Thursday, July 27, 2006

Spy agencies call for broader surveillance laws

The heads of the nation's 2 major spy agencies on Weds told Congress that it's impractical to seek warrants before tracking the global phone and Internet activities of groups like al-Qaida and terrorist sympathizers. (Well, it is impractical for me to stop at every red light when I'm running late and there is no traffic coming from the other direction, but guess what? I DO. It is the LAW asshat.) At a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, CIA Dir Michael Hayden (who until recently headed the NSA) and NSA Dir Keith Alexander urged adoption of a proposal that would grant spy agencies more power and current practices more legitimacy. (B/c quite frankly, whipping it out & taking a piss on the Constitution IS getting so tiresome.) The proposed law amounts to a rewrite of the 1978 wiretapping law (FISA). Obtaining individual warrants "is less well-suited to provide the agility to detect and prevent attacks against the homeland" than it was during the Cold War era, Hayden said, particularly when investigators are in "hot pursuit" of communications involving al-Qaida and its associates. (And it really impedes their ability to track the goings-on of political enemies, peace groups, liberal churches, vegans, and other oh-so "dangerous" elements in America.) The bill in question was announced recently by Sen Arlen Specter after extensive negotiations w/ the WH. It would reduce the amount of info that authorities have to supply in warrant applications to the secret FISA Crt. (Really people... details shmeetails.) It would also allow for blanket approval of current and future electronic surveillance programs--a departure from the existing requirement that individual warrants be obtained for each wiretapping target. (B/c the march of fascism must be put on the fast track folks.) It also makes it optional for the govt to obtain crt review of the existing NSA terrorist surveillance program. (Well, I want taxes to be optional, but it's just not in the cards baby.) However, Specter and the Bush admin have given repeated assurances that the prez will submit the program he has publicly confirmed for review, (Oooh... a promise from Bush... that makes it A-okay) if the bill passes in the precise form that he wishes. (What?.. only if the bill passes in the precise form he wishes? Uhh... I thought he just promised... oh screw it... I've got some jackboots to shine, I've got to practice my arm salute, and I have to dust off the framed pix of Dear Leader.)
Posted by Tina :: 1:02 AM :: 14 Comments:

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