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Democrats Whining Again – They Voted Yes Instead of No

Sunday, August 19, 2007

The voice of the Democratic party, The New York Times gives us another front page article stating, “Concerns Raised on Wider Spying Under New Law”. It seems that in the rush to escape Washington for the August recess the Democrats, “passed legislation they may not have fully understood and may have given the administration more surveillance powers than it sought.”


This is purely election rhetoric as a majority of members of Congress rarely read what’s being debated and usually do not have a clue what they are voting on. The best and most recent example was the failed Immigration reform package that had Senators debating before they had seen any text of the bill.

Public opinion polls show that Americans aren’t worried one bit that suddenly the government is going to be listening in on calls from the spouse requesting you don’t forget to pick up the dry cleaning. Let us not forget that it was the New York Times in December 2005 that described a program of “warrantless domestic wiretapping” ordered by the Bush administration and carried out by the National Security Agency since 2002.

The truth is that the secret wiretapping of foreign communication has been going on for decades. FISA or the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act was modified by Jimmy Carter in an Executive Order in 1979 and again by Bill Clinton in 1995. The FISA Act was written before the development of disposable cell phones, the internet and email, – it needs to be updated to keep in step with newer communications technology.

A senior intelligence official said, “The intent here was pure: if you’re targeting someone outside the country, the fact that you’re doing the collection inside the country, that shouldn’t matter.” Since much of this technology is U.S. made, the computer systems that store the data are on U.S. soil.

The hysteria is not just restricted to the Democrats and the ACLU. On June 20th France’s venerable Le Monde newspaper wrote that French government officials have been banned from using the uber popular BlackBerry devices for fears of foreign spying. Specifically, the issue has to do with the fact that RIM’s servers reside in the US and the UK. In other words, they fear US and UK spies. RIM responded with the usual assurances of security going so far as to say that even the US National Security Agency couldn’t view the content of any Blackberry communicated data. These same networks have even been cleared by the UK government and NATO for sending sensitive data.

The legislation “restores FISA to its original and appropriate focus — protecting the privacy of Americans,” said Brian Roehrkasse, Justice Department spokesman. “The act makes clear that we do not need a court order to target for foreign intelligence collection persons located outside the United States, but it also retains FISA’s fundamental requirement of court orders when the target is in the United States.”

The question is how much collection of communications do we need to protect this nation against terrorism. I don’t fear that my constitutional rights have been sacrificed at all. The left however fears the worst and still wants to give the detained unlawful enemy combatants in Gauntanimo more rights than U.S. citizens.

Posted: 1715PT 08/19/07


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One Comment leave one →
  1. cmblake6 permalink
    Tuesday, August 21, 2007 3:39 pm

    Could it possibly be that the DU is worried that THEIR OWN Anti-American activities will be discovered? That the intelligence they give to our enemies, and/or the commands they receive from the same, could be discovered? Nah, couldn’t be!? Or could it?

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