Posted by Curt on 24 June, 2006 at 7:48 pm. Be the first to comment!

Guess the MSM will not be closing ranks too tightly around the 7 fellas who wanted a pulitzer so bad, they cared little if they damage our counter-terrorism ability. This editorial from the Washington Post may be a harbringer of things to come:

THE TREASURY Department’s just-disclosed program of searching records of overseas bank transfers may provoke outraged comparisons to the National Security Agency’s warrantless surveillance and data-mining of telephone call records. At least if news reports and government statements concerning the revelations are correct, however, this program is far less troubling. As with all revelations concerning the secretive Bush administration, you have to worry about what you don’t know. So far, however, it seems like exactly the sort of aggressive tactic the government should be taking in the war on terrorism.

No shite sherlock.

It’s funny and sad that the same Democratic party which skewered our intelligence agencies for their pre-9/11 intelligence gathering abilities will now stop at anything to crush any attempt to actually fight terrorism.

This reporting done by the gang of 7 was nothing but shrill hyperbole to get their names out there, and to skewer the Bush administration while they were at it. How dare Dana Priest get all the attention for divulging secrets when we can divulge just as well as she can.

For one thing, it appears to be legal. The government is receiving large volumes of data detailing financial transfers from the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT), a Belgium-based consortium that acts as a kind of messenger service for banks around the world, electronically notifying banks of transactions other banks are attempting to complete. The government, if it develops suspicions about a person, can search the system for any transactions that person may have engaged in. While customer banking data are generally private under federal law, the statute does not appear to cover the society, which isn’t a bank and doesn’t have individual customers. What’s more, a different law gives the president broad powers in a national emergency situation to investigate, or even prohibit, certain financial transactions.

Which means its legal.

Nothing here folks, move along.

But the damage is done. Terrorists read papers also and now have a better idea at how we can track them financially. Sure, people say “well it’s common sense that the Government is listening to them so they would know anyways” (a typical lefty argument) but what they fail to comprehend, or just don’t want to comprehend, is a simple saying:

“out of sight, out of mind.”

Human beings get complacent over time. It’s just human nature. If there is no chatter about the Government wiretaps, government scanning of financial records, and so forth, then they will go back to their bad habits. But the more attention that is paid to this stuff by the general public via our treasonous media the more they will think about it.

It’s just common sense.

It is also the sort of information the government should be examining in any effort to frustrate terrorist financing and develop leads about who is funding whom. While such data can certainly be misused, records of overseas financial transfers are less sensitive from a privacy point of view than, say, the contents of phone calls or e-mails. And some safeguards appear to be in place to make sure the information is not misused. The department receives the material under a subpoena, Treasury officials emphasized yesterday. SWIFT’s representatives audit all searches, as does an outside auditing firm. Unlike a data-mining operation, where analysts try to identify high-risk individuals using patterns and trends embedded in huge data sets, analysts here are searching for transactions involving individuals about whom they already have suspicions.

Because the administration is so secretive, it is essential that Congress appropriately inform itself of the details and contours of the program.

Yeah, why would they want to be secretive in a time of war. It’s not like our media and a certain political party would do anything to hinder the war on terror would they? /sarcasm

The Justice Department needs to go after these leakers, and hard. The editors and writers of the NYT’s/LAT’s should not be the ones to decide what should be classified and what shouldn’t.

Many on the right are cancelling any subscriptions they had of these papers, which I did long ago thank you. Haven’t had the LA Times at my house in over 5 years and it looks like it won’t be visiting anytime soon.

Other’s Blogging:


It’s funny and sad that the same Democratic party which skewered our intelligence agencies for their pre-9/11 intelligence gathering abilities will now stop at anything to crush any attempt to actually fight terrorism.

This reporting done by the gang of 7 was nothing but shrill hyperbole to get their names out there, and to skewer the Bush administration while they were at it. How dare Dana Priest get all the attention for divulging secrets when we can divulge just as well as she can.

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