June 12, 2007
Tomorrow's Democratic Panic Attack
Continuing our public service of bringing you tomorrow's news today, here is what we expect will be the next Democratic hysteria point: The NID is revising the EO:
The national intelligence director [Mike McConnell] has won White House approval to begin revising an executive order that lays out each spy agency's responsibilities and the government's protections against spying on Americans.
The Reagan-era 1981 presidential order is woven into the culture at the 16 spy agencies and spells out their powers. It also provides fundamental guidance to protect against spying on Americans, prohibitions against human experimentation and the long-standing ban on assassination.
From the Democratic perspective, this is mischief in the making! They already believe that the intelligence services want, more than anything else, to spy on ordinary American liberals going about their urgent, everyday goals: destroying the Bush administration, America's ability to fight the war against global jihad, and America itself.
This is actually a historical oddity; in a irony of cognitive dissonance, liberal hatred of intelligence services and operatives has not caught up with the reality that most of the latter support the same "urgent goals" above... as proven by the fact that nearly every leak that has blown a heavily classified operation to gather intelligence on jihadists has come from within the various intelligence services themselves -- from the CIA, the FBI counterterrorism division, the NSA.
It was crypto-Realist elements within the clandestine services who blew the NSA al-Qaeda intercept program, the SWIFT surveillance, the Total Information Awareness database, and many others. It's not libel to say that the CIA especially, that creature of the State Department, has been at war with the war since the Clinton administration.
Thus, anti-defense liberals find themselves arrayed against their own "special ops" forces -- due entirely to the lag between reality and the liberal Democratic perception of reality. Thus:
Some officials familiar with Intelligence Director Mike McConnell's plans, speaking only on condition of anonymity because the deliberations remain internal, said his intent is solely to update the policy to reflect changes in the intelligence community since Sept. 11, 2001, including the creation of his own office.
But other officials, who also spoke on condition they not be identified, said opening the order to changes could lead well beyond that. They said the exercise could threaten civil liberties protections approved by President Reagan following intelligence abuses in the 1970s, and that intelligence agencies will be tempted to expand their powers....
[C]ivil liberties advocates say the executive order isn't strong enough now because it didn't prevent the Bush administration from running controversial operations including the National Security Agency's warrantless domestic eavesdropping program [the obligatory labeling of the NSA program to intercept international phone calls from or to al-Qaeda as "domestic eavesdropping;" I believe journalists who ignore this rule stand in danger of being disbarred or defrocked or having their J-school epaulets painfully snipped off. -- the Mgt.]
Lisa Graves, deputy director of the Center for National Security Studies, said the administration has pointed to the executive order as evidence that Americans are protected from government spying. But the order "doesn't provide adequate protection now for civil liberties. Any watering down would be problematic," she said.
There is little that the Democrat Congress can do to stop McConnell from rewriting the executive order, nor to stop Bush from signing it. But the president also wants Congress to alter the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) to bring it up to date... and in particular, though you won't get this from this AP article, to make it easier and quicker for intelligence agencies to launch surveillance of fast-moving terrorist targets without having to lurch through the cumbersome process of seeking a warrant, as laid out in the current FISA legislation.
(It was that need that drove the NSA, immediately after 9/11, to start tracking phone calls between known al-Qaeda terrorists abroad and suspected sleeper agents here in the United States -- thereby causing Democratic heads to explode.)
I suspect that Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV, 60%) and Rep. Silvestre Reyes (D-TX, 80%) -- chairmen of the Senate and House Select Committees on Intelligence, respectively -- will be heavily lobbied by the Democrat leadership and committee chairs to hijack this agenda and hold it hostage; the ransom demanded would be direct Democratic involvement in rewriting the EO, so they can muck things up even further, perhaps even reinserting Gorelick's Wall.
But if Bush holds firm, refusing to compromise, and if Tony Snow and GOP friendlies in Congress fire continuous salvos against the Democrats for holding up vital intelligence legislation (during a war!), violating the recommendations of the Iraq Study Group, and putting all Americans in danger -- just because they want to pick a fight with the president instead of with our nation's enemies -- then I suspect that the Democrats will cave, just as they did with supplementary troop funding.
So let's see how this plays out -- and whether Big Lizards is prescient or paranoid!
Hatched by Dafydd on this day, June 12, 2007, at the time of 4:43 PM
TrackBack URL for this hissing: http://biglizards.net/mt3.36/earendiltrack.cgi/2168
The following hissed in response by: Big D
What is humorous here is that it is not what is being done that is the problem, but that George Bush is doing it. I have friends and acquaintances that believe, no I mean BELIEVE, that George Bush is just about to land black ops troopers on their lawn and send them to Gitmo. I have an otherwise sane and rational friend who is willing to bet money that Bush will stage a coup at the end of his presidential term. Easy money for me, but so sad.
Both the right and left engage in paranoid fantasies, but only the left seems to see such disconnects from reality as completely normal. perhaps because so many people in the news and entertainment areas share their disconnect. Or perhaps it is because everyhting the left believes is so detached from reality,
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