"How Would a Patriot Act?" by Glenn Greenwald

Discussion in 'Reviews' started by Mustang, Jun 2, 2012.

  1. Mustang

    Mustang Gold Member

    Jan 15, 2010
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    39° 44 mins 21 secs N, 104° 59 mins 5 secs W
    At only 128pp, this is an extremely informative book about the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) law, why there was a need to create it, and how it's been very often ignored or circumvented in the aftermath of 9-11.

    Prior to the law taking effect, the book chronicles the governmental abuses by presidents from both political parties when in power. Those very abuses are what led to law being enacted in the aftermath of the Watergate scandal. The book also details how, ostensibly with the intention of protecting the US after 9-11, the law was ignored by the Bush administration despite the fact that FISA was updated in the Patriot Act in order to meet the expressed concerns of the Bush administration.

    Greenwald chronicles how Bush (as well as the telecoms) violated the law from 2001 through 2005, despite Bush's repeated public assurances that no Americans' communications were being monitored without a warrant.

    Also of note in the book is how Congress rallied to give the telecoms immunity from law suits even as the law suits were in progress. Congress and the administration also shielded the gov't from accountability on the basis of 'national security' concerns.

    Let me add one fact for the consideration of anyone who thinks that FISA was somehow a failure from 1978 when it was enacted to 2001 when Bush decided to violate the law. In that period, 13,102 requests for a FISA warrant were made by a succession of administrations. None were turned down.

    The book also covers other end runs around Americans' constitutional rights such as indefinite detention without formal charges, legal representation, or a trial.

    For any and all members here who say that they love the US Constitution and the rule of law regardless of which political party is in power, this is a must read.
  2. Peach

    Peach Gold Member

    Jan 10, 2009
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    We knew it was being done, and we allowed. The imparted fear of further terror attacks led us to abandon liberty for "safety", which results in neither, as Franklin wrote. Sounds like an interesting book.

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