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View Diary: Dick Durbin: Secret FISA court 'fixed,' 'loaded' (206 comments)

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  •  Um, what? (2+ / 0-)

    You posited one theory -- that the rate of issuance of FISA warrants demonstrates that the court is a mere rubber stamp.

    I posited another theory -- that while I agree that there could be a valuable role some kind of public advocate to monitor the proceedings, the rate of issuance of FISA warrants could also merely be reflective of the nature of the proceedings and the nature of investigations, that police/prosecutors generally don;t seek warrants unless they know they can get one.  

    How you got "authority figures are always right" from that is beyond me.

    The reality is that the threshhold for a warrant in any context -- by its very nature -- has always been very low as a matter of practical application.  "Probable cause" for a warrant is not the hurdle many here seem to be suggesting, and it never has been.  It is and always has been very broad.

    •  yes (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Aunt Martha, Zinman

      99.97% of the time is no rubber stamp.

      The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

      by Laurence Lewis on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 05:01:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well, what is the rate for other courts? (0+ / 0-)

        Is your complaint about warrants in general or just FISA warrants?

        •  i know this is hard (0+ / 0-)

          but we're not talking about other courts. they are irrelevant. whether or not they are rubber stamps is irrelevant. whether or not fisa courts are rubber stamps is relevant. and they are.

          The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

          by Laurence Lewis on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 05:41:02 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  But without comparing other courts (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Villanova Rhodes

            . . . you have no logical basis to conclude that the FISA Court is "rubber-stamping" anything.  A 99.7% approval rate, alone, is not indicative of anything.  It could merely be a reflection of the state of jurisprudence on the standard for warrants -- that is, the 99.7% could have been decided entirely properly based on how broadly the standard for warrants has always been applied.  It could be identical, therefore, to the approval rate for all courts, even non-secret courts.

            So, if your assertion is that these "secret" courts are "secretly" rubber-stamping "secret" warrants, then we need to compare it to how "non-secret" courts issue "non-secret" warrants.

            Not sure what your issue is with that.

          •  OK let's try this a different way. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            AaronInSanDiego

            When you call them rubber stamps, which of these comes closest to your view?  

            (1) The individual judges do not exercise independent thought or analysis, need not bother to and probably don't read the papers or listen to the presentation, and will rule for the government no matter what.

            OR

            (2) The FISA is crafted so broadly as to encompass virtually anything the executive seeks, so even good faith judicial review will result in 99.7% approval.

            OR

            (3) The fourth amendment has been so thoroughly gutted that there is no meaningful judicial review of any wiretap application, foreign or domestic, regardless of the location, structure, or process for such review.

            You seem determined just to keep repeating your conclusion, so this is probably a waste of my time, but I thought I'd give it one last shot. If you're blaming the composition of the court, that argues for changing the selection process. If you're blaming FISA, that argues for a legislative solution. If you're blaming the judiciary as a whole for weakening the 4th, that argues, I suppose, for more emphasis on these issues during elections. But there's not much point in discussing solutions if we can't identify the nature of the problem.

            •  some of 1 (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Villanova Rhodes

              most of 2

              some of 3

              anyone claiming fisa review is any way a meaningful safeguard is either naive or foolish or deliberately dishonest.

              The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

              by Laurence Lewis on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 07:10:50 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

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