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Warrants for wiretapping? That’s SO Pre-9/11!

December 20, 2005

…administration officials argued that the existing Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act was not written for an age of modern terrorism. In these times, Mr. Bush said, a “two-minute phone conversation between somebody linked to Al Qaeda here and an operative overseas could lead directly to the loss of thousands of lives.”

New York Times

Sorry for being on such a political jag here, but I am doing a double-take on the news these days. Help me out here. Did the president pretty much just say the law ‘wasn’t working for him’ so he flouted it? Did that just happen? Maybe I’m missing something, but I think that’s exactly what I just saw. The president didn’t want to get warrants to listen to our phone conversations, so he just went ahead and did it without them. Without apology! I guess he figures he can just scare everyone into accepting his new powers by invoking “the loss of thousands of lives.”

I have a new definition for “wingnuttery”: people who see absolutely nothing wrong here.

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No comments yet

  1. Wow, did he really say the law “wasn’t working out for” him? I mean, I know that’s what he thinks, and that’s what all his arguments, if you can call them that, claim, but “wasn’t working out for me” sounds so Valley Girl-ish, like he’s breaking up with a middle school Best Friend Forever.

    I am continually amazed at the number of people who will defend anything and everything this president does, and I’m continually horrified by the degree to which people will gladly offer up their liberty for vague promises of security and trust.


  2. Yikes, no he didn’t literally say “wasn’t working for me” – that’s why I said “pretty much” and put it in single quotes. But I’m not sure how the administration’s defense is substantively different than that in any case.


  3. I didn’t think so, but the mental image of the President as Valley Girl was too much for me to resist. Plus, it just borders on the plausible edge of what he might say: “9/11 changed everything. The terrorists move quick, you see. Sometimes we don’t have time to get warrants, and I’ll never stop defending America. The old laws weren’t working out for us, and my first job is to protect America from the terrorists who attacked us on 9/11.”


  4. Warrants for wire tapping went out of style around the same time being able to voice an opinion different than the leadership’s without being called a terrorist did.



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