Wednesday, July 9, 2008

The Day the Constitution Died...Again

The Senate voted to pass the FISA bill. As far as I can tell, this means that the Bush adminstration, the phone companies, and all the other probable criminals will most likely never be investigated and, drum roll please, the government can continue to spy on us without our knowledge.

It is time for a devolution, darlins. Or sumthin. Remember, these politicans aren't going to lead us anywhere except into the abyss. Obama promised he would be a leader, he promised a new better government. I believe he proved today that he is a politician and not a leader by voting for this. We knew Clinton was a politician, but Obama promised he would be different. Hah! I heard the Obama campaign said they weren't worried about his vote on the FISA bill. They said it wasn't like the left was going to vote for McCain. I thought. how could they be that cynical and ignorant. No, people on the left are not going to vote for McCain, but many people on the left will stay home! And this would mean McCain would become prez. By the way, Clinton voted against the FISA bill.

The ACLU says, "The FISA Amendments Act nearly eviscerates oversight of government surveillance by allowing the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) to review only general procedures for spying rather than individual warrants. The FISC will not be told any specifics about who will actually be wiretapped, thereby undercutting any meaningful role for the court and violating the Fourth Amendment’s protection against unreasonable search and seizure.

"The bill further trivializes court review by authorizing the government to continue a surveillance program even after the government’s general spying procedures are found insufficient or unconstitutional by the FISC. The government has the authority to wiretap through the entire appeals process, and then keep and use whatever information was gathered in the meantime. A provision touted as a major “concession” by proponents of the bill calls for investigations by the inspectors general of four agencies overseeing spying activities. But members of Congress who do not sit on the Judiciary or Intelligence committees will not be guaranteed access to the agencies’ reports.

"The bill essentially grants absolute retroactive immunity to telecommunication companies that facilitated the president’s warrantless wiretapping program over the last seven years by ensuring the dismissal of court cases pending against those companies. The test for the companies’ right to immunity is not whether the government certifications they acted on were actually legal – only whether they were issued. Because it is public knowledge that certifications were issued, all of the pending cases will be summarily dismissed. This means Americans may never learn the truth about what the companies and the government did with our private communications."

Once again, I'm doing what I know to do. I've called my senators to thank them for doing the right thing. And I'm going to contact the Obama campaign and let them know what I think. Mario and I have also decided we're not donating any more money to the Obama campaign, at least for now. We were giving a little bit each month, just as we would have given a little bit to Clinton (or Edwards, etc.). But no more.

(Yes, I'm still on a break. My computer is dead again. Again. Again. Again. Enjoying the break although I miss blogging.)

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