..Binney believes that the agency now stores copies of all e-mails transmitted in America... the N.S.A. has built enormous electronic-storage facilities in Texas and Utah. Binney says that an N.S.A. e-mail database can be searched ... in the manner of Google. ... “General Hayden reassured everyone that the N.S.A. didn’t put out dragnets, and that was true. It had no need—it was getting every fish in the sea.”The lesson? Beware when those in authority speak in metaphors.
To me the "dictionary selection after the manner of google" is a dragnet, and to most people it's the sort of thing they were worried about, so when an authority denies a specific behaviour by means of a metaphor, try to see what is being hidden and thus perhaps admitted to.