Hmm. I'm not sure what it says about me when I realize how much credit I'd give the President if he said: "Yes, I broke the law. I take full responsibility and have been working to fix the situation" as opposed to "I didn't break no laws! My lawyers say that the Constitution says I didn't! Nu-uh!"
Several of our conservative friends are under the misapprehension that there was indeed Congressional oversight over the project. This is understandable, as the President keeps saying it. That, sadly, doesn't automatically make it true. I know there's a certain percentage of people who sleep better believing the President has magic powers, among them the ability to shift reality through sheer force of his will, but, um, no.
And yes, I know that many times only a select few members of the Intelligence Committee are briefed on certain issues. But in this case, as this letter from Senator Rockefeller indicates, the Senators were told what was going on, told there was no way they could approve or disapprove, and then sworn to secrecy.
That's not oversight. Oversight means "watchful supervision". It means some level of control. Please pardon the crude metaphor: but if telling someone you're about to do something but they have no ability to moderate it or stop it gives them oversight, then a rape victim has "oversight" on her rapist. I call bullshit.
Oh, and for the inevitable "When will you people realize we're in a war" post: Yes, I realize that. But a war to preserve ... what? The Founding Fathers had Britain breathing down their neck. They didn't blink. I recently saw a Congressman on TV say "If Washington DC goes up in nuclear fire, the Constitution burns with it." If you want to reduce our freedoms to historical scraps of paper, that makes sense, I guess.
This isn't a war -- there's no "winning" until you eliminate every dissatisfied wingnut with a cellphone and C4 on the planet, and that ain't gonna happen in the next two hundred years. (Hell, we can't even police our own wingnuts. Remember Oklahoma City? ... You don't. No, that doesn't tend to come up much, does it ...) I mean, go ahead -- give me a definition of an operational victory in the "War on Terror". Impossible. We can't even nail down operational goals in Iraq.
No, what we're in is a long, hard struggle between order and chaos, freedom and fundamentalism, with all four sides often cross-pollinating. We are in a struggle that will every day challenge our sense of justice and identity, challenge us to rise above our fear. What's really amusing, in a grim way, is that such a struggle has a name out there in the languages of the world. It's usually mis-translated as "war", too.
We're in a jihad, folks.
Who says God doesn't have a sense of humor. The Bastard.