Thursday, January 31, 2008

The Precipice

Ever see a sick critter spin in circles?

Mr. Bush, the nominal President of these parts, has begun to spin.

At the start of the Iraq war, Congress wrote a temporary law that exempts the national spy process from having to get warrants from the secret FISA court for every goshdarn wiretap. They used to have to do this within 72 hours after the taps had been set in place. This exemption is set to expire soon. Mr. Bush would like it renewed permanently.

He claims that preventing the court from recording our wiretaps will protect us from terrorists. Whereas the original law didn't protect us. He wants the temporary bill made permanent.

THEN he says that he will veto a permanent bill unless it also includes protection from the law for the phone companies for anything illegal but unspecified that they may have done in wiretapping everyone's phones without a warrant, not just the terrorists.

When the court wasn't looking, they wiretapped everyone's phones. Now they're stuck up a tree.

They could have committed any crime in pursuit of the government's purpose or been responsible for the crimes being done by others. Bush wants a big blanket for his enablers.

So he will veto the bill? He will veto that protects us from terrorists unless it protects his buddies? Does he connect one sentence with the meaning of the next?

He is telling us to set free his friends or we will be attacked by terrorists.

What a choice! What a choice to give the American people.

Bush delivered his final State Of The Union message a few days ago in a slurred voice that suggested inebriation or that he had had a recent stroke. The slurring diminished during the speech, so he healed from his stroke rather quickly. An article about his healing years ago from his alcohol addiction appeared in the press the next day by coincidence.

He made a choice before his speech. He may have made several choices.

Meanwhile, a two-week extension of the current wiretap bill has been put in place. This will move discussion forward, past "Super Tuesday", when many states have their primary elections and a candidate may win early a party's nomination.

Debate on the FISA bill will now be much more public. Candidates may speak before Congress. Ted Kennedy, who earlier promised to help Senator Dodd filibuster the bill if it came before Congress, now will now surely speak, both as a Senator and as a major endorsee of Senator Obama's candidacy. Perhaps Senators Obama and Clinton will choose to speak also.

Fun ahead.


The discussion on whether waterboarding is torture continues to be unresolved, held in limbo by Attorney General Mukasey, who bravely opined today under duress that if it were done to him and it hurt, he might consider it torture. The world can only tighten his screws further and further.

As soon as the fact that waterboarding is torture becomes unarguable, he must indict his President. Not an easy choice.

This will probably happen after Super Tuesday.

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