Wednesday, July 19, 2006


No, Bob Barr with the ACLU - Lives in a Fantasy World

Former Representitive and closet Bush hater Bob Barr continues his onslaught on the NSA surveillance program:

"( - A bill to clarify the Bush administration's lawful use of domestic spying would give the administration a "blank check," according to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and former Republican U.S. Rep. Bob Barr. The bill, sponsored by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter was ridiculed by Barr Tuesday as the product of a "bizarro world."

The National Security Surveillance Act of 2006 was introduced in March. Specter has called it a "compromise" bill that would allow the president flexible use of electronic surveillance while giving him the option of seeking prior approval for the surveillance from the Federal Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court.

"I think it's clear that compromise is a complete mischaracterization of what is contained in the Specter bill," said Caroline Fredrickson, director of the ACLU's legislative office in Washington, D.C.

"In fact it is basically a capitulation to the administration and all of the wish lists of what they would want," Frederickson said during a conference call with reporters.

"What this means -- bottom line -- is that the president can unilaterally monitor anyone he wants, at anytime, for any duration without any check whatsoever," said Lisa Graves, senior counsel for legislative strategy at the ACLU.

Graves said the Specter bill falls far short of providing a congressional check on the president. "There are a lot of problems with this bill, but all those problems are overshadowed by the fact that the president, in this bill, is not required to follow anything in it," she said.

"It is really a blank check, or at the minimum, a check for whatever the president wants."

Barr, who represented Georgia's 7th District in the U.S. House from 1995 until 2003, added that the bill would allow the president to go on a "broad net fishing expedition" for data.

"This legislation, while labeled by Senator Specter as a compromise, is a complete cave-in to the administration," Barr complained. "It's almost as if this were being proposed in an alternative universe, sort of a bizarro world."

The bill does stipulate that the president should have significant authority over electronic surveillance. "The Commander in Chief requires the ability and means to detect and track an enemy that can master and exploit modern technology," Specter's bill states.

It adds, however, that while "it is essential that the President have all necessary means to protect us against our enemies, it is equally essential that, in doing so, the President does not compromise the very civil liberties that the President seeks to safeguard."

When Spector announced the compromise, some conservatives had a "WTF" moment, but I told you, "I see a smirk". The fact that both the ACLU and Bob Barr are bugged just confirms my original diagnosis. Notice that all of the ACLU and Barr's objections are "hypothetical" and quite frankly insulting to the character of President Bush.

Again, for the hand-wringing going on, no one has yet to come forward and say, "I've been harmed!" by the very effective NSA program. The fact is the program works, safegards are in place, and the socialist ACLU and Bob Barr should take a powder and get over it.

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