Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Spier: FISA Hearings Begin February 6 and
by William Spier
…be prepared for some (first day) canned speech from A.G. Alberto Gonzales. The stakes are very high here; and the ranking majority leader on the Judiciary Committee, Arlen Specter, may not bring comfort to those expecting Bush administration officials to be accused of illegality. After all it was Spector who sponsored an amendment to the Patriot Act that would make it a felony to demonstrate in any area the Secret Service deems off bounds.
Glenn Greenwald has posted a very good piece (Questioning the Attorney General) to help prepare us for the hearing. In it he lists 10 questions which Gonzales should answer. Greenwald also directs the reader to the fifteen questions Specter submitted to the Administration.
Absolutes of the Hearing:
Republican committee members like DeWine (OK), Hatch (UT), Cornyn (TX) will bloviate and be apologists for the administration. Gonzales will be praised for his tenacious pursuit of terrorists. Far out Republicans like Brownback (KN), and Coburn (OK) will show their fascist beliefs, and Lindsey Graham (SC) will throw softballs while professing a commitment to a thorough examination of the issue.
All Republicans will try to make the public believe that the whole brouhaha is going to give Al Qaeda an advantage and that domestic spying was only on suspected terrorists. They will suffer the public with incessant references to 9/11
On the Democratic side, Diane Feinstein (CA) will be of no use whatsoever. She is clueless. Expect Feingold to accuse Gonzales of perjury.
Who will be called to testify?
Besides Gonzales, will Specter allow James Comey and Jack Goldsmith, both formerly of the Justice Department, to testify. Will Specter bring in Ashcroft? How about forcing testimony from David Addington? (Cheney’s Cheney) . He is the evil behind the evil one. He tried to minimize all dissent by going behind the backs of everyone at Justice who might think that massive domestic spying is illegal. Addington, it will be made known sometime, paved the way and supported the rationale for torture, domestic spying, and violations of the Geneva Convention. John Woo was the pudgy face the president, vice president and Addington sent out to grease the public wheel. He was on the Newshour so often in 2001 and 2002 he should have been offered a contract.
Then there is Deputy White House Council Timothy Flannigan, former Tyco lawyer....
Gonzales had no experience at national security law before his appointment. He's a chump for the aforementioned Addington.
You cannot dig anywhere in this White House and not unearth really bad anti-democratic personalities. These characters all come from a corporate world where deceit is the norm, and absolute executive power is a given.
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