Saturday, August 4, 2007

A Pox on Both Our Houses

Let’s take stock of the current political climate: The Democrats have the majority in both chambers of Congress. They’re dealing with the lamest of lame duck presidents. It’s been all but established that Bush’s wireless wiretapping scheme is a massive failure and a blatantly illegal, not to mention an unnecessary one since we’ve had FISA courts that had granted 19,000 temporary warrantless surveillance warrants out of 19,005 applications. It’s also been revealed that the Bush junta had abused these broad powers over a period of years to spy not just on suspected terrorists but millions of American citizens both here and abroad.

Perfect time to cave in, then.

Maybe the Senate and lawmakers in general think that we lack long-term memory. After all, we encourage this belief by electing more or less the same clowns in office every other year, seemingly daring them to pull the shit that they do except during those very brief periods in election years when they suddenly remember their constituency and badger us for votes and money while waving populist banners in our adoring, ever-hopeful faces.

Do they really want to get out of Dodge and go to their summer homes so badly that they’re willing to give this dry drunk rube even broader-sweeping spying powers or is it because they’re listening too closely to professional racist Trent Lott?

This latest collapse by the Democrats just breaks my heart and makes me think that there really is no hope for this democracy or the republic. And this particular cave-in is perhaps the most depressing:

Initial approval by Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. The administration relented to Democrats leery of Gonzales by adding McConnell to the oversight.

For those of you just tuning in, that would be the same Alberto Gonzales who felt it necessary to “correct and clarify” his statements to the Senate Judiciary Committee last July 24th in a letter admitting that, well, yes, we did have political strategy meetings with Karl Rove and other rabid Republican partisans, including a 2001 media strategy session for Bush’s re-election in ’04.

After telling the Senate Judiciary Committee the exact opposite thing.

So the Senate, which has said on both sides of the aisle that Gonzales can’t be considered trustworthy regarding the warrantless wiretapping scam is nonetheless trustworthy enough to be able to designate our enemies for warrantless wiretapping without either the immediate or prior participation of the FISA courts that were set up by President Carter in 1978 for this very same purpose.

But, hey, it’s all good. After all, this is only a stop-gap measure that’s going to last only six months until they can hammer out something that doesn’t buttfuck the 4th amendment quite so intrusively.

Yeah, just try prying Bush’s hands from these new powers after six months.

Now Bush is setting his sights on the House. How comfortable do you guys feel now with your 31 seat majority, especially when your party is led by a woman who steadfastly refuses to initiate articles of impeachment while simultaneously helping to remove language from a bill that allows Bush to invade Iran while bypassing Congress?

That would be the Democratically-run House that, like the Senate, has never once asked, Why can’t our intelligence community be trusted to provide the FISA courts, after nearly seven years, with a list of suspected terrorists before the wiretaps begin?