Sunday, June 25, 2006

I've Got a Secret!

A lot's being made right now about the New York Times' story about the federal government's snooping into the financial records of those suspected of financing al queda terrorists. 'Twas leaked by a government official to the Times and others, followed by a request by the White House that the story not be published for national security reasons.

Now, let's step back and take a closer look at that.

By what Constitutional authority does the government keep secrets from Americans? Any one of us, with very few Constitutional exceptions, could actually become President of the United States. If a craven, amoral oaf like Bill Clinton-Rodham can be trusted with the keys to the White House, and all that implies, who's not to be trusted?

If the government is monitoring financial records (and we all know they are), what's the big deal if the Times tells us about it again? How many people (of those who actually pay attention to the slimy underside of federal snooping) don't think this monitoring occurs? C'mon, let's be real!

A couple of randomly selected Republican Congressfools have been on tv recently reminding us that private banking records don't have the degree of privacy protection that do other forms of communication. It has been thus decided by the US Supreme Court (may we all prostrate ourselves and pay humble homage to the Sacred Shrines in Washington DC, omniscient though they are in making our lives safe and event-free) long ago.

Problem is, if you look no farther back than the Supreme Court decision, which probably happened in the wake of the (illegal) adoption of the US Income Tax--I haven't checked--you'll come away with that opinion. If, as you ought, you simply read the Constitution and the Bill of Rights themselves, you'll find no authorization for the Executive Branch, or either of the others, to blanket-monitor the financial records of the public at large.

The 4th Amendment specifically prohibits such searches in the absence of due process (a search warrant).

The Supreme Court in question obviously found a way around the letter of the Constitution to make such searches "legal." The proper way to make such decisions is not to wader through reams and reams of erroneous, bought-and-paid-for Superior, Circuit and Supreme Court decisions rendered over the decades, but rather to simply read the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and go by what it says.

There is no justification in the founding documents for blanket mining of the financial records of those who trust their dealings to US financial institutions. It will only undermine their standing in the world market. That harms the American economy, and ought not be tolerated. Banks should, as an industry, refuse.

I hope many of you will join me in condemning the present Administration in the strongest terms, for trying to fight a war by destroying the civil and financial liberties of Americans, rather than simply finding and punishing America's attackers.

They've killed Freedom! Those bastards!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

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