Paul Calandra calls Glenn Greenwald a ‘porn spy’

After CBC’s report on CSEC’s highly dubious spying on Canadians over airport Wi-Fi, the prime minister’s parliamentary secretary Paul Calandra accused the public broadcaster of journalistic malfeasance and called Glenn Greenwald, the journalist who worked with them, a “porn spy.”

“Canada’s signals intelligence agency has been clear that the CBC story is incorrect. Yet the CBC went ahead and published it anyways,” Calandra said in the House of Commons Friday. “Here are the facts. Before the story aired, CSEC made clear that nothing in the stolen documents showed that Canadians’ communications were targeted, collected or used, nor that travellers’ movements were tracked.”

Calandra and CSEC’s assertions rest on a narrow reading of what it means to spy on people’s digital communications. They only track metadata, they say, and not the actual contents of emails, phonecalls, etc. This is a distinction American spies also constantly make, comparing it to reading the mailing addresses on an envelope but not actually reading the letter contained inside.

For that analogy to work, it would have to be a magical envelope that not only contains the to and from addresses, but also the precise desk at which the letter was written, the exact word count, and whether and how many previous letters had been exchanged between the two people.

Calandra’s kicker on Friday was, as usual, not a substantive rebuttal to the serious allegations against CSEC but rather a smear on the man who has brought them to light.

“Mr. Speaker, why is furthering porn spy Glenn Greenwald’s agenda and lining his Brazillian bank account more important than maintaining the public broadcaster’s journalistic integrity?”

What the hell is a porn spy? Who knows, but more than a decade ago, when Greenwald was still a practicing lawyer, he briefly had a stake in a porn company. There’s nothing illegal about that, unlike CSEC’s alleged spying operations targeting Canadian citizens.

[via Maclean's]

CSEC, Glenn Greenwald, Paul Calandra,

  • http://www.sherwinarnott.org/ Sherwin Arnott

    You would think that our government officials would unanimously care about our safety and privacy. Sad.