Monday, February 06, 2006

From the floor of the hearing

Not literally, of course. I'm home sick today so I'm lying on the couch and subjecting myself to the Judiciary Committee Hearings. What the whole argument seems to hinge on are two words: force and war. First, those who support the NSA program believe that surveillance is included in the word "force" as it was articulated in the Congress's resolution giving the president the power to use force in the war against Iraq. Therefore, they see the program as legal. Second, those who support the program believe that we are at war. Given the first premise and combining it with this one, the program is legal because surveillance is force and becaue we are at war. I personally don't believe surveillance constitutes the use of force as it applies to the resolution about going to war in Iraq. Secondly, I don't think we're at war. There are warlike activities going on in Iraq; certainly those who are stationed there would say that we are at war. But the relationship between that war and some kind of war on terror is tenuous at best. I'm tired of our leaders saying we are at war in order to take away our rights.