"...violate the Separation of Powers ordained by the very Constitution of which this President is a creature."

The United States just took a gigantic step away from the cliff today. An unknown federal district court judge just told the President of the United States where he could shove his warrantless wiretapping program.

Federal District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor is my new personal hero. She has ordered President Bush to immediately end his warrantless wiretapping program as it is in violation of the very Constitution of which his office is a creature. Here is how she puts it in her injunction:

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Defendants, its agents, employees, representatives, and
any other persons or entities in active concert or participation with Defendants, are permanently
enjoined from directly or indirectly utilizing the Terrorist Surveillance Program (hereinafter


The fuming and foaming at the mouth of the diehard anti-bushie is really quite funny. Let's get some highlights:
* Setting up a new personal hero because she made a fully reasonable legal decision (that... it should be noted... she was under tremendous political pressure to make)
* Setting up a strawman with a rediculous invented quote
* Over the top speculation "If the President refuses to follow this order"
* Claiming that a decision that goes your way is "restoring some sanity and our historic American liberties".

* The wiretapping without warrants at presidential order is (sadly) nothing new. JFK did it, Carter did it... in at least one case it was taken to court and found "reasonable". The precedent is (again... sadly) with Bush on this one.
* This order is only sane... and is the way the original decision should have landed. Everyone is politically motivated in this fight.
* From now on the wiretap approval process will simply be turned into a rubberstamp procedure with a friendly judge's staff. In effect, it's still secret, it's still all done "on the inside", and it's now just delayed for a few hours.
* This has nothing to do with KDE, whatsoever.

In my opinion... this is nothing to get excited about. But recently the anti-bushies have been trying to outdo the anti-clintonites for dogmatic hatred during the late 90s... it's a fun (if pathetic) show.

By kiruwa at Thu, 08/17/2006 - 18:49

  1. This wiretapping has been going on for over five years in direct violation of the Constitution and statutory law as you yourself agree. This judge has ended it -- at least for now -- and will likely be subject to scathing attack from the right wing. Yes, she is a hero.
  2. No other president in American history has setup such an extra judicial wiretapping program. What Bush has done is unprecedented. Neither JFK, Carter or Clinton claimed the inherent power to violate congressional statute and wiretap in such a broad manner without warrant. Don't decry strawman and then use one yourself.
  3. Yes, the wiretaps will now require a warrant in accord with our Constitution. Funny you dismiss warrants as just a meaningless rubberstamp procedure.
  4. Who gives a shit whether it has anything to do with KDE. Look at the top. It is filed under 'personal' ... if you don't like it then you can turn your eyes elsewhere.

Have a nice day!

By Adam Treat at Thu, 08/17/2006 - 21:00

2. Past presidents have certainly done so (particularly during the Red Scare). FDR didn't bother to defend it vs former members of the American Nazi party. What we actually have is the first time that one of the major political parties has had a real interest in attacking the president over these taps.
3. That was more of a prediction... I suppose it didn't really belong in the facts section. But do you seriously think there will be a different outcome?
4. I should probably see if the blog scraper can be filtered a bit. Front page KDE news, this should not be :)

By kiruwa at Thu, 08/17/2006 - 23:12

What you are forgetting is the fact that there was a law passed because of these past behavours. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) is a system to allow fast warrants for wiretapping, even up to 24 hours after the wiretapping has been started. This law, which the President is bound by the constitution to obey, has been ignored by this administration because they don't want to allow any oversight into their activities, just like the past abusers of wiretapping that the law was created in response to.

The attitude you have is that because people have done it in the past, than it is alright for the current administration to do it now. There are a ton of past attrocities that have been commited that we now have laws to prevent, do you think we should just disregard those too?

By smeat at Sat, 08/19/2006 - 04:50

By gordonhenriksen at Thu, 08/30/2007 - 04:38