John McCain Now Pretends He Didn't Say Keith Alexander Should Resign; Gives Nonsensical Explanation

from the accountability-how? dept

We just wrote about Senator John McCain calling for NSA boss Keith Alexander to either be fired or resign -- though for the exact wrong reasons. Specifically, he wants him fired for letting little people like Ed Snowden and Chelsea Manning have access to important documents and also for having embarrassing facts (like that we spy on McCain's friends in high places, like Angela Merkel) revealed. Let's be clear. Here is McCain's exact quote:
SPIEGEL: Should Keith Alexander, head of the NSA, resign?

McCain: Of course, they should resign or be fired.
While a bit odd that McCain would refer to Alexander as plural, it's hard to say that he didn't say that. But, guess what? His press people are now trying to walk this back, and saying that McCain did not say what he actually said.
“Senator McCain believes that there needs to be accountability for the Snowden leaks, but he is not calling for the resignation of General Alexander, who is retiring soon,” McCain spokesman Brian Rogers told POLITICO. < ?i>
Actually, he did call for his resignation (or firing). Quite directly, as noted above. Separately, just what kind of "accountability" is he calling for? In the interview, he clearly said those responsible should be fired or resign. Of course, perhaps someone reminded him that Alexander is an "important person" like himself, Merkel and other top politicians, and he realized that "accountability" only applies to the little people.


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Nov 11th, 2013 @ 11:35am

    Man...

    McCain's so old that he can't remember what he said just a few hours ago.

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 12:55pm

    Sounds like he's been getting public speaking advice from General "Least Untruthful Answer" Clapper. Expect McCain next to claim that it was a trick question.

     

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  3. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:03pm

    Mike continues to think politico-babble is important.

    I might as well just go with taglines all the time: any of them are more relevant to your everyday life than what one of the worst fascists in Congress says.

    So here's one I like:

    "Some people think that the Federal Reserve Banks are United States Government institutions. They are private monopolies which prey upon the people of these United States for the benefit of themselves and their foreign customers; foreign and domestic speculators and swindlers; and rich and predatory money lenders." The Honorable Louis McFadden, Chairman of the House Banking and Currency Committee in the 1930s http://www.4thmedia.org/2013/10/21/who-owns-the-federal-reserve-the-fed-is-privately-owned-and-its-s hareholders-are-private-banks/

    09:02:57[k-5-3]

     

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  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:06pm

    "However, Rogers noted that McCain was asked whether “they” – Alexander, President Barack Obama, and Congress’s intelligence committees – should resign. So, Rogers said, McCain was arguing for general accountability in Washington, as opposed to specifically whether Alexander himself should step down."

    So in actuality he wasn't JUST calling for the resignation of Alexander, but also the members of the intelligence committees and the President. Ok, I think that would be an acceptable outcome given the how egregious this was. Let's start with the Feinstein and Mr. "I don't really know what a violation of privacy is" Rogers since Alexander is on the way out anyway.

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:08pm

    Re: Mike continues to think politico-babble is important.

    You really don't get the concept of "being on topic" do you?

     

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  6.  
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    SolkeshNaranek (profile), Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:12pm

    NSA - Resignations - Accountability

    I would like to think McCain received a phone call after his "resignation" statement hit the press.

    I can imagine the phone call originating from within the NSA and reminding McCain of the "incident/s" he would like to keep private and how it might accidentally become public knowledge if he didn't change his position or statement.

    They are watching everybody McCain, not just the "little people". Welcome to the nightmare of your creation.

     

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  7.  
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    Gwiz (profile), Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:15pm

    Re: Mike continues to think politico-babble is important.

    I might as well just go with taglines all the time: any of them are more relevant to your everyday life....


    Is Blue attempting comedy here?

    I find this statement to be utterly hilarious. Blue's comments have about as much relevancy in my everyday life as that piece of gunk stuck to the bottom of my shoe. Both are annoying, formless, messy and useless.

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:17pm

    he's probably afraid of being put on the 'ones to watch' list

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:17pm

    Re: NSA - Resignations - Accountability

    I can imagine the phone call originating from within the NSA

    No, bud.

    The call probably came from McCain's own staff. Or maybe someone the senator met on the cocktail circuit. Doesn't really matter.

    And all the call was, simply, was a reminder that General Alexander was retiring soon. Nothing more. And not sinister at all. Only the fact of General Alexander's imminent retirement.

    Senator McCain just wasn't aware of that fact. He didn't know.

     

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  10.  
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    Gwiz (profile), Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:23pm

    Re: Re: Mike continues to think politico-babble is important.

    You really don't get the concept of "being on topic" do you?

    No Blue doesn't. And what makes this even more funny is that Blue felt the need to scold the community for being off-topic this morning.

     

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  11.  
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    Internet Zen Master (profile), Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:25pm

    Hmmm...

    Given how blunt McCain's known for being sometimes, I wouldn't be surprised if this was spokesman Brian Rogers trying to do damage control where it wasn't needed. After all, what Rogers sees as potentially damning to McCain's career, might be seen by many others as a positive statement and get him more support.

    ... Actually, scratch that. Considering that there are many slimeball politicians who would twist McCain's words and make it look like he was calling for Obama to resign, doing this double-speak bull crap makes sense, given what goes on in that wackoland that exists inside the Beltway.

     

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  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Mike continues to think politico-babble is important.

    Pot... kettle...

     

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  13.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:33pm

    Here is McCain's exact quote

    Here is McCain's exact quote in context:
    SPIEGEL: Who must be held accountable?

    McCain: The head of the NSA, the president of the United States, the Congressional Intelligence Committees, all of these contractors we pay that were responsible for performing the background checks. There should be a wholesale housecleaning.

    SPIEGEL: Should Keith Alexander, head of the NSA, resign?

    McCain: Of course, they should resign or be fired. We no longer hold anybody accountable in Washington. The Commandant of the Marine Corps fired a couple of generals because of failure of security at a base in Afghanistan. Tell me who has been fired for anything that's gone bad in this town.

    In context, it's apparent that Senator McCain is up to one of those standard political tricks: He is not answering the question the interviewer is asking. Instead, Senator McCain   —like any good politician—   is answering the question that he wishes the interviewer would have asked.

    He's probably such an old hand at this by now, that it's not even a conscious thing anymore. All decent politicians ignore the questions and answer the way they want.

    In this case, Senator McCain isn't even trying to be tricky or to obfuscate. He's just following up on “Who must be held accountable?” and answering with how those people should be held to account.

     

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  14.  
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    SolkeshNaranek (profile), Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:34pm

    Re: Re: NSA - Resignations - Accountability

    Don't tell me how to imagine my dystopian world.

    I'm also not your "bud", pal. :)

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:36pm

    Re: Re: NSA - Resignations - Accountability

    "Senator McCain just wasn't aware of that fact. He didn't know."

    Really? If that's the case maybe he should be calling for his own resignation on the ground that he's a clueless wonder, as that's been public knowledge for almost a month now.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:41pm

    Re: Here is McCain's exact quote

    So you mean his idea of "a wholesale housecleaning" is simply to sweep all of the dirt under the rug and pretend like it never was there in the first place?

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 1:43pm

    Re: Re: Re: NSA - Resignations - Accountability

    Senator McCain just wasn't aware of that fact. He didn't know.
      he's a clueless wonder 

    IN the 113th Congress, Senator McCain is not a member of the Senate Select Committee On Intelligence.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 2:01pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: NSA - Resignations - Accountability

    I didn't say he was. I said that if he wasn't aware that Alexander was retiring he obviously isn't paying attention to much of anything that is going on - especially if he's going to comment publicly on an issue. That would also make him not a member of the Intelligent Community in general.

     

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  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 2:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: NSA - Resignations - Accountability

    especially if he's going to comment publicly on an issue

    Wait a second… Name any national politician who needs to know what's he's talking about before running his mouth.

    That's just not in the political DNA:   Knowing anything about the subject? Politicians are compelled to talk, regardless.

    You can't hold Senator McCain to some kind of higher standard. That's not fair.

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 2:22pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: NSA - Resignations - Accountability

    Now we are getting somewhere...

    "Wait a second… Name any national politician who needs to know what's he's talking about before running his mouth."

    They all seem to talk a lot about the Constitution but apparently most of them haven't got a clue about what that is about.

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 2:27pm

    Re: Man...

    How can we ever be sure the NSA didn't just pull out McCain's file on him inbetween his statements?

     

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  22.  
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    wec, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 2:33pm

    Isn't the PR reply just like the answer of monitoring Merkels phone calls. They didn't say he didn't say it. They said he is not asking for resignation as of now.

     

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  23.  
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    seal, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 2:43pm

    Senator McCain is functionally senile and should not even be followed by the press. McCain should retire.

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 2:51pm

    Re:

    They said he is not asking for resignation as of now.

    Are you saying that Senator McCain is flipper-floppering?

    Somehow, I didn't have John Sidney McCain III down as one of those wobbly flipper-flopper types.

    Are you sure about that?

     

     

    Flipper-floppering.   That's puke-worthy.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  25.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Nov 11th, 2013 @ 4:00pm

    Re: Re: Man...

    Are you saying that there's more than one McCain?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
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    AC Unknown (profile), Nov 11th, 2013 @ 8:04pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: NSA - Resignations - Accountability

    There's a concept called "noblesse oblige". It's French for "Nobility Obliges". It means that power and/or prestige come with responsibility. A person in power should be a greater role model for society.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 8:55pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: NSA - Resignations - Accountability

    It's French…

    I thought the Frogs guillotined most of their ancien nobils back in 1789—during their revolution and the terror.

    Or did they leave enough aristos with their heads still attached to be worth a damn?   Damn all blue-blood aristos.

    A tisket, a tasket,
         a head in a basket.
    It does not answer,
         questions you ask it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  28.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2013 @ 10:08pm

    Re: Man...

    Nah, His PR Brian Rogers, is more loyal to General Alexander than McCain.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  29.  
    identicon
    Davd, Nov 12th, 2013 @ 1:48am

    Re: Re: Re: Man...

    Why vote for a politician with a single face when you can get a two-faced one for the same ballot?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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