Thursday, August 17, 2006

Carter judge rejects NSA program Carter judge rejects NSA program

Today, Clinton appointeee, Federal District Court Judge Anna Diggs Taylor, of the Southern Division of the Eastern District of Michigan, in a suit brought by the ACLU, CAIR, etc., rejected the government's arguments for its NSA Terrorist Surveilance Program (TSP) and issued a permanent injunction against the program. The Opinion has to set a record for circular logic:
  • The State Secret privilege doesn't protect the government as to the TSP program because the plaintiffs can show damage despite this, without access to classified material, in the chilling effect that the illegal TSP program had on the plaintiffs' ability to communicate electronically with known or suspected terrorists.
  • The plaintiffs have standing because their communciations with known or suspected terrorists has been chilled, which is a 1st Amdt. violation.
  • Their 1st Amdt. rights have been violated because their ability to communicate with the known or suspected foreign terrorists has been chilled by the illegal TSP program.
  • The TSP program is illegal since it violates the 4th Amdt., and in particular, plaintiffs' reasonable expectation of privacy resulting from FISA.
  • The court doesn't have to review whether the TSP violates FISA, or whether FISA is Constitutional, since the government has already violated the 1st and 4th Amdt. Constitutional rights of the plaintiffs.


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Blogger jpe said...

You may disagree with the reasoning, but circular it ain't.

7:50 AM  
Blogger Bruce Hayden said...

The circularity I see is that the expectation of privacy for a 4th Amdt. violation is based on FISA, but the Constitutionality of FISA isn't addressed because the TSP violates the 1st and 4th Amdt.

Also, not all speech is protected by the 1st Amdt., and thus, not all chilling is a violation of the 1st Amdt. But FISA has again been used to legitimize the speech that is chilled by the TSP, despite that Act again not being subject to scrutiny because the TSP violates the two amdts.

7:31 PM  

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