In a lengthy interview with Charlie Rose Monday evening, Barack Obama did his best to reassure the American people that he is not Dick Cheney. However, Obama’s entire defense of a surveillance program that has only grown under Obama’s watch is that he set up a number of checks and balances, specifically through a FISA court that would have to approve warrant requests:
Charlie Rose: So I hear you saying, I have no problem with what NSA has been doing.
Barack Obama: Well, let me — let me finish, because I don’t. So, what happens is that the FBI — if, in fact, it now wants to get content; if, in fact, it wants to start tapping that phone — it’s got to go to the FISA court with probable cause and ask for a warrant.
That sounds really good, right? It’s all okay because a court won’t allow the government to abuse the warrant process and just snoop on our calls willy-nilly. But then Rose asks Obama the only question that matters, which Obama conspicuously ducks:
Charlie Rose: But has FISA court turned down any request?
Barack Obama: The — because — the — first of all, Charlie, the number of requests are surprisingly small… number one. Number two, folks don’t go with a query unless they’ve got a pretty good suspicion.
Here is the thing: If the FISA court is not turning down warrant requests, it is nothing more than fascist window dressing-a rubber stamp. And this is the likely reason Obama ducked the question:
[The FISA court] last rejected a request back in 2009, and that was only one out of 1320. In its entire history, since 1979, the court has rejected a grand total of 11 applications. 11. Out of 33,939 applications. That’s 0.03%. Not 3%. 0.03% with not a single rejection in over three years. That’s not careful review. That’s a rubber stamp
One warrant of 1320 turned down by the FISA court.
Out of 33,939 requests, the FISA court has only rejected 11.
The reason polls show Obama has a growing credibility problem with the American public is because his arrogant, sanctimonious rhetoric has painted him into a corner. He is not who he said he was — not even close.
When the media was cheerleading his campaign in 2008, we were assured Obama would be different. I guess that what the media meant by different was fewer jobs, a larger deficit, increased surveillance, and more wars.
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