Saturday February 16, 2008
According to the President and his followers, we will be — as of the stroke of midnight tonight — no longer safe, no longer protected, no longer snug and secure in the strong and loving arms of our Federal Government. That’s because the Protect America Act — a law which has only existed for six months yet is now indispensable to America’s ability to survive and avoid being slaughtered by the Terrorists — expires tonight.
The President himself this morning dramatically intoned: “At the stroke of midnight tonight, a vital intelligence law that is helping protect our nation will expire.” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell gravely pointed out: “What will happen at midnight tonight is much more significant than stump speeches, steroids or superdelegates. On Sunday, the terrorist tracking program . . . no longer will be fully operational.” National Review warrior and all-around tough guy Andy McCarthy fretted: “When the Clock Strikes Midnight, We Will Be Significantly Less Safe.”
This is one of the most bizarre propaganda dramas ever, even when weighed against other Bush Terrorism propaganda dramas of the past. There is one reason, and one reason only, that the Protect America Act expired. Its name is “George W. Bush.” That is who refused to agree to the Democrats’ offer to extend the law by 21 days (or longer), then repeatedly threatened to veto any such extension (“US President George W. Bush on Wednesday vowed to veto another temporary extension of a domestic spying law”), then directed the always-obedient House Republicans to vote unanimously against the extension, which they (needless to say) did. This vital-to-our-safety piece of legislation expired only because George W. Bush repeatedly blocked its extension. It’s just that simple.
All of the right-wing war cheerleaders who will be rendered sleepless as of midnight tonight, petrified that the Muslims who normally lurk menacingly on their corners will now be free to spring attacks since we now live under FISA (1978-8/2007) rather than the PAA (8/2007-2/2008), have only the Warrior-Protector Commander-in-Chief to blame for making us all so very “unprotected and unsafe.” And George W. Bush’s (absurd) claim this morning that, as of midnight tonight, “it will be harder for our government to keep you safe from terrorist attacks” amounts to a confession that he has deliberately chosen to make us all Unsafe because he is the one who single-handedly ensured the death of this Vital Intelligence Tool. This is an extremely straightforward, clear and indisputable fact which even our national press corps ought to have no trouble conveying.