Democrats Seem Ready to Extend Wiretap Powers
WASHINGTON, Oct. 8 — Two months after insisting that they would roll back broad eavesdropping powers won by the Bush administration, Democrats in Congress appear ready to make concessions that could extend some crucial powers given to the National Security Agency.
Although willing to oppose the White House on the Iraq war, they remain nervous that they will be called soft on terrorism if they insist on strict curbs on gathering intelligence.
The Democrats won the midterms last year because people are tired of this president and they are tired of his wars. They don't feel safer; they don't like the erosion of their civil rights; and no one likes the idea of the government sniffing into every phone call, every email, and every envelope that comes into or goes out of their home.
And yet, they don't get that. They're more concerned with how the Republican America-haters see them than anything else. So they sell us out, in the hopes that an unpopular president and unpopular members of Congress of an unpopular party with unpopular ideas will say nice things about them.
As we head into the next presidential election, I've noticed a lot more chatter that sounds like a replay of the 2000 race: That you can't tell the difference between the Democrats and the Republicans, with "Democrats" calling talk radio to say that if Hillary gets the nomination, why they can't see how voting for a Republican could be any different, so they might just vote for the GOP next time around. It's something that seemed to have been designed to shore up the chances of the Republicans back then, when the choices were between an effective extension of a popular presidency and the functionally retarded offspring of an unpopular one. I think it's serving a similar purpose this time, when none of the Republicans are an appealing counter-representation of the party, which comes across as rich old white men who want to stay in power and for you to stay frightened. But right now, when the Democrats are caving in on every important issue, I'm starting to feel the same way, like there's not a damn bit of difference among any of them.