Tuesday, February 12, 2008

What comes after farce?

Kagro X, via Greenwald:
In rejecting the Feinstein "exclusivity" amendment to the FISA revision considered on the Senate floor today -- an amendment that failed by a vote of 57 Ayes to 41 Noes, thanks to another "painless filibuster" of precisely the type we were promised would not be tolerated on this bill -- the Senate has voted to say that although they were passing a law governing surveillance, it was OK if the President decided that he really didn't like the law very much and wished to make up his own instead.

Exclusivity -- the purpose of the amendment that "failed" -- meant simply this: that the law they were passing was the law, and it was the governing authority for how surveillance could be conducted in America.

The Senate just rejected it, so that means that they're passing a law, but if a president decides later on that he thinks there's really some other controlling authority besides the law, that's OK.
Marx:
The Party of Order proved by its decision on revision that it knew neither how to rule nor how to serve; neither how to live nor how to die; neither how to suffer the republic nor how to overthrow it; neither how to uphold the constitution nor how to throw it overboard; neither how to cooperate with the President nor how to break with him. To whom, then, did it look for the solution of all the contradictions? To the calendar, to the course of events. It ceased to presume to sway them. It therefore challenged events to assume sway over it, and thereby challenged the power to which, in the struggle against the people, it had surrendered one attribute after another until it stood impotent before this power. In order that the head of the executive power might be able the more undisturbedly to draw up his plan of campaign against it, strengthen his means of attack, select his tools, and fortify his positions, it resolved precisely at this critical moment to retire from the stage...
Seriously, when the legislative body of a nation is insufficiently bold to declare that its laws are, indeed, the laws, and that, therefore, anyone who contravenes those laws is, indeed, breaking the law, then what's the point?

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