Conservative commentator Charles Krauthammer likely stunned some political observers on Thursday when he appeared on “Special Report,” noting that he has no major problems with the government’s controversial collection of phone records.
However, Krauthammer also spoke about PRISM, the internet surveillance program that has caught the ire of liberals and conservatives, alike. With little still known about the latter data collection, the commentator was cautious on this front — but he made it clear through some quipping that he believes its name is “spooky.”
“The PRISM sounds a lot different because it sounds as if — we’re not sure if it involves content. I also think that the word PRISM has a Bond connotation,” Krauthammer said. “It’s the villain on the island is working on the PRISM program. So it has kind of a spooky tone.”
Earlier in the conversation, host Chris Wallace asked explicitly about the overarching data mining programs, including the cell phone effort.
“Charles, what is your take on the overall programs as we’ve learned so far and particularly on PRISM, our information somewhat sketchy. And also, Senator Barack Obama’s apparent change of heart?,” host Chris Wallace asked.
While Krauthammer noted that Obama has offered up “a lot of hypocrisy,” he also said that he isn’t surprised that the president has recognized the need to expound upon Bush-era policies.
“I’m not surprised when he becomes commander in chief and they come about the threats out there and his hair stands on end and he says, ‘Well, perhaps Bush was on the right track,’” the conservative commentator said. “So, it’s not surprised, it’s good for the country that a conservative does it and then a liberal. And then the people understand this is required.”
And those weren’t his only comments about the matter. Krauthammer also noted that the phone program isn’t a free-for-all, calling the need for the government to go to a judge when it finds unpalatable phone patterns “reasonable.”
“I’m not at all upset by what was revealed today about the phone program. It is meta information,” he said. “And what you get ‘a’, you have to go to a judge. ‘B,’ it’s sifted by a computer looking for patterns. It’s data mining.”
Watch Krauthammer speak about these issues, below:
(H/T: Real Clear Politics)
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