'Tis better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all. Tennyson, Alfred, Lord

Location: Orange County, CA, United States

I am an avid golfer who enjoys political discourse and quantum physics. I believe that regardless of politics that reality eventually intervenes.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Bush Wire-taps OK

As far as I'm concerned Bush is doing his job when warrantless wire-taps are done. Here's what I found ...

John Schmidt who served under Clinton wrote an article saying that the Bush wire-taps were OK. The bottom line is that FISA does not alter the constitutional power vested in the president to conduct warrantless searches to obtain foreign intelligence. Even the FISA court in 2002 agreed.

I took a look at FISA.

Section 1802a says:
"Notwithstanding any other law, the President, through the
Attorney General, may authorize electronic surveillance without a
court order under this subchapter to acquire foreign intelligence
information for periods of up to one year if the Attorney General ..."

Section 1802b indicates that a US person cannot be surveilled. It's not clear to me but it doesn't look like it affects 1802a.

But then section 1806i seems to open the door wide open for any surveillance:
"In circumstances involving the unintentional acquisition by an
electronic, mechanical, or other surveillance device of the
contents of any radio communication, under circumstances in which a
person has a reasonable expectation of privacy and a warrant would
be required for law enforcement purposes, and if both the sender
and all intended recipients are located within the United States,
such contents shall be destroyed upon recognition, unless the
Attorney General determines that the contents indicate a threat of
death or serious bodily harm to any person."

I'm no lawyer but it sure looks like Bush had every right to conduct warrantless wire-taps.

And then there's nonsense like this:

The process to get a warrant was beauracratic and took too long, not to mention the "not-my-job" mentality.

The FISA Court slowed down the process even further during an urgent environment after 9/11.

The FISA court discouraged Moussouai Warrant.
"Sen. Charles Grassley is among those who think that the FBI might have been able to stop the 9/11 attacks if the FISA Court hadn't discouraged the Bureau from aggressively pursuing a warrant in the Moussaoui case."


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