Thursday, June 09, 2005

The Patriot Act

President Bush is stumping today for the renewal of The Patriot Act and for making it permanent. The sound bite that I have been hearing all day on radio news is:

"My message to Congress is clear: Terrorist threats against us will not expire at the end of the year and neither should the protections of the Patriot Act," Bush told more than 100 law enforcement officers.

The Bush machine really spun out a wonderful line there. Terrorism is not like eggs or milk, who would have guessed. However, rhetorical wit aside, how does that argue for making the law permanent?

As long as there is a legitimately constituted group of terrorists looking to take us on here and abroad The Patriot Act will safely pass through Congress whenever its renewal will be needed. I suspect that this condition will exist for at least another generation and maybe two. I also think that renewing this law and reminding the American public of what we are doing and how we are going about it every few years is a good thing. I would even think it is something that Congressmen in Washington would like to be seen on TV talking about. Every few years maybe a hearing or two, examine the issue, tweak things around the edges and then in a great demonstration of patriotism, reauthorize The Patriot Act.

I think Bush is acting foolishly, or more accurately those making politics on this issue. If this is President Bush insisting and not listening to his advisors, then Congress needs to get smart. No law like this should just be made “permanent” and hustled off to the shelves, its not good for anyone, inside or out of Washington.


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