Friday, February 17, 2006

Senate Rejects Wiretapping Probe

The Bush administration helped derail a Senate bid to investigate a warrantless eavesdropping program yesterday after signaling it would reject Congress's request to have former attorney general John D. Ashcroft and other officials testify about the program's legality. The actions underscored a dramatic and possibly permanent drop in momentum for a congressional inquiry, which had seemed likely two months ago.


In December, two Republicans on the committee -- Olympia J. Snowe (Maine) and Chuck Hagel (Neb.) -- called for a congressional investigation of the NSA program. Yesterday, they supported the move that adjourned the meeting without voting on Rockefeller's motion.

Folks it’s official. Democracy is dead.

Heretik offers a poem titled 11:59

Meanwhile, The New York Times reports Accord in House to Hold Inquiry on Surveillance whereas, Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas conveys the White House had agreed in principle to negotiate on legislation that would give Congress authority to oversee the eavesdropping.

Sen. Rockefeller, the Senior Democrat on the panel emerged from a closed-door committee meeting fuming and accused Republicans of caving to White House pressure. "Mr. Roberts used the deal to push off a vote on a plan by Democrats to conduct a full-scale investigation of the program."

But it gets better...el Presidente busho believes it is a really good idea to give control over our ports to Muslim countries…are you asking yourself why don’t we have Saudi Arabia run Homeland Security? The company based in Dubai will have a major role in operating ports in and around New York City. Did you know that Dubai Ports World is owned by the United Arab Emerites (UAE)?
UAE was one of three countries in the world to recognize the Taliban as the legitimate government of Afghanistan and it has been a key transfer point for illegal shipments of nuclear components to Iran, North Korea and Lybia. [more at Think Progress]
And lastly...

Digby has a good assessment on what we've learned from this business of the vice president getting drunk and shooting an old man in the face.

For instance, the next time somebody accidentally runs over a pedestrian and refuses to talk to police about it until the next day, we should remember that he was traumatized. [more]

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