Re: O/T: Top Ten Things Liberals Believe

"Christopher Jahn" <cjahn@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in message news:Xns973084DEC9929xjahn@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
> "ROBERT WRIGHT" <mikey73@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in
> bbgpf.142$ul2.125@trndny05:">news:bbgpf.142$ul2.125@trndny05:
>>> In 2004, however, it *would* have been big news that he was
>>> authorizing illegal spying, and had the Times reported it, it
>>> could well have affected what people thought about his
>>> so-called "war on terrorism."
>> Yes, it is terrible that George W. Bush was using intellegence
>> to listen on folks in America (NOT necessarily AMERICANS) who
>> might be communicating with Al-Queda. If he had been doing
>> this prior to 9/11 perhaps he would have discovered the many
>> correspondences between Mohammed Atta and his AL Queda
>> buddies. If only! Bush should have taken an example from
>> Bill Clinton who pulled confidential FBI files on
>> terrorists....Oops, I mean political oponents. And why doesn't
>> Bush follow another Clinton precedent by using the IRS and
>> audits to try to intimidate his political oponents.
> ACtually, if Congress had funded its own 1989 law requiring that
> all passenger lists be compared to the FBI and CIA terrorist
> databases, 9/11 could never have occurred.
> It is Congress itself as whole that is directly responsible for
> all the lives lost, not Clinton, and not Bush.
>>> Even now, the news has changed people's views and helped
>>> derail renewal of the "Patriot" Act.
>> Which I predict will be big mistake for the democrats and
>> even the Republicans who did not renew the Patriot Act. When
>> the CLinton Administration is pulling FBI files, not of
>> suspected terrorists, but of political oponents. When the
>> Clinton administration is using the IRS to intimidate and
>> audit its political oponents, once again it is no big deal.
> I don't agree with that conclusion. I think it IS a big deal,
> and as I recall, there was an investigation and the guilty
> parties were punished.
> It's just one of those bothersome facts that the guilty party was
> not Clinton.
>> But when the Bush Administration uses current technology to
>> monitor those with suspected terrorist ties, oh how HORRIBLE!

First I want to thank Chris Jahn for responding to the actual points I was trying to make in my post and not attacking me or getting nasty. This is the kind of debate that is much more enjoyable.

> The problem is that there are laws that dictate how that
> technology is to be implimented, and those laws are inviolable.
> Those laws are in place to prevent abuses of power, and certainly
> we have seen that a sitting President can and has abused that
> power.

I am not sure which president you are referring to, but I will assume you are probably referring to President Nixon. However, don't forget about Abraham Lincoln, now considered one of the greatest presidents in U.S. history, suspended habeus corpus laws during the Civil War and, when the Supreme Court ruled him in violation of the Constitution, he essentailly thumbed his nose at the Supreme Court (and, didn't he throw a judge in jail? I seem to recall reading about that too.)

> The problem is that we only have his word that he was only using
> it to monitor terrorists, and I don't trust him because he's
> already broken the law to do it, why wouldn't he lie to justify
> his crime?

History will judge him either favorable or infavorable. Just like Lincoln. However, I think the fact that he was doing this to protect American lives and not to attack his political oponents (as Clinton did) will lean him more in the favorable column. As I said, history will tell.

> Congress creates the law of the land; the President has to obey
> it. He has an opportunity to veto it, but if overridden, the law
> applies. And that's really the end of the matter. Bush broke
> the law, and no one, not even the President of the US is above
> the law, as you are so quick to point out about Clinton's
> extensive persecution over lying about a blowjob.
> --

Lying under oath to a grand jury is a crime, regardless of the subject. The fact that it was done by the top law enforcer in this country completely undermines our justice system. I have paid close attention to the punishments of folks who have lied under oath since Clinton's transgressions, and I always wonder why they don't say, "But Bill Clinton did it and he didn't get any jail time!"

As to whether Bush broke the law, this is still debatable. He may be covered by the Patriot Act. And the last few paragraphs of the NY TIMES article states some interesting things:

*The administration feared that by publicly disclosing the existence of the operation, its usefulness in tracking terrorists would end

*Mr. Yoo, the Justice Department lawyer, wrote an internal memorandum that argued that the government might use "electronic surveillance techniques and equipment that are more powerful and sophisticated than those available to law enforcement agencies in order to intercept telephonic communications and observe the movement of persons but without obtaining warrants for such uses." Mr. Yoo noted that while such actions could raise constitutional issues, in the face of devastating terrorist attacks "the government may be justified in taking measures which in less troubled conditions could be seen as infringements of individual liberties."

*In a 2002 brief, the government said that "the Constitution vests in the President inherent authority to conduct warrantless intelligence surveillance (electronic or otherwise) of foreign powers or their agents, and Congress cannot by statute extinguish that constitutional authority."

*The decision by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review, which sided with the administration in dismantling a bureaucratic "wall" limiting cooperation between prosecutors and intelligence officers, cited "the president's inherent constitutional authority to conduct warrantless foreign intelligence surveillance."

*The dividing line, the court acknowledged, "is a very difficult one to administer."

BUt I think the fact that President Bush was using this intellegence gathering in an effort to fight terror attacks is going to be a huge check in his favor.

> }:-) Christopher Jahn
> {:-(
> You're never alone with schizophrenia.