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FISA not so simple

Discussion in 'U.S. Politics' started by Dr.Who, Mar 30, 2008.

  1. Dr.Who

    Dr.Who Well-Known Member

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  2. Libsmasher

    Libsmasher New Member

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    We don't "need" FISA - its existence is unconstitutional.
     
  3. Dr.Who

    Dr.Who Well-Known Member

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    How is spying on terrorists unconstitutional?

    Can we get by without spying on terrorists?
     
  4. Libsmasher

    Libsmasher New Member

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    No FISA set up a congressionally mandated court to approve executive branch spying.
     
  5. Bunz

    Bunz New Member

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    Why do we need both FISA and the Patriot Act?
    But hey it was the Patriot Act that brought down the feared terrorist Elliot Spitzer in his jihadist acts with high class call girls.
     
  6. SW85

    SW85 New Member

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    No, it wasn't. He was caught because the feds noticed him moving large amounts of currency around. Currency reporting requirements were enacted in the 1970's, and money laundering has been illegal for 20+ years. The Patriot Act merely extended these laws to include aspects of terrorist financing.

    Believe it or not, the Patriot Act wasn't a nefarious scheme cooked up by Rove and Halliburton to entrap innocent gigolo-governors.


    Really, what's most objectionable about the failure of the Dem Congress to renew the Protect America Act is that it now requires the exec. branch to go through the courts to wiretap people outside the country who are also talking to people outside the country. You can't say with a straight face that that (a) hurts American civil liberties, and (b) doesn't hamper America's intelligence collecting capabilities.
     
  7. Dr.Who

    Dr.Who Well-Known Member

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    I must be missing something. Court oversight of spying sounds like a good thing provided they can work out some of the bugs mentioned in the post just prior to this one.
     
  8. Bunz

    Bunz New Member

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    It is my understanding that before the USPA (which I think is a pretty bogus name but that is besides the point) a transaction over $10k would generate a SAR(suspicious activity report), it is also my understanding that he never pulled out over that amount of cash. Namely, I dont know a single ATM that will spit that much cash.
    Either way, they had Spitzer under survelience for suspicious activities. Now someone explain to me why the federal government and namely the FBI had the agents to put together this case and maintain surveilence for quite sometime when the focus of the FBI is fighting terrorism. If anyone cant see that this whole situation is politically motived, they need to get thier eyes checked. I do not condone what the Governor did, but I would rather our federal law enforcement agency keep me safe from foreign terrorists, that a philandering Governor.
     
  9. Libsmasher

    Libsmasher New Member

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    Unfortunately, the way it was done violates the constitution - congress is not allowed to invent a court that in effect puts unconstitutional congressional restraints on the president's Article II powers. I'm sure if it happened the opposite way (ie, the president set up by executive order a court to oversee congressional activities) that people would quickly grasp the unconstitutionality.
     
  10. SW85

    SW85 New Member

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    Large transactions have been monitored since the 1970's. The only thing the Patriot Act in this regard did was revise earlier legislation on financial transaction monitoring to include a focus on terrorist financing. That's all.

    You obviously don't know what money laundering is: it's the act of moving large amounts of money around to cover up large expenditures and/or revenues that cannot be accounted for legally. It's not intrinsic to the nature of money laundering that I have to withdraw any money. Again, money laundering has been illegal for 20+ years. All of this was to combat corruption and the influence of the mob and whatnot.


    Right, because, you know, a law enforcement agency can only do one thing at a time.
     
  11. Dr.Who

    Dr.Who Well-Known Member

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    Excellent, that addresses the OP. A problem with FISA is what you have described. what do you propose to fix that and also solve the problem that caused them to create such a court?
     
  12. Libsmasher

    Libsmasher New Member

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    The president should ignore the FISA court, and if anyone doesn't like it it can be resolved in federal court. And...."problem"? What problem? The president has always exercised extraordinary powers in wartime, with the nation under attack. Eg, Abraham Lincoln monitored telegraph messages. Roosevelt monitored electronic communication in and out of the US during WWII. If people want to change the constitution, they are welcome to try - it's a free country.
     
  13. Dr.Who

    Dr.Who Well-Known Member

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    Sorry I misread your post.

    A problem that I would describe (from the article) would be that due to the nature of the way communication we cannot monitor only that which is from terrorists. We need to tap onto the whole stream and let machines sort out what to look at and what to ignore. This is awful hypothetical but it is possible that innocents in the US would have their comminication monitored, flagged, and reviewed by actual people without a warrant.
     
  14. Libsmasher

    Libsmasher New Member

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    And then do what with it - prosecute illegal behavior? Can't do it. War is hell, and this is a minor example. The president has broad powers to protect the country in wartime, and right now we are fighting two wars. Certainly the worst attack on the mainland US, and most civilian deaths since the War of 1812, merits extraordinary powers.
     
  15. Dr.Who

    Dr.Who Well-Known Member

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    I guess I am approaching this in more general sense. I am thinking about the shape of the legislation after the war too. Eevn during the war I would like to se checks and balances in all aspects of government.

    What check is there against a president (either this one that I generaly like or another that neither one of us might not like) who would abuse fisa to spy on innocent citizens? Seriously, I am not being argumentative here. I just don't know what the check would or should be.
     
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