Spyware Government

I’m glad to see that the controversy over George Bush’s illegal domestic spying program is getting more heated. Could this be the straw that breaks the camel’s back, and brings down this awful administration? I hope so — it’s basically the same issue that forced Nixon to resign in 1974 under the threat of impeachment, and resulted in a law specifically to prevent such breaches of privacy and infringements of civil liberties: The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) of 1978, a law that George W. Bush has apparently broken.

A few interesting recent developments:

1. According to today’s New York Times, a number of Republican politicians, in both houses, are now starting to publicly express doubts over the leaglity of Bush’s covert domestic spying program, including Representative Heather Wilson, Senator Susan Collins, Senator Lisa Murkowski and Senator Arlen Specter, the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee (and who I can’t help thinking of as “Uncle Arlen,” even though I’ve never met him, since he’s related to my ex-girlfriend Jessica).

2. The Feds have been stepping up their inquiry to discover who leaked the information about the illegal wiretapping program to the New York Times in the first place– a witch hunt that is no doubt intended to warn other potential whistle-blowers that they will be hunted down, and which clearly shows just how nervous the administration are about this whole issue.

3. George W. Bush recently announced that the security services had foiled a plot by Al Qaeda shoe bombers to fly another commercial jet liner into another building, this time the Library Tower (although apparently he mistakenly called it the Liberty Tower) in Los Angeles. Please — the timing is just a little bit too convenient, and are we really supposed to believe that Al Qaeda are so lacking in imagination that they would try exactly the same act of terrorism AFTER security measures have been tightened up in airports and on planes throughout the globe?

4. Moveon.org have produced a clever new TV ad that includes footage of “Tricky Dicky” Nixon morphing subtly and seamlessly into footage of George W. Bush, and clearly makes the following point:

“Nixon was also illegally spying on Americans for reasons he claimed were related to national security. America disagreed and we passed a law after Nixon resigned that balanced national security and the civil rights of Americans.”

5. The Campaign to Impeach Bush published a full-page ad in the New York Times recently.

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