ACLU vs. NSA: It's very simple. Bush broke the law
As we've said from the beginning, the issue on warrantless surveillance is that Bush broke the law. And when the Times finally decided to break the story of Bush's warrantless surveillance program (after seeing Him safely into office for a second term), even Barron's agreed.
[JUDGE JACKSON] [Title III of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act states that] â€œthe FISA of 1978 [fines; imprisonment for violation] shall be the exclusive means by which electronic surveillance of foreign intelligence communications may be conducted.â€ [emphasis added] ... The wiretapping program here in litigation has undisputedly been continued for at least five years, it has undisputedly been implemented without regard to FISA ... [and it] has been acknowledged by this Administration to have been authorized by the Presidentâ€™s secret order during 2002 and reauthorized at least thirty times since.
Oh, and violating FISA is a felony. So that's thirty felonies. Not just for Bush, but for anyone that was "only following orders."
You know, I could go on and on. But I think it's really that simple.
All we want is for the rules to be obeyed, and for the President to be subject to the Constitution, checks and balances, and the rule of law.
The authoritarians don't want that, and so they obfusacate the issue in whatever way they can, as they are paid to do.