This piece seems to me to come up with at least something of a solution:

Some kind of oversight – possibly an independent counsel housed within the executive branch, perhaps a beefed-up, streamlined, and more secretive FISA court, and preferably not a Congressional subcommittee – would go a long way toward ensuring some amount of honesty and trustworthiness.

I’d want some kind of independent court or Congressional oversight to check the executive in this. Nothing too onerous; just a reassurance that safeguards are in place to prevent abuse. This isn’t about Bush as such, although his complete disregard for means rather than ends in the war on terror remains a huge liability for him and us. It’s about all future presidents as well, since this war will go on for the indefinite future. Maybe the FISA law needs reform. But the job of the executive, once it has recovered from emergency mode, is to figure out new procedures for the new challenges we face. We long ago needed a clear legal system for dealing with enemy combatants. Instead, we got ad hoc executive improvisation, which gave us Abu Ghraib and widespread detainee abuse. We now clearly need new procedures for wire-tapping. If Bush and Cheney could drop their arrogance, they could find friends in the Congress and the public who would be all too willing to help.

CALLING YOUR GIRLFRIEND: Memo to straight guys: women like it when you call them up for no reason and chatter on. I know. It can be a real pain in the ass. But no one said the heterosexual lifestyle was easy. Dan Savage, as ever, has some great advice on the subject.

MALKIN AWARD NOMINEE: “Homosexual sexual relationships are wrong. That’s the reason they should not be celebrated. Not because they haven’t yet been ingratiated into the public conscience or shamelessly accepted by their practitioners. The reason people are repulsed by homosexual sex isn’t because people are bigoted. It’s for the same reason people are repulsed by pedophilia, theft, murder and lying. It’s because God is repulsed by sin and we all inherently understand right from wrong. (See Romans 1.)” – Mark Landsbaum, analogizing a gay relationship to murder, on the Concerned Women for America website.

– posted by Andrew.


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