My brother sent me a link today asking why the Democrats don’t just explain why what the Republicans are saying about FISA is bulls*** instead of catfooting around and giving the Republicans the floor. I have to say that I’ve been left C-Span1 (the House floor) in the background of my desktop for the last two days and have heard Republicans spouting time and time again on this subject, but almost no Democrats have spoke on the floor. You would think you’d have Democrats after Democrat standing up talking about FISA rebutting the Republicans point by point, but they aren’t even trying.
So, in a nutshell here’s why congress should let the FISA bill drop this year instead of coming back with a conference report that has the Senate version with Telco Immunity.
1. Lives will still be protected if the FISA extension is allowed to lapse as it doesn’t lapse entirely, we go back to the system that was set up in 1978 for the original FISA act.
2. This is about Telco Immunity and not Intelligence. If it was about Intelligence gathering, the could strip the Telco amendment and vote for it separately instead of having it rammed down the house leaderships throat as a Intelligence bill.
3. Warrantless wiretapping is a direct threat to the civil liberties of our citizens as it puts to few checks on the intelligence gathers by the judical branch. Abuses have already been found and although the Republicans tout having thwarted incidents because of these added powers, it’s not proven that a warrant would have hinder the investigations.
Continuing warrantless wiretapping the US Citizen is giving up privacy to subvert possible terrorist threats. Intelligence isn’t the long term strategy for dealing with terrorism, we need to be looking at constructive, diplomatic ways, to be cutting the feet out from under the terrorists. Build friends in the world, create more democracies where the terrorist cannot hide, by friendly persuasion, not force.
It’s ironic that we are looking at “Intelligence” methods as the best way to achieve prevention of terrorism as it’s like seeing a lump on your skin and going to the doctor before it becomes malignant it’s good, but in the long run what we need is to stay out of the sun. There is a good reason these people hate us. We’ve been imposing a double standard of democracy and freedom on the world, we need to stick to true freedom, by supporting real democracy with transparency, accountability, and real elections. By not standing up to these values that we say we believe at home, we’ve lost the moral high ground and we’ve cut the feet out from under ourselves rather then the terrorists.
Before I go off on a further tirade on the FISA, terrorism, or else wise, i’ll leave you with the link my brother forwarded me today. The blog itself is probably better then mine in explaining why FISA is dumb, but it’s comment 10 which is most accurate.