Less Than 20% Of Americans Believe That There's Adequate Oversight Of The NSA

14/11/2013 16:59

One of the key responses from the NSA and its defenders to all of these Snowden leaks is that there is "rigorous oversight" of the NSA by the courts and Congress. Of course, that talking point has been debunked thoroughly, but NSA defenders keep trotting it out. It appears that the public is not buying it. At all. A recent poll from YouGov found that only 17% of people believe that Congress provides "adequate oversight" on the spying of Americans. A marginally better 20% (though, within the 4.6% margin of error, so meaningless difference really) felt that Congress provides adequate oversight of the NSA when it comes to collecting data on foreigners. Basically, that part of the NSA story just isn't particularly believable in light of everything that's come out. Oh, and people are paying attention to the news. A full 87% had heard something about the spying on foreign countries -- with only 14% thinking that such a program has helped US interests abroad.

Oh, and it gets worse. According to a different study, the more informed people are about the NSA, the less they like what the NSA is doing. The NSA has been insisting if people could only understand more about its actions they'd be much more comfortable with the agency's actions, but this study suggests that's not quite true either.

Neither of these findings should come as a shock to most people outside of the NSA, but for our friends over at the NSA reading this, it would appear that your talking points aren't working. Perhaps, next time, try (1) telling the truth and (2) not trampling all over the Constitution.

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