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Boyceofsummer
07-06-2007, 01:13 PM
Court dismisses lawsuit on spying program By Andrea Hopkins
2 hours, 1 minute ago



A U.S. appeals court ruled on Friday a lawsuit challenging the domestic spying program created by President George W. Bush after the September 11 attacks must be dismissed, in a decision based on narrow technical grounds.

The appeals court panel ruled by a 2-1 vote that the groups and individuals who brought the lawsuit, led by the American Civil Liberties Union, did not have the legal right to bring the challenge in the first place.

The surveillance program was authorized by Bush to monitor the international phone calls and e-mails of U.S. citizens, without first obtaining a court warrant. A lower court had ruled in August 2006 that the program was unconstitutional.

The Bush administration appealed, and the appeals court in Cincinnati set aside the decision.

The appeals court did not decide the merits of the lawsuit challenging the program as illegal and unconstitutional. It just held that the plaintiffs did not have standing or the legal right to sue.

The ACLU plaintiffs included lawyers who said they could not defend clients accused of terrorism because the government, under the wiretapping program, could listen into attorney-client conversations.

But the two judges in the majority opinion said the plaintiffs had failed to prove they were under surveillance.

"The plaintiffs allege that they have a 'well founded belief' that their overseas contacts are likely targets of the (National Security Agency) and that their conversations are being intercepted. The plaintiffs have no evidence, however, that the NSA has actually intercepted (or will actually intercept) any of their conversations," Judge Alice Batchelder said in the ruling.

IMPUNITY

ACLU lawyer Melissa Goodman said the decision effectively protects the wiretapping program from any judicial review.

"The Bush administration is basically left free to violate an act of Congress with impunity -- the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which Congress adopted over 30 years ago to prevent the executive from engaging in precisely this kind of unchecked surveillance," Goodman said.

"They are effectively saying you can't show that you've been wiretapped and you'll never be able to show that you've been wiretapped because the whole thing is so secret."

ACLU officials said they are reviewing all legal options, including appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court.

White House spokesman Tony Fratto said the administration was pleased by the ruling. "The court of appeals properly determined that the plaintiffs had failed to show their claims were entitled to review in federal court," he said.

In the previous ruling, a U.S. district judge in Detroit ruled the program violated the Constitution and a 1978 law prohibiting surveillance of U.S. citizens on U.S. soil without the approval of the special surveillance court.

The two judges in the majority, Julia Smith Gibbons and Batchelder, are Republican appointees, named by Bush and his father, respectively.

Judge Ronald Lee Gilman, appointed by President Bill Clinton, a Democrat, dissented. Gilman said he would uphold the ruling last year on the grounds that the program violated the 1978 law.

The surveillance program caused a political uproar among Democrats and some Republicans, as well as civil rights activists. The Bush administration abandoned the program in January, putting it under court review.

(Additional reporting by James Vicini and Matt Spetalnick in in Washington)

(Editing by David Wiessler; Reuters Messaging: andrea.hopkins.reuters.com@reuters.net; +1 513 699 0045; andrea.hopkins@reuters.com))



Copyright 2007 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

chagrin
07-06-2007, 01:17 PM
nice, go get 'em - oh and while you're at it, make sure to listen in on all the boring details of the usual everyday citizens; I am sure it's really going to hurt people, you know - the gub'ment listenin to the usual daily bullshit of normal folks talk. I'm sure the Feds are really interested in boyce, meme, banyon, penchiefs and JAZ's everyday activities. :rolleyes:

I hope they continue to nail dipshits for plotting against the USA, too bad you people just don't get it :shake:

ClevelandBronco
07-06-2007, 01:22 PM
So, in other words, the judicial branch has affirmed that the executive branch is operating within its powers, despite the fact that the legislative branch would like to intervene?

Let the ruckus procede, then, by all means.

Hog Farmer
07-06-2007, 01:24 PM
nice, go get 'em - oh and while you're at it, make sure to listen in on all the boring details of the usual everyday citizens; I am sure it's really going to hurt people, you know - the gub'ment listenin to the usual daily bullshit of normal folks talk. I'm sure the Feds are really interested in boyce, meme, banyon, penchiefs and JAZ's everyday activities. :rolleyes:

I hope they continue to nail dipshits for plotting against the USA, too bad you people just don't get it :shake:

AGREED!

penchief
07-06-2007, 01:43 PM
nice, go get 'em - oh and while you're at it, make sure to listen in on all the boring details of the usual everyday citizens; I am sure it's really going to hurt people, you know - the gub'ment listenin to the usual daily bullshit of normal folks talk. I'm sure the Feds are really interested in boyce, meme, banyon, penchiefs and JAZ's everyday activities. :rolleyes:

I hope they continue to nail dipshits for plotting against the USA, too bad you people just don't get it :shake:

You seem to keep missing the point. They can target whoever they want without justification. That means they can freely target political opponents, lawyers, or anybody that stands in their way. And if they never have to reveal their tactics or what information they cull, they are basically omnipotent.

Say goodbye to the liberty you profess to love so much.

Too bad you just don't get it.

Baby Lee
07-06-2007, 01:44 PM
So, in other words, the judicial branch has affirmed that the executive branch is operating within its powers, despite the fact that the legislative branch would like to intervene?

Let the ruckus procede, then, by all means.
Actually, no. That's not what happened.
The judicial branch said 'there's no one before us who can prove standing to complain, so we're not going to affirm or refute a hypothetical.'

Baby Lee
07-06-2007, 01:49 PM
You seem to keep missing the point. They can target whoever they want without justification. That means they can freely target political opponents, lawyers, or anybody that stands in their way. And if they never have to reveal their tactics or what information they cull, they are basically omnipotent.

Say goodbye to the liberty you profess to love so much.

Too bad you just don't get it.
No, they can't.
Targeting individuals in a manner that results in effible harm gives those individuals standing, which no one has proven yet.
And if they never reveal their tactics or what information they cull, they're absolutely IMPOTENT, outside of creating a database of utterly useless information.
That's what I think you miss. The provision is self-policing. Any abuse resulting in tangible damage to someone not deserving of scrutiny is going to ruin the whole thing. And any abuse resulting in no tangible damage is just a tree falling in the woods.

Chief Henry
07-06-2007, 02:00 PM
nice, go get 'em - oh and while you're at it, make sure to listen in on all the boring details of the usual everyday citizens; I am sure it's really going to hurt people, you know - the gub'ment listenin to the usual daily bullshit of normal folks talk. I'm sure the Feds are really interested in boyce, meme, banyon, penchiefs and JAZ's everyday activities. :rolleyes:

I hope they continue to nail dipshits for plotting against the USA, too bad you people just don't get it :shake:



Amen Brother...

Chief Henry
07-06-2007, 02:02 PM
You seem to keep missing the point. They can target whoever they want without justification. That means they can freely target political opponents, lawyers, or anybody that stands in their way. And if they never have to reveal their tactics or what information they cull, they are basically omnipotent.

Say goodbye to the liberty you profess to love so much.

Too bad you just don't get it.


You mean like the way Hillary was tapping phones of the Bimbo's Billary was scoring with in the 90's or the way FBI records showed up on the Clinton's coffee table in the LIVING room.

jAZ
07-06-2007, 02:04 PM
So, in other words, the judicial branch has affirmed that the executive branch is operating within its powers....
That's not at all what the ruling says. It says that these people can't sue because they can't prove that they have grounds for a suit because they can't get to the records to show that they were spied upon. It's sort of a catch 22... which is no vindication for the WH by any stretch.

Direckshun
07-06-2007, 02:04 PM
So, in other words, the judicial branch has affirmed that the executive branch is operating within its powers, despite the fact that the legislative branch would like to intervene?
No, the court said nothing about whether or not the executive branch was operating within its powers, it said that the people bringing the suit weren't legally entitled to.

penchief
07-06-2007, 02:30 PM
You mean like the way Hillary was tapping phones of the Bimbo's Billary was scoring with in the 90's or the way FBI records showed up on the Clinton's coffee table in the LIVING room.

Wow. Just Wow.

This is not a partisan issue. The problem is that there is no oversight, no governmental transparency, and zero accountability. Self-policing? Give me a break.

These guys have yet to find a regulation that suits them. The problem is not that these mechanisms don't exist. The problem is that we have an administration that has zero respect for those mechanisms. They only want absolute power. And people like you are willing to give it to them freely while babbling on about 'Billary'.

Boyceofsummer
07-06-2007, 02:30 PM
by the time the enablers 'get-it' it will be too late. We have most likely passed the point of no return.

penchief
07-06-2007, 02:32 PM
by the time the enablers 'get-it' it will be too late. We have most likely passed the point of no return.

I've often thought so, too.

Baby Lee
07-06-2007, 02:35 PM
Self-policing? Give me a break.
The depth and breadth your analytical acumen continues to stun me.

Chief Henry
07-06-2007, 02:42 PM
Wow. Just Wow.

This is not a partisan issue. The problem is that there is no oversight, no governmental transparency, and zero accountability. Self-policing? Give me a break.

These guys have yet to find a regulation that suits them. The problem is not that these mechanisms don't exist. The problem is that we have an administration that has zero respect for those mechanisms. They only want absolute power. And people like you are willing to give it to them freely while babbling on about 'Billary'.



If they wanted absolute power, they'd be monitoring boards like this
and then come into your home and cut your hands off or rape your wife and daughters like Saddam.

Zero respect huh...You should thank your lucky azz that we have a
president that respects American citizens so much that he is protecting your azz from the people that want to cut your throat for not beleaving in ALLAH.

Logical
07-06-2007, 02:48 PM
So, in other words, the judicial branch has affirmed that the executive branch is operating within its powers, despite the fact that the legislative branch would like to intervene?

Let the ruckus procede, then, by all means.

Not true, what the courts did is what they always do and stand on the issue of foundation. Sadly the ruling that needs to be made was avoided because the legal issue of foundation could not be established.

ChiefaRoo
07-06-2007, 02:50 PM
If they wanted absolute power, they'd be monitoring boards like this
and then come into your home and cut your hands off or rape your wife and daughters like Saddam.

Zero respect huh...You should thank your lucky azz that we have a
president that respects American citizens so much that he is protecting your azz from the people that want to cut your throat for not beleaving in ALLAH.

Terrorism isn't real, it's all about the evil W. and his plans to turn the USA into a theocracy. Mark my words you conservatives the Methodists in the US Govt. are trying to take away your freedoms.

Logical
07-06-2007, 02:52 PM
Terrorism isn't real, it's all about the evil W. and his plans to turn the USA into a theocracy. Mark my words you conservatives the Methodists in the US Govt. are trying to take away your freedoms.ROFL

Nice try at sarcasm

Boyceofsummer
07-06-2007, 02:55 PM
If they wanted absolute power, they'd be monitoring boards like this
and then come into your home and cut your hands off or rape your wife and daughters like Saddam.

Zero respect huh...You should thank your lucky azz that we have a
president that respects American citizens so much that he is protecting your azz from the people that want to cut your throat for not beleaving in ALLAH.

and the powers in control of our government are wrong. Even the Israelis know better than to intervene and incite civil unrest contrary to their own security interests. We are nearing a point that will necessitate cutting off funds for this fiasco. Once and for all!

Baby Lee
07-06-2007, 03:00 PM
Not true, what the courts did is what they always do and stand on the issue of foundation. Sadly the ruling that needs to be made was avoided because the legal issue of foundation could not be established.
I guess the whole bemoaning of 'shredding the Constitution,' is a dodge if the Constitutional requirement of standing [not foundation], is, IYO, nothing more that code for being chickenshit.

Logical
07-06-2007, 03:56 PM
I guess the whole bemoaning of 'shredding the Constitution,' is a dodge if the Constitutional requirement of standing [not foundation], is, IYO, nothing more that code for being chickenshit.

I said nothing of the sort. I am merely pointing out that the court did not rule on the actual issue but instead used the lack of foundation to avoid the ruling. I do not think that is being chickenshit.

Baby Lee
07-06-2007, 04:06 PM
I said nothing of the sort. I am merely pointing out that the court did not rule on the actual issue but instead recognized the lack of standing to follow the Consitution. I do not think that is being chickenshit.
FYP

Logical
07-06-2007, 04:10 PM
FYPActually I have no problem with the way you fixed my post.

Baby Lee
07-06-2007, 04:12 PM
Actually I have no problem with the way you fixed my post.
Good, because the original smacked of intonation of pretense, which was the source of my chickenshit surmise.
That, and the use of 'sadly' previous.

Logical
07-06-2007, 04:15 PM
Good, because the original smacked of intonation of pretense, which was the source of my chickenshit surmise.
That, and the use of 'sadly' previous.


Sadly was used because I am hoping the issue will eventually be ruled upon. But I agree it needs to be a case where the court has proper jurisdiction.

Baby Lee
07-06-2007, 04:22 PM
Sadly was used because I am hoping the issue will eventually be ruled upon. But I agree it needs to be a case where the court has proper jurisdiction.
I think we're good.
You can see where verbiage such as 'SADLY they USED foundation to AVOID' might lead me to think you're accusing them of chickenshittery, right?

penchief
07-06-2007, 04:38 PM
If they wanted absolute power, they'd be monitoring boards like this
and then come into your home and cut your hands off or rape your wife and daughters like Saddam.

Zero respect huh...You should thank your lucky azz that we have a
president that respects American citizens so much that he is protecting your azz from the people that want to cut your throat for not beleaving in ALLAH.

They want to cut my throat because they're thugs, not because they believe in Allah.

The examples you cite are not means to an end but are the end result of the means. Once they have absolute power, chopping off someone's hands only seems logical to sheep like you. You are not much different than those in militant Islam who buy the garbage being fed them by the likes of bin Laden or those who sheepishly kneel before the Taliban.

The same thing goes for this administration. They don't want total control because that's what's right for America. They want a "permanent republican majority" because it's good for the family business.

And for what it's worth, I wouldn't be so sure they aren't monitoring boards like this. If they were I guess you'd be gold.

BucEyedPea
07-06-2007, 04:44 PM
Terrorism isn't real, it's all about the evil W. and his plans to turn the USA into a theocracy. Mark my words you conservatives the Methodists in the US Govt. are trying to take away your freedoms.
Hillary?
Hillary is a Methodist.

BucEyedPea
07-06-2007, 04:45 PM
They want to cut my throat because they're thugs, not because they believe in Allah.
:thumb:

penchief
07-06-2007, 05:02 PM
The depth and breadth your analytical acumen continues to stun me.

.......and people accuse me of being naive. For someone that is supposed to be looking out for the constitutional rights of this country's citizenry, I find it amazing that you can be so naive. Are you suggesting that this administration has exhibited the traits that give you confidence that they are not politicizing their newfound powers? Why would anyone believe such a thing given their track record?

Are you suggesting that they would not do something that exceeds this country's sensibilities and then deny it or lie about it?

Are you one of those who condones torture and unwarranted domestic spying or are you really so naive as to believe the administration when they say it isn't technically torture and that they're only spying on terrorists?

Were you one of those people who really believed Bush when he lied straight-faced to the American people about their spying on Americans secretly ("When you hear the word 'wire-tap', that requires a warrant")?

You can pick me apart all you want (which has been your habit), but when are you going to be capable of acknowledging certain trends that are not good for this country or the rule of law?

Logical
07-06-2007, 05:28 PM
I think we're good.
You can see where verbiage such as 'SADLY they USED foundation to AVOID' might lead me to think you're accusing them of chickenshittery, right?Yes

patteeu
07-06-2007, 08:11 PM
Wow. Just Wow.

This is not a partisan issue. The problem is that there is no oversight, no governmental transparency, and zero accountability. Self-policing? Give me a break.

That can't be the problem, because there has, in fact, been bipartisan Congressional oversight of this program all along. So much for zero accountability.

penchief
07-06-2007, 08:56 PM
That can't be the problem, because there has, in fact, been bipartisan Congressional oversight of this program all along. So much for zero accountability.

If you call coercion oversight. Wasn't it Rockefeller who penned a letter out of dissent because he was bound not to go public? Wasn't it Durbin who spoke out in a similar manner (after the fact) about the muzzle placed on committee members concerning the lies that were used to persuade America to invade and occupy a country against everything this nation has ever stood for?

Only a handfull of committe members were briefed, not the entire congress. The congress appears to be bound by laws that the administration is not bound to. Heck, Cheney can unilaterally decide what is classified and what is not classified while congress is bound to a hard and fast rule. Considering this administration's track record for lying, the oversight you speak of is not legitimate oversight unless you believe a gun to the head constitutes oversight.

ClevelandBronco
07-06-2007, 09:51 PM
Actually, no. That's not what happened.
The judicial branch said 'there's no one before us who can prove standing to complain, so we're not going to affirm or refute a hypothetical.'

You're absolutely correct. I read too much into this when I skimmed the article:

"The Bush administration is basically left free to violate an act of Congress with impunity -- the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which Congress adopted over 30 years ago to prevent the executive from engaging in precisely this kind of unchecked surveillance," Goodman said.

patteeu
07-06-2007, 10:22 PM
If you call coercion oversight. Wasn't it Rockefeller who penned a letter out of dissent because he was bound not to go public? Wasn't it Durbin who spoke out in a similar manner (after the fact) about the muzzle placed on committee members concerning the lies that were used to persuade America to invade and occupy a country against everything this nation has ever stood for?

Only a handfull of committe members were briefed, not the entire congress. The congress appears to be bound by laws that the administration is not bound to. Heck, Cheney can unilaterally decide what is classified and what is not classified while congress is bound to a hard and fast rule. Considering this administration's track record for lying, the oversight you speak of is not legitimate oversight unless you believe a gun to the head constitutes oversight.

Oversight was provided in a manner that was based on agreement between the executive branch and the legislative branch and which was standard operating procedure for the Congress when exercising oversight over the nation's most classified intelligence programs.

There was no coercion here. The legislative oversight panel could have stopped this program at any point and I'd expect them to do so if they really believed it was wrong.