We Will Get Fooled Again

October 19, 2009

Change isn’t going to come. At least not when it comes to the Patriot Act. Those who think this piece of legislation goes way too far in violating citizen’s rights (count me in) were hopeful that the Obama administration would reign in the expansive abuses permitted by the act. Now it’s clear that under Obama, things will get worse.
Here’s what the Electronic Frontier Foundation has to say about the subject. They’re not alone. It shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise. Hillary Clinton pointed out in her primary campaign that Obama campaigned against the Patriot Act in his Senate campaign, then voted for it as senator.
The Washington Post points out the administration’s hypocrisy in a recent article.
The really intriguing figure in all this is David Kris. This guy switches sides on the issues like Bill Parcells switches football teams. He started off as a Bush DOJ lawyer, appearing before congress to argue for more executive powers under FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) and the Patriot Act. Then, after leaving the Bush administration, he continued arguing in support of the Bush administration’s power grabs.
Next, he decided to blast his old boss, publishing in 2008 what many believe to be a brilliant legal memorandum attacking the NSA, warrantless domestic wiretapping, and the Bush Administration’s push to expand executive power.
Now, he’s Obama’s Assistant Attorney General for National Security, and he’s once again on Capitol Hill. Now he’s pushing for renewal of the Patriot Act and looking to expand government power over surveillance of its own citizens.
What does he really believe in? We’ll never know, but he’s a damned good lawyer.

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