Best of Blogs: January 25, 2006
EDITED BY PIERRE TRISTAM/Candide's Notebooks
From the left, the right, the in-between: we include the political,
the social, the cultural and the undefinable.
Featured Blog I: Nora's Ripley's
25 Things People Have A Shocking Capacity to be Surprised by Over and Over
NORA EPHRON /Jan. 24, 2006
1. Journalists sometimes make things up.
2. Journalists sometimes get things wrong.
3. Almost all books that are published as memoirs are initially written as novels, and then the agent/editor says, this might work better as a memoir.
4. Beautiful young women sometimes marry ugly, old rich men.
5. In business, there is no such thing as synergy in the good sense of the term.
6. Freedom of the press belongs to the man who owns one.
7. Nothing written in today's sports pages makes sense to anyone who didn't read yesterday's sports pages.
8. There is no explaining the stock market but people try.
9. The Democrats are deeply disappointing.
10. Movies have no political effect whatsoever.
11. High-protein diets work.
12. A lot of people take the Bible literally.
13. Pornography is the opiate of the masses.
Read the rest of Ephron's list...
Featured Blogger II: West Virginia Redux
How Bush's Generals Trash the 4th Amendment's "Probable Cause" Standard
GEORGIA10/DAILY KOS /January 24, 2006
[The only context you need for this post is the wording of the 4th Amendment, which reads: "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."]
The first thing that struck me when General Hayden made the ignorant observation that the Fourth Amendment didn't include a probable cause standard was that someone needed to tattoo the Bill of Rights on his chest, backwards, so he could read it every time he looked in the mirror in the morning. The second thing that struck me about his insistence that a "reasonable suspicion" standard prevails over probable cause for the spying program was that this Administration and the Congress already rejected a reasonable suspicion standard. In 2002, Republican Senator DeWine introduced an amendment to the PATRIOT ACT that would have lowered the FISA warrant standard for non-U.S. citizens from probable cause to "reasonable suspicion." The DeWine amendment, S. 2659, was rejected in Committee. Glenn Greenwald has a must-read, excellent post on the DeWine amendment here. DeWine's amendment would have lowered the standard ONLY for non-U.S. citizens. The administration expressed serious misgiving about the constitutionality of DeWine's amendment. In the end, his amendment did not pass. The admission that Bush's spying program uses a "reasonable suspicion" standard rather than a "probable cause" standard is explosive and damning. Why? Because the Bush administration knew--indeed, took the position--that a reasonable suspicion standard with respect to non-U.S. citizens was probably unconstitutional. Yet the administration now applies that same unconstitutional standard to United States citizens? Read Georgia10's full post...