especially Iran our foe who is gaining strength due to the Iraq theatre struggles in W's "GWOT", and his military-industrial complex chums have been given $50 billions to arm Israel and its enemies in the Middle East, maybe we
are closer now than ever to Apocalypse.
You could rationalize the recent caving in to W regarding funding the war in Iraq as ineffectual moves by our Congressional Democrats are trying to make that will outsmart Rove, but this last stupidity, regarding FISA, exhibits that they reek. The Democrats aren't protecting our Constitution. Why are they letting 43 ramrod violations of our civil rights through a Congress they control.
The Democrats don't want W violating FISA then they don't let a committee dealing with it bring it up. The GOP for the years they controlled Congress only dealt with matters that favored their interests. As an example of this every
election period they voted on gay rights and flag burning amendments.
W has done this before. He has waited until the last minute and forced Congress to pass legislation that they never would have passed previously. The Democrats knew that 43 would try to paint them as being "Defeatocrats', as he tried to do that unsuccessfully in 2006, so why couldn't they have prepared themselves better? The reason for Congress' consideration of W's illegal NSA eavesdropping on US citizens was that Bush Administration's program to monitor the phone calls and e-mails of Americans without warrants is unconstitutional. What is hard about saying that and that the matter had to be researched and discussed before another illegal program gets booted back to them again?
The opinion article "Warrantless Surrender" at
states "Congress is stampeded into another
compromise of Americans' rights."
The Democrat Congress could have done the right thing "Instead, it was strong-armed through both chambers by an administration that seized the opportunity to write its warrantless wiretapping program into law -- or, more
precisely, to write it out from under any real legal restrictions....The government will now be free to intercept any communications believed to be from outside the United States (including from Americans overseas) that involve "foreign intelligence" -- not just terrorism.
It will be able to monitor phone calls and e-mails of U.S. citizens or residents without warrants --
unless the subject is the "primary target" of the surveillance. Instead of having the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court ensure that surveillance is being done properly, with monitoring of Americans minimized, that job would be up to the attorney general and the
director of national intelligence. The court's role is reduced to that of rubber stamp...There is one small saving grace here: These sweeping new powers expire after six months. Of course, having dropped the audit requirement, lawmakers won't have a good way of knowing how many Americans had their communications intercepted. The administration will no doubt again play the national security card. Democratic leaders say they want to move
quickly to fix the damage. If only we could be more confident that they won't get rolled again."
The GOP in general, and particularly Specter, can't be depended on as the current article "Gonzales admits testimony 'confusing'" at
indicates. It was just a few days ago that Congress was breathing down the liar Attorney General's neck as the article states "His letter to Senate Judiciary Committee leaders stopped short of an apology as the Bush Administration pushed to expand eavesdropping on suspected terrorists. But in response, the committee's top
Republican, Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, joined Democrats who said Gonzales should not have sole authority to approve the warrantless interception of messages between foreign terrorists overseas."
Historians will wonder about this time period and about the craven actions of Democrats.
The article "House Approves Changes in Eavesdropping" at
describes how this came to pass. An insufficient number of Democrats were against this and "They said the White House was using the specter of terrorism to weaken Americans' privacy rights and give more power to Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales, an official Democrats say has proved himself untrustworthy.
"Legislation should not be passed in response to fear-mongering," said Representative Rush D. Holt, Democrat of New Jersey."
That W's thugs have not only been uncooperative as "But Democrats, and some Republicans, say the administration has worsened the distrust by refusing
to be provide detailed information to lawmakers and by offering what appear to have been misleading answers to Congressional queries."
Not only that but even GOP don't trust W and his crowd as "Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, has criticized Mr. Gonzales, the attorney general, for insisting that the Justice Department never had any internal disputes about the legality of the surveillance program.
Several top Justice Department officials, including the director of the F.B.I., Robert S. Mueller III, have publicly contradicted Mr. Gonzales's testimony and told lawmakers that senior officials threatened in
2004 to resign over the disputes."
Yes, the GOP can't speak about this without the cracks in reality and truth becoming apparent, but the Democrats just allowed themselves to get rolled again.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Rep. John Conyers introduced a bill to amend this legislation "as soon as possible.", but so what? How many US citizens are going to have their civil rights trampled upon for the next 6 months?