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Obama Administration Uses 'State Secrets' Clause To Try To Block All Warrantless Wiretapping Cases

from the transparency-is-dead dept

Despite new rules from the Obama administration that are supposed to reduce the use of “state secrets” claims to avoid revealing certain information, the first use of such a claim out of the administration since change the rules is to (once again) try to stop lawsuits involving warrantless wiretapping efforts by the federal government that began under the Bush administration. Again, this is disappointing. It remains difficult for me to see how anyone can justify a warrantless wiretapping program. I have no problem with a wiretapping program that has judicial oversight, but how can anyone defend a system that had no oversight at all?

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Comments on “Obama Administration Uses 'State Secrets' Clause To Try To Block All Warrantless Wiretapping Cases”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Who is the party of "getting shit done"?

Has this administration been successful at ANYTHING since taking over the office? I’m thinking back and am having trouble…

I think his administration has pretty much re-nigged on every campaign promise given. Seriously. I don’t think it’s The President himself, hit rather his incompetent administration that can’t keep their eye on completing one single thing. Sure, we’ll get HealthCare, but damn, it’s going to be costly.

I get the impression that if his admin went to a Baskin Robbins 31 Flavors, President Obama would walk right up, say “Double Neopolitan in a Waffle Cone” Ba-zam! done.

But Rham and the Staff would sit there with their finger up their ass and ask for samples of each flavor then go back and say they forgot what the 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th… flavor was like.

By the time they figure it out, President Obama would have finished and been in the limo, with Hillary who walked to the next-door Deli. President Obama also takes out four pieces of Nicorette while Hillary finishes the last puff of a Cigar.

Eventually, Rham realizes how long they took because the smoke signals stop emanating from the Limo. Rham tells the lady thank you, pulls everyone away, decides not to order anything, and they collectively jump into their respective vehicles like a team of 7 yearolds going to a soccer match.


Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Who is the party of "getting shit done"?

Whoops. Good catch, and wrong word choice. Growing up, my grandfather used it all the time, bad habits are hard to break, and I wasn’t even thinking the reader would think it had a “Subtle” or “Classy” connotation.

Perhaps Masnick will edit the post such that it says one of the following: “failed”, “flunked”, “botched”, “blew”, “screwed up”, “flopped”, “went belly-up”, “fell through”, “abandoned”, or “betrayed”. Any one of these words will fit.

hegemon13 says:

Re: Who is the party of "getting shit done"?

“I don’t think it’s The President himself, hit rather his incompetent administration that can’t keep their eye on completing one single thing. Sure, we’ll get HealthCare, but damn, it’s going to be costly.”

First of all, it is primarily Congress, not the Administration, that is working on the health care bill.

Second, saying “it’s not the president, it’s the Administration” is a bit disingenuous. After all, the president CHOOSES his administration. And, yes, I agree that he did a piss-poor job of it. And yes, he has reneged on nearly every campaign promise, especially those that mattered most (transparency and accountability).

Mike says:

Boy this is rich. Eight years of democrats saying they were appalled by the Patriot Act and just like that they turn around to use similar methods. Well, the only thing I can tell you is get ready for the back peddle.

Honestly though I think this Democrat winning streak is about to be over with come 2012. Me thinks Obama is going to get cornholed in the debates if he keeps on running things like he has this year.

Paul (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Lesson to Republicans: You thought you were going to keep the office forever? What where you Thinking!!! Now the Democrats have the powers you concentrated into the Presidency!

Lesson to Democrats: You are not going to be in office forever either! Do you really want the other guys to have this power!?!?!?

Where is George Washington among these folks? Can’t any President walk away from the opportunity to use powers that are a threat to us all?

Anonymous Coward says:

Now, as an expat, I have very little direct interest in the policies and politics of the US. I do still follow them, however. When Obama was elected, I briefly entertained the notion of dancing in the street, but expat or no, I’m still an American, and much too lazy for that sort of thing.

I must admit to being greatly disappointed by the Obama administrations handling of the whole wiretapping issue, along with a few other things.

Upon some sober reflection, I’ve decided that there are three possible conclusions I can draw from it.

First, Obama’s a douche. (Actually much more complicated than that, but you get the idea.)

Second, Obama is being forced to trade political capital on this issue to get oomph elsewhere.

Third, there actually is some aspect of this whole operation which significantly affects National Security (Capitalization reflecting the “*BOOM* There’s no more New York.” variety of national security rather than the “You can’t bring a bottle of water on an airplane.” variety.). Now, I can’t imagine what that aspect would be, and how it would be eliminated with judicial oversight, but then, I’m not briefed on the program, now am I?

Understand, I’m not arguing for or against any of these positions, I’m merely sharing the form which my thoughts will be taking as more information develops.

RD says:

The password is...

“has pretty much re-nigged on every campaign promise

What’s the word I’m looking for here? Subtle? Classy?”

The word you are looking for is “barely contained bigot” and it manifests itself in every narrow-minded, racist, bigoted whiner about how “Obama didnt do this” or “Obama did that” that shows up on forums like this, and especially usatoday. They vibrate like a tuning fork at the prospect to take yet another shot at the president, armchair-quarterbacking a job that they themselves could never hope to do even half as good as the best they are complaining about.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: The password is...

Incorrect, sir. I am pointing out a severe problem in identifying, campaign promise that has been kept.

Perhaps you can point to some examples of campaign promises kept. At a basic level, I thought Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act would be shot down, and Glass-Steagall would be re-enacted within the first few months, instead it’s this song and dance about Healthcare. Can they only do one thing at a time?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: The password is...


Another good site for tracking Obama’s successes and failures.

Of course, Obama will keep many promises, but he’ll also break many. Just like George Bush, just like Clinton, etc.

The part that drives me crazy is that both major candidates lied like crazy in the debates. Their supporters here at work always justified their candidates lies while attacking the other candidate for the same thing.

In other words, the problem isn’t the candidates. The problem is the people. People are content to vote for power hungry liars, so that’s what we’ll get.

Sheinen says:

The guy explained his usage of the word, probably with the wrong spelling, and from the remainder of his post it was fairly obvious that he intended no racial hatred toward anyone. In fact he seemed to have Obama’s back, which is probably the right stance.

I’m British so I have no clue what your problem is – Gordon Brown has the authority, wit, charm and managing power of a prune and we have to put up with the douche on a daily basis.

It’s very easy to make campaign promises when your outside of the white-house. But the truth is, when you get there, your eyes must be opened to some pretty interesting facts. Facts which may render some of your previous idea’s fairly stupid. If this point keeps coming back up there’s probably a good reason.

rwahrens (profile) says:

another possibility

Another possibility occurs to me.

Perhaps the Obama DOJ is taking this position in the hopes that the courts overturn the provisions of the Patriot Act that they object to.

If the DOJ just kills these cases, or lets them go through without testing this position, it will never get tested by the courts, and another Administration could continue to use it in the future.

If it gets tested NOW, and ruled unconstitutional by an appeals courts, then it is gone for good, and cannot be reused in the future.

This isn’t the first time an Administration has done this by supporting a past Administration’s policies in order to get them overturned in court.

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