Tuesday, February 12, 2008

And Liberty Cried...

As I write this, it was within the last hour that the 110th Session of the Senate of the United States passed by 68 - 29 the most constitutional damage EVER. Consider the 4th Amendment wrecked unless some miracle happens in the House and/or in the Conference report.

Here is a pretty good summary of what went on, what will happen next.

But let's have a look at this in a total context.

THE PRIMARIES: Both Senators Obama and McCain were on the floor, voted on the amendments and the actual final bill. Senator Clinton was not on the floor and did not vote.

THE PRESS: SadButTrue's post below pretty much sums the climate up; LIES.

THE COURTS: Bear with me here. This is a little complex. The FISA court continues to say that there is likely information that the public should know that exists in the classified materials the ACLU seeks. Christy Hardin Smith at FDL puts it better than I can:

In other words, there is likely information that the public should know that exists in these classified materials, but the Congress, and not the courts, is the place in which these matters ought to be investigated. It's a strong hint from the FISA court, but they are not going to go beyond that because to do so, in their opinion, would be a violation of their role in this oversight tango. (And I have to wonder if the documents that the House is combing through contain this information -- or is it something beyond what they have been given?)

That the FISA Court has gone on record publicly not once -- but twice now-- on this issue screams volumes. That there is no clear resolution to these issues says a lot about where we are politically, and about the levels of frustration that is engendering among a whole host of people inside and outside the Beltway.

Contrast the FISC Court against Antonin "It’s ‘Absurd’ To Say The Gov’t Can’t ‘Smack’ A Suspect ‘In The Face’" Scalia. In light of the fact that testimony under water torture hasn't been in use since, oh, the Spanish Inquisition.

All this and a Healthy Dose of Unitary Executive.

Personal Gain Trumping Duty. Lies. Secrets. Legal Versus Justice System. Unchecked Executive Power.

You now understand why I titled this post "And Liberty Cried..."

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