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Cold War Warrantless Wiretapping

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the all-your-call-are-well-you-know-the-rest dept.

Privacy 85

somanyrobots writes "President Gerald Ford secretly authorized the use of warrantless domestic wiretaps for foreign intelligence and counterintelligence purposes soon after coming into office, according to a declassified document. The Dec. 19, 1974, White House memorandum, marked Top Secret / Exclusively Eyes Only and signed by Ford, gave then-Attorney General William B. Saxbe and his successors in office authorization 'to approve, without prior judicial warrants, specific electronic surveillance within the United States which may be requested by the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.'" And reader jlaprise1 adds, "My research [from 2009] makes the news! President Ford authorized warrantless wiretaps in December 1976 and laid the foundation (PDF) for US telecommunications security policy."

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85 comments

History Repeats Itself (4, Insightful)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723220)

This can't really surprise anyone. I'm sure there are plenty of things our government has kept from us either "for our own good" (their rationale for hiding their actions) and for national security reasons (we can't disclose everything). But how much do we really want to know? No matter how much they tell us we always suspect more ... and the conspiracy theorists will only use the truth to build even more elaborate plots of imaginative intrigue and nefarious actions.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

Cryacin (657549) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723354)

If only there was a wise being striding forward to take over the world. At least there would be progress by one so skilled to manipulate so many. Unfortunately, we cannot attribute to malice that which is easily explained by incompetence. President Bush is the starkest reminder of that, followed by our dear friends on Wall Street.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723542)

Bush was a shining example of the attitude that political office is a prize instead of a job. Let's hope there are no more playboy princes that run away and hide when the country needs them.

A small correction: (1)

fyngyrz (762201) | more than 4 years ago | (#31725392)

"My research [from 2009] makes the news! President Ford authorized warrantless wiretaps in December 1976 and laid the foundation (PDF) for US telecommunications security policy."

That should read:

...laid the foundation for criminal violation of the United States federal government's authorizing document, the Constitution."

And the unauthorized (1)

h00manist (800926) | more than 4 years ago | (#31726294)

There's information available, and someone who wants it, and can pay. Beyond unfairly-authorized, there are sure to be lots of undocumented, secret abuses, at several levels of access to the technology, authority, information, and personnel, etc involved.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

thej1nx (763573) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723548)

Why is it that always Republicans (both Ford and George Bush) who have been usually eager to subvert and corrupt existing laws, and don't even have the guts or decency to publicly accept the responsibility for doing so?

And before folks start bashing me for being a democrat troll or something, I am not even American. It just seems to me as an outsider though, that based on statistics, having a Republican President usually ensures that American Democracy is turned into a mockery. And it is definitely a grave problem for the rest of the world, when the elected(or non-elected) ruler of the nation with world's largest stockpiles of weapons/nukes decides that he just wants to do as he pleases, the laws, rules and wishes of the said American public be damned.

Re:History Repeats Itself (0, Troll)

dan828 (753380) | more than 4 years ago | (#31724142)

No, it's just that with a press corps that overwhelmingly identifies with the Democratic party, the excesses of Republicans are more likely to be investigated and reported on.

Re:History Repeats Itself (3, Insightful)

Lakitu (136170) | more than 4 years ago | (#31724392)

No, it's just that with a press corps that overwhelmingly identifies with the Democratic party, the excesses of Republicans are more likely to be investigated and reported on.

Not quite. It's fun to believe in, but really, you're just an idiot with a persecution complex for doing so.

They "always seem" to be Republicans because there's a terribly small sample size. There's only been 44 P's OTUS, and 2 of them have now been indicated as having "corrupted and subverted existing [wiretapping] laws", so it's not surprising at all that they are both affiliated with the same party.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

Jurily (900488) | more than 4 years ago | (#31726858)

There's only been 44 P's OTUS, and 2 of them have now been indicated as having "corrupted and subverted existing [wiretapping] laws", so it's not surprising at all that they are both affiliated with the same party.

It's exactly as surprising as two heads when flipping a coin twice.

Btw as long as they get to choose the candidate, it doesn't matter whether you vote D or R, they still win.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

dan828 (753380) | more than 4 years ago | (#31726914)

How so? I'm not a republican and don't vote for them. It is however. quite clear that on overwhelming percentage of reporters are left leaning. It's no conspiracy, it's just that, as a profession, it draws people with certain ideologies. Much like you don't find many students in the school of business that aren't right leaning.

Polls of news staff find self identification as left leaning to be something in the range of 80%.

Oh, and go fuck yourself.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

Lakitu (136170) | more than 4 years ago | (#31727308)

who cares if you're a Republican or not if you "self-identify" as "right-leaning"? You feel persecuted, and it's fun to believe, but it's a fucked up complex of yours that the rest of us don't care to deal with. I mean really, you try to point out that journalists are trying to dig up dirt on the political right in order to prove the point that the stereotype of Presidents with a disregard for law aren't likely to be Republicans. What kind of idiotic logic is that? If you're going to judge entire groups of people based on such small amounts of fact, then you should probably go ahead and think that Republicans "always are" the ones who disregard the law. Instead you use it as some kind of justification that not only are they not the ones who tend to disregard the law, but it also stands as proof that the Jew-controlled and lefty-biased media is out to get you. WTF?

I see people talk about the leftward political bias of the news media all the time, and then they back it up with stuff like "i know it's true, i watched cnn for 5 minutes before changing back to fox!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" or pretending that there are entire Libraries of Congress' worth of poll data showing a self-identified bias. I've never seen a good poll showing that, and I wouldn't be likely to hold them in high regard even if they did due to the nature of polling.

Seriously, now. Even if "something in the range of 80%" (what is your error margin on that, +/- 100%?), there would still be plenty of "right-biased" journalists who would figuratively kill for the opportunity to scoop a story like that on a Democratic President. No, sir, your whole "they're out to get me!!!!!!" spiel is dumb and unentertaining for those of us not living under the pretense. The reason they "always seem" to be Republican is because there have been two P's OTUS found to have done it, and only 44 total. As the reply above yours says, it's just about as surprising as flipping a donkey/elephant coin and getting the elephant twice in a row.

As for your suggestion, I will now self-identify as fucking myself. Take that as you will.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1, Flamebait)

dan828 (753380) | more than 4 years ago | (#31727688)

No, I don't at all feel persecuted in any way. I don't think anyone is out to get me. Do you understand now? I'm pointing out that in the political spectrum in the US the press corp is left leaning. I'm not saying there is some main stream media monster that is out to suppress the poor right wing. I don't watch fox, I don't watch CNN, I frankly don't watch TV much at all, I get my news from a wide variety of domestic and foreign news websites, and after reading a lot of diverse opinion, I make up my own mind. So you stereotyping me with some preconceived class of people that you have seen from time to time saying whateverthefuck is wrong. Take that as you will.

And frankly, there was no need for you to be such a prick from the get go. Just jump right out there, stereotype someone, put a bunch of words in his mouth about persecution and right wing angst that was never there, and call him an idiot. I can't imagine you have many friends in real life with that sort of personality. Jack ass.

Re:History Repeats Itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31728264)

I'm pointing out that in the political spectrum in the US the press corp is left leaning.

Don't make us laugh. The vast majority of the US press corps is privately owned and is controlled by right wing die hards like Rupert Murdoch. They pay lip service to left wing view points but virtually all the mainstream press is thoroughly right wing with all the right wing talking points (e.g. government waste, wall street is wonderful, military invasions are wonderful) endlessly pushed./p

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

Lakitu (136170) | more than 4 years ago | (#31754690)

I'm not the one who has done any stereotyping here -- you are. You painted both the news media and business schools with your broad stereotyping brush. In fact, feeling like you're being stereotyped may be part of your potential persecution complex!

I said if you believe x, then you are y. If you think that the reason that the only presidents who have willfully ignored wiretapping laws are both Republican and not Democratic is the result of leftward media bias, then you are not very bright nor logical.

If that result is because of media bias, you are not only implicating that the Democratic presidents in the same time period have willfully ignored wiretapping laws, but that this information is fairly easily available to the lefty media outlets, and being covered up by them, while simultaneously being difficult to impossible to find for rightward-biased media outlets. If you really believe the shit you typed in your first reply to our foreign friend, then you think that three terms worth of Democratic presidents were willfully ignoring the law AND it's being hidden by their lefty media puppets.

You're a fucking moron if you think that. Even with a huge media bias, something of that magnitude is not likely to be covered up for long, especially not after TWO former Presidents were indicated in doing the same behavior. Let alone because of the lack of political-right journalists! You're a fucking moron.

The reason two Republican presidents and no Democratic presidents have been indicated is because of small sample size. Stop injecting your media bias diatribe into situations where it is irrelevant in addition to having a spurious foundation in truth.

Re:History Repeats Itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31755618)

You sure read a fuck of a lot into what I said. Anyways, you obviously have a huge chip on your shoulder about this, to the point you have crafted a huge argument and read paragraphs and paragraphs that I never typed or implied on this issue, to the point I really wonder at your rationality.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

Lakitu (136170) | more than 4 years ago | (#31755814)

No, it's just that with a press corps that overwhelmingly identifies with the Democratic party, the excesses of Republicans are more likely to be investigated and reported on.

Read it again. You imply that with a more Republican identifying press corps, that there would be Democratic presidents as having ignored or violated wiretapping laws.

Logic doesn't have a political affiliation.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

Fuzzums (250400) | more than 4 years ago | (#31731674)

That last line ruins the quality of the rest of your reaction...

Re:History Repeats Itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31729338)

The Republican party has been subverting the Constitution since it's inception. Do not forget that Lincoln suspended Habeas Corpus, set up a quasi-official domestic secret police force via Alan Pinkerton and his detective agency, and undertook quite a few other constitutionally dubious actions.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 4 years ago | (#31741786)

The Republican party has been subverting the Constitution since it's inception.

Hell, the very idea of political parties is a subversion of the constitution - where loyalty to the party is more important than loyalty to the country.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 4 years ago | (#31724424)

So, are you saying: "The press made me do it."?

Or that everybody has done it, but that EVERY reporter and EVERY newspaper, magazine and tv station give Democrat Presidents a free pass on things that are obviously illegal.

If it's the second, then thank heaven we are saved. FoxNews is finally here.

Re:History Repeats Itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31725726)

No, he's not. He's saying the press is predominately liberal and their personal biases show. The first part has been shown, since studies looking at political affiliation show liberals overwhelmingly dominate the national press. The second half is a matter of opinion.

It's not as if Clinton ever got put on trial for letting Bin Laden go. There wasn't even a full commissioned accounting done. Or Carter's tribunal system really made all that much news. Or the difference in the media's handling of right wing extremism versus left wing extremism was ever treated fairly, only after viewers howled at the lack of parity.

We've never had a national discussion on the difference between policy which leads to death and crime and similar directable actions (a left tactic), versus decision making that leads by design or mistake to similar outcomes more directly (lambasted by the press against the right). Why? Because it works for the left. If a policy leaves people gunned down in the streets, it's a criminal act by the individual, but if it's from the right, it's by design and traceable to the top.

They'll put up inciteful commentary sent to representatives as outrageous, but online commentary on news.yahoo.com that's worse by liberals, won't be covered to any large extent if at all.

"If it's the second, then thank heaven we are saved. FoxNews is finally here."

Say that all you want, but of the Big 3, Fox News is no longer the worse actor. MSNBC is.

But at least you put your biases on your sleeve with bad sarcasm. CNN has gone left slowly. Hell, Monocle, hardly a US or right ring bastion, had reporting on this prior to Lou Dobb's leaving. MSNBC has gone whacko left and has gone way beyond anything shit Fox has done, and Fox has done a lot of shit. It's so bad, even basic reporting, Fox has passed MSNBC, which to me, a long time MSNBC viewer, is just stunningly bad. I thought the press couldn't go lower than Fox. MSNBC showed they can; they even run ads trying to downplay their actions and say they are in the middle, which is just sick.

Even with tactics, they aren't trying to hide those anymore, like largely putting Republicans interviewees on delayed or lagged lines during interviews while having the Democratic party backer in the same room as the host.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

dangitman (862676) | more than 4 years ago | (#31724510)

No, it's just that with a press corps that overwhelmingly identifies with the Democratic party, the excesses of Republicans are more likely to be investigated and reported on.

What a load of horse shit. Whichever party is currently in power is much more likely to be investigated and reported on by the media.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

khallow (566160) | more than 4 years ago | (#31724216)

Why is it that always Republicans (both Ford and George Bush) who have been usually eager to subvert and corrupt existing laws, and don't even have the guts or decency to publicly accept the responsibility for doing so?

Too much power, not enough accountability. I'm not sure why you mention "Republicans" explicitly, since this is a problem common to both dominant parties.

Re:History Repeats Itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31723806)

>followed by our dear friends on Wall Street.
And in the Federal Reserve, the Treasury, the SEC, the UK FSA, and the central bank of every country in the world..

Re:History Repeats Itself (3, Interesting)

jlaprise1 (1042514) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723500)

With respect to electronic surveillance, legality wasn't at issue. In 1974, the law did not recognize the existence of electronic surveillance. It did however regulate lawful and unlawful physical entry.

The originally redacted text was "That the minimum physical intrusion necessary to obtain the information sought will be used."

This clearly contradicted constitutional protections for unlawful search and seizure. Until the advent of FISA, all of the other aspects of the memo were legal or perhaps better defined as extra-legal. Ford delegated extraconstitutional power to the AG in 1974. So the Ford memo is revealing the legal and legally questionable methods it is employing, taking care to conceal the most questionable.

From current available information, the government since 9/11 is probably taking a similar approach. At present, the law does not recognize the capture or use of metadata and the courts have ruled that information on the outside of physical mail i.e. addresses are not protected. From conversations I have had, since 9/11 I suspect that the following is taking place:

Using the purported, NSA capture technology identified in Telco central offices, the government is collecting information about internet traffic patterns (metadata) and content but is not reading the content.

Using networking theory, they identify patterns of usage that are statistically similar to the patterns of usage of known terrorists.

The government then approaches the FISA court with this evidence seeking to obtain a warrant for the content, which they have previously captured but not read.

FISA court grants the government a warrant and it then legally reads the previously captured content.

The government's use of intelligence methods regularly outpaces the law's ability to catch up and recognize the existence and power of new technologies. This memo is evidence of that.I think that in all likelihood what the government is doing with the telephone companies is legal for the government to do because the law doesn't address their activities just as it didn't address electronic surveillance in 1974. The telephone companies desperate plea for immunity speaks to the fact that telecom law _does_ address this and that they would have been legally liable for providing customer information.

Techno-legal arbitrage.

John Laprise Ph.D.
Visiting Assistant Professor
Northwestern University in Qatar

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723526)

Considering Ford was on the spot taking a bribe from Suharto for looking the other way on the day of the invasion of East Timor it really shouldn't surprise anyone. The money went to a Republican Party campaign fund instead of into his own pocket but he was still for sale to foreign powers. He was a far worse President than Nixon.

Re:History Repeats Itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31724036)

This is why you never trust anything the government says and when it recommends something, do the exact opposite. Which brings to mind a more general concept: If you want to succeed in life watch what "normal" people do and do the exact opposite.

Re:History Repeats Itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31724272)

Its funny that "conspiracy theorists" are still looked upon as nuts even after proof is shown backing up their claims.

I have long said the government has been doing this for years and I do think it goes much much deeper then what we are being told.

Re:History Repeats Itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31724278)

This can't really surprise anyone. I'm sure there are plenty of things our government has kept from us either "for our own good" (their rationale for hiding their actions) and for national security reasons (we can't disclose everything). But how much do we really want to know? No matter how much they tell us we always suspect more ... and the conspiracy theorists will only use the truth to build even more elaborate plots of imaginative intrigue and nefarious actions.

'and the conspiracy theorists will only use the truth to build even more elaborate plots of imaginative intrigue and nefarious actions.'

I think you have a warped sense of what a 'conspiracy' actually entails, or else you would not be employing the equivalent of the term 'thought criminal' in such a loaded way.

For instance, a 'corporation' amounts to what is to all intents and purposes a 'conspiracy'. A 'party' amounts to what is a 'conspiracy'. You 'subscribe' to the party/corporation for your trinkets of gold/worthless fiat paper currency, and in return you shamelessly promote the virtues/doctrines/goals of the party/corporation.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conspiracy

'Conspiracy (civil), an agreement between persons to deceive, mislead, or defraud others of their legal rights, or to gain an unfair advantage'

Guess what? Advertisers, every day, 'deceive', 'mislead', or 'defraud' 'customers' 'of their legal rights'.

So really, drop the term 'conspiracy theorist'. It's a neologism - it doesn't mean what you think it means. If you are really searching for 'imaginative intrigue', then I can only refer you to the following:
1 - WMDs in Iraq
2 - Climate change so 'catastrophic' they actually had to resort to 'dataset fixing' and deliberate skewing of their computer models to arrive at the sudden surge in temperature growth. Oh, and never forget those 'sea levels are rising', 'the polar bears are drowning', and all this other bullshit that has now been totally discredited.
3 - An 'imaginative' killer H1N1 strain that was going to kill everyone, and therefore everybody had to be inoculated.

How many times do you have to be 'deceived' and 'lied to' before you start to consider the possibility that, hey, the government, and the corporations that represent it, does not, perhaps, like, uhhh...

give a shit about you?

I mean, it's a terrible thought, but you go from there, and all of a sudden your warped sense of 'being'/'existence' is alleviated in an instant.

Re:History Repeats Itself (1)

Helldesk Hound (981604) | more than 4 years ago | (#31730860)

> This can't really surprise anyone. I'm sure there are plenty of things our
> government has kept from us either "for our own good" (their rationale for
> hiding their actions) and for national security reasons (we can't disclose
> everything).

1/ it shouldn't surprise anyone who has been watching the actions of the USA over the last 10 years because the government of that country has proven that it cannot be trusted.

2/ The government of the USA demonstrates repeatedly that it doesn't trust the people that it was elected to represent. Oh that's right - it isn't actually a real democracy. Their "president" is appointed and rules by fiat!

3/ It isn't "our" government. This is an international forum. Please respect that fact.

> But how much do we really want to know? No matter how much they
> tell us we always suspect more ... and the conspiracy theorists
> will only use the truth to build even more elaborate plots of
> imaginative intrigue and nefarious actions.

The people of the USA *should* want to know everything that is being done in their name. If they don't take ownership of the actions done in their name by holding their representatives responsible then they should not be surprised when the rest of the world takes action by, for example, obliterating a landmark building in New York.

This latest revelation only demonstrates that the actions taken by the USA since 11/9/2001 have really been happening all along, just not so visibly.

Who cares? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31723222)

What's the big deal--good guys fighting bad guys to protect America and the free world. Too bad George W. Bush didn't take some similar initiative before allowing 9/11 to happen.

Forgot who said this (-1, Troll)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723248)

If you believe in Democracy, then you implicitly endorse secret police.
If you believe in anything else, then you explicitly endorse those same powers out in the open.

The only difference is how much we are willing to delude ourselves. We call ourselves Free, but we haven't been so since September 24, 1862.

Re:Forgot who said this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31723272)

We call ourselves Free, but we haven't been so since September 24, 1862.

Old grudges die hard, huh?

Re:Forgot who said this (3, Informative)

hduff (570443) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723444)

If you believe in Democracy, then you implicitly endorse secret police.
If you believe in anything else, then you explicitly endorse those same powers out in the open.

Citation needed so we can better understand this apparent crazy talk.

The only difference is how much we are willing to delude ourselves. We call ourselves Free, but we haven't been so since September 24, 1862.

Nice semi-cryptic pseudo-conspiracy-like reference.

  September 24, 1862 is the date President Lincoln suspended Habeas Corpus during the American Civil War, a time of rebellion (certainly as defined from his perspective). It was only suspended for those considered to be in rebellion.

Article I, Section 9, clause 2 of the Constitution states, "The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it." Nothing unconstitutional or illegal with what Lincoln did no matter how much you dislike it. At least he did it out in the open.

I would argue that until there are no others who wish to control us, no one will never be "Free". That won't occur until there is only one person left on Earth. Until then, your point is moot.

Re:Forgot who said this (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31724134)

Article I, Section 9, clause 2 of the Constitution states, "The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it." Nothing unconstitutional or illegal with what Lincoln did no matter how much you dislike it. At least he did it out in the open.

Joe Biden, is that you? Article I defines the powers of the legislative branch, not the executive branch.

Re:Forgot who said this (1)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | more than 4 years ago | (#31725114)

Is "Joe Biden" a secret code for one of your talking points, or do you specific evidence that points to Biden taking a anti-civil liberties position? I mean, if you can prove that he's "Dick Cheney" in another body, I'm all ears.

Re:Forgot who said this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31731476)

In the 2008 vice-presidential debate Joe Biden also mixed up Article I and Article II. Sorry to have to explain that to you.. but maximum lulz at your partisan reaction.

Re:Forgot who said this (1)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | more than 4 years ago | (#31747098)

Ironically, Biden was right, though at the cost of destroying his argument... The Vice President is mentioned in both Article I (as President if the Senate) and Article II (as the runner up in a Presidential election),. The Amendments draw the VP closer to the President, but what gave Cheney his authority was a delegation of power from the Executive ( which was bound by certain disclosure rules.) By arguing that the VP was a legislative officer, or worse, an officer insulated from both legislative and executive oversight, Cheney evaded such disclosure rules.

This sort of an argument belongs in the same category at Guantanomo's prison camps (not subject to either the courts of Cuba or the courts of the United States) and the ongoing conspiracy to torture (torture is ill defined, and therefore we have the opportunity to redefine torture so that it excludes our harsh interrogation policies).

Re:Forgot who said this (1)

hduff (570443) | more than 4 years ago | (#31730024)

Here's the longer answer that addresses your uninformed objection.

Article I, Section 9 is specifically identified as limitations on the legislative branch, and in particular for any legislation concerning Habeus Corpus it chooses to enact. It is not explicitly forbidden to the other branches; the Constitution only states Congress can only make laws about suspending H.C. subject to that limitation. Also note that H.C. is only a privilege, not a Right.

Lincoln implemented his suspension under the limitations described in Article I, Section 9, clause 2, so had Congress passed it as a law, there could be no valid objection.

The real question is Did Lincoln have the authority to do it? There is no definitive answer found solely within the Constitution, but scholars point to implied authority under Article II, Section 1, Clause 1 and Article II, Section 3, Clause 4. Lincoln's actions came under criticism of Chief Justice Roger B. Taney as he objected to it, so it was obviously controversial at the time and should have been.

But no matter, since the Habeas Corpus Act 1863 rendered any dispute moot. Congress clearly had the authority to do it

Therefore, one could conclude that the President may act unilaterally if he believes the actions fall under his implied authority. This is the OP's actual objection, I assume. Congress can validate his action by explicitly passing a law in support or by doing nothing. Congress can invalidate any action by passing a law undermining or prohibiting it. If these actions are abused, Congress has the ability to impeach the President. The people have the ability to vote for a different Presidential candidate in the next election. That's pretty much all that can be done unless you want to advocate the overthrow of the government. Good luck with that, Skippy.~

Congress has generally shown no such leadership in this matter, preferring to do nothing. Don't blame me if Congress lacks leadership; vote for somebody different next time.

Re:Forgot who said this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31731706)

Lincoln implemented his suspension under the limitations described in Article I, Section 9, clause 2, so had Congress passed it as a law, there could be no valid objection.

Aside from the valid objection of Ex parte Milligan (1866) that habeas corpus may not be suspended where the courts were still open and unimpeded by any rebellion or invasion elsewhere.

The real question is Did Lincoln have the authority to do it? There is no definitive answer found solely within the Constitution, but scholars point to implied authority under Article II, Section 1, Clause 1 and Article II, Section 3, Clause 4. Lincoln's actions came under criticism of Chief Justice Roger B. Taney as he objected to it, so it was obviously controversial at the time and should have been.

Oh, I don't doubt you can find scholars [wikipedia.org] who'd take "he shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed" to imply any authority whatever, but Ex parte Merryman (1861) decided that the president cannot suspend habeas corpus.

Re:Forgot who said this (1)

hduff (570443) | more than 4 years ago | (#31739874)

but Ex parte Merryman (1861) decided that the president cannot suspend habeas corpus.

Which was successfully ignored by Lincoln and then invalidated by Congress. So as a practical matter, Lincoln not only could do it, but in fact, did it; it just took a few years to do it properly.

The reality is that the President can do whatever the President can do when the other branches fail to exercise their "checks and balances" responsibilities. The blame lies with Congress for bending over too often.

Re:Forgot who said this (2, Interesting)

colinrichardday (768814) | more than 4 years ago | (#31724318)

September 24, 1862 is the date President Lincoln suspended Habeas Corpus during the American Civil War, a time of rebellion (certainly as defined from his perspective). It was only suspended for those considered to be in rebellion.

No. Lincoln suspended it in 1861 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ex_Parte_Merryman [wikipedia.org] , but he did issue the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation on Sept 22, 1862
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emancipation_Proclamation [wikipedia.org] , so it would appear that the OP objects to the loss of freedom to enslave.

Re:Forgot who said this (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31725052)

LOL! I knew this thread would be a humor trove!

Re:Forgot who said this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31723452)

I'm sure, some black people from 1862 and their descendants would beg to differ.

What is it with Americans and their cars (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31723270)

President Ford, General Motors... What's next? Actors in politics?

This is news? (1)

psiogen (262130) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723406)

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act was passed in 1978. Prior to that, there were no legal checks on government surveillance. I assume every president was doing it from the moment the equipment was invented.

Re:This is news? (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723478)

Right, and the deal with W doing it was that it was known to be illegal at the time and was a pretty egregious abuse of power. FISA allows for warrants to be issued after the fact and requires very little in the way of justification. It's barely better than nothing, however it does give at least some judicial over view even if barely.

Re:This is news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31723490)

If I understand that part of history correctly, the FISA courts actually allowed spying on citizens. Started under Carters administration the FISA courts could give you a warrant to monitor a persons financial institutions records if you could prove that the person had links to foreign agencies of any sort, but any information you obtained on them as a result of executing this search warrant could not be used in court against the person because the results were obtained outside of the boundaries of what the constitution allows. So fast forward roughly 30 years and the Patriot Act is passed, it changes the language in the laws that made these FISA court warrants 'legal' so that "financial institutions" can mean anything from your bank to your doctor to your stock broker, and, all of the evidence they gathered before that they couldn't use in court, the Patriot Act says does a 180 there and says the government legally has to use it in court now. If you are served a warrant of this sort and you tell anyone (your wife, a lawyer, a judge, anyone) it is a federal offense and you go to prison.

Recruiting campaign... (3, Funny)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723472)

I remember an old joke that went something like this...

"NSA is conducting advanced research in the fields of applied mathematics, signal processing, and cryptography. To apply for one of these exciting positions, just pick up the phone, call your grandmother, and ask for one!"

Life imitates art :-)

So, what are they doing and hiding *right now* ? (2, Insightful)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723484)

I guess we'll find out in ~40 years, when we are either dead, or too old to care any more.

Although, "Get off my lawn!" crimes have no statute of limitations, and you are never to old to scream it.

So what secret authorizations were issued by Bush . . . and are still in effect under Obama?

I guess I will probably never know.

Ah, isn't ignorance bliss?

Why bother to ask? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31724298)

The majority of people would just label the answers as conspiracy theories. Do you know that THERE WERE people during cold war times who accused the government of warrantless wiretapping? And what did those people receive in return? They were either labelled as conspiracy theorists or KGB agents or communist sympathizers. Pretty much the same is happening now against intellectuals like Noam Chomsky.

Re:So, what are they doing and hiding *right now* (2, Interesting)

Garrett Fox (970174) | more than 4 years ago | (#31726272)

Well, for starters, Obama has continued Bush's warrantless wiretapping policy. Second, he's continued the tradition of re-authorizing the ongoing state of national emergency which has existed, continuously, since at least 1979. (Each President has issued executive orders, publicly available, declaring that a "state of emergency" exists because of the 1979 Iran Hostage Crisis, not to mention other extreme emergencies like diamond smuggling in Sierra Leone.)

I wouldn't be too upset about these, because the assault on the Constitution is now mostly open rather than secret.

A Little HIstory (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31723518)

Who was Ford's first Chief of Staff? Donald Rumsfeld. And when Rumsfeld became his Secretary of Defense, who did Ford appoint Chief of Staff in his place? Dick Cheney, Rumsfeld's assistant. And who did Ford make his head of the CIA? George H. W. Bush. All of this happened during the "Halloween Massacre" of November 1975. This put Rumsfeld and Bush on Ford's NSC. Cheney would not have on the NSC, but he certainly would have known about it. Consider this story about memos Cheney wrote in 1975 regarding a Seymour Hersch story about the US tapping Soviet underwater cables. Cheney was clearly in the loop on intelligence and surveillance programs. So three of George W. Bush's closest advisors - his father, his Secretary of Defense, and his Vice-President - would have known about this. Don't you think when Cheney or Rumsfeld suggested this, they said to W. "Gerry Ford did it, and no one complained that it was unConstitutional - just ask your father." (Admittedly, Rumsfeld and Bush Sr. aren't exactly friendly - Rumsfeld tried to push Bush Sr. out at CIA back in the Ford days, and Bush Sr. was one of the main critics in the back-office attempts - eventually successful - to push Rumsfeld out at Defense in 2006. But it's very interesting to see how closely the Ford Administration was tied to the W. administration.) My point is that there was a cabal in the Ford and Bush administrations, with Rumsfeld and Cheney at its core, who have a history of evangelizing the idea of broad electronic surveillance which I would argue violates our Constitutional guarantees against arbitrary searches. There were other cliques in the W. administration with similar ideas (John Poindexter), so perhaps we should see this as something that W. believed in, strongly.

Re:A Little HIstory (5, Interesting)

jlaprise1 (1042514) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723608)

All true...though Ford was really concerned about the Soviet threat. He genuinely believed that this was the only way to deal with the threat of soviet eavesdropping on US microwave telecommunications. Ford was actually a champion of personal privacy. It's just that competing with the personal privacy that we think of everyday , there is a second kind of privacy which the government is concerned with. Their focus is protecting citizens from foreign surveillance threats and as these and other documents show, the responsibility of government to protect citizens' privacy from external threats trumps citizens' right to avoid surveillance from their government.

This duality is clear in the documentary record but does not show up in public. It's only a debate held in the White House. Perhaps it should be entertained elsewhere as well...

Re:A Little HIstory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31728406)

Ford was actually a champion of personal privacy.

Was that supposed to be a joke or sarcasm?

Re:A Little HIstory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31729196)

Piece of shit computer ate my post.

Anyway, why would I fear privacy invasion from a foreign gov't more than from my own? Unless I'm a spy (in which case this all goes out the window) or I'm a journalist (in which case seeking privacy is silly - they seek exposure) I can see no reason. My government could use privacy invasion for all sorts of nefarious purposes. This argument stinks of a power grab, not a legitimate interest.

Re:A Little HIstory (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31723646)

Very interesting. All supporting my claim that Bush Jr. was basically a facade for those really running the show.

What good is the Constitution without mandatory jail time for violating it? These men all knew (and we can now throw Ms. Rice into that mix) that they were violating the Constitution they swore to uphold. Yet our Congress will not hold those accountable. Where is the office of Special Prosecutor when you really need it?

Obligatory Image Link (2, Informative)

Bob9113 (14996) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723560)

President Gerald Ford secretly authorized the use of warrantless domestic wiretaps for foreign intelligence and counterintelligence purposes soon after coming into office, according to a declassified document.

Obligatory image link:

http://images.google.com/images?q=ford+cheney+rumsfeld [google.com]

I am (1)

Aurisor (932566) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723622)

I am Jack's complete lack of surprise.

Should've Impeached Nixon (5, Informative)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723686)

What finally pushed the Congress into preparing to impeach Nixon was the revelation that Nixon was secretly (and, of course, warrantlessly) wiretapping Congress. Keeping Vietnam going, using the CIA to break into Democratic campaign HQ at the Watergate (and a shrink's office) - all just "business as usual". But the wiretapping was enough to push them over the edge.

So George Bush Sr, Republican National Committee Chair, went to Nixon to explain that enough Congressional Republicans would vote to impeach that he would be impeached. So Nixon resigned. And Ford, who Nixon had got to replace his original VP, Spiro Agnew, when Agnew was convicted of income tax evasion (on massive bribes he'd taken but not reported to the IRS), inherited Nixon's evil empire. George Bush Sr inherited the CIA.

And then Ford started warrantlessly wiretapping people, just like Nixon had. Nixon was wiretapping not only Congress, but all kinds of political enemies, including anti-war and environmentalist activists, counterculture figures like John Lennon. Nixon turned the White House into a Republican Kremlin. And Ford kept it that way.

In 1978, with Democrat Carter in the White House a Democratic Congress passed FISA, which was designed to be the supreme law controlling wiretapping. Nominally subordinate to only the 4th Amendment, which it violated by allowing exceptions to the Amendment's requirement of a warrant issued prior to any wiretapping.

Republican George Bush Jr inherited the presidency in 2000. And soon wiretapped every American, all our phonecalls and email, without a warrant. Even though the FISA court issued a warrant, before or after the fact, for every single one of the hundreds of thousands of requests it got, however invalid any of those requests might have been.

Even to the point of wiretapping conversations between defendants and their lawyers in cases brought by the Bush "Justice" Department, which was just ruled illegal [scienceblogs.com] , years later. With Bush leaving office unimpeached.

The Congress should've impeached Nixon. It should have impeached Bush. Hell, it should've impeached Reagan, for running the secret Iran/Contra wars, illegally supplying Iran with weapons and shipping drugs like cocaine and opium around on CIA planes - the investigation probably would have turned up warrantless wiretapping to protect the other illegal programmes.

But we didn't. And Republicans, even Bushes (and Cheneys) get to walk around free, free to run for office. And a large section of the public that believes "it's only a crime if you get caught" treats those criminals and traitors to their oaths to protect the Constitution as "statesmen".

As every time before, the next one will be even worse. Hi, president Romney, how ya doin'?

Re:Illusion of Democracy (2, Insightful)

Phrogman (80473) | more than 4 years ago | (#31723800)

I am afraid you folks down south of the border (I am Canadian) have been reduced to having an illusion of democracy and your Constitutional Rights. I know the average American supports the Constitution and believes implicitly in the American system of government etc. Its a great system overall, but I think its been abused for the past 50 years or so - at least by the Republicans when in power. You don't have a right to privacy, you don't have the right of free speech, you don't have the right to avoid unlawful search and seizure - all those things have been stripped away systematically by succeeding US presidencies. These things have been done in the name of "National Security", but really they are in large part a way for the party in power to stay in power, and for the Republicans to keep control over US society and its laws. I hope something is done to rectify this, perhaps Obama can manage it, but I highly doubt much will change.
Good luck getting your country back!

Sadly, under Prime Minister Harper, my country is heading the same way. We have a prime minister who is willing to prorogue Parliament whenever there is the possibility that he might be challenged over his cavalier actions. He has done so twice so far and I see no signs he is likely to stop until he is unelected. Sadly the opposition parties can't find their asses with both hands at the moment, so the whole country suffers.

Re:Illusion of Democracy (1)

hduff (570443) | more than 4 years ago | (#31730094)

Its a great system overall, but I think its been abused for the past 50 years or so - at least by the Republicans when in power.

It's been abused by politicians and bureaucrats of all political persuasions for as long as there have been politicians and bureaucrats.

And the US doesn't have a monopoly on that kind of behavior BTW.

Re:Should've Impeached Nixon (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31724314)

I love how you always have to get Reagan in on it. It's the moonbat circle of truth.

The vast majority of people that actually did the acts you speak were around for administrations of both parties. You choose to see the evil figure head in your ideological opposite party. Shocking, I know. This is what happens when you build a giant central government with large police and intelligence organs. To think it would magically be less of a problem when your team is in office is delusional. The only difference is what people choose to see, report, and believe.

Now, by all means, carry on with your sermon.

Re:Should've Impeached Nixon (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 4 years ago | (#31725290)

Except Reagan was guilty of violating the Boland Amendment. As well as guilty of supplying our enemy, Iran, with weapons. And guilty of letting the CIA ship addictive drugs into the US.

The fact that others were also guilty doesn't mean that Reagan wasn't also guilty.

It's your problem that the facts interfere with your deification of Reagan.

Re:Should've Impeached Nixon (3, Informative)

MasterOfMagic (151058) | more than 4 years ago | (#31724776)

Nominally subordinate to only the 4th Amendment, which it violated by allowing exceptions to the Amendment's requirement of a warrant issued prior to any wiretapping.

Um, no. The Fourth Amendment says no unreasonable search or seizure, not no unwarranted search and seizure. It does, however, set out what a warrant requires, but it does not require a warrant for a lawful search:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

There are many cases where a warrentless search has been held to be reasonable, and thus not a violation of the Fourth Amendment.

That being said, warrantless wiretapping of the entire US population is, indeed, an unreasonable intrusion, in my opinion.

Re:Should've Impeached Nixon (2, Insightful)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 4 years ago | (#31725272)

No. The Supreme Court has repeatedly and consistently held that no search is reasonable without a warrant, except in "exigent circumstances", where delay for a warrant is likely to give the suspect time to destroy the evidence required for a warrant. The only other exceptions, automobiles and consented searches, do not apply here. And the FISA requirements for post facto warrants do not limit issuance in only exigent circumstances.

Re:Should've Impeached Nixon (1)

ducomputergeek (595742) | more than 4 years ago | (#31725458)

Thing is, wiretapping by the US Federal Government was long standing Standard Operating Procedure since Telephones were deployed in the 1900 and telegraphs since the 1860'. It was around a long time before Nixon. I don't think the government didn't need a warrant up until the 1920's.

Even then, phones can be tapped, it's just that evidence gathered isn't court admissible. But the type of work the NSA et. al. are doing is intelligence gathering. Whether or not it's court admissible isn't a grave concern.

Understanding Datamining vs. Terrorists (1)

jlaprise1 (1042514) | more than 4 years ago | (#31726012)

On the contrary, I doubt the government is doing anything illegal. They are using techno-legal arbitrage.

Current laws do not protect metadata. The government likely analyzes metadata to find possible terrorist suspects by looking for patterns. It presents those analyses to the FISA court as evidence to look at the content of suspect individuals and FISA grants a warrant. All of this is strictly legal or at least extralegal.

The problem is that telecommunications companies are likely complicit. Private telecommunications law does address such things. That was why they fought so long and hard for immunity. While the government couldn't be held liable, the telcos could.

John Laprise Ph.D.
Visiting Assistant Professor
Northwestern University in Qatar

And Obama, right? (1)

Garrett Fox (970174) | more than 4 years ago | (#31726304)

For consistency's sake, you also want Obama impeached for continuing the policy [nytimes.com] , right?

Where does the Constitution mention wiretapping? (3, Insightful)

jjo (62046) | more than 4 years ago | (#31724078)

There seems to be a common understanding around Slashdot that domestic warrantless wiretapping is always unconstitutional.

Wiretapping is not mentioned in the Constitution, but one's "persons, houses, papers, and effects" have been interpreted in many but not all cases to include electronic communications. Some of the cases where the courts have not extended constitutional protection in this way are for foreign communications and for domestic communications with agents of foreign powers.

A few years after the Ford memo mentioned above, Congress passed the FISA statute, in an attempt to somewhat restrict these constitutionally-permitted warrantless wiretaps. However, it is not a settled question whether the Congress has the right, through legislation, to restrict the President's authority, as Commander-in-Chief, to conduct otherwise-constitutional foreign intelligence operations.

The bottom line is that the issue is not as clear as you might think.

Trying to recast crime (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31724118)

What I find so sad is that every time a leader commits a crime in the United States someone finds new history to say "they've always done it that way". I think the country and the system deserve to actually follow their own laws maybe that way it might get better. Laws should apply to people in power, not just the downtrodden.

Re:Trying to recast crime (1)

hduff (570443) | more than 4 years ago | (#31730108)

What I find so sad is that every time a leader commits a crime in the United States someone finds new history to say "they've always done it that way". I think the country and the system deserve to actually follow their own laws maybe that way it might get better. Laws should apply to people in power, not just the downtrodden.

It makes you wonder if the business of government could be done without all this skullduggery or if we just consistently elect petulant egomaniacs that only feign any sense of morality while they do whatever the Hell they want.

]Failzo8s (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31725532)

dist0rbing. I8f you conversation and

Well surprise surprise... (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 4 years ago | (#31725762)

And we tried "hopey changey" with Jimmy Carter... It's not much of a stretch to say we are in Nixon's 11th term in office.

learning from history (1)

mentil (1748130) | more than 4 years ago | (#31725860)

Seems our overlords learned from history and chose to repeat it.

Understanding the Earlier Redaction (2, Interesting)

jlaprise1 (1042514) | more than 4 years ago | (#31725946)

The really big deal in the document is the redaction. In the earlier version, item C allowing minimal physical intrusion was redacted. In the version I FOIAed it was declassified.

What's the big deal? In 1974, electronic surveillance wasn't covered by the law. The law didn't even envision such a thing. Breaking and entering, however the law was well prepared to deal with.

Ford authorized the DoJ to conduct break-ins without a warrant. I know really ironic coming on the heels of Nixon, but I have to reiterate; Ford was a really stout defender of privacy rights based on all the research I've done.

John Laprise Ph.D.
Visiting Assistant Professor
Northwestern University in Qatar

One of the biggest problems (1)

OrwellianLurker (1739950) | more than 4 years ago | (#31726988)

The judicial branch has no teeth, and no balls. SCOTUS regularly place judicial precedence over what the Constitution actually says, and the actual intent of the Framers' words. I understand that when the shit hits the fan, the Constitution can and should be set aside. This applies to invasions, rebellions, repeated terrorist strikes, etc. But if it isn't an EMERGENCY, they should go to prison. Once the emergency is over, all unconstitutional executive actions should cease. At this point, we should focus on what went wrong, how to fix it in the future, and how to prevent it. An example is the health care bill. Sure, health care is fucked up in most states. What part of the Constitution grants the Federal government power to mandate all Americans to hold health insurance? If it isn't there, and enough people want it (ya know, that whole "democracy" thing), then amend the Constitution. I know it is not an easy or quick process, but doing it any other way is very dangerous. Hell, why not amend the Constitution to speed up the amendment process (if that is possible to do without damaging it)? I hear people say "oh, but how would they have known what would be going two hundred years later?" They knew about tyranny, and oppression, but not about the internet and nuclear weapons! If the Constitution is lacking, and people WANT change, they can amend it. And if not enough people want change, do it in your state. If you can't accomplish what you want in the United States of America, or in any state, vote with your feet.

Re:One of the biggest problems (1)

narcberry (1328009) | more than 4 years ago | (#31728600)

1. The constitution specifically makes room for such emergencies. If you think it is meant to be laid aside for any emergency, you are probably loved by a government eager to declare emergencies.
2. Your order of operations is offensively backwards. First pass laws in your state. Why do you need to pass constitutional ammendments as your first option?
3. You don't want to speed up the amendment process. It is not that difficult to raise a hopenchange mob, the damage to our nation would be irrevocable.

Re:One of the biggest problems (1)

OrwellianLurker (1739950) | more than 4 years ago | (#31729284)

1. The constitution specifically makes room for such emergencies. If you think it is meant to be laid aside for any emergency, you are probably loved by a government eager to declare emergencies.

I know. I meant if they did it properly (with Congress' approval and in an actual emergency). I didn't properly word my original post.

2. Your order of operations is offensively backwards. First pass laws in your state. Why do you need to pass constitutional ammendments as your first option?

You are correct. That was rather stupid of me to post that.

3. You don't want to speed up the amendment process. It is not that difficult to raise a hopenchange mob, the damage to our nation would be irrevocable.

Yes, you're probably correct. That's why I said "(if that is possible to do without damaging it)." I personally haven't thought of a quicker method that doesn't pose a threat to the process.

Hopefully... (1)

jonadab (583620) | more than 4 years ago | (#31728424)

One supposes, if there is any sanity in our legal system AT ALL, that information so gathered would never be admissible in court.

But if the idea was to use it to figure out stuff like which previously trusted CIA employee shouldn't have further access to classified information, or should be deliberately fed misinformation, during the cold war, I suspect a lot of people would have been pretty okay with that.

Nothing new (1)

LDLar (1782928) | more than 4 years ago | (#31729176)

All modern presidents have done the same thing. http://www.poynter.org/column.asp?id=75&aid=96665 [poynter.org]

Re:Nothing new (1)

hduff (570443) | more than 4 years ago | (#31730144)

All modern presidents have done the same thing. http://www.poynter.org/column.asp?id=75&aid=96665 [poynter.org]

Which makes it right in which way?

The citation implies that it all started with Truman and, I assume, the "threat of Communism" which, in retrospect, was mostly a boogeyman. Are you arguing that fear alone is a valid basis for surrendering any freedom?

Welcome to China... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31731344)

...in America.

Republican, Democrate (1)

Fuzzums (250400) | more than 4 years ago | (#31731696)

What strikes me is that some of the discussions here are STILL about Republicans Democrates. Those people don't get it.
The topic SHOULD be about the fact that a president that spies on his own citizens.

What is old is new again (1)

ps2os2 (1216366) | more than 4 years ago | (#31744708)

History in some cases does repeat itself as there are very few items that have not been done before. This is an unfortunate state of affairs.
Where is the back bone of the US presidents that would even consider this type of flagrant violation of the constitution? I suppose the same place that Bush and company get their idea for commission of torture to prisoners of war. This is perhaps worse than wire tapping but it is still against the constitution.

What we may want to do in the future is too put wires on the president of the US and every time he authorizes an illegal act a nice volt of electricity would come down the wires and send a jolt to his gonads (or if its a woman to her vagina).

Hey its legal according to Bush's special commission" he is not in uniform and he is a combatant as he orders soldiers into wars. This sounds like officer to me.

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