FBI Head Admits Mistakes In Use Of Security Act:

Yeah, “mistakes” like breaking the law.

WASHINGTON, March 9 — Bipartisan outrage erupted on Friday on Capitol Hill as Robert S. Mueller III, the F.B.I. director, conceded that the bureau had improperly used the USA Patriot Act to obtain information about people and businesses. “How could this happen?” Mr. Mueller asked rhetorically in a briefing at the headquarters of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. “Who is to be held accountable? And the answer to that is I am to be held accountable.”

Who is this guy, Macbeth? “Fellow citizens, it is I for whom these laws may have been broken, for thou shalt toll thine bell, in thee, thoust Patriot Act remain steadfast.”

But look at these staggering numbers: “The inspector general traced the increase in the use of the [national security] letters after Sept. 11, 2001. There were 8,500 in 2000, the year before the Patriot Act broadened surveillance powers. There were 39,000 in 2003, 56,000 in 2004 and 47,000 in 2005, the years covered in Mr. Fine’s review. The report found many instances when national security letters, which allow the bureau to obtain records from telephone companies, Internet service providers, banks, credit companies and other businesses without a judge’s approval, were improperly, and sometimes illegally, used.”

Check out our chief law enforcement officer’s take on this. “Undoubtedly, some will argue that the FBI should forfeit its authority to use this tool,” Gonzales said. “Instead, I would urge patience, that we not rush to judgment and allow these substantial corrective measures time to work.”

Natch. Rather than focusing on prosecuting those who allegedly broke the law in this matter, the Attorney-Doofus is more interested in making sure the administration’s grab on power remains intact.

That’s why I echo the ACLU’s Tony Romero about Gonzalez being the one to investigate this matter: “This attorney general cannot be part of the solution. He is part of the problem.”

Meanwhile, on his latest World Tour, someone informed our addled Commander-in-Chief about the matter (after first explaining what a “national security letter is” and who the “FBI” are). Said Bush: “We’ll address the problems in the report as quickly as possible. My question is: What are you going to do to solve the problem and how fast can you get it solved?”

What is it with all the rhetorical comments? I doubt administration spinmeisters have been reading Shakespeare or Donne lately, but something tells me it has more to do with denying culpability than anything else. As if by saying “gosh isn’t this awful? My question is, who would do something like this?” they can pretend they had no idea the “grunts” at the FBI could possibly be so cunning. Y’know, kinda like those “grunts” at Abu Ghraib, the “rogues” at the NSA, and on and on.

Just chalk it up to one more administration illegality; one more instance where criminal behavior in the White House has been exposed. And one more instance where if the Democrats don’t get off their duffs and start a blizzard of subpoenas, this group will skate off into the sunset in 20 months scot free.

cross posted from: AoF

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3 Responses to Gasp!

  1. Todd

    I have an idea. Hold him accountable and give him the freakin boot. Investigate every damn instance of criminal behavior from BushCo and impeach them all!

  2. It’s time for a spring cleaning! The whole lot of them has to go. We will not have a country to reclaim in two years at this rate!

  3. Buzz says:

    This administration has provided us with countless examples of: half truths, outright lies, character assination, politically motivated purges, privacy violations, ineptitude, breaches of civil rights, betraying of public trust, witholding civil rights, and tardy, or lack, of response to national disasters. Some, but not all, manifestations would be:
    1. The Hurricane Katrina fiasco
    2. Lying about the sale of “yellow gold”
    by Africa to Iraq in the State of the
    Union Address
    3. The intentional outting of CIA operative
    Valarie Plame, as a reprissal against her
    husband, Ambassador Wilson
    4. The unexplained dismissal of several high
    ranking national circuit court judges
    5. The total disregard for provisions of the
    Geneva Convention, as witness by the
    conditions and treatment of detainees
    at Guatanemo Bay, Cuba
    6. The strong arm tactics employed by the
    Republican National Committee in 2000 in
    Florida in order to secure Bush’s win.
    (never has been a full investigation)
    7. Unwillingness to acknowledge the global
    effects of environmental warming
    8. Turning our democracy into a theocracy by
    effectively establishing a “church state”
    via “born again” evangelics.
    9. Witholding needed funds to family planning
    and HIV agencies here, and worldwide, who
    fail to teach abstinance as the ONLY means
    of birth control
    10. Failure to react to the ongoing genocide
    in Africa
    11. Deceiving congress and the America public
    about Iraq’s alleged WMD’s. (By sending
    Colin Powell to the UN to present faulty
    intelligence, we are in an Iraq quagmire
    12. Using the Republic National Committee and
    false TV ads to destroy (swift boat) the
    integrity of war hero, Senator Kerry
    13. And now, the revelation that the AG’s
    office and the FBI have used acknowledged
    unlawful tactics to compromise personal
    privacy and protected civil liberties!!
    What more is it going to take? By his public
    arrogance President Bush (AKA “The Decider”)
    has displayed utter contempt for both the Legislative and Judicial branches. Our Constitution is based on three branches of government with a clearly defined system of checks and balances. Although Congress was given a political mandate by the result of the 2006 election, they have so far inexplainably failed to act on it!! The electorate is totally fed up with King George’s imperial monarchy. We can’t afford to wait until 1/20/09. WAKE UP LEGISLATORS AND ACT NOW!!!