Sunday, June 25, 2006

King Hates the Constitution and Defends Another Warrantless Act

Once again the Bush administration does an end-run around the constitution and decides that warrants are so pre-9/11 and once again, King stands up for Bush.
According to the NYTimes "Under a secret Bush administration program initiated weeks after the Sept. 11 attacks, counterterrorism officials have gained access to financial records from a vast international database and examined banking transactions involving thousands of Americans and others in the United States, according to government and industry officials.
"The program, however, is a significant departure from typical practice in how the government acquires Americans' financial records. Treasury officials did not seek individual court-approved warrants or subpoenas to examine specific transactions, instead relying on broad administrative subpoenas for millions of records from the cooperative, known as Swift.
That access to large amounts of confidential data was highly unusual, several officials said, and stirred concerns inside the administration about legal and privacy issues."

What is so difficult in getting a warrant from a court to search suspected records?

So King steps up to the plate to defend Bush on FOX News (hat tip Crooks and Liars.)
Seems King wants the NYTimes to be charged with espionage!
I guess he was playing to the far-right kook FOX News viewer with that one.
"Peter King: Chris, I think the administration acted entirely appropriately. The 1976 U.S. Supreme Court case gives them, to me, the absolute right to do this. They’re in full compliance with all statutes. To me, the real question here is the conduct of the New York Times by disclosing this in time of war, they have compromised America’s anti-terrorist policies. This is a very effective policy. They have compromised it. This is the second time the New York Times has done this. And to me, no one elected the New York Times to do anything. And the New York Times is putting its own arrogant elitist left wing agenda before the interests of the American people, and I’m calling on the Attorney General to begin a criminal investigation and prosecution of the New York Times — its reporters, the editors who worked on this, and the publisher. We’re in a time of war, Chris, and what they’ve done has violated the Espionage Act, the COMINT act. The time has come for the American people to realize, and the New York Times to realize, we’re at war and they can’t be on their own deciding what to declassify, what to release. If Congress wants to work on this privately, that’s one thing. But for them to, on their own, for the editor of the New York Times to say that he decides it’s in the national interest — no one elected them to anything. Remember, this is the newspaper that brought us Jason Blair. Going back a few years ago, they’re the ones who gave Fidel Castro his job in Cuba. They have no right to do this at all. The First Amendment is not absolute, especially when it comes to something like this, which is a clear violation of statutory law."

King ought to check the congressional record and look up the Right to Financial Privacy Act of 1978 before he spouts off about the 1976 Supreme Court ruling.
The long and short of it is that a Warrant or a Subpeona is needed to access financial records.
The Bush administration just like the wire-tap case ignored the law and did what it wanted to do.
King as usual backs Bush and the law-breaking.
Its funny how King throws in former Times reporter Jason Blair to attack the paper. Blair got in trouble for making things up in his stories. Is king saying the Times is making things up in this story? If so, how can they be charged with espionage if what they say isn't true?
King is all over the place in his attempt to defend this program and every route he takes shows how little he really knows.

And while King is spouting off on COMINT, let's remember just the other day King was on News12 Long Island letting local terror cells know they are being watched by the FBI.
Maybe King should be locked up for that.
§ 798. Disclosure of classified information
(a) Whoever knowingly and willfully communicates, furnishes, transmits, or otherwise makes available to an unauthorized person, or publishes, or uses in any manner prejudicial to the safety or interest of the United States or for the benefit of any foreign government to the detriment of the United States any classified information—
(3) concerning the communication intelligence activities of the United States or any foreign government;

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This evening I heard Rep. King refer to The New York Times as a "serial criminal". He said that because the Times is a "serial criminal", this is why they and not the LA Times or The Wall Street Journal should be prosecuted. He made these comments during an interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper. If I knew that Mr. King himself read every piece of mail addressed to him, this is what I would write:

"I would like to meet you alone, without your usual phalanx of bodyguards and security goons. If such a miracle occurred, nothing would give me more pleasure than to spit in your ugly face. But since such meeting will never occur, all I can say to you is 'vete a chupar la chocha de tu madre'."