Matthew's Foray into Blogging

Friday, December 23, 2005

Domestic Spying

It has become known that the Commander in Chief has authorized spying on people within the United States without first obtaining a court order. The administration’s position is that the president can order domestic spying without judicial oversight, under the President’s power as commander in chief. However, President Bush’s actions are contrary to the Constitution and laws passed by Congress. the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act requires the attorney general to obtain prior authorization from a judge, in a secret expedited proceeding, before engaging in domestic spying or wiretapping.

This is disconcerting by virtue of the fact that the President, who took an oath of office, to ‘‘preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States,” is flouting the Constitution. It also holds the potential to discourage free speech. It implicates the Fourth Amendment right of the people “to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures.”

My initial reaction upon learning of the President’s approval of domestic spying was not one of shock. I did not fear that National Security Agency agents might have my phones tapped, or that they might be monitoring my library reading habits. It does not seem likely to me that people on the fringes of society will be whisked away and held in secret prisons because of their unorthodox views. I would imagine that people of whom the government is suspicious would be those who would potentially pose a legitimate threat to the United States, such as the September 11 bombers, who the government completely missed.

In part, the negative reaction is a result of President Bush’s unpopularity; this is one more reason to harp on the President. My lack of dismay probably results from the fact that it does not surprise me that this president would show such disregard for the Constitution and the laws.

However, what the President did was wrong in principle, and that is enough.


  • Geena Davis can domestically spy on me anytime.

    Um, did I just say that?

    By Blogger Thomas, at 12:28 PM, December 23, 2005  

  • This issue is not one that should receive the amount of publicity it is. The powers that be need to have time to sort through it quietly without everyone peering over their shoulders.

    By Blogger Steve, at 4:39 PM, December 23, 2005  

  • In a related vein, Thomas, my brother and I were discussing Scarlett Johansson

    By Blogger Matthew, at 4:39 PM, December 23, 2005  

  • Scarlett Johansson. And on the 7th day, God rested.

    That's the first and only time I'll ever capitalize the g-man's name because she's the only reason I'd ever believe in a g-g-g-god.

    By Blogger hal the brown, at 11:16 PM, December 23, 2005  

  • US mainly marked its entrance in to world arena in WW-II, by fighting Nazis. But, I guess they have been fighting monsters for too long now.

    “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.” -- Friedrich Nietzsche

    By Blogger Sphinx, at 8:50 PM, January 15, 2006  

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