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tv   All In With Chris Hayes  MSNBC  June 12, 2013 8:00pm-9:01pm PDT

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can see my exclusive interview with ed snowden's friend, mavanee anderson, it went a little long tonight, but that is tonight's last word. chris hayes is up next. ♪ good evening from new york, i'm chris hayes and thank you for joining us. tonight on "all in," our first guest is a journalist who should be prosecuted for breaking the nsa surveillance story. that at least the opinion of one prominent u.s. congressman. glenn greenwald of "the guardian" joins me in a moment. and later -- i don't remember agreeing to any of this when i clicked okay to those facebook terms of service. how do the giant tech companies at the heart of the nsa revelations recover from this? we'll discuss that coming up. plus, during an extremely contentious house hearing today one republican came this close
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to going full todd akin. republican male legislators talking about rape again. we will give you the grisly details. but we begin tonight with the unfolding spy novel that continues to play out in real life right before our eyes. today the battle lines over nsa leaks are being dramatically drawn, the rhetoric on all sides is heating up, and the stakes for everyone connected to this story are rising. after days of complete radio silence nsa leaker edward snowden surfaced today in hong kong with an explosive interview with the english-language newspaper "the south china morning post," in which he charged the u.s. government has been hacking hong kong and china for years. telling the paper that he believed there had been 61,000 nsa hacking operations globally, with hundreds of targets in hong kong and on the mainland. he also explained why he's in hong kong. "i am not here to hide from justice. i am here to reveal criminality. i have had many opportunities to flee hong kong.
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but i would rather stay and fight the united states government and the courts because i have faith in hong kong's rule of law. my intention is to ask the courts and the people of hong kong to decide my fate." and on the same day that edward snowden reemerged nsa director army general keith alexander just happened to be slated to testify at a previously scheduled committee hearing on capitol hill. so of course he got a good grilling from members of congress eager for their first shot at some public on the record answers from the nsa about the newly exposed spying programs. under questioning from senator pat leahy of vermont, about how many terrorist attacks have been thwarted by the nsa's monitoring of telephone and internet records, alexander said he couldn't give the exact number because that's classified. what he did give the committee was a ballpark figure in the dozens. there is, of course, no way to independently confirm that number. that is part of the problem in all this. but i am guessing that general alexander chose those words
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under oath very, very carefully, as not to end up like his pal james clapper, the director of national intelligence, whose testimony back in march under questioning from senator ron widen looks really, really, really bad given what we all know now. >> does the nsa collect any type of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of americans? >> no, sir. >> it does not? >> not wittingly. there are cases where they could inadvertently perhaps collect but not wittingly. >> i think in poker that's called a tell. if you just watched that and thought that clapper was thinking extra hard on that answer, well, that's because it's actually quite straining to come up with the least untruthful answer to a question you don't feel like answering truthfully. >> in receitrospect i was asked when are you going to stop
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beating your wife kind of questioning, which is meaning not answerable necessarily by a simple yes or no. so i responded in what i thought was the most truthful or least untruthful manner by saying no. >> yesterday senator widen called for an investigation related to clapper's march testimony, saying "this job cannot be done responsibly if senators aren't getting straight answers to direct questions." but james clapper will almost certainly not be the only person who is going to be investigated because of the leaks and their aftermath. there is of course edward snowden who could well be facing criminal charges any day now. and there is now a member of congress calling for the prosecution of journalists involved in publishing the leaks. well, actually, let me amend that. a journalist, one specific journalist. after first calling for action against journalists yesterday, last night, republican congressman peter king was asked to clarify his position today on fox news. and clarify he did.
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>> do you believe that? you stand by that? both greenwald and the "washington post" reporter? >> i'm talking about greenwald. greenwald, not only did he disclose this information, he has said that he has names of cia agents and assets around the world. and they're threatening to disclose that. that to me is a direct attack against americans, putting american lives at risk. >> that greenwald, glenn greenwald who peter king called responsible for a direct attack on the american people, that glenn greenwald who's been in hong kong breaking the story that has sent ripples throughout the entire american political system is, i believe, if we have him joining me now, columnist on civil liberties. and we done have him now. we are working out some technical issues. we do have him? great. awesome. glenn greenwald, columnist on civil liberties and national security for the "guardian" newspaper there in your monitor staring back at us unblinkingly because that of course is a photo and we appear to have him
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on the phone. glenn greenwald, how are you? >> good, chris. thanks for having me. >> first i want to get your reaction to peter king's rhetoric in the past two days about prosecution. specifically singling you out as someone who has "a direct attack on america." i think he accused of you threatening to expose individual covert cia agents. i just want to get your response because he's been given a fair amount of air time over the last two days to attack you. he's a sitting member of congress. i understand you've been traveling. what is your response to congressman king's accusations? >> i don't think there are many people who take peter king very seriously. i also think that most americans find instinctively repulsive the idea that journalists should be arrested and prosecuted for doing what journalists are supposed to do, which is reporting on what the united states government does in the dark. that said, he is the chairman of the house homeland security committee. and the obama administration has in the recent past flirted with the idea and even embraced some theories that would suggest that
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you can be held criminally liable for being a conspirator with your source if you act as a journalist. so it's not something that i would dismiss lightly. but what i thought was most remarkable was that the entire framework that he offered, the ground on which he made his call for my arrest and prosecution, was an outright fabrication. really a lie. i mean, he went on national television and accused me of having threatened to uncover and expose and publish the identities of covert cia agents as though i was lewis libby or something. i have never remotely suggested that i even have in my possession the identities of cia covert agents. i do not. nor have i ever threatened that i would publish those. i never would. it wasn't just that it was an extremist piece of advocacy on his part, it was that it was based in a complete fiction. >> the never would sentence you just said there, i think this is really to me an important point in all this. i think because we have the hangover of wikileaks, which was -- you've defended quite strenuously and been an advocate
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for both bradley manning and julian assange and protecting the important role they played in stirring a debate. but it was quite different in the sense that it was bulk disclosure. and i think even bradley manning himself would say that he didn't have the ability to read and vet every one of the 850,000 documents. these scoops have been much more thoroughly vetted both by edward snowden and yourself and other journalists who reported on them at the "guardian." my question is, the prism slide, there were 41 slides in the prism power point slides that was one of the most blockbuster revelations. "the guardian" put four and a fifth slide up. what are we to make of the fact that 36 of those slides have not been disclosed? what does that say about the way that you are approaching this work, about what secrets can and should be put before the public and which ones shouldn't be? >> yeah, i really think this is the critical point, chris, i really hope everyone walks away understanding. first of all, i think there's a serious question about the extent to which bradley manning did read the documents he
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disclosed. but let's leave that to the side. from the very first moment i spoke with edward snowden he was emphatic about the fact that he was not turning over to us all of the documents that he could get his hands on, that he had very carefully spent months looking at them, examining them, figuring out which ones the public should see and which ones would cause gratuitous harm and said he wasn't going to turn those over, including things like the names of covert cia agents. he then when he gave it to us said i don't want you to simply indiscriminately dump these documents. i want you to engage in a very rigorous standard journalistic assessment of what is in the public interest and what would cause harm. i want you to be very careful and judicious about figuring out what it is that the public should know in terms of how journalism functions because he didn't want the accusation to be made validly that he was trying to harm the united states or that we were. and he was very clear about the fact that had he tried to, had his intent been to harmt united states he could have sold the documents to foreign adversaries. he could have covertly passed them to foreign adversaries.
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he has given us all sorts of documents, the vast majority of which we have decided not to publish because either they're not relevant or because they would just cause gratuitous harm without informing the public. every single thing that we have revealed is in the public interest. it is things that the u.s. government is doing that the public didn't know but should know. and yet none of it can even remotely or conceivably be said to harm national security. terrorists already know and have known for years that the u.s. government is trying to monitor and surveil their communications. we didn't tell terrorists anything they didn't already know. we told american citizens things they didn't know about what their government is doing but should know. >> glenn, let me ask you this question about snowden. i understand a lot has been made of him as a character, and i understand people being frustrated somewhat with that. because broadly speaking, the point here is the policy and what the government is doing, not edward snowden. that being said, it's a remarkable and incredibly compelling story, just from a human drama level. and as someone who actually sat down with him, has talked to him, in light of the interview
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he gave today to the english language paper in hong kong, do you have a sense of what the game plan here is? because it just -- you know, what he has done is either depending on your point of view remarkably foolish or remarkably courageous, but he is really out on a limb right now. >> you know, chris, honestly meeting him and talking to him and the first thing i did was on the first day i met him, i spent five straight hours just questioning him as relentlessly as i could to have an understanding for what he's thinking, who he is, what he was really doing. and it was one of the most extraordinary experiences of my life, one of the most formative because it was really remarkable to look at somebody who had so rationally assessed the choice they had made, one that they knew was likely to result in their imprisonment for decades if not life, and yet who genuinely concluded that his conscience compelled him to step forward and disclose that the nsa has been systematically lying to congress, that they've been deceiving the american people, that they're building
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this worldwide spying apparatus, that he felt that the need to do that outweighed his own personal self-interest. that said, he also knows that the u.s. government is the most powerful entity on earth, that it considers him to be the number one most wanted individual. that they intend to, if they get their hands on him, basically destroy his life. and although i haven't discussed specifically with him what his plans are, he knows that he is holding some cards given that he had access to very top secret information on the part of the most secretive agency in the world and intends to figure out how best he can protect himself. that's my guess as to what it is he's doing. >> in terms of the revelations that we've gotten so far, and they fall into a number of different categories, but i do want to ask you, before i let you go, there's been some pushback on the reporting, particularly about the prism program, and there's another program code name blarney that come from those powerpoint slides that use the phrase directly from the servers, or "direct access."
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and there was pushback by the tech companies who are listed in those slides saying we didn't give any direct access. and there's some question i think about what exactly that phrase means or could mean. and i just want you to clarify your best understanding of what the reality is about the nexus between how the nsa is working with these private tech companies. >> sure. we've published four stories so far. the only one about which there has been any questions raised is the one that the -- the only one the "washington post" also published, which is the prism story. our story was written differently than the way the "post" wrote theirs, which is why they've had to walk back theirs. our story was the following -- we have documents, a document from the nsa that very clearly claims that they are collecting directly from the servers of these internet giants. that's the exact language that this document used. we went to those internet companies before publishing and asked them and they denied it. and we put into the story prominently that they denied it. our story is that there is a discrepancy between the relationship that these -- that the private sector and the
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government has in terms of what the nsa claims and what the technology company has claimed. what is definitely true, and follow-up reporting by the "times" has proven this, is there have been all kinds of back door negotiations about back door access. they have agreements to share data with the government. i don't think anybody knows at this point exactly what the nature of those arrangements are. and the reason we published our story and the reason we presented it as this discrepancy is precisely because whatever the tech companies and the government are doing in terms of turning over data to the government should be done in public. we should know what agreements they've reached. we should know what the government has asked for and what they're negotiating with now in terms of access. what we do know for sure is that the government has a program that targets the communication over these companies, that huge numbers of people around the world used to communicate with one another. and we think there should be accountability and transparency for whatever those exact agreements are. >> glenn greenwald, columnist for the "guardian" newspaper, thank you for joining us tonight. >> thanks for having me, chris. democrats' military sexual assault bill has been struck down in the senate by a democrat.
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more on that with co-sponsor of the bill senator barbara boxer coming up. d st recommended by... my doctor. my gynecologist. my pharmacist. citracal. citracal. [ female announcer ] you trust your doctor. doctors trust citracal. [ female announcer ] you trust your doctor. with centurylink visionary cloud it'sinfrastructure,art. and custom communications solutions, your business is more reliable, secure, and agile. where over seventy-five percent of store management started as i'm the next american success story. working for a company hourly associates. there's opportunity here. i can use walmart's education benefits to get a degree, maybe work in it, or be an engineer, helping walmart conserve energy. even today, when our store does well, i earn quarterly bonuses. when people look at me, i hope they see someone working their way up. vo: opportunity, that's the real walmart.
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when striking down the military sexual assault bill, senator carl levin said "it's people within that institution that have to fix the problem." i will tell you why that's exactly the wrong way to approach this. and later, the evolving drama in silicon valley where tech giants like google and facebook are panicking over their reputations in the wake of the nsa revelations. make a wish! i wish we could lie here forever. i wish this test drive was over, so we could head back to the dealership. [ male announcer ] it's practically yours. test drive! [ male announcer ] but we still need your signature. volkswagen sign then drive is back. and it's never been easier to get a jetta. that's the power of german engineering. get $0 down, $0 due at signing, $0 deposit, and $0 first month's payment on any new volkswagen. visit today. on any new volkswagen. uh-oguess what day it is!is??
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huh...anybody? julie! hey...guess what day it is?? ah come on, i know you can hear me. mike mike mike mike mike... what day is it mike? ha ha ha ha ha ha! leslie, guess what today is? it's hump day. whoot whoot! ronny, how happy are folks who save hundreds of dollars switching to geico? i'd say happier than a camel on wednesday. hump day!!! yay!! get happy. get geico. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more. the picture you see is the new head of the air force's
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sexual assault prevention effort. notably a woman, two-star major general margaret woodward. she will lead a newly elevated office and will essentially be replacing this man, lieutenant colonel jeff korzinski, arrested last month and charged with sexual battery. the problem is sexual assault in the military is at epidemic levels with a pentagon study showing 26,000 people in the armed forces were sexually assaulted last year. and it has spurred a kind of remarkable legislative movement to fundamentally reform the institutional structure of how justice is administered inside the armed forces. that movement hit a huge roadblock today. in this -- in the person of this man, senate armed services committee chairman carl levin, who introduced a measure to replace senator kirstin gillibrand's proposal to remove sexual assault cases from the military chain of command, chairman levin's measure prevailed. the battle lines that have been drawn on this issue and as we
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have told you from the beginning is not republican versus democrat but rather those on the side of the pentagon who don't want fundamental reform and do not want to take this outside of the chain of command versus an insurgent group of senators led by senator gillibrand, who do. >> the victims tell us they do not report because of chain of command. it's not that their decision's wrong. it's that they are the decider, and the victims have said, i'm not reporting because it's within the chain of command. >> it is harder to hold someone accountable for failure to act if you reduce their power to act. >> we also have heard no data that would indicate that by removing the command completely from any role here that that is going to have a positive impact on retaliation. >> the fact is, if we don't have a fundamental change in how we address this issue are we going to be back here in two more decades having this same conversation?
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>> joining me now is senator barbara boxer, democrat from california. she was a co-sponsor of senator kirsten gillibrand's bill. senator, my first question is what is your reaction to the fact that essentially this was killed today in committee? >> it was a bad day for the opportunity that we have to finally get things right here. you know, for 20 long years various secretaries of defense have said these words, "we have zero tolerance for this kind of activity in the military and we're not going to allow it," and every single secretary of defense never made the changes. we have to make the changes, just like australia did, great britain did, canada did, israel did. and what did they do? they took these vicious crimes outside of the chain of command. they have an independent prosecutor. you know, what carl levin and his friends did, it's very disappointing.
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he's my friend, but i have to tell you, what they did today is embrace the status quo instead of embracing the victims and using this as an opportunity to bring needed change. they kept the commanders in charge. the commander not only decides whether there will be a prosecution, the commander also decides when and where the court-martial will be if it goes forward. and they even pick the jury. chris, this is a nightmare, and it has to change, and i predict we're going to have a real donnybrook on the senate floor because we're not going to let this go by easily, gently into the night. >> what do you mean by that? this means you're -- >> what i mean is -- >> yeah. >> we are going to offer the gillibrand/boxer/collins language again and we're going to fight to get it done, and we are going to get our day on the full senate floor. it was interesting, we did get republicans and democrats for our proposal but just not
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enough. but i believe the time has come for change. i am extremely disappointed in what happened. i have to say i'm not shocked because change is hard. we know it is difficult. we saw how gays were treated in the military for decades and decades. we saw how women had been treated in terms of their equality. we saw how there was no integration in the military until finally president truman made it happen. so all these are civil rights battles. these are human rights and civil rights and, you know, people forget that half of the victims are men. so it's not a women's issue. it is a violence issue. >> senator, could i -- >> it's a criminal issue. >> senator, i want to play a little bit of sound from one of your colleagues who voted against your amendment today in committee. tim kaine basically making the argument, if you're going to take this out of the chain of command, why not take all these other horrible crimes out of the chain of command? the chain of command is how crimes are processed inside the military.
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take a listen. >> murder, larceny, robbery, forgery, bad checks, arson, extortion, burglary, house breaking, perjury, fraud against the united states. >> that seems like a -- at least at face value a somewhat persuasive argument, that there's a lot of crimes and all those crimes are serious. why make a special exception to the way the system works for this specific crime? >> well, we don't. if you read our bill. and he obviously didn't read our bill. what we said is crimes that are unique to the military will stay within the chain of command. but serious felonies will come outside just like they do in great britain, just as they do in israel, just as they do in canada and australia. so it sounds great, but we took care of it in our bill. >> senator barbara boxer, who is pledging to continue to battle
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this on the floor as this goes to the floor and offer amendments and expressing her disappointment tonight. thank you very much for joining us. >> yeah. >> i really appreciate it. >> sure. arizona republican trent franks has a lot more name recognition tonight after a comment about rape and pregnancy. it's a glimpse into what your republican congress was up to today. more on that next. [ male announcer ] everyday thousands of people are choosing advil. here's one story. my name is taho and i'm a fish guy. it's a labor of love. it's a lot of labor and it's a lot of love. i don't need to go to the gym. my job is my workout. you're shoveling ice all day long. it's rough on the back. it's rough on the shoulders.
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before, when my friends on the left side of the aisle here tried to make rape and incest
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the subject because you -- you know, the incidents of rape resulting in pregnancy are very low. >>'ll, well, that was congressman trent franks, republican from arizona, making a variation of an argument you may have heard somewhere before. just in case you weren't exactly sure if you heard him correctly. franks repeated the claim when nbc cameras caught up with him. >> the incidences where pregnancy from rape that result in abortion after the beginning of the sixth month are very rare. >> very rare. does that sound familiar to you? >> first of all, from what i understand from doctors, that's really rare. if it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. >> now, in some ways what we saw today was progress. i mean, this is what progress looks like. trent franks stopped himself from going the full todd akin here. cutting himself off before he
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started in on any offensive nonsense notions on theic of female biology. franks had no comments on shutting that whole thing down. but what he failed to do was heed the simple urgent advice of gop pollsters who told house republican caucus members to flat out stop talking about rape earlier this year. rape is a four-letter word, they were told. don't say it. but here's congressman franks today putting the spotlight on a republican party with an earned reputation for lacking sensitivity on women's issues. >> i just find it astonishing to hear a phrase repeated, that the incidence of pregnancy from rape is low. that's not -- i mean, there's no scientific basis for that. and the idea that the republican men on this committee think they can tell the women of america that they have to carry to term the product of a rape is outrageous. >> so who put trent franks in a position and forced him to talk about this stuff? the answer? trent franks.
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because this is trent franks' crusade. franks was speaking about a bill he introduced to the house judiciary committee, a bill that has literally zero political future but allows trent franks to make on the record statements like this. >> i don't think any of us would argue that a child should be killed because of the sins of an evil rapist. what we need to do is be harder on the rapist. i wonder how many of my colleagues on the other side would say we should suggest death penalty for the rapist, but they certainly do for the child. >> franks' bill bans abortions nationwide after 20 weeks. now, this is a reintroduction and expansion of a bill that franks previously drafted to apply only to washington, d.c. similar statewide laws like one in arizona, for instance, have been struck down by federal appeals courts. and the constitutionality of the franks bill is at best highly dubious. >> this legislation is especially dangerous because it is a direct challenge to the
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supreme court's ruling in roe versus wade. it contains a nearly total ban on abortions prior to viability, which the supreme court says violates women's rights under the constitution. >> so is a bill with no chance of passing the senate and no chance really of being upheld by the courts. but this is what the house republican caucus does day in and day out. they use their staff's energy and the scarce legislative resources of a body of congress that is stretched thin to put on a show. and under house speaker john boehner, they rarely even work. the 113th congress has only 126 planned days in a session. a whopping 34 1/2% of the year. so -- and i notice this because we come in the morning and we write on the board what's going on. and it's amazing how rarely something's happening in the house. but on that rare day they're actually working with the limited resources at their disposal to tackle the nation's problems, this, this is what the house republican caucus is doing. debating a bill that is
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profoundly unconstitutional as an act of pure theater. it's the same thing they're doing when they vote to repeal obama care 39 times. they are essentially a bunch of really ideologically zealous teenagers, teenagers who have just discovered politics and view politics as a means of self-expression, politics of symbolism, not of lawmaking. might as well fire up the performance art engine, destroy some art class project in effigy or make some elaborate puppetry. and please, let me be clear, there's nothing wrong with any of this when you're powerless. expressing dissidence and frustration and rage at the status quo when you're 16 and powerless, that's an important part of engagement in politics. i've done that. and those of you outside the political process who want the people in power to hear your voices i say right on. wave those puppets, beat those drums. but you elected members of the house of representatives are part of the government running the country. we pay you to do the very difficult and important work of
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governing. there's a budget that needs to be passed. there are 12 million unemployed people. 11 million people who could be deported at a moment's notice. and there are 66,000 troops in afghanistan. for the love of god, work on that stuff. you are not sent to the highest halls of power so you can spend all of your time staging the equivalent of those campus conservative clown shows that sponsor affirmative action bake sales. get it together. and grow up. we'll be right back with click 3. one a day women's 50+ is a complete multivitamin designed for women's health concerns as we age. it has 7 antioxidants to support cell health. one a day 50+. accomplishing even little things can become major victories. i'm phil mickelson, pro golfer. when i was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis, my rheumatologist prescribed enbrel for my pain and stiffness, and to help stop joint damage. [ male announcer ] enbrel may lower your ability to fight infections. serious, sometimes fatal events including infections, tuberculosis,
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the super awkward pr dance that google, facebook, yahoo, and microsoft are doing with the federal government in the wake of the nsa spying scandal. that's coming up. but first i want to share the three awesomest things on the internet today, beginning with the evolution of an invention. the emoticon. a simple pictoral message that helps express how we feel. a simple frowny face will suffice. now, the inventor of the emoticon tells the wall street journal he does not like what
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his invention has morphed into. i'm talking about the emoticon's more aggressive japanese cousin, the emoji. why settle for a smiley face when you can send your friend a picture of a pizza or this random pile of poop? scott is not impressed. "sometimes i feel like dr. frankenstein. my creature started benign but it's gone places i couldn't agree with." i couldn't agree more. the second awesomist thing on the internet today, a late night legend. the folks at cbc music created this amazing 2 1/2-minute super cut of david letterman asking the same question over and over and over again to bands appearing on his late-night show. and it's really kind of weird. >> beautiful. are these your drums? >> those are fantastic. >> are those your drums? >> great. >> cool. >> nice drums. >> how are you? >> good-looking drums. thank you very much. >> i love these. nice job. >> these are beautiful drums
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too, by the way. nice job. those are great. >> those are beautiful. nice job. >> hey, the man has a thing for drums. i'm not here to judge david letterman. get help. and the third awesomest thing on the internet today, a beloved children's icon meets a new medium. officially, a vine is a six-second looping video like the one shown here. unofficially, a vine is kind of terrifying. want to immortalize your kids' piano recital as six seekds of sheer horror? just create a vine out of it. it did strike some as a bit odd when the white house chose to commemorate a visit from cookie monster as a vine. brace yourself as i unleash the horror. hey, kids, want to have nightmares for the rest of your life? look, it's cookie monster lurking just yards away from where the president lives. new york magazine with the headline "c is for creepy." the reason why cookie monster was at the white house to begin with is amazing. he was there to publicize a sesame workshop program that helps children whose parents are in jail. a really noble and important cause.
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but the way to turn noble things into creepy things is with vine. although while it is slightly terrifying to see a white house cookie monster popping out from behind the lamppost, it's nowhere near as creepy as seeing a times square elmo popping out from behind a linger liquor sforp you can find our creepy vines by searching chris hayes and all the links on tonight's click 3 all end with we'll be right back. [ male announcer ] this is betsy. her long day of pick ups and drop offs begins with arthritis pain... and a choice. take up to 6 tylenol in a day or just 2 aleve for all day relief.
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when the government wanted to know how to better keep an eye on information on the web, it went straight to silicon valley. more than a decade ago cia director michael hayden began enlisting the private sector to build the nsa's data ops. hayden knew at the time that the companies in silicon valley had the knowledge and skill required to make this happen. in an interview with the national journal, hayden is quoted as saying, "we made them part of the team because" -- and i'm quoting here, "why would we not turn the most powerful telecommunications and computing management struck on the planet to our use." it's that interview given by michael hayden, he gets to the core of the political revelation that's have rocked the political and tech world over the past week. which is the fact that the same electronic architecture that brings us everything that is amazing about social media and also makes a lot of money is, to use edward snowden's catchy phrase, an architecture of oppression. and all of this has been super embarrassing for the tech industry.
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the nsa is said to have tapped into the servers of nine of the biggest companies. still the heads of two of those companies have put up a rather curious but united front by issuing nearly identical and very carefully parsed, measured statements denying any knowledge of nsa's prism program. mark zuckerberg said facebook has never been part of any program to give the u.s. or any government direct access to our servers. we haven't even heard of prism before yesterday. while goolg's larry page claimed "we have not joined any program that would give the u.s. government or any other government direct access to our servers. we have not heard of a program called prism until yesterday." and now in what appears to be an attempt to show it has nothing to hide, google has sent a letter to the justice department requesting permission to publicly disclose how many foreign intelligence surveillance requests it gets. these tech companies, the ones implicated in the prism monitoring program, track people's habits and interests and whereabouts as a mechanism for producing profit. it's probably the most powerful tool in human history for finding out things about people.
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so it seems only a matter of time until the state pressed it into service to locate its enemies. joining me now is bruce snyder, security expert, author, and also the chief security technologist for bt group a security provider. and colleen taylor, a reporter for tech crunch and tech crunch tv. i want to start on this point, i talked to gren greenwald around the beginning, because i think because of what's surprising about these revelations and was true about the warrantless wiretapping und cert bush administration is the nexus of private industry and the government. this idea of direct access to servers, colleen, silicon valley, the companies named in that, have pushed back quite hard, although in very measured language. what is your understanding right now of what we know about who's telling the truth and what approach these big entities like google, facebook, apple and others are taking in responding to this? >> yeah. i think that all of these companies, facebook, google, and
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microsoft especially over the past couple of days, they've come out and released updated statements, essentially encouraging the government to allow them to be more transparent about what the extent of the involvement is here. there is sort of a sense that their hands are tied because under the foreign intelligence surveillance act, fisa, you're not allowed to disclose any time that you receive a request. and so it's kind of this catch 22, this cycle here, where they can't say everything that's going on. they're prohibited from doing so. >> i read somewhere the other day talking about these companies as being essentially like hostile witnesses for the prosecution, that they are compelled by law to do this. they talk in their statements about complying with the law. but then they talk about this no direct access to servers. and then "the guardian" put up this slide in which we have the nsa saying in their own slide "collection directly from the servers of these u.s. sf providers. microsoft, yahoo, google, fbs,
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pal talk, aol, skype, youtube, apple." brurs, as someone who knows architecture pretty well, what do you make of that? >> it's hard to tell. there's a lot of ways you can parse these words. what does direct access mean? does it mean i have a wire in, i can tap my own queries? or does it mean i'm going to ask for this data, for this bulk data for everybody and get it shipped to me? you can call one direct access. you can call one indirect access. i'm afraid we're really just parsing this to try to save face. and i think this is@companies want to go public, because it looks really bad and they're going to lose public trust. >> and there's obviously been a long conversation about these -- i mean, the irony here is all these companies function, profit, specifically the way they make money is by knowing a lot about their users and selling that information to advertisers. facebook does. i remember when there was a big freakout about gmail because gmail was going to read -- was going to have an algorithm that was going to read your e-mail and give you targeted ads to it.
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and now i just don't even notice the targeted ads, right? so colleen, do you think that there is -- they feel that there's actually a business threat to them and their reputations in terms of these revelations? >> absolutely. especially here in silicon valley and the tech industry. you mentioned that of course we know our data is being used to display ads against it. and people are even a little bit uncomfortable with things like that. but when something is happening secretly with your data and you've really trusted these companies, and it sounds silly to say you trusted a company, but i think, you know, there is a feeling about google, facebook, microsoft, aol, all these companies, that they're different. i think that people were jaded when it came out that maybe verizon was complying with the nsa and years ago that at&t might have been doing a similar thing. that's hugely offensive, but it doesn't really strike you to the heart and make you feel quite as betrayed as when you hear that these other companies are -- we
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thought they were different. >> facebook is also so much more intimate. facebook and gmail, they're very intimate parts of your day and your life. >> it's important to talk about the culture as well here. i mean, the idea is that facebook as a company is so open and transparent. and you know, everything that happens within the company is on the up and up and the way they respect their users. >> these companies really have a business getting people to trust them with their data, with their files, their e-mail, their friends, their photos. >> that is what the profit is. the profit is trust us enough to give us everything about yourself. >> and it turns out they had this side business betraying that trust to the government. >> although not a side business. they weren't selling it to the united states presumably. >> in some cases the companies seem to have been allowed to recover fees. we've seen pricelets for wire
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fapg. we don't know if there's money changing hands. there certainly could be. they might be given some recompen recompense. but in a sense they're losing their trust. for the first time i think we have companies who are saying wait a second, all this government snooping is making us look bad. >> and i think we may have reached a turning point there. and the thing to me, colleen, and what i want to get to here is the reaction to this is so much predicated about the way we have all been habituated to turn over information about ourselves, to just assume we are being monitored, to know that every -- there's a record of everything from the easy pass we drove through, there's an incredible louis ck riff on this i want to play from you and list want to read from this incredible piece, bruce, you wrote before these revelations called "the for you a piece you wrote before these revelations, the internet is a surveillance state. very true words. all that after the break. all business purchases.
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people are almost like begging the government to take over -- and the corporations to take over your life. people are excited when you take a picture of yourself on your phone and put it online, it says where the picture was taken. i remember when e-zpass happen people were like i don't want anyone to know when i go through the lincoln tunnel. but now, every single conversation i've ever had is a public record in the library of congress.
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yeah! cool! >> cutting to the heart of the matter as he often does. i'm here with bruce schneider and colleen taylor. we're talking about privacy and silicon valley's response to the nsa revelations. i want to read this excerpt from a piece you wrote march 17th called the internet is a surveillance state. maintaining privacy on the internet is nearly impossible. if you forget once to enable your protection or click on the wrong thing and you've permanently attached your name to whatever anonymous source you're using, governments and corporations are working together to keep it that way. part of the way we're receiving this news is in the context of already having given up the ghost on the notion of privacy. >> and we have. we do it willingly, we go on to g mail, facebook, and these services are selling our privacy, and that's how they make money. and this is the normal part of doing business.
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normal part of living our lives. like the cameras with location. it is everything. and, yes, there are things you can do. asked a lot this week, what can we do? there's stuff around the edges, but for most of us, this is really hard. we cannot live our lives. >> does that mean we just -- i don't want to just embrace the idea that privacy is gone, and so none of this all makes a difference, which is an argument i've heard. like well, they've got my records about everything and everything i've done so throw up your hands. >> no. yeah, i don't think that that's the case. but a lot of people have been asking that this week. i have heard here in silicon valley, a lot of engineers saying, well, it's time for me to fire up my own server, run my own e-mail client like i did in the '90s. do it all myself. that's going to be expensive, though. that's going to be hard to do. there's a reason why hot mail became so popular and yahoo mail and gmail, but at this moment with how little we really know, there's still so much more information that needs to come
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out. these companies' hands are tied in a lot of ways. we don't know yet, and there is a small number of people at least that are thinking about going back and doing it all themselves and pulling their data off the internet. >> here's a thought experiment that matt iglesias said, google glass plus prism is going to be a lot of fun. right? think about that, think about the amount of information that's going to be streaming through people's google glasses that is going to be sucked up somewhere and stored somewhere. that is the library of data that just -- it boggles the mind of how much sheer information there is out there about any one of us all together. >> it's not just google glass, it's google glass plus location, plus tagging, plus facial recognition, the ability to search for people, connect them and connect that to your
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financial records what, put on your credit cards and your phone records. it's everything together. we're talking about drones, we add drones to that, you look at one thing it might not be that bad, it's everything put together. the way to think of this, to me, data is the pollution problem of the information age. all processes produce it, so natural byproduct, stays around, we're talking here about secondary use. and really if you think about pollution or we look back 100 years ago and are amazed that the titans of industry could ignore as they built the industrial age. >> as coal is belching all this stuff into the errands it's like, well, it's not mine to deal with, i need to make the energy that that coal produces. >> i think our great grandchildren said the same thing. how could you ignore all of this data as you built the information age. just because there's no
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technical solution, a lot of cases there isn't, doesn't mean there's no answer. this is why we have laws to step in. this is how we deal with problems. >> bruce schneider, colleen taylor, thank you both, that was great. that is all in for this evening. the rachel maddow show starts right now. >> thank you, chris. >> thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. this is evelyn rivera, 24 years old, evelyn moved to the united states from colombia with her family when she was a toddler, she was just three years old when she got here. you might be able to tell from the family resemblance and the similar smiles, the lady standing beside evelyn in this photo is her mom, yolonda. they look-alike, right? this is the portion of the fence that separates the united states and mexico. it's located in the towns of nogales. it separates nogales, arizona from the town in mexico that is also called nogales. this particular part of the