The Republican majority of both houses of the 109th Congress gave Bush the power of the Patriot Act to conduct data mining under the FISA court, and immunity to all of the telecommunications companies that he had previously abused his power to avoid FISA Court Warrants.
I argued this point many years ago on this forum. The Bush NSA was criminal because it purposely avoided the FISA court, or played this stupid game of getting FISA warrants months & years after the fact to cover the administrations ass
and then the Republican Congress gave it all blanket immunity retroactively.
The Republican congress gave Bush executive power to everything that's now a Prism "scandal" for Obama, as if Obama is breaking the law. When in fact the Intelligence committee and congress has been routinely notified of the NSA's actions under FISA court orders. But with Obama it's a scandal. The headlines last week from Grenwald were that Prism was used domestically, now the news agencies are very quietly backpedalling on that. Grenwald's other sensational headlines of phone taps and illegal eavesdropping stretches the truth and only feeds the rightwing echo chamber and progressive left, but none of the metadata gathering is new and none of it is illegal.
I don't like the executive powers under the Patriot Act but I find it more offensive to misrepresent the legal actions of the NSA and attack the president because the public doesn't have a grasp of these executive powers. That's all the rightwing media cares about, and what is scary is how quickly all the media is interested in is a sensationalist headline.
I recall just a few weeks ago Obama made a very important speech to reconfigure and reboot our position on the War on Terrorism. Yet, today Obama could give a detailed talk to the American people on the Patriot Act and executive power, the NSA and counterterrorism efforts and a heavy dose of no-nonsense reality checks --- but if some douchebag from CodePink stands up and heckles him, then THAT is the only thing the media will report.
In my opinion, Glenn Grenwald is just this week's douchebag. He's obviously got a direct line to another douchebag with Congressional Intelligence clearance that's feeding him a steady stream of classified docs. So todays fauxoutrage is that the military has plans
on how to conduct cyber attacks on foreign countries. Yes, this is now another Grenwald created Obama scandal.
The republicans and the mainstream media do not like the fact that a democratic president has executive powers, even after the President himself said a few weeks ago that some of these powers should be limited
but all the public heard then was that CodePink yelled at the President.
People on Facebook and Gmail are so upset about losing metadata privacy, LOL!