Tuesday, December 20, 2005

More on the apparently non-FISA spying

I'm going to take one step back on this.

If what the annointed "experts" on NPR this morning said is true, that the FISA act allows instant eavesdropping and retroactive court approval, and that they've only turned down 10 or so out of 1,500 requests since 1978 then perhaps a valid point has been made.

On the other hand, if it is that easy to do and the retro-active provision erases the need to bypass the procedure for expediency, it begs the following question:

What does the administration have to gain by bypassing it? What does it have to lose by using it? It makes me wonder if I'm not hearing the whole story. And perhaps there's a very good reason I'm not hearing the whole story. There is, for instance, the possibility that we know there is an agent with access to the FISA courts -- you know, one who might leak information -- but we don't know who it is. Now that's just a for instance.

I just find it amazingly difficult to believe that if it were as cut and dried as I heard in the NPR report this morning that intentionally bypassing it makes any sense in any context. I can't find a motive.

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