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judge rules warrantly wiretapping illegal
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mouse



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 5:33 pm    Post subject: judge rules warrantly wiretapping illegal Reply with quote

first report from here
Quote:
Judge Nixes Warrantless Surveillance
By SARAH KARUSH
AP
DETROIT (Aug. 17) - A federal judge ruled Thursday that the government's warrantless wiretapping program is unconstitutional and ordered an immediate halt to it.

U.S. District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor in Detroit became the first judge to strike down the National Security Agency's program, which she says violates the rights to free speech and privacy.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed the lawsuit on behalf of journalists, scholars and lawyers who say the program has made it difficult for them to do their jobs. They believe many of their overseas contacts are likely targets of the program, which involves secretly taping conversations between people in the U.S. and people in other countries.

The government argued that the program is well within the president's authority, but said proving that would require revealing state secrets.

The ACLU said the state-secrets argument was irrelevant because the Bush administration already had publicly revealed enough information about the program for Taylor to rule.


now, as i recall, the admin dropped (or curtailed) legal action against some terrorists because they were afraid of revealing "state secrets"... which suggests to me they won't fight this one.

now whether or not they will actually _stop_ is another question....
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Amilam



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
The government argued that the program is well within the president's authority, but said proving that would require revealing state secrets.


I find it mind blowing that the Bush administration uses this legal defense. I'm sick of hearing about liberal activist judges. When this is their primary defense you would have to be an activist judge to rule in favor of this.
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mouse



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

a little additional info from the nytimes (the first part of their story was the same as above):
Quote:
''By holding that even the president is not above the law, the court has done its duty,'' said Ann Beeson, the ACLU's associate legal director and the lead attorney for the plaintiffs.

The NSA had no immediate comment on the ruling.

Taylor dismissed a separate claim by the ACLU over data-mining of phone records by the NSA. She said not enough had been publicly revealed about that program to support the claim and further litigation could jeopardize state secrets.

Beeson predicted the government would appeal the ruling and request that the order to halt the program be postponed while the case makes its way through the system. She said the ACLU had not yet decided whether it would oppose such a postponement.


of course, if the government demands the order be postponed, and then drags its feet on the appeal, they get what they want without actually having to prove it in court...but at least there is a ruling against them. it will now go down in history as the illegal, unconstitutional act it is.
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mouse



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 5:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Amilam wrote:
Quote:
The government argued that the program is well within the president's authority, but said proving that would require revealing state secrets.


I find it mind blowing that the Bush administration uses this legal defense. I'm sick of hearing about liberal activist judges. When this is their primary defense you would have to be an activist judge to rule in favor of this.


ah, but by definition, all liberal judges are activist; conservative judges never are. even though analysis of rulings shows that conservative judges have a much larger track record of "legislating from the bench".

but see, they legislate the _right_ way, the _american_ way, the _republican_ way, so it's alright.
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cletusowns



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually this kind of wiretapping has been going on since the Wells Fargo Telegraph systems. It really is nothing new to be honest. Not really defending it but saying it was a big idea of Bush's is giving him too much credit
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Monkey Mcdermott



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 8:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not that that fact makes it any less illegal, or the defense presented "Its legal, but we cant tell you why cause state secrets/presidential privledge/etc etc any more ridiculous.
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Major Tom



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cletus just likes repeating "he did it first, he did it first!"
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cletusowns



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Major Tom wrote:
cletus just likes repeating "he did it first, he did it first!"


I was just pointing out that this program and the like have been around for nearly 100 years. Just commenting that I found that pretty interesting.
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Major Tom



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cletusowns wrote:
Major Tom wrote:
cletus just likes repeating "he did it first, he did it first!"


I was just pointing out that this program and the like have been around for nearly 100 years. Just commenting that I found that pretty interesting.


ok, i've been wrong before but i have to say i'd believe that if i could.

the way i see the comment is as an empty yet pointed spin construct.

cletusowns wrote:
Actually this kind of wiretapping has been going on since the Wells Fargo Telegraph systems. It really is nothing new to be honest. Not really defending it but saying it was a big idea of Bush's is giving him too much credit


four reasons:

1) vagueness - can't even claim historical reference here, more of an 'indication of temporal range'. a lack of specific incidence is meant to avoid any direct comparison and thus any need to defend one's interpretation of any specific facts.

2) comparability - in relation to (1), above, yet in light of the possibility that a specific incident was in mind and not mentioned, that lack of mention specifically avoids any consideration of the current acts in question and their implications vis a vis the appropriateness of any specific comparison

3) simplification - as if the efforts of the bush administration in this regard can be boiled down to a single gerund like 'wire-tapping' would allow us to ignore all of the unconstitutional dancing, equivocation and demonstrated contempt for the separation of powers that have surrounded and compounded the illegal program at the heart of it all.

4) deflection - replacing the concept of "blaming bush" with the concept of giving him too much credit may be a subtle and satirical (or at least ironic) flare; still the attempt to suggest he's "not to blame" is clear.
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mouse



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 9:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

and cletus - i note that you do not specify whether or not the telegraph-tapped was done with or without a warrant. that's the issue with bush's program - not that wiretapping is being done, lots of wiretapping has been done over the years, and when done with a proper target in mind, has produced valuable results - but the fact that bush insists on doing it without a warrant. with no judicial oversight whatsoever - even though it would be very easy for him to get it, through fica.

and even if it was warrantless 100 years ago, many laws have changed since then - as has the technology (anyone on the telegraph line could listen in to any message; modern phone calls are a little more directed). current law requires a warrant, obtained from a judge after demonstrating that there is some valid reason for wanting to listen in on some specific person's calls.
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cletusowns



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 10:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, my first reply was quick and vague because I was headed out the door.

My point really was that this is nothing new. Operation Shamrock in the 1970s was basically the same deal. Wiretapping without a warrant. I do agree that warrantless domestic wiretapping should be stopped. That being said I don't think it is quite the same thing. This program monitors calls going out of the country while Nixons program monitored calls and actions of people inside the country. If you want an interesting read into the NSA I'd go check out The Puzzle Palace by James Bradford.

On the other hand, I *can* see how going deeper into how and by what system the monitoring is done can be considered basically one of the biggest state secrets of the modern era. You have to realize that until about 20 odd years ago the NSA was basically unheard of by almost every American and I do think that going any further into how they go about collecting intelligence would be revealing state secrets.

I wasn't responding to anyone in the thread mainly.. just from what i've heard from friends in regards to Bush and the wiretapping program. So, I see your point Major Tom in regards to how I worded it.

Just mainly commenting that I found the whole idea pretty fascinating.
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mouse



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 10:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cletusowns wrote:
I *can* see how going deeper into how and by what system the monitoring is done can be considered basically one of the biggest state secrets of the modern era.


which, to my mind, makes it even crazier that they wouldn't get warrants from a top-secret court almost no one had heard of before all this, because then that court (and others) would have helped them keep the secret - rather than being able to drag it out in the light of day as a constitutional issue.
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Major Tom



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PostPosted: Fri Aug 18, 2006 12:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mouse wrote:
cletusowns wrote:
I *can* see how going deeper into how and by what system the monitoring is done can be considered basically one of the biggest state secrets of the modern era.


which, to my mind, makes it even crazier that they wouldn't get warrants from a top-secret court almost no one had heard of before all this, because then that court (and others) would have helped them keep the secret - rather than being able to drag it out in the light of day as a constitutional issue.


in this, bush is daring the rest of the government to try and 'call his bluff' and, in that, he is hoping to establish a new high-water mark for executive priviledge.
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BoySetsFire



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PostPosted: Fri Aug 18, 2006 3:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

the FISA court was established EXACTLY because the Shamrock program was found to be illegal by Congressional review.

some links on Shamrock:

http://cryptome.org/nsa-shamrock.htm

http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2005/12/project_shamroc.html

also, anyone interested in the NSA and world-wide intelligence gathering should read or listen to the audiobook of Patrick Keefe Radden's Chatter.
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Major Tom



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PostPosted: Fri Aug 18, 2006 4:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

BoySetsFire wrote:
the FISA court was established EXACTLY because the Shamrock program was found to be illegal by Congressional review.


thank you, THANK YOU, for the context, sir.

i suck at history almost as much as current events suck.
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