It's not every day a former deputy attorney general testifies that the White House violated the law--and did so knowingly. But that seemed to happen this morning when former Deputy Attorney General James Comey testified before the Senate judiciary committee about the once-secret NSA warrantless wiretapping program that targeted citizens and residents in the United States.Today, that same man, David Corn of Mother Jones published a secretly (and possibly illegally) taped conversation between a US Senator and his campaign operatives. That Secretly taped conversation had nothing to do with national security because as he has stated above listening in for national security---bad. Listening in for political reasons---good!
In August 2006 David Corn wrote in The Nation that Bush's wireless program for national security was an example of of his "view of expansive (even Supreme presidential power)
For months, George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and other administration aides have been defending--even championing--what they call the "terrorist surveillance program," under which the National Security Agency can intercept communications that involve an American citizen or resident without a warrant if one party to the communication is overseas and suspected of being linked to anti-American terrorists). They have maintained that the president has the authority as commander in chief to authorize such surveillance. Though the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) generally forbids wiretapping without warrants, the White House has contended that Bush is not bound by the limitations of that law. This claim--arising from the Bush administration's view of expansive (even supreme) presidential power--set up a constitutional clash. And in the first round of the legal battle, Judge Taylor has knocked out the White House argument.The audio tape released by Mr. Corn today was really much ado about nothing. Is anybody really shocked that a political candidate will use an opponent's own public statements about their mental illness and issues against them? How Shocking. What we do learn from Corn today is that secretly taping political conversations---very good, but secretly taping conversations for national security---very, very bad.
In the same 2006 article from The Nation Corn said this about a judge striking down Bush's wiretaps.
Weeks before he took office in 2001, Bush quipped, "If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator." Democracy, though, is not easy. And a commander in chief has to abide by the rules, as various courts have now ruled. The administration's King George approach to governance has taken another blow. But it's royally unlikely this president is going to accept the decision and give up his claim to the throne.In September of 2012 David Corn obtained a secretly taped video (by Jimmy Carter's grandson) of Mitt Romney talking to campaign contributors. Corn and his progressive cohorts were able to make great use of Romney telling contributors that he didn't have to care about the 47% who don't pay taxes. Now Romney was talking about not having to care about trying to get their votes but Corn used it to imply Romney wouldn't care about them if he was president.
That secret video was OK because it was only about politics, it had nothing to do with national security.
In September 2006 President Bush spoke to the UN General Assembly. In his speech the president mentioned the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was adopted by the UN in 1948. Writing in the Huffington Post, Corn pointed out all the ways he believed that Bush was ignoring that declaration including:
You see---it's in his own words--Corn believes the UN forgot to put in a clause exempting the targets of political campaigns.No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.Bush keeps insisting on the right to wiretap people--including American citizens (under certain circumstances)--without a warrant, not even a secret warrant. As for the right not to have one's honor and reputation assailed, the drafters of this declaration must have forgotten to put in a clause exempting the targets of political campaigns.
I have to apologize to Corn, he wasn't being a hypocrite...he was simply executing the true meaning of the UN Declaration of Human Rights which was supposed to read that you cannot secretly tape people except when you want to slander them politically. Well at least we now know his motivation.