Photo Courtesy of The Atlantic
My guess is yes. Remember how the election of 2000 forgot all about the national debt headed towards zero. It forgot all about the greatest economic boom in America’s history. It forgot about the prosperity that every quintile of the American Public experience growth from one year to the next. It forgot about the peace that was in the Balkans. It forgot about the curtailing of Welfare. The election in 2000 was decided on morality. More people in those good times were interested in “morality” than what was good for the economic future of this country. Because of “morality” (translated as sexual immorality) even smart people could not bring themselves to vote for more of the same, and instead switched to something completely different. It was close. Florida proved it, but had that immoral incident never been brought to light, … things would have been so much different today. it affected that many voters, enough to throw an election in the middle of the biggest boom times ever, to the minority party.
That is a valuable lesson. Now for a known Obama supporter and guide, to have severe misgivings over this use of secrecy and reading all data on all citizens, and keeping them for future reference, (one can only think for sinister reasons), is very telling. This is a gut mover; one like having the president dally with an intern which sets a lot of people off. Both are impossible to justify. The simple fact that all this information is for sale to prospective employers, competitors for the next promotion, or spouses wishing to exit a relationship, has grave consequences to a lot of American’s private lives. And it is not that they did something bad. It is that accusations (unfounded) can be made on piecemeal information (as was done by Issa in the IRS hearings) and the citizen of the United States cannot defend his actions. In fact, he never knows of what he was accused. He gets turned down for this, or for that, and it is all from a mistake…
The Obama Administration is in grave danger of losing his place in history. His legacy will be shadowed by his upholding of this secret spying. He has only one out, and it must take place now; surprise everyone, and his legacy will be saved, as well as create a democratic administration which will not undo, as was promised by Romney, everything the current president has put in place.
Here is what he has to do.
1) Fire and replace the current director with someone Constitutionals trust.
2) Declare all NSA actions will now be open. FOIA will apply to the NSA.
3) Remove all objections to lawsuits in court, which seek clarification over whether the Constitution was violated or not.
4) Since the NSA is in charge of domestic spying, (the CIA does International), the NSA rules need to change to that of the FBI. Though not perfect, secrecy is still kept, but the super-secrecy is stopped.
5) Warrants will be required for all searches. That is the minimum of what the Constitution requires.
6) Encourage all internet providers not to cooperate unless they have a court order requiring them to do so for each person. Outlaw blanket searches. Outlaw phishing.
7) Admit the NSA went overboard, and take the responsibility for it. Say it was a mistake, which you plan and hope it will be fixed long before you hand over the White House keys to your successor.
Mark my words. If a very moderate Republican (Christie) ran and said he would “shut down the NSA”, he would get my vote as of now. This is serious and you had better listen to those outside of Washington, before you listen to those within. if you are skeptical, I don’t blame you. But I have to tell you, we survived Bush; we can survive a moderate Republican who is far more clear headed and able to stand up to nut case conservatives, which was Bush’s biggest personal fault; he caved. You need to understand that all that damage by Bush, affects my children far less than having them be slandered for something they know nothing of, or did not do because it is attached to their name. Our privacy is of utmost importance to us. Just like America sent a signal that sex in the White House would not be tolerated, you are in the same boat now. Clinton won the impeachment battle. It cost Gore the next election.
The Republicans have something on you here; you are guilty; this is scary stuff. Any dodging, or keeping the status quo, hurts your legacy every day it exists in its current form. You know what you have to do, and the sooner it gets done, the sooner all talk among our citizens goes back towards getting rid of Republicans completely, so we finally can fix the economy.
It would be one more thing.. you got right.