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Americans overwhelming support President Bush in wiretapping.

ANAV

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A few question for those who think Bush should be impeached. Are you in that big of a hurry to have Cheney be the president? If it was a Democrat in office would you be calling for impeachment? If this story had broke a few months after 9/11 would you be so adamant?

And a question for those who think Bush should not be impeached. If it was a Democrat in office accused of the same thing, would you be calling for his impeachment?

IMO the President should have the authority to order wiretaps without approval in a time of war. Keeping America safe is his number on priority and in todays world extreme measures are necessary. OBL just said yesterday that attacks are being planned on American soil. So go ahead, wiretap to keep me and my family safe.
 

aps

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ANAV said:
A few question for those who think Bush should be impeached. Are you in that big of a hurry to have Cheney be the president? If it was a Democrat in office would you be calling for impeachment? If this story had broke a few months after 9/11 would you be so adamant?

And a question for those who think Bush should not be impeached. If it was a Democrat in office accused of the same thing, would you be calling for his impeachment?

I am not saying that Bush should be impeached; however, I think those of us who associate ourselves with being either a democrat or a republican are all guilty of being partisan when it comes to these issues. Republicans were in an uproar about Clinton when he lied before a grand jury, and they wanted him to be impeached. Democrats came to his defense saying that he lied about sex, which isn't a big deal. When you support someone, it's much easier to forgive that person or to overlook issues involved with that person. So my guess is that if a democrat was in office and was accused of doing what Bush has done, democrats would be saying what you say below (that you support this).

IMO the President should have the authority to order wiretaps without approval in a time of war. Keeping America safe is his number on priority and in todays world extreme measures are necessary. OBL just said yesterday that attacks are being planned on American soil. So go ahead, wiretap to keep me and my family safe.

So are you assuming that those judges on the FISA court don't care about our national security? Based on the number of times that court orders have been sought, which court order was denied, it doesn't appear that asking for warrants would have had much of an impact on this program.
 

Simon W. Moon

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oldreliable67 said:
But, I continue to get the impression that few posters realize the nuances (oh no, shades of John Kerry!) of FISA and the FISA warrant process, especially the time element involved, which goes a long way toward answering the "why not get a warrant using the 72 hour emergency provisions" question. In todays (01/19/2006) WSJ,
Victoria Toensing, who as chief counsel for the Senate Intelligence Committee from 1981 to 1984, participated in oversight of FISA in the first years after its passage. When she subsequently became deputy assistant attorney general in the Reagan administration, one of her responsibilities was the terrorism portfolio, which included working with FISA.

First off, thank you some more and again for another very civil, relevant and thoughtful response.
Second accept my apologies as my desire to respond has overwhelmed me even though I've not had a chance to fully digest the article to which you have linked, YET.

Third, if the conditions were onerous, why not lobby to have them changed instead of merely ignoring them?
Congress has been relatively pliable re these sorts of affairs in recent years.

Why not change the laws and requirements instead of making an end run around them?
 

Simon W. Moon

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ANAV said:
If it was a Democrat in office would you be calling for impeachment?
Why wouldn't I be just as disturbed by the affair?

ANAV said:
If this story had broke a few months after 9/11 would you be so adamant?
I would. As I've said, my understanding of the American equation is that Liberty is more valuable than Life. That's why we repatedly trade the latter for the former.

ANAV said:
IMO the President should have the authority to order wiretaps without approval in a time of war.
Perhaps. But even of this were currently the case, we should declare war.

ANAV said:
Keeping America safe is his number on priority and in todays world extreme measures are necessary. OBL just said yesterday that attacks are being planned on American soil. So go ahead, wiretap to keep me and my family safe.
There's no sign that rlinquishing these rights will actually, factually make us significantly safer.

Examine the odds of being a victim of a terrorist attack and compare them to the odds of dying in a car wreck or a household accident.
How much safer would you have to be to justify the loss of a Constituional Right?
If the chance of dying from a terrorists act goes from 0.0001 to 0.00001 (ten times as safe) is it worth relinquishing an American right?
If we go from being 99% safe to 99.9% safe, was that extra 0.9% worth giving up the rights so many Americans have died to preserve?

We know how valuable what we're being asked to give up is. What're getting in the return for yeilding up our liberties?
 

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Simon said:
Third, if the conditions were onerous, why not lobby to have them changed instead of merely ignoring them?
Congress has been relatively pliable re these sorts of affairs in recent years.

Why not change the laws and requirements instead of making an end run around them?

It is my impression that consideration was given to seeking new legislation. Subsequently, there have been several theories offered as to the reason(s) why new legislation was eventually determined to not be a solution, ranging from a fear of the legislative process exposing a new technological capability to fear of informing terrorist organizations of more precisely how we monitor them. Somewhere, on one of the several threads related to this topic, I posted a summary of the fears of exposing a new technology; will see if I can locate it and post a link.

The referenced article by Toensing echoed the "informs terrorist" argument but adds an argument concerning the dilution of the president's authority to acquire foreign intelligenc. She puts it this way:

"There are other valid reasons for the president not to ask Congress for a legislative fix. To have public debate informs terrorists how we monitor them, harming our intelligence-gathering to an even greater extent than the New York Times revelation about the NSA program. Asking Congress for legislation would also weaken the legal argument, cited by every administration since 1978, that the president has constitutional authority beyond FISA to conduct warrantless wiretaps to acquire foreign intelligence information."
 

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If the President has free reign to wiretap whoever he wants, without anyone making sure he had a good reason, how long will it be before a President abuses that power to steal trade secrets from business competitors? I bet the Republicans would cry foul then!

Navy Pride said:
What good are those liberties if your not alive to enjoy them?
And you were in Viet Nam?? I used to think Viet Nam vets were strong, brave Americans. I never thought of them as cowardly. I guess there are exceptions to everything.

Navy Pride said:
All presidents in a time of war have done it and "Slick Willie" did it in peace time.............I guess its only a crime if GWB does it.....:roll:
If you can show good evidence that they did it without a warrant then I'll agree they are just as guilty as GWB.

Navy Pride said:
Short of committing suicide there is nothing GWB could do to please people like you and simon.......
Wrong. Navy you need to realize that not everyone in the world aspires to the same stupid partisan ideology that you desparately cling to in order to undestand complex politics. There are plenty of things Bush could do that would please people like them (and me). First, he could quit torturing people for worthless information. I even started a thread specifically to thank Bush when he agreed to McCain's torture bill...before he reniged like the lying piece of dog crap he is. Second, he could quit blabbing his uneducated propoganda about the terrorists "hating our freedoms" and at least try to refute the specific complaints they've actually made. Third, he could get a warrant for wiretapping American citizens and be second-guessed like every other war President. Forth, he could save American taxpayers millions of dollars by coming forward with who the **** leaked Valerie Plame's name already (Rove). The list goes on...

George_Washington said:
For all you fellows that claim that Bush is taking away our freedoms, well...

Nearly every administration, when faced with the threat of war, has instilled a strong, central government.
That's a strawman. The argument is not about a "strong, central" government, it's about a "wiretapping citizens without a warrant" government.

George_Washington said:
Also, what is there more to fear? Tyranny or anarchy? I say anarchy is the darkest threat because it inevitably errupts into tyranny.
That's another strawman. We are not facing an Anarchy. The question is between Tyranny or Democracy.

George_Washington said:
For all you people who say that our country was founded on a, "less centralized" government, well, that just wasn't the case. The Federalist Papers, the book that was the blueprint of the Constitution, was the basis for our government. Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and John Adams, talked in detail about the value of a solid and central government.
You're absolutely right. That's why we are a Republic, not a true Democracy, because a strong central government is very important especially during war. But don't forget that our entire government is based on a system of checks and balances. A government that can keep itself in check is just as important. That ability for our government to 2nd-guess itself is completely lacking in this warrantless wiretapping of American citizens.

ANAV said:
A few question for those who think Bush should be impeached. Are you in that big of a hurry to have Cheney be the president?
Good questions, but I thought impeachment only means he is convicted of a Federal crime while in office, not necessarily that he is removed from his Presidential duties. As Simon would say, CMIIW. :)

ANAV said:
IMO the President should have the authority to order wiretaps without approval in a time of war.
Not when the "war" has no end in sight. We're not fighting an enemy, we're fighting an ideology. We don't have any definitive victory condition in the "war on terror," so it could conceptually go on forever, like the war on drugs and the war on poverty. Under no circumstances would I be willing to give the government perpetual war powers.
 
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H

hipsterdufus

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Oh by the way hips I love the dems new saying....."Culture of corruption".....Every time a dem opens his mouth that is the first words that come out.........

In the era of 5 second sound bites - it's come down to little catch phrases on both parties.

"Culture of Corruption" "Up or Down Vote" "Reform" "Retreat and Defeat" etc.

Sad...
 
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Binary_Digit said:
That's a strawman. The argument is not about a "strong, central" government, it's about a "wiretapping citizens without a warrant" government.
Citizens? The wiretaps were on suspected terrorists and those participating in terrorist activity. The servellience was on those speaking with al-quida. Please stop spinning this as though Bush listened in on your grandmother.
 

Stace

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KCConservative said:
Citizens? The wiretaps were on suspected terrorists and those participating in terrorist activity. The servellience was on those speaking with al-quida. Please stop spinning this as though Bush listened in on your grandmother.

Well, without warrants, we don't really know WHO he was spying on, now, do we? He very well could have been spying on Binary_Digit's grandma - or yours, for that matter.
 
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Stace said:
Well, without warrants, we don't really know WHO he was spying on, now, do we? He very well could have been spying on Binary_Digit's grandma - or yours, for that matter.
lol, yeah, because he's got nothing better to do, right.:roll: Honestly, I think you guys had better luck with the artificial Thanksgiving turkey scandal or that stolen election crap.
 

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KCConservative said:
Citizens? The wiretaps were on suspected terrorists and those participating in terrorist activity. The servellience was on those speaking with al-quida. Please stop spinning this as though Bush listened in on your grandmother.
Some of the folks were American citizens.
Some folks who have suspected of having terrorist ties turned out not have had such ties.
Since these are facts, there is no spin.
 

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My gramma's apple pie is the bomb. Oops..
 
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Simon W. Moon said:
Some of the folks were American citizens.
Some folks who have suspected of having terrorist ties turned out not have had such ties.
Since these are facts, there is no spin.

yes, simon, of course.
 

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ANAV said:
A few question for those who think Bush should be impeached. Are you in that big of a hurry to have Cheney be the president? If it was a Democrat in office would you be calling for impeachment? If this story had broke a few months after 9/11 would you be so adamant?

And a question for those who think Bush should not be impeached. If it was a Democrat in office accused of the same thing, would you be calling for his impeachment?

IMO the President should have the authority to order wiretaps without approval in a time of war. Keeping America safe is his number on priority and in todays world extreme measures are necessary. OBL just said yesterday that attacks are being planned on American soil. So go ahead, wiretap to keep me and my family safe.


Its all just partisan politics bullshit.........The democrats have no answer on any issue........Its all they got.........I dare them to try and impeach this president with a republican congress.....It ain't gonna happen.....
 

cnredd

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Simon W. Moon said:
Some of the folks were American citizens.
Some folks who have suspected of having terrorist ties turned out not have had such ties.
Since these are facts, there is no spin.
But that's where the problem lies with warrants...

The NSA monitors calls where one party is outside of the US...I'm sure we can agree that this number will be in the millions..Although I don't know the specifics, it seems that the NSA locks in on certain keywords and conversations get spit out of the computers so the human element can analyize them...

Now how many conversations get spit out everyday?...every hour?...thousands?...tens of thousands?...hundreds of thousands?...

And out of those conversations, how many does the "human element" believe there's a need to go further with monitoring them for a terrorist conversation?..Ten thousand a day?...Hundred thousand a day?...

How the heck are you going to get a warrant for every one of these?...72 hours?...You'd be lucky to get them all in within 72 days!...

Every judge in the nation could be utilized and we still wouldn't have the paperwork complete...

Now...

Let's be real "conservative" here and say the estimate of these conversations the computer spits out is one thousand a hour...24 thousand a day out of millions and millions of international(with the US being one side) is hardly out of the realm of plausability...BTW - This part has been legal for decades...This is hardly breaking news...

How long does it take for the "human element" to recognize a conversation may be terrorist related?...Once again, we'll go low and say 5 minutes...That's 5,000 minutes a hour folks...and that's JUST on the initial analyzation...I'm sure once the first contact makes a connection, it doesn't go straight to some secret FISA court for warrants...Imagine if the first contact thought there may be a connection because of something inconsequential...he'd be laughed right out of court!...

So it goes up the ladder...a supervisor...probably another one after that...it might go through 5 or more hands before we'd even start thinking about a warrant...Once again, let's be conservative and say this takes an hour...

Now this is just ONE case...

How many go up the line and get stopped by the top person(people?)...Well that's about 50 minutes going through this and deciding against getting a warrant...Now they start all over with the next case...and remember...when it gets to the upper management side there's probably a line forming 6 miles long...

Also remember...this is going on 24/7...this just ain't one eight hour day, then it stops at the 5 o'clock whistle...

Now how long does it take by the time it gets from the top person's hands to the court?...How many "typers" would be needed to draw up each case?...Added up, I'm sure that's a few hundred more hours of administrative stuff before it gets to a judge's hands...

Even if a steady stream is going to the courts in this manner, how long does it take a judge to see if the warrant has merit?...5 minutes?...10 minutes?...I'm sure some judges are slower than others...It would be dumb to just "sign off" on each one in twenty seconds...this is a "case by case" basis...

And ALL of this is going on BEFORE an individual gets targeted for specific monitoring...

How long has this process taken?...An hour and a half minimum?...could be few...I don't know...

But I do know this...In a day and age of $10 phone cards and disposable phones, by the time that warrant is signed to target an individual, that phone could be LONG GONE...any numbers connected to it rendered moot...

The warrant has become meaningless...You now have a piece of paper to checkup on a phone sitting in a dumpster...congratulations...

You know what the whole arguement is for the ones who cross their fingers and wish Bush falls for this?...

"F--- national security!....At least we have the correct paperwork!"...:roll:
 

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Wouldn't the SMART conservative response be to CHANGE the law and not just break it because it's inconvenient?
 

cnredd

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shuamort said:
Wouldn't the SMART conservative response be to CHANGE the law and not just break it because it's inconvenient?
I don't know...

Would you ask that the law be changed on vandalism if you have to break a window to save people from a building on fire?...
 

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shuamort said:
Wouldn't the SMART conservative response be to CHANGE the law and not just break it because it's inconvenient?

Absolutely, shuamort. The legislative history of FISA showed that Congress included a provision that allowed the president to conduct surveillance without a warrant for the first 15 days of a time of war because they estimated that it would take 15 days to pass legislation during a wartime emergency. They were very specific. They estimated it would take 7 days to allow each house of Congress to review the amendments and make recommendations and another 7 days to pass the legislation.

It doesn't get more specific than that.
 
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cnredd

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aps said:
Absolutely, shuamort. The legislative history of FISA showed that Congress included a provision that allowed the president to conduct surveillance without a warrant for the first 15 days of a time of war. They provided this provision because they estimated that it would take 15 days to pass legislation during a wartime emergency. They were very specific. They estimated it would take 7 days to allow each house of Congress to review the amendments and make recommendations and another 7 days to pass the legislation.

It doesn't get more specific than that.
Except for the fact that it has already been established that the legislation would NOT be passed...15 days...15 months...15 years...

ATTORNEY GENERAL GONZALES: This is not a backdoor approach. We believe Congress has authorized this kind of surveillance. We have had discussions with Congress in the past -- certain members of Congress -- as to whether or not FISA could be amended to allow us to adequately deal with this kind of threat, and we were advised that that would be difficult, if not impossible.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/12/20051219-1.html

Also, compare "FISA's legislative history" with the partisan hackery we call Congress today...

Bush Administration - "We would like to propose that..."
Democrats - "NO!!!"
 

aps

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cnredd said:
Except for the fact that it has already been established that the legislation would NOT be passed...15 days...15 months...15 years...

ATTORNEY GENERAL GONZALES: This is not a backdoor approach. We believe Congress has authorized this kind of surveillance. We have had discussions with Congress in the past -- certain members of Congress -- as to whether or not FISA could be amended to allow us to adequately deal with this kind of threat, and we were advised that that would be difficult, if not impossible.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/12/20051219-1.html

Also, compare "FISA's legislative history" with the partisan hackery we call Congress today...

Bush Administration - "We would like to propose that..."
Democrats - "NO!!!"

What? So if they don't like what Congress says, they can just do it anyway? Think about Gonzales's arguments. "We didn't ask Congress to amend FISA because in the past they said they wouldn't do it." At the very same time, he is also saying that "The President has the right to do this."

Why would they even discuss going to Congress if the President had the authority all this time to conduct warrantless surveillance?

Poor Gonzales. He's digging a hole for himself.
 

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aps said:
What? So if they don't like what Congress says, they can just do it anyway? Think about Gonzales's arguments. "We didn't ask Congress to amend FISA because in the past they said they wouldn't do it." At the very same time, he is also saying that "The President has the right to do this."

Why would they even discuss going to Congress if the President had the authority all this time to conduct warrantless surveillance?

Poor Gonzales. He's digging a hole for himself.
Because there is nothing in FISA that says you can OR can't in certain instances...

Why did Clinton have FISA amended to include warrentless searches AFTER one was conducted on Aldrich Ames???

Thanks to a warrant authorized by Attorney General Janet Reno, a team of agents from the sprawling National Security Division had permission to enter the Ames home in Arlington, Va. There was only one minor problem. The attorney general of the United States does not have the authority to order a warrantless physical search of a citizen's home, argued Professor Jonathan Turley of George Washington University National Law Center. The Aldrich Ames search in my view was obviously and egregiously unconstitutional...

...Now eager to put a stamp of judicial impartiality on the hazy executive branch doctrine of inherent authority, the Justice Department immediately got behind the bill to expand the FISA court's power. Soon after Ames pleaded guilty last year to spying, administration officials began arguing that adherence to traditional Fourth Amendment protections for American citizens would unduly frustrate counterintelligence efforts against spies operating in the U.S.

Physical searches to gather foreign intelligence depend on secrecy, argued Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick. If the existence of these searches were known to the foreign power targets, they would alter their activities to render the information useless. Gorelick went on to explain that A [traditional] search can only be made when there's probable cause to believe a crime is involved, whereas a national-security search can be made at a substantially earlier stage. We often don't know what we're looking for when we go in, she observed.


This is the EXACT same logic used with wiretapping!!!...You simply don't know what you're looking for beforehand, so how the heck could a warrant help it?...

Now...

Here's the difference...

1995 - Democrats in Congress who agreed with this logic(WHY? - A Democratic President) and expanded it to include warrantless searches...They would've included wiretaps at the time if they had crystal balls and knew that $10 phone cards and disposable phones would cause a problem...

2002 - Democrats in Congress who DO NOT agree with this logic(Why? - A Republican President) and do a 180 when it comes to the exact same issue...

Imagine the stupid logic...FISA gets amended in 1995 to include warrantless searches but doesn't in 2002 when it comes to warrantless wiretaps?

What changed?

Oh yeah...The new guy has an (R) after his name...:roll:
 

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Navy Pride said:
All presidents in a time of war have done it and "Slick Willie" did it in peace time.............I guess its only a crime if GWB does it.....:roll:
I think you're wrong. Is it possible for you to actually provide proof to your claim this time or will you simply ignore posts that prove you wrong?

A link that proves that President Clinton authorized wiretaps against Americans without going through FISA, please? Oh, BTW - Don't waste our time with the CIA traitor Aldrich Aimes because he signed a release that permitted the government to tap his phones without a warrant, as does everyone who works for the CIA.

So Navy it's time, again, to prove that Clinton did what Bush is doing... or admit that you're making up untruths, again.
 

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cnredd said:
Because there is nothing in FISA that says you can OR can't in certain instances...

Why did Clinton have FISA amended to include warrentless searches AFTER one was conducted on Aldrich Ames???

Thanks to a warrant authorized by Attorney General Janet Reno, a team of agents from the sprawling National Security Division had permission to enter the Ames home in Arlington, Va. There was only one minor problem. The attorney general of the United States does not have the authority to order a warrantless physical search of a citizen's home, argued Professor Jonathan Turley of George Washington University National Law Center. The Aldrich Ames search in my view was obviously and egregiously unconstitutional...

...Now eager to put a stamp of judicial impartiality on the hazy executive branch doctrine of inherent authority, the Justice Department immediately got behind the bill to expand the FISA court's power. Soon after Ames pleaded guilty last year to spying, administration officials began arguing that adherence to traditional Fourth Amendment protections for American citizens would unduly frustrate counterintelligence efforts against spies operating in the U.S.

Physical searches to gather foreign intelligence depend on secrecy, argued Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick. If the existence of these searches were known to the foreign power targets, they would alter their activities to render the information useless. Gorelick went on to explain that A [traditional] search can only be made when there's probable cause to believe a crime is involved, whereas a national-security search can be made at a substantially earlier stage. We often don't know what we're looking for when we go in, she observed.


This is the EXACT same logic used with wiretapping!!!...You simply don't know what you're looking for beforehand, so how the heck could a warrant help it?...

Now...

Here's the difference...

1995 - Democrats in Congress who agreed with this logic(WHY? - A Democratic President) and expanded it to include warrantless searches...They would've included wiretaps at the time if they had crystal balls and knew that $10 phone cards and disposable phones would cause a problem...

2002 - Democrats in Congress who DO NOT agree with this logic(Why? - A Republican President) and do a 180 when it comes to the exact same issue...

Imagine the stupid logic...FISA gets amended in 1995 to include warrantless searches but doesn't in 2002 when it comes to warrantless wiretaps?

What changed?

Oh yeah...The new guy has an (R) after his name...:roll:

Okay, first, I want to tell you that I appreciate the fact that you do research to back up your argument.

Second, in regard to your statement of "Because there is nothing in FISA that says you can OR can't in certain instances...", I am not sure if that is true. However, I don't have time to research this because I have to leave to go meet my husband for dinner. I'll get back to you on this probably some time this weekend, as I'll be too tired to get online once I get home tonight.

Cheers.
 

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aps said:
Okay, first, I want to tell you that I appreciate the fact that you do research to back up your argument.

Second, in regard to your statement of "Because there is nothing in FISA that says you can OR can't in certain instances...", I am not sure if that is true. However, I don't have time to research this because I have to leave to go meet my husband for dinner. I'll get back to you on this probably some time this weekend, as I'll be too tired to get online once I get home tonight.

Cheers.
Those "dinners" tire me out, too!...:doh

Ta!...:2wave:
 

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cnredd said:
Because there is nothing in FISA that says you can OR can't in certain instances...

Why did Clinton have FISA amended to include warrentless searches AFTER one was conducted on Aldrich Ames???
As previously noted the Aldrich Ames argument is not an accurate one. ALL CIA employees sign a waver that allows for wiretaps and surveillance WITHOUT a warrant.

Signing a waver is equal to authorization from a court IMHO. It has absolutely nothing to do with what is happening now.
 
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