Anyone who thinks the FISA court hasn’t been abused, and isn’t an abusive unconstitutional cancer on the Bill of Rights isn’t worth talking to, or even worth a bucket of piss. This is also true for anyone who thinks the FBI hasn’t routinely abused its authority in applications for and use of warrants for surveillance.
History being the honor truth pays to irony we are now witnessing the fascist and opportunistic wing of the government turn the table and accuse the FBI of playing fast and loose with the rules while the liberal wing of the government defends the honor of the Hoovers. This would be hilarious were it not so fraught with the potential for disaster.
That Trump is an unhinged mongoloid, professional demagogue and amateur fascist and clearly some sort of psychopath is in a sense irrelevant but matters again, in the ironic sense, because that while insane, and a monster, he is not wrong when he says the FBI is a hybrid of righteous boy scouts and career cynics capable of every abuse imaginable. This history of the Hoovers is not a set of alternative facts but a litany of Stasi-esque nightmares. Neither of which means Trump isn’t also a wholly owned subsidiary of Putin incorporated.
Two (or more) things, even contradictory ones, can be true at the same time, Aristotle notwithstanding. The brain of the nation or of the government as the case may be, can hold two mutually exclusive ideas in its head at the same time and continue to function. At least for a while. Clearly Trump is pushing the country towards dictatorship. Clearly he is a terrorist and is a clear and present threat to national security. But it is also true that the FBI is bipolar and when the marble in its head rolls from the slot marked, obey the law, to the slot marked, behave like a Fascist, it acts as one would expect. As we have said elsewhere,Trump is not a creature of the (government) system though he is very much a creature of the (American) system, and he will not, like his spiritual progenitor, Nixon, follow (some of) the rules and wave from the steps of Marine One as he goes off into temporary political stasis and comfortable exile.Trump is heading for the fuhrer bunker and a political gotterdammerung. If he has to take the government down with him he will do it and if he has to take the country down with him he will do that too.
The manifestation of this impulse will materialize in several ways but among the most potentially lethal and destabilizing will be in calls for a review of the FBI’s requests for warrants through the FISA court.
Since the Patriot Act was a completely unconstitutional blank check and since the FBI is a notoriously power drunk bureaucracy riven by factions and subject to the factional and tribal rivalries that dominate the wider government bureaucracy, any review of the process, however ham-fisted, corrupt or honest, will reveal ugly truths.The system is corrupt and the Bill of Rights has been soaking in formaldehyde since the spineless whores and zealots of both parties passed the Patriot Act and told the intelligence agencies: go do what you have to do but don’t tell us but if you get caught we’ll fry your sorry asses for it (and if we don’t, like Obama giving them a get out of jail free card, and saying with folksy sleaze, yeah we tortured some folks, don’t mistake that for the idea that we don’t remember everything and won’t, if necessary, use it to skull fuck you).
Recall that soon after 9/11 George H. Bush said that the intelligence agencies were going to have to get into bed with a lot of unsavory people and that afterwards he didn’t want to hear from you civil liberties types.
Putting aside for the moment the aristocratic, Don Corleone meets James Angleton amorality and lack of intellectual rigor inherent in the Yankee honk for torture and neo-fascist techniques of governance, one could instead focus on the fact that in addition to being dismissive of civil liberty types with, what one assumes is a fond attachment to things like the rule of law and The Bill of Rights, George the 1st was also talking about the Goon squad.
As Robin Williams put it: in the dictionary, under irony, see irony.
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern end their days by handing over their own death warrant to their executioner who reads the fine print and sees that it says: The bearer of this note is no friend of the king.
Pity the goons and the righteous boy scouts at the FBI who, following master’s orders, did what they were told.The ugly days of reckoning are upon them.The resulting circular firing squad will be large enough to contain multitudes and the only way out will be to replace the current dysfunctional quasi-dictatorship with a different dysfunctional quasi dictatorship, or they will have to pay the butcher’s bill.
Take a look at the link below and notice at the end that one of the wise men says there should be a review of the process.That of course will not only make the investigation into Trump problematic at best and a failure at worst, it will open the door to a review of the toxins the government has been injecting into itself (and the nation) for decades.
My kingdom for a horse, or a good lawyer said, Richard, but in this iteration of the tragedy the lawyers are just as dirty as everyone else and there aint a horse fast enough to outrun the shit storm that’s on tap.
And then there’s this from Wired (emphasis added):
“And some national security experts argue that the memo does reveal legitimate lapses in the FISA system. “Part of the reason FISA was passed by Congress is to prevent against things like what just happened,” says Donna Bartee-Roberston, a former National Security Agency attorney and an adjunct professor at George Washington University Law school, where she teaches FISA law. Bartee-Roberston believes that intelligence officials acted inappropriately by not telling the FISA court about the true origins of the Steele dossier, especially when they had an opportunity to do so with each warrant renewal application
“If you look at that memo, if the memo is true factually, the court did not have all the facts in front of it,” says Bartee-Robertson, adding that she would not be surprised if an Inspector General investigation was opened to examine what exactly happened during the Page warrant application process.”
Of course no one will ever go broke overestimating the government’s ability to hide its crimes from exposure. Expect the inspector-general’s report to have two versions; the public one and the classified one.