Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Come On, We Need This. It's Not Like The Terrorists Know We're Monitoring Their Calls Or Anything

As we enter the twilight of the Bush era--348 days (but who's counting?) it occurs to us that the general response to his tenure has been, well, less that positive overall. Now, we understand that getting us into a meaningless, unnecessary war, botching whatever good feeling toward this country existed in the world, turning parts of several states into third world countries, and shredding the constitution are all activities that are most likely to draw a frown from the general populace, but you have to admit, the guy does care about the country. We mean, at least he has a good heart.

Take the terrorist surveillance law currently in congress. All the president wants to do is protect you and us and to do that he needs to give security agencies certain tools. As the president said, " If this law expires, it will become harder to figure out what our enemies are doing to infiltrate our country, harder for us to uncover terrorist plots, and harder to prevent attacks on the American people."

See. He cares about you. He wants to protect you, your little baby, even your cute cuddly dog, right Mr. president?

President Bush threatened a veto in the debate to update terrorist surveillance laws, assailing Democratic plans to deny protection from lawsuits for telecommunications providers that let the government spy on U.S. residents after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Now what could be more straightforward than that. Even if the guy is a total doof you have to admit that...wait a minute...what?

Bush's veto threat was aimed at amendments that would bar retroactive immunity to phone companies and other telecom providers that have illegally given the government access to e-mails and phone calls linked to people in the United States. "Look, if these companies have to obey the law, they'll never cooperate with us, said Attorney General Michael Mukasey.

But, but, but, if the law is vetoed, won't that mean it will be harder to prevent attacks on the American people?

"Telcoms, are people too," Mukasey responded. Some 40 civil lawsuits have been filed against telecommunications companies. They carry with them a threat of crippling financial penalties, which the White House says could bankrupt the companies. "Just how much are your Constitutional rights worth?" Mukasey asked. "Are they worth putting my good friend Ed Whitacre out of a job?"

"Private citizens who respond in good faith to an illegal request for assistance by a government run amok should not be held liable for their actions," Mukasey said. "These are patriotic companies who put the good of the country above profit."

Ummm...except when they don't.

The Senate could vote on the surveillance bill and amendments this week. "We're confident they'll cave just like before," Mukasey told reporters. "After all, they care about as much for the Constitution as we do."

All righty then. Well, at least we know why the terrorists haven't attacked us again. They don't need to.

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