Wire Tapping Debate & State of the Union Address

As well all know President Bush gave his State of the Union address tonight. I personally thought some parts were well written and articulated, but much of it was a simple rehashing of Mr. Bush’s stated goals, even if it was too little, too late. I was annoyed by his comments supposedly encouraging the development of alternate fuel technology and investing in American technology and innovation given that his administration has done little to nothing, aside from lip service, to support such initiatives in the past.

Overall it was a so-so speech without any real spark. It really came off like many other of the President’s speeches have been: businesslike. The problem is the United States is not a business. It’s not a corporate hegemony. It’s a nation. Trying to run it like a business (but without the fiscal limitations of a business) have only led to disaster: government debt, pork barell politics, company bail outs, etc.

Wire tapping debate in Congress resumes Teusday (News.com) I am somewhat offended by President Bush insinuating in the State of the Union speech that the temporary Protect America Act was solely the reason why our security and intelligence services have had successes against terrorists and other would be threats to the United States. The reason many congressmen are hesitant to make the Act permanent, as Mr. Bush desires, is that it may in fact not be needed given the existing FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) does make allowances for possible threats. The real problem is the act being debated upon could potentially give a blanket pardon to companies that acted illegally and make them exempt for said illegal activities.

Too often, nations and governments allow criminal activity to be pardoned in the name of protection and security and the public good. Sometimes this is accurate and true. More often though, it is simply an excuse to abuse power, to silence opposing views, and eventually oppress citizens. In this case, it appears to be another corporate bail out for companies that knew what they were doing was unethical and illegal and did it anyway. If that is the case, then they shold be rightly held accountable for their actions, especially if their actions harmed their customers and consumers.

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