Tuesday, 9 October 2007

Another letdown for civil liberties... thanks to the Democrats?

So they fight a largely (purely for some) symbolic, somewhat shallow battle over Iraq, but don't bother to stand up to the Bush administration when American civil liberties are threatened? Whose side are the Democrats on? Dems still seem to be worried more about appearing 'soft' on fighting terror than concerns of basic American freedoms.

Only if one views the 'war on terrorism' as a real war that is serious enough that the US's fighting in it is allowed to chip away at the bedrock of American liberty (i.e. the Fourth Amendment of the US Constitution) can one truly not see how troubling the wiretapping expansion promoted by both political parties is.

From today's New York Times:

Two months after insisting that they would roll back broad eavesdropping powers won by the Bush administration, Democrats in Congress appear ready to make concessions that could extend some crucial powers given to the National Security Agency.

Administration officials say they are confident they will win approval of the broadened authority that they secured temporarily in August as Congress rushed toward recess. Some Democratic officials concede that they may not come up with enough votes to stop approval.

As the debate over the eavesdropping powers of the National Security Agency begins anew this week, the emerging measures reflect the reality confronting the Democrats.

Although willing to oppose the White House on the Iraq war, they remain nervous that they will be called soft on terrorism if they insist on strict curbs on gathering intelligence.

A Democratic bill to be proposed on Tuesday in the House would maintain for several years the type of broad, blanket authority for N.S.A. eavesdropping that the administration secured in August for six months.

Because of their fear of being called wimps in the 'war on terrorism', the Democrats are once again caving into supporting a horrible Bush administration program (this same thing happened last summer too with the approval of the then-illegal White House NSA spying program). Great job guys; you've really served the people who gave you the majority in both houses of Congress well!

It's time for oversight over the Bush administration; it's time for government contractors in Iraq as well as at home to admit and rectify their misdeeds; it's time for the US to admit errors and mistakes too; it's time for the transparency a working liberal democracy requires to shine through this White House, this Congress, and the courts. If only one of the two major political parties would fight for what the United States needs.


cwilcox said...

"The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."
I guess our Senate never read the 4th Amendment.

cwilcox said...

Linked ya.

clearthought said...

Thanks Red Hog. Yes it would do a great deal of good if members of the government actually read the Constitution they're supposed to be following.