Sunday, December 18, 2005

The NSA Flap

It looks like the Democrats are trying to rewrite history in order to cash in on the latest “scandal” ginned up by the MSM in hopes of keeping the Bush administration on the defensive. The NSA eavesdropped on phone calls and emails of US citizens without a court ordered search warrant. Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi claims she “expressed strong concerns at the time.” As the tireless Tom Maguire writes,

Oh, she had expressed strong concerns at the time! That's why she was asking for Congressional hearings, and sending cryptic letters to the White House and the Justice Department, letters she will no doubt produce in due course. (No, I can't think of a reason in the world she has not produced them already - maybe her staff has been busy with their holiday shopping).

Sorry, Congresswoman Pelosi, but if you can’t produce evidence of expressing your concerns, then we have to conclude that they weren’t that strong, if they existed at all. It looks to me like the Democrats don’t think seriously about anything except destroying Republicans. That’s the only war they understand.

If we’re in a war, and the enemy has attacked us on American soil, it is entirely proper for the NSA to monitor their communications without search warrants. This issue and many others would be clarified if Congress would do as it is tasked in the Constitution and declare war. Then we would have an objective condition for the expansion of state power. The powers would end with the end of the war.

We have not had a declaration of war since 1941, but we’ve had a lot of wars. Congress had become accustomed to leaving matters of war to the executive branch. The Spider-Man movie said, “With great power comes great responsibility.” (A dubious statement of altruism implying the strong have an obligation to sacrifice for the weak.) In Congress’s case, the obverse is true: if you evade responsibility, you lose power. (At least, I think that’s the obverse. Maybe I should relisten to Peikoff’s Introduction to Logic.)

(Powerline has a good piece on this.)

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