I learned after reading Major Danby's post that using spying for political purposes (squashing dissenters and political opponents) is nothing new. He shows how former director and founder of the FBI J. Edgar Hoover abused his power to spy on Americans...Afterwards I'll show an article on how spying affects us directly in the modern day...especially for those of us brave enough to speak out against injustice (ex: Rove outing Joe Wilson's wife as a CIA agent). In fact, Rove has relied on blackmailing political enemies ever since he helped Bush run for governor. Imagine what he could do with the NSA.
In addition, Hoover was credited by Truman in his memoirs saying "The country had reason to be proud of and have confidence in our security agencies. They had kept us almost totally free of sabotage and espionage during the World War II"."
If Bushie and his buddies are allowed to wiretap anyone and tap into their private lives...just imagine what the future would look like...Well you don't have to daydream that much because this abuse of power, this power that is used to undermine the political strength of opponents, of critics and unbiased journalism, is ALREADY HAPPENING.
Rove started the list while Bush served as governor of Texas, compiling information on various political enemies in the state and leaking damaging information on opponents to friends in the press. The list grew during Bush’s first run for President in 2000 but the names multiplied rapidly after the terrorist attacks of 2001 and passage of the USA Patriot Act. Using the powers under the act, Rove expanded the list to more than 10,000 names, utilizing the FBI’s “national security letters” to gather private and intimate details on American citizens.
National security letters, which can be issued by an FBI supervisor without a judge’s review or approval, allows the bureau to examine the telephone calls, correspondence and financial lives of any Americans.
As George Santayana said: "Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it." also, "A country without a memory is a country of madmen. What's good for Rove... probably isn't good for me... related:
bradspangler theorizes that Bush doesn't want authorization from FISA courts because he is politically abusing surveillance powers.
grapes theorizes that the biggest threat to Bush is the truth. Which means possibly spying on US personnel who are possibly telling folks back home what's happening in Iraq.