( – promoted by buhdydharma )
Obama Administration Embraces Bush Position on Warrantless Wiretapping and Secrecy
Says Court Must Dismiss Jewel v. NSA to Protect ‘State Secrets’
San Francisco – The Obama administration formally adopted the Bush administration’s position that the courts cannot judge the legality of the National Security Agency’s (NSA’s) warrantless wiretapping program, filing a motion to dismiss Jewel v. NSA late Friday.
n Jewel v. NSA, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is challenging the agency’s dragnet surveillance of millions of ordinary Americans. The Obama Justice Department claims in its motion that litigation over the wiretapping program would require the government to disclose privileged “state secrets.” These are essentially the same arguments made by the Bush administration three years ago in Hepting v. AT&T, EFF’s lawsuit against one of the telecom giants complicit in the NSA spying.
“President Obama promised the American people a new era of transparency, accountability, and respect for civil liberties,” said EFF Senior Staff Attorney Kevin Bankston. “But with the Obama Justice Department continuing the Bush administration’s cover-up of the National Security Agency’s dragnet surveillance of millions of Americans, and insisting that the much-publicized warrantless wiretapping program is still a ‘secret’ that cannot be reviewed by the courts, it feels like deja vu all over again.”
This issue has particular relevance to me, because back in 2007 I signed on as one of the 33 named plaintiffs in the AL-HARAMAIN case against AT&T, Verizon, George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, the NSA et al. that was filed on ‘our’ behalf by the EFF.
MASTER CONSOLIDATED COMPLAINT
AGAINST BELLSOUTH DEFENDANTS against Bellsouth Communication
Systems, LLC, BellSouth Telecommunications, Inc., BellSouth Communications
Systems, LLC, BellSouth Corp., BellSouth Telecomminications, Inc…
(See Item 126 on page 127).
So to say I am more than a little bit disappointed is, as they say, the understatement of the year. That said, however, am I surprised? Not so much as I thought I would be. Indications, of late, that President Obama has given short shrift to promises of transparency and an end to the War Crimes committed by the previous administration have more than amply demonstrated that “Change we can believe in” is simply that. Not real, actual change, just change we can believe in, if, that is, we wish to continue living in fantasy land.