Or, If the Republicans Are Going to Take Away All Our Liberties to Supposedly Catch Terrorists, the Least They Could Do Is Actually Catch Some Real Ones.
It’s not surprising that Republicans are spying on fellow Americans. They seem to do it every chance they get, starting with Nixon.
What’s surprising is how incompetent they are in doing it. Take Bush and his version of Mad Magazine’s “Spy versus Spy.” Five years and probably billions spent, yet all he has managed to catch so far with his Constitution forbidden warrantless searches and his daily mega privacy invasions of our personal financial and communications networks is, maybe, that one small gang from Florida who supposedly wanted to attack Sears Tower. And, even that requires a might big benefit of doubt for the assumption the truly dufus gang members involved could actually have found the Tower in question, let alone blow it up.
Granted, there have been other alleged terrorists picked up by US police forces around the country, albeit an embarrassingly tiny handful by any standard. Heck, in terms of suspects found per capita, the Canadian Mounties seem to be a thousand times more successful than we are with far less manpower and almost no bucks or high tech toys.
Moreover, why do our own alleged terrorist discoveries always seem somewhat laughable like the guy who said he wanted to blow up an airplane with his shoes. Okay, let’s give the Bush crew that one, but a careful observation demonstrates him and all of those other terrorist wannabes apparently were uncovered by other, more traditional, law enforcement means, not by monitoring all our business and personal transactions.
Even then, on the rare occasions the Administration supers snoopers somehow stumble across a terrorist candidate who conceivably could have done real harm, the Justice Department usually either blows it or almost does so. Take for instance, the Max Sennett-like comedy of the Oregon attorney arrested as terrorist, but then it turns out the high tech boyos at FBI couldn’t even read a fingerprint correctly. J. Edgar is probably rolling over in his grave.
Or, take Zacarias Moussaoui, who fell into our hands by other means than destroying the Bill of Rights. That particular lunatic fully confessed to participating in the 9/11 plans and amazingly courted the death penalty for himself. Despite that, Bush’s hand picked prosecution crew not only couldn’t get the jury to agree grant his wish, the government Perry Masons in that case bungled so badly, they came close to forcing the judge to dismiss the case altogether. They must have been hired out of the same grab bag of Republican hacks as the former FEMA chief, “Brownie.” They must have gotten their law degrees by mail order. Maybe the Democrats could do no better, but they could hardly do a “heckofa” worse job than the Republicans have been doing “safeguarding” us.
New rules and regs to insure chemical and nuclear plants are safeguarded? Forget it. Not when all the lobbyists and plant owners are Republican. Require examination of all cargo containers entering the country large enough to hide bombs or terrorist? Finally implement the findings of the 9/11 Commission on how to prevent reoccurrences? Why that might cost the Republican CEOs and shareholders of the port and transportation companies money. At least pass on the security costs to the US Treasury? Definitely not since that might reduce further massive tax cuts to the already super rich or slightly reduce the massive inheritance going to their offspring by accident of birth.
Republicans even disbanded the CIA unit tasked to hunt for Osama in 2005. The guy who admits prime responsibility for 9/11 involvement and who gave Bush the excuse to ignore the entire Constitution continues to freely threaten us, but Bush chooses to not even have a unit exclusively after his head. The excuse given is that so many new terrorists have been recruited and created as a direct result of Iraq and Afghanistan that we can no longer afford to have assets dedicated to just him.
Bush is bitter about the newly revealed financial spying he is conducting. That is understandable since the most interesting statistic about it is that ten times as much of the manpower and effort used went into searching for Cuban money movement as it did searching for terrorist funding sources. For someone who pretends to be primarily after terrorists, the misallocation of scarce assets to bird dogging the geriatric Castro has got to be embarrassing to say the least. The facts make Bush look like an idiot even if he justifies the illegalities on security grounds.
Or take the one new possible terrorist plot uncovered. It turns out that the Holland and other tunnels in New York City, the same city that had its Homeland Security funds drastically cut to divert the money to Nebraska and Wyoming, is where the threat is. By the way, once again, it is not clear if Bush’s UnKonstitutional Koppers had much to do with the discovery.
Yessiree. The lesson to be learned is that if you are giving up your freedoms, liberties, democracy and Constitutional rights to Bush and his Republicans in the hopes of securing security, you’d be far better off hiring Inspector Clouseau or Canadian Mountie Dudley Doright.