June 21, 2008

FISA roundup

If you stand for nothing, you'll fall

for anything

And now, we know there are some members of the Democratic Congress who will sell us out swiftly. Like Hoyer and Rahm Emmanuel. For those of you who remember my previous defense of Rahm, I'd like to point out this is the Constitution, not some stupid minor issue. There was NO ACCEPTABLE compromise on this.

First, the showdown now moves to the Senate where Feingold and Leahy are already saying they'll stop it. Will Reid let them or ignore him as he's done previously?

And lets not forget that more than half the Democrats in the House DID vote against this capitulation... Folks like Conyers and Barbara Lee. They deserve some of your love.

Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) pointed to a constitutional concern.

"The grant of retro-active immunity is inconsistent with our basic principles. We are breaking with a very proud tradition and intervening in a pending court decision in an effort to reach a preordained legal outcome. This is a bad precedent," he said.

Republicans without exception spoke in favor of the bill, often citing the dangers of terrorism.

Greenwald and others are raising money to take on Hoyer and some of the other weak sisters who think selling out is standing up.

Obama issued his statement on FISA (take one and take two) and, to say the least, it's weak. Not much of a surprise to those of us who never really bought the new kind of politics bullshit, one hell of a shock to those of you who actually thought fucko was something different.

Gadfly has more on the Texans who caved in. Edwards and Lampson are standouts, but not surprises... you had to know their names would be there. Reyes is seriously too senile (and frankly stupid) to fully grasp what he's done. The rest of them, like Al Green, were just following orders. Like the Nazi's. As a side note, for those of you in 22, is Lampson really as much of a bitch as he appears? Seriously, the guy is pathetic... does he have ANY backbone?

Doggett, of course, voted against it. EVERY Republican voted for it which is to be expected since all of them look at being a Representative not as a sacred public trust but as an opportunity to line their pockets. Seriously, while Lampson may be a jellyfish, the Republicans here in Texas really believe that we should give up essential liberty for temporary safety and security. As Benjamin Franklin put it, they deserve neither.

Some Texans y'all turned out to be. Scared to death of the terrorists. Cowards. You're pathetic even for Republicans.

At this time, I'd like to urge you to do what just about everyone I know has already done. Stop all contributions to the DCCC, DSCC and DNC. Focus on candidates and organizations that do not support this abortion of our Constitutional rights. It's time for certain members of the Democratic leadership to understand that the tail does not wag the dog. While they're some good people at these organizations, the leadership is thoroughly corrupt. Until we find a way to marginalize folks like Steny Hoyer, Rahm and Pelosi, they'll just keep pulling the same shit on us. And we'll all end up losing people... voters are repulsed by gutlessness. And that's what these traitors displayed.

I'll be completely honest... I grew up Republican. I grew up thinking Democrats were weak, didn't have any real feelings or values. I learned yesterday I was partially right (I've known for a while Republicans were pandering idiots without an intellectual core). I moved over to the Democratic Party based on economic issues and social issues and I've been proud of that decision. But, I have to admit, we've seen little of substance out of this Democratic Congress. There's no balanced budget. There's no sound energy policy. There's no expansion of social justice. There's a definitive effort to destroy our civil liberties. There's no real oversight of the executive branch.

There are a number of Democrats that join with Republicans on such a consistent basis that they may as well take a trip up to Minneapolis this August instead of coming to Denver. It's those folks that deserve absolutely no support. Let them seek support from the people they really care about. It certainly isn't us.

Why, after all this time, are Democrats caving in to Republicans? Why aren't we forcing half of their caucus to fold? Because, while they may be wrong, they've got the strength of will that many of our folks in Congress find irresistible. Go on, Steny, give Blount a hummer... we know you're dying to.

Finally, there's this from Dan Froomkin at the WaPo

What kind of a country is it where, when the head of state asks you to do something that may well be illegal, but assures you that he considers it legal, you can't be held accountable for doing it?

Welcome to the new U.S. of A.

Under the surveillance "compromise" that the House of Representatives approved today, telecommunications companies that participated in the government's warrantless surveillance program would get immunity from civil lawsuits as long as they showed that they were told that the program was authorized by President Bush and was determined by his legal team to be lawful.

With Congress having largely abandoned its oversight obligations on this issue, and with little chance of Bush's Justice Department investigating itself, these lawsuits were really the only remaining avenue of accountability -- at least until the next administration.

But the new law would prohibit federal judges from addressing the merits of these suits. Instead, since the government did provide assurances about legality that the companies can easily document, judges would be required to dismiss them.

In a system of laws, a permission slip from the president isn't supposed to supercede duly enacted legislation -- and the Constitution.

So how did Bush get his way with Congress -- again? It was just four months ago that House Democrats defiantly rejected what they called Bush's fear mongering and refused to vote on a surveillance proposal that included telecom immunity. It appeared that Bush's iron hold over Congress on national security had finally been broken.

But, on some issues at least, Congress is apparently still willing to cave to The Man.

And this from Digby... and just let me say, I don't want to hear you bitch until you've made a donation to a one of those people who stood up for the Constitution of the United States of America.

Posted by mcblogger at June 21, 2008 01:08 PM

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I totally agree with you about stopping donations to DCCC, DSCC and DNC. Donations should only be given to those who've demonstrated they have a backbone.
I am a committed supporter of Obama, but I agree that his statement supporting the compromise was very disappointing. I am hoping he'll join Feingold and Leahy, but I know I'm just setting myself up for more disappointment.
How can these Democrats continue to give in to a man who's popularity has dipped to 25%? I just don't understand.

Posted by: jobsanger [TypeKey Profile Page] at June 21, 2008 02:52 PM

Neither do I... my read is that they are scared of the impotent Republican attack machine.

That, and some of the leadership may have been involved with the wiretapping.

Posted by: mcblogger [TypeKey Profile Page] at June 22, 2008 03:51 PM

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