Thursday, May 03, 2007

'the president had the constitutional authority to decide...'

* athenae:
"I've been coming to the end of this long book project, which is why I haven't been on the blog as much the past month or so and likely won't be until next week or thereabouts. It's about journalism and journalists and the way we make newspapers today and the constants, the good constants, in that world, but mostly it's about what happens when somebody tells you something's impossible and you basically tell them to shove it. Mostly it's about what you can do when you want something bad enough. Conscious choices, and rising above. I've been reading Jacob's Galactica and Farscape recaps a lot, too, and watching Babylon 5 again. It's insane how much inspiration I get from science fiction, for things that are utterly of the now."
i can't wait.

* Risen/NYT:
"Senior Bush administration officials told Congress on Tuesday that they could not pledge that the administration would continue to seek warrants from a secret court for a domestic wiretapping program, as it agreed to do in January.

Rather, they argued that the president had the constitutional authority to decide for himself whether to conduct surveillance without warrants.

As a result of the January agreement, the administration said that the National Security Agency’s domestic spying program has been brought under the legal structure laid out in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which requires court-approved warrants for the wiretapping of American citizens and others inside the United States.

But on Tuesday, the senior officials, including Michael McConnell, the new director of national intelligence, said they believed that the president still had the authority under Article II of the Constitution to once again order the N.S.A. to conduct surveillance inside the country without warrants.

During a hearing Tuesday of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Mr. McConnell was asked by Senator Russ Feingold, Democrat of Wisconsin, whether he could promise that the administration would no longer sidestep the court when seeking warrants.

“Sir, the president’s authority under Article II is in the Constitution,” Mr. McConnell said. “So if the president chose to exercise Article II authority, that would be the president’s call.”"

* the Other Horton:
"Last night, Bush delivered a peevish veto message with respect to the Iraq bill. He had a petulant, whiny tone that perfectly matched the description from the Nelson Report. We’re down to Bush’s final year. This is going to be ugly."

* Other Horton:
"As we look more deeply into the U.S. attorneys scandal, and consider the testimony of Alberto Gonzales, Paul J. McNulty, William Moschella and Kyle Sampson—and the invocation of the constitutional right-of-silence by Monica Goodling—there are unmistakable traces of the "honor code" of omertà everywhere. This wouldn’t be unusual for a criminal investigation—but for the fact that the subjects are the nation’s senior-most law-enforcement officers."


starroute said...

It's insane how much inspiration I get from science fiction, for things that are utterly of the now.

Not at all insane, because the secret truth is that science fiction is and has always been about the Now -- the genuine Now, not the prettied up Now with all the rough edges smoothed off that we try to pretend we're living in.

Yeah, the names have been changed, and some of the players wear rubber masks (as Dylan put it, "I had to rearrange their faces And give them all another name")-- but in the end, that only serves to reveal their true natures and not as any sort of actual disguise.

On the day when human beings become able to deal with reality as it is instead of as we'd like it to be, we won't need science fiction any longer to remind us of all the bits we're not prepared to handle. But until that day comes, science fiction is as close to true reality as we're going to get.

«—U®Anu§—» said...

In August, a federal judge ruled the Bush administration's warrantless surveillance program was illegal, and ordered it halted immediately.

The White House responded, "um, no," and, as always, nothing changed. Unresponsive to Congress, the Bush administration is also unresponsive to the judiciary, and thus a candidate for forcible overthrow.

Executive privilege, or immunity, was not intended to be a lawbreaking license. Does Judge Taylor know that?

lukery said...

starroute - as william gibson says: "(SF) is the present with all of the knobs turned up to the highest setting, with everything stoked....

"Science fiction isn't about the future, it's about the present... But there's a side to science fiction which is like history inverted, the historical impulse turned inside out and run backwards into the future. The more logical science fiction futures are future histories.""

lukery said...

Mr U - it just hurts my head. it's the same story, again, and again.