So the Democrats in Congress got together with the Republicans in Congress and the Administration (do we have to call them "the Administration", really, when they can't administer their way out of a paper bag? How about-- oh pick your own suitably excremental adjective. I'm busy and sleepy and cranky.) to "reform" (and by reform we mean "gut like a carp") the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (now you know what FISA stands for, at least. Don't let anyone tell you I'm good for nothing.). I am properly outraged by this, and will be donating to the ACLU,possibly the Strange Bedfellows campaign (though those Ron Paul people are a bug, not a feature), and whoever else might make these gutless dolts uncomfortable (Meaning the "Administration", Congressional Democrats, and other gutless dolts to be named later). Yet, despite my high dudgeon, and promising a piece on this, so sure was I of its rantworthiness, I am sleepy and cranky. I am sad and dispirited. Not because I expected much different, not because I now know why it happened (can't find the link, but in some of the reviews of Jane Mayer's latest book-- basically, enough Democrats were briefed on what Bush was "administering", that when the potential for war crimes prosecutions was broached, said Dems came down with acute cover-yer-ass-itis; and a certain sympathy for those poor innocent babes at the helm of our telecommunication playground.), but because it is just so sad that there is no leadership offered in the fine art of saying "enough".
When the Bush spying plans-- like the Bush torture plans (no links here-- do you really need them at this point? The question is not whether spying and torture took place, but whether they're a good thing for the nation or not-- Mithras help us all.)--
were revealed to these leading Democrats, somebody should have squealed (I would pick Jay Rockefeller-- he's old, led a rich full life, he's got more money than Zeus so he could get great lawyers.). Somebody in the Congressional leadership should have said "we don't do this." Let the chips fall where they may, act like a coequal branch of Government, put on the brakes. Do something, anything. Don't just go "Oh, that's very interesting. Are you sure it's necessary? Oh, then, carry on." Don't let it get to where you have to shred the 4th Amendment to protect your own worthless pustule-flecked cowardly rump. This seems obvious to me, but apparently it's hard for some people to grasp. And just look at the expressions on the faces of Bush and Cheney in the photos as this farce was signed into law-- they literally can't believe they're getting away with it. Again. Those expressions tell me that things didn't have to turn out this way.
But turn out this way they did. A court challenge looms, and I am guardedly hopeful, since the "Administration" has lost every FISA related case under the old law, and hopeless, since most have been turned over on appeal. If you're interested in the differences between the old and new FISA laws, click here. I'm tired and cranky and though busy, feel a need for a good long cry in the shower, ala Elisabeth Shue in "Leaving Las Vegas". And, courtesy Congress and the President, for the same reasons.