In the world of Banana Republics, some things occur that are more Banana Republic-y than others. Spying on political opponents to intimidate, harass, and suppress ideas is at the top of the list. You would think the brazenness of intelligence agencies would at least be curtailed after they were exposed in the blatant spying and unmasking of the Trump administration on the basis of a false dossier paid for as opposition research. You would be wrong. These unelected bureaucrats don’t even pretend to hide it anymore, especially now that regime change has been achieved in the Executive Branch.
Based on the Obama/Biden Spy-Gate precedent, it is now well known that US citizens communications can be secretly surveilled if a part of communications with foreign actors at varying degrees of separation. Meaning the NSA is supposed to only surveil foreign targets, but can collect communication of US citizens that communicate with foreign actors, or even secondary communication between US citizens if one of the parties originally communicated with a foreign actor. What is particularly appalling in this case is the “unmasking” of Tucker Carlson, and leaking of his private emails and text messages to the press. An objective observer might ask, where were the unmasking and leaks prior to when NBC news actually interviewed Vladimir Putin? Who approved the unmasking and who leaked to the press? Was Carlson unmasked because he is not an “approved” news source of the current regime? All very troubling questions to ponder. I can’t help but think we are so far down an Orwellian path that it has become irredeemable. It is like a bad combination of “Dark Knight Returns” and any particular episode of the “Handmaids Tale”.
At a higher level this is just further evidence of a complete ongoing breakdown of our Republic and the freedoms it once represented. President Biden was right when he said we face the biggest threat to our Democracy since the Civil War. Except that it is coming directly from radical elements within his own party and administration rather than a bunch of unarmed hippies that “sieged” the capitol on Jan. 6th.