Trump-era "obscure security unit"

fooferdoggie

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this is what we would expect from trump.



According to Boburg, "The Investigations and Threat Management Service (ITMS) covertly searched employees' offices at night, ran broad keyword searches of their e-mails trying to surface signs of foreign influence and scoured Americans' social media for critical comments about the (2020 U.S.) Census, according to documents and interviews with five former investigators. In one instance, the unit opened a case on a 68-year-old retiree in Florida who tweeted that the Census, which is run by the Commerce Department, would be manipulated 'to benefit the Trump Party,' records show."
 

SuperMatt

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this is what we would expect from trump.



According to Boburg, "The Investigations and Threat Management Service (ITMS) covertly searched employees' offices at night, ran broad keyword searches of their e-mails trying to surface signs of foreign influence and scoured Americans' social media for critical comments about the (2020 U.S.) Census, according to documents and interviews with five former investigators. In one instance, the unit opened a case on a 68-year-old retiree in Florida who tweeted that the Census, which is run by the Commerce Department, would be manipulated 'to benefit the Trump Party,' records show."
Maybe we need better anti-corruption laws in America. It seems to me that such abuses of power should result in jail time.
 
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fooferdoggie

fooferdoggie

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Maybe we need better anti-corruption laws in America. It seems to me that such abuses of power should result in jail time.
trump is the walking definition of corruption. so corrupt no one would touch him. well lets hope the grand jury does.
 

SuperMatt

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Just noticed the title of the unit reminds me of “security through obscurity” which is never a good policy. Not surprising such a dumb idea was concocted by the kakistocracy.
 

lizkat

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Commerce Department under Ross was destined to be a horror show. No one showed up for the Obama administration's carefully prepared transition presentations, and when Trump finally nominated Wilbur Ross to lead the department, he showed up without any aides or transition team members to a single meeting with the outgoing administrator. That may have been a bad omen, but there are ways that things could have been even worse.

For example, after three months as Trump's pick to lead Commerce, it became clear Ross didn't have a clue what he was actually in charge of, the lack of transition never having been addressed. God knows what Ross was doing for those three months. So a former Bush official was dispatched to try to get Ross up to speed on the importance of, say, NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Admin) which manages among other things the National Weather Service. Here is a glimpse of what happened then, from Michal Lewis' book The Fifth Risk:

There was no way the Bush official could get across all he wanted to tell the new commerce secretary in a single meeting. “NOAA is a beast,” he said. “It’s twelve thousand employees and they are decentralized—out in these little tiny offices all over the country. But it does more to protect Americans than any other agency except for Homeland Security and the Department of Defense.” The Bush official did get to tell Ross his main point about NOAA. “It’s incredible value and everyone shits on it,” he said. “The people are great. They aren’t in it for the money. They’re in it for the mission.”​
And he asked Ross a question: “What’s your philosophy for running the department?”
“What do you mean?” asked Ross.​
“It’s not really the Department of Commerce,” said the Bush official. “Its mission is a science and technology mission.”​
Yeah, I don’t think I want to be focusing on that,” said Ross.”​
Yeah well what a surprise, eh? Climate change? A bridge way too far. NOAA is actually 60% of the Department of Commerce. No matter what the mission and motive of the dedicated NWS employees had tended to be, the focus of Trump (and Ross) was quite different, signaled immediately by Trump's nomination of Barry Myers to administer NOAA. If that name doesn't ring a bell, he was CEO of AccuWeather and has long lobbied for the National Weather Service to be privatized, even suggesting persistently to lawmakers that NWS be prohibited from publishing weather forecasts "for free" --although the data that AccuWeather itself uses for forecasting is gathered and maintained by the NWS piece of NOAA.​
Fortunately the gross conflict of interest that was explicit in the Trump/Ross nomination of Meyers turned off even a lot of Republican Senators, and the nomination languished for a couple of years until he finally withdrew it on grounds of a decline in his health. NOAA was run by a series of acting administrators during Trump's presidency.​
If you ask me, the Treasury should just claw back Ross' salary for the four years he hung out at Commerce... and that's before we get to the whole issue of the census, another responsibility of the department he supposedly managed.​
 
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