July 1, 2008

AND THE SADDEST PART IS...:

Democrats Capitulate on FISA: Democrats are trying to rationalize capitulating on surveillance and telecom immunity in the new FISA bill by calling it a compromise. It isn't. (Julian Sanchez, June 25, 2008, American Prospect)

A "compromise" usually involves parties in conflict each giving something up to seek a middle ground. So it was strange to see the term bandied about on Friday, when the House of Representatives -- after holding strong for months against White House demands -- passed a surveillance reform bill that will grant legal amnesty to telecoms that participated in the National Security Agency's program of warrantless wiretapping, and give George Bush carte blanche to continue listening to our international calls with only the most anemic court oversight. A vote in the Senate could come as early as today.

One might think, as Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) does, that the proper word for this is "capitulation." After all, Republicans got precisely what they had wanted all along, and Democrats seem not to have wheedled even a mess of pottage in trade for the rule of law and the Fourth Amendment. But give the House leadership points for at least accidental honesty: "Compromise" can also mean "to make a shameful or disreputable concession," which fits the deal brokered by Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) to a tee.


...these folks think Senator Obama would be a good president because he's willing to compromise with our enemies.

Posted by Orrin Judd at July 1, 2008 3:18 PM
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