Thanks to free long distance on my cell phone, I have Washington office of the excrable Dianne Feinstein on speed dial. I call regularly, because just about everything she does pisses me off.
The Horrible Senator chairs the Intel Committee, and her service in that august body has been one of unremitting failure. Did we ever get any answers as to how we were sold a bill of goods on the WMD, to the tune of a trillion dollars and too many thousands dead to count? Even after admitting she had been had, she failed to, you know, try to figure out how it happened. You might think someone would get fired, but a mistake that cost a trillion bucks and thousands of dead was not the type to get her attention.
(Rant continues, and tries to make a point)
Had to step over that pile of -- whatever. I'm back now.
The mission of the Intel Committee includes oversight of the CIA and the NSA. This committee along with its GOP majority counterpart in The House are all that stand between us and General Clapper's wet dream. Yeah, I know. Shudder.
It isn't any secret that the CIA has been torturing prisoners for years, often to death, and has secret prisons in other countries. Let me rephrase that. It is still a secret in some quarters. The only people left in the country who don't know about it all sit on the Intel Committee.
When it came to torture, Dianne talked tough, and insisted that abuse be limited to what the Army Field Manual permits. It never occurred to her, even after all my calls and letters, to expose the people who were violating every tenet of civilized society on my dime, and perhaps examine the culture that allowed it to take place.
Prison for those clowns seems about right, but at this point I would settle for a stern look.
Now we have the Snowden/NSA story. I'm having fun with the staffers all over again. Here is what I have found out. When I pointed out that the Prism program, the FISA court and the Patriot Act contradict every word of the Fourth Amendment, I was told that the Senator believes these programs to be legal, because they are limited to "metadata," not the contents of the call.
Bull. IANAL, but whom I call is just as protected as what we talk about. Since the applicable law, the court and its decisions are all secret, they can't be appealed to another court as the Constitution provides, so there has never been a judicial review of the constitutional aspects at any level. The whole system is designed to be isolated and protected from constitutional review, and to date there has been none.
But I have a stronger argument than that.
Thanks to Mr. Snowden, we know that General Clapper lied to Congress, a federal offense. Exposed, General Clapper confirmed his mendacity with a letter to Senator Feinstein apologizing for being caught.
My latest question is this. Knowing as we do now that General Clapper lied in the past and only admitted it after being exposed, there is no reason to believe another word he says on the subject, and no reason for a man with zero credibility to remain employed. Senator Feinstein has already admitted that they fooled her once, so why on earth would she accept the word of a proven liar that he isn't committing any other crimes? Unless you hear about them, then he might. Why should the Intel committee accept the new "limits" of the program when it turned out the old "limits" were a fabrication?
If you live in a state whose senator sits on the Intel Committee, they need to hear from you. That would be CA, OR, WV, MD, CO, VA, NM, ME, GA, NC, ID, IN, FL, ME, OK. There are two members who are on the side of the angels, Wyden of Oregon and Udall of Colorado. They need your support. All the others need to be encouraged to discuss these events in a public forum.
When I call conservative senators about this, I always stress my Army veteran status and ask why a so-called conservative who stood up for the Second Amendment, isn't standing up for the First and Fourth Amendments.
Thanks for reading this, if you did.