Tice regarding NSA surveillance.
The website WhoWhatWhy has posted a transcript (and video) of Mr. Tice's July 10, 2013 interview on RT, and it contains some interesting tidbits.
Of course, with respect to NSA surveillance, the big question is who gets and uses the information; who is running this runaway train? Tice suggested that specific surveillance on politicians, generals, judges was being set up at night to limit detection by NSA employees. He also mentions VP Dick Cheney's office, which a colleague suggested was behind the collections.
And here was a new fact I had never heard before, but of course it makes sense: every bit of snail mail is being photographed to learn the addresses and who is connected to who...
RT: ... who is administering the surveillance?
Tice: That’s a good question. I don’t know the answer to that. It looked like, the plugging in of these phone numbers was being done in the evenings at NSA. So almost it was like being done on the sly even so that most NSA employees did not know what was going on. Now, a high-level person at NSA told me this was being directed from the vice president’s office. That would be Vice-President Dick Cheney. I don’t know that for sure but that’s what I was told from a very senior person at NSA.
Tice: ... I noticed that the intelligence community is not being hit with the sequester, the intelligence budget. Well, how is that possible? Is there some kind of leverage that is being placed on our three branches of government, to make sure that the intelligence community gets what they want? In other words, is the intelligence community running this country, not our government?
... Tice: What’s different about this is at the Orwellian scale. This is the everything scale. This is not just Richard Nixon going after a few, you know, enemies’ list. This is everybody and everything. And now NSA is literally tapping every communication, every digital communication in this country, content, not just the metadata, the content. And when they’re saying, “well, it’s not that far,”once again, they’re lying. They continue to lie about the full capability.
... Tice: Well, I sort of consider this sort of a, the light police state. Because they’re hiding the fact that it is a police state. I mean the fact that they can literally go into all of our communications, all of the digital communications, the fact that … It’s been disclosed recently that the post office is now doing a cover on every tangible letter that goes to the post office. They’re taking the picture of everything. They’re looking at the return address and they’re looking at the main address at who is mailing something. And that is also being digitally stored. So every means of communication in this country, everything is being watched by the federal government. And that is Orwellian and that is a trademark of a police state.