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Law School Dropout Accuses President of Breaking the Law

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 6:37 pm - January 16, 2006.
Filed under: Bush-hatred,Liberals,War On Terror

Vanderbilt Law School Dropout Albert A. Gore Jr., accused President Bush of breaking the law when, in the wake of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the president authorized wiretapping on international phone calls of terrorist suspects.

Before making another wild accusation against the man who defeated him in the 2000 presidential election, Gore should perhaps have consulted individuals who, unlike him, actually graduated from law school and studied the laws in question. Over at Powerline, one such attorney, John Hinderaker, analyzed the president’s program and surveyed the applicable law and found “under the Constitution and all controlling precedents, the NSA intercept program is legal.” In his update to that post, he provides a link to the Justice Department rationale upon which President Bush relied. (Unlike Mr. Gore, those who wrote that opinion graduated from law school.)

And it’s not just a conservative attorney like Mr. Hinderaker who has found the president’s program to be legal. As we have reported before, John Schmidt, associate attorney general in the Clinton Administration, in which Mr. Gore also served (but in a different capacity) found that the president had the legal authority to OK the wiretaps. Another left-of-center attorney to sign off on the president’s plan was Cass Sunstein, one of the nation’s most respected constitutional scholars.

Before accusing his erstwhile adversary of breaking the law, this disgruntled Democrat should have consulted with those who actually graduated from law school. And perhaps he should also consult with graduates of another type of professional school so he might finally get over his loss to President Bush now over five years ago.

UPDATE: Back in the day when he was working for Bill Clinton, Gore didn’t claim that his boss and his appointees were violating the law when they defended similar eavesdropping. Gateway Pundit provides comments supporting such programs from law school graduates. (Via: Glenn (who thinks I’m a meanie).)

UP-UPDATE: It helps to have Glenn Reynolds accuse you of “getting mean.” His link spiked our readership, pushing us up over 500,000 Visitors.

UP-UP-UPDATE: Astute Blogger fisks Gore’s speech here (H/t: Powerline).

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176 Comments

  1. Lefty is an accurate label for people who embrace the politics of socialism, pacifism, and anti-Americanism. I don’t consider it a perjorative when someone labels me a right-winger because the connotation is I embrace capitalism and individual responsibility. “Chickenhawk” is an ignorant slur, whose logic goes along the lines of you unless you become a policeman, you’re not allowed to support law enforcement, unless you become a fire-fighter, you can’t support putting out house fires, and so on…

    Comment by V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 1:56 pm - January 18, 2006

  2. Rightiswrong:

    bush has willfully admitted his offenses

    He has openly declared he is doing something the relevant case law specifically states he has the authority to do. See post #120.

    Comment by Tom Eastmond — January 18, 2006 @ 2:08 pm - January 18, 2006

  3. Korla Pundit — January 18, 2006 @ 12:47 pm – January 18, 2006

    Your lists, except for W, are kind of silly. What wars did Lincoln, FDR and Reagan Rah! Rah! Rah! for (when they were of an age at which they reasonably could have served (in the military, not in office). Buchanan was definitely a ChickenHawk of the Vietnam war (and he was of an age at which he could have served). Neville Chamberlain was too old to have been a ChickenHawk. Carter had been in the military, but not at the relevant time. Clinton was a snake-oil salesman, and he still is, but from what I have read, he was not Rah! Rah! Rahing the Vietnam ward.

    V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 1:56 pm – January 18, 2006

    Typical silly rationalization from conservatives. People on the right can engage in name-calling (“leftist”) but they criticize others for what they themselves are doing. Grow up.

    Comment by raj — January 18, 2006 @ 2:29 pm - January 18, 2006

  4. My, see how they go down: wriggling uncomfortably, grasping at imaginary rungs in the air, babbling incoherently about the arbitrary parameters of the obscure epithets that occupy their cloistered existence. See how the mad dog, unaware of its madness, runs around frothing at the mouth, not conscious of its only salvation: a pistol’s merciful discharge.

    Smell ya later, commie dirtbags!

    Comment by Korla Pundit — January 18, 2006 @ 2:41 pm - January 18, 2006

  5. V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 1:56 pm – January 18, 2006

    I don’t consider it a perjorative when someone labels me a right-winger because the connotation is I embrace capitalism and individual responsibility.

    It would be nice if your fellow conservatives would embrace capitalism and individual responsibility. Apparently you haven’t been paying attention. Richard Nixon imposed wage & price controls, which exacerbated the inflation problems due to his continuation of the Vietnam War–despite the fact that he told us in 1968 that he had a “secret plan” to extricate the US from the war. He was a liar.

    Saint Reagan substantially expanded government–and so has GWBush, both by borrowing. They are both borrow-and spend liberals. More than a few self-described conservatives are actually “gimmes” (give me). Aside from no-bid contracts with Halliburton, the Republicans have expanded, for example, the price supports for agribusiness. During the late 1990s the Feds even expanded welfare for mohair producers–at the insistence of BugKiller DeLay.

    Comment by raj — January 18, 2006 @ 2:45 pm - January 18, 2006

  6. Unlike the left-wing shills on this forum who will not even criticize Democrats who oppose gay marriage, my criticisms of Bush on fiscal profligacy, domestic policy, and border neglect have been extensive, both in this forum and in others. I am not a Republican. I am registered Independent, which gives me the freedom to criticize either party wherever I see fit. My viewpoint is fiscally conservative and socially conservative/libertarian. I do not regard Nixon as a conservative, nor do most contemporary conservatives.

    Comment by V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 3:44 pm - January 18, 2006

  7. >I do not regard Nixon as a conservative, nor do most contemporary conservatives.

    Hell, no.

    But I also don’t consider so-called “liberals” to be liberals at all. Liberals would champion the toppling of the Taliban, Saddam and the Ayatollahs. They would never support Kim Jong Il. They would abhor islamofascism and any other form of fascism. They would not ask why dictators, terrorists and bigots hate us. They would be proud to be hated by such monsters.

    That’s why they are better referred to as lefties, commies and other terms that never adequately capture their moral bankruptcy and utter disingenuousness.

    I guess a rose by any other name…

    Comment by Korla Pundit — January 18, 2006 @ 4:59 pm - January 18, 2006

  8. Hey, breaking news! Last week’s airstrike on “civilians” in Pakistan killed, among other terrorists, Al Qaeda’s master bomb maker, who trained shoebomber Richard Reid and “20th hijacker” Zacharias Moussaui.

    Zing!

    Take that, asshats!

    Comment by Korla Pundit — January 18, 2006 @ 5:04 pm - January 18, 2006

  9. V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 3:44 pm – January 18, 2006

    This is a joke, right? You criticize others, using the epithet “leftist,” yet whine when others criticize conservatives who were ChickenHawks–calling it “name-calling.”

    I don’t particularly care whether or not you are a registered Republican. You do not practice what you preach. And that makes you something of a hypocrit.

    For your information, I have criticized Democrats who oppose gay marriage, and I will continue to do so. I haven’t seen the topic raised here (I don’t normally come here–I was prompted by a recent link on IndeGayForum) and so I haven’t posted on the topic here. Your “domestic policy” is so vague as to be virtually worthless to respond to. Border neglect is rather silly, since businesses on the US side of the borders with Canada and Mexico wants porous borders and resents the self-styled “militias” in Arizona that have been patrolling the border down there and who have migrated up to Northern Vermont to “patrol” the border with Canada. They are bad for business on the US side of the border.

    I really don’t care whether “contemporary conservatives” would consider Nixon to be a conservative–he was considered one when he ran for office, and that is what matters. Saint Reagan was too, and so was GWBush. Although it should be clear that the latter two were “bait and switch” conservatives: actually “borrow and spend” liberals, in my book.

    BTW, I am not a Democrat. I am what is, in Massachusetts, “unenrolled.” (There used to be an “Independent party” and so the state election authorities came up with the “unenrolled” category to distinguish them from the registered members of the Independent party.) I have resided in MA for 25 years, and I could give you a long list of Democratic politicians who are homophobes, some of whose names you might recognize. Especially Michael Dukakis. Remember him? Although there are others here in MA that I could name.

    Comment by raj — January 18, 2006 @ 5:17 pm - January 18, 2006

  10. Korla Pundit — January 18, 2006 @ 5:04 pm – January 18, 2006

    It was breaking news as of 3-4 hours ago.

    Just to let you know, it really isn’t that difficult to construct explosive devices. I made some in high-school chemistry class in the mid 1960s, and it was somewhat fun setting them off in the back. I suspect that instructions for making explosive devices can be found all over the internet. I doubt that Timothy McVeigh needed the assistance of al-Qaeda to generate the explosive device (which I will not describe) that he used to blow up the Murrah Federal Office Building in OK City. I also doubt that the Moroccans who blew up the Madrid subway needed al-Qaeda assistance to build the explosive devices. And I doubt that the IRA needed the assistance of al-Qaeda to build their bombs used in London, particularly since most IRA bombing occurred before al-Qaeda was formed.

    If this report is true, it is an interesting development, but it would be a mistake to read too much into it.

    Comment by raj — January 18, 2006 @ 5:35 pm - January 18, 2006

  11. But frankly, if the Democrats want to go into the 2006 elections under the banner of “Defending the Rights of Terrorists to Plot Murder and Mayhem Without Government Surveillance,” I say, Go for it.

    I guess they’ll be in the good company of Republicans then:

    Former U.S. Rep. Bob Barr, chairman of PRCB, was joined by fellow conservatives Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform (ATR); David Keene, chairman of the American Conservative Union; Paul Weyrich, chairman and CEO of the Free Congress Foundation and Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Second Amendment Foundation, in urging lawmakers to use NSA hearings to establish a solid foundation for restoring much needed constitutional checks and balances to intelligence law.

    “When the Patriot Act was passed shortly after 9-11, the federal government was granted expanded access to Americans’ private information,” said Barr. “However, federal law still clearly states that intelligence agents must have a court order to conduct electronic surveillance of Americans on these shores. Yet the federal government overstepped the protections of the Constitution and the plain language of FISA to eavesdrop on Americans’ private communication without any judicial checks and without proof that they are involved in terrorism.”

    Comment by Jody — January 18, 2006 @ 5:54 pm - January 18, 2006

  12. Actually, they won’t be. Bob Barr and Grover Norquist are not running in 2006. In fact, Bob Barr is no longer a congressman and is widely regarded as something of a nutter. In the GOP, that doesn’t get you much. In the DNC, it gets you the party chairmanship.

    However, his dissident viewpoint does highlight a difference between Donks and Reps. The Reps have a much higher tolerance for dissent within the party than Donks do. Just ask Zell Miller and Joe Lieberman.

    Comment by V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 6:10 pm - January 18, 2006

  13. V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 6:10 pm – January 18, 2006

    Oh, has something changed regarding Bob Barr since 1996? He was one of the chief sponsors of the federal Defense of (one of his three) Marriage(s) act. He was lauded by conservatives then.

    http://www.lectlaw.com/files/leg23.htm

    Comment by raj — January 18, 2006 @ 6:29 pm - January 18, 2006

  14. I was never a big fan of Bob Barr, but conservatism is a philosphy of ideas, not a Cult of Personality. Saying, “Look, this guys claims to be a conservative, but he disagrees with you,” really doesn’t prove anything.

    Comment by V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 6:55 pm - January 18, 2006

  15. Oh, and if you read what Bob Barr actually said about wiretapping terrorists (according to wiki) he said it was ALWAYS wrong, under any circumstances.

    Nutter.

    Comment by V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 7:15 pm - January 18, 2006

  16. V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 6:55 pm – January 18, 2006

    I was never a big fan of Bob Barr, but conservatism is a philosphy of ideas, not a Cult of Personality.

    Sorry, this is incorrect. Conservatism, such as it is, is defined by the people who most people consider to be “conservatives” at any point in time. That is why Nixon was considered to be a conservative, that is why Reagan was considered to be a conservative, (who knows what GHWBush was?), that is why GWBush is considered to be a conservative.

    And that is why Bob Barr is considered a conservative.

    Conservatism isn’t a philosophy of ideas. Conservatism is a set of beliefs held by people who, at any particular point in time deign to call themselves conservatives.

    Liberalism is, too, by the way, but that hasn’t been raised here. So is libertarianism, for that matter.

    Much of this labelling is silly, but them’s the breaks. Conservatism as a “philosophy of ideas”? Give me a break. I was born at night, but not last night.

    Comment by raj — January 18, 2006 @ 7:27 pm - January 18, 2006

  17. V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 7:15 pm – January 18, 2006

    Oh, and if you read what Bob Barr actually said about wiretapping terrorists (according to wiki) he said it was ALWAYS wrong, under any circumstances.

    I know full well that the ACLU hired Bob Barr as a “privacy expert” after he left the Congress. It caused quite a stir. That doesn’t denigrate from the fact that he was one of the chief sponsors of the federal Defense of Marriage Act in 1996. Of course, Barr was trying to embarrass Clinton. It didn’t work, did it?

    Comment by raj — January 18, 2006 @ 7:34 pm - January 18, 2006

  18. You couldn’t be more wrong, but I’m sure you’re used to that. When Bush embraced socialized health care (the prescription drug giveaway) he did not transmute it into a conservative idea.

    Comment by V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 8:22 pm - January 18, 2006

  19. “Eavesdropping on the press is eavesdropping on the terrorists if the press is talking to terrorists.

    Uh, think about the implications of that, boss.

    Comment by PeaceOut — January 18, 2006 @ 9:38 pm - January 18, 2006

  20. Um, I have, PeaceOut (in #171). I’d rather never eavesdrop on the press, but if they’re talking to terrorists and this could help us capture or kill someone who would otherwise murder civilians, then it’s a good thing.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — January 18, 2006 @ 10:49 pm - January 18, 2006

  21. V the K — January 18, 2006 @ 8:22 pm – January 18, 2006

    When Bush embraced socialized health care (the prescription drug giveaway) he did not transmute it into a conservative idea.

    Apparently you know little of history. When Otto von Bismarck (German Reichskanzler) instituted the German social security system in the 1880s–which included a government organized but not government provided health care funding system–he did it in an attempt to forestall the advance of the Social Democrats. Bismarck was very conservative, but he also understood politics.

    GWBush’s embrace of a rather complicated prescription drug program was also a defensive measure for Republicans, since it was clear that some form of government support for prescription drug payments was relatively popular with much of the citizenry. After GWBush opposed any form of prescription drug payment assistance for some time, his administration figured out a way to make it (i) ridiculously complicated, which might discourage participation and (ii) largely a welfare program for the pharmaceutical companies.

    Conservatives are as conservatives do. And as conservatives are widely considered. GWBush in 2000 ran on a public relations slogan of “compassionate conservatism.” Remember? And more than a few people who consider themselves conservatives apparently believe that he is a conservative. You do not believe that he is a conservative? Fine with me. I don’t really care. In large part because I don’t either–he’s a “borrow-and-spend” liberal. Except on social issues of course, on which he really toes the social conservative “party line.” But it is likely that most people in the country who would self-identify themselves as being conservative would consider GWBush as being conservative. That would mean that he is a conservative. But, bait&switch.

    Comment by raj — January 19, 2006 @ 2:45 am - January 19, 2006

  22. GayPatriotWest — January 18, 2006 @ 10:49 pm – January 18, 2006

    I’ve thought about the implications, too, but I have come to the conclusion that any terrorists who would talk to the press over unscrambled cell phone links would have to be idiots. Sophisticated terrorists might be vile, but it is unlikely that they are idiots. If a sophisticated terrorist wants to dialog with a news organization, it is likely that he would do so over a scrambled link. Or just do what bin Laden does, have audio or video tapes delivered.

    BTW, it has been reported that the Madrid rail bombings were coordinated by disposable cell phone links. Of course, since nobody was expected to answer the phones, scrambling would not have been necessary.

    Comment by raj — January 19, 2006 @ 2:58 am - January 19, 2006

  23. Calling liberal “ass clowns” is pathetic.

    Calling liberal ass clowns WHAT is pathetic?

    Comment by rightwingprof — January 19, 2006 @ 2:53 pm - January 19, 2006

  24. >Calling liberal ass clowns WHAT is pathetic?

    Calling them on the phone is pathetic.

    Comment by Korla Pundit — January 19, 2006 @ 3:01 pm - January 19, 2006

  25. debt consolidation

    Comment by debt consolidation — June 9, 2006 @ 5:53 am - June 9, 2006

  26. Thousands Now breast enhancement Who Never Thought They Could

    Comment by Breast Enhancement — October 27, 2006 @ 6:05 am - October 27, 2006

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