Friday, June 19, 2009

Small Circles

One of the problems with expecting change from the government (and yes, this includes "the One," who I've not heard referred to as "the One" except by Neocons and their ilk) is that the ones governing us run in small circles - tight communities where everyone's hands wash each others'.

Glenn Greenwald highlights one of the problems with the government in this post where he discusses illegal wiretapping and its continued abuse by the government, despite the government's insistance that it would be fixed...

Key passage is the second paragraph:
Every time new revelations of illegal government spying arise, the same exact pattern repeats itself: (1) euphemisms are invented to obscure its illegality ("overcollection"; "circumvented legal guidelines"; "overstepped its authority"; "improperly obtained"); (2) assurances are issued that it was all strictly unintentional and caused by innocent procedural errors that are now being fixed; (3) the very same members of Congress who abdicate their oversight responsibilities and endlessly endorse expanded surveillance powers in the face of warnings of inevitable abuses (Jay Rockefeller, Dianne Feinstein, "Kit" Bond, Jane Harman) righteously announce how "troubled" they are and vow to hold hearings and take steps to end the abuses, none of which ever materialize; (4) nobody is ever held accountable in any way and no new oversight mechanisms are implemented; (5) Congress endorses new, expanded domestic surveillance powers; and then: (6) new revelations of illegal government spying emerge and the process repeats itself, beginning with step (1).
Of course, we shouldn't be surprised that it doesn't change, because it's not affecting those in power - they can continue to act the way they have been with little to fear in the way of recourse. That's shameful.

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