Thanks to General Michael Hayden, Deputy Director of the Fatherland Security Dept. we now know why the Bush administration chose to forego seeking warrants from the special court established by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Because the surveillance is illegal.
The level of evidence that the government had which precipitated its desire to eavesdrop did not rise to the level of “Âprobable cause”Â, the standard used by the FISA court. Likewise, since the standard of evidence used by the Attorney General in considering requests for emergency 72 hour surveillance, pursuant to FISA, is the same as that used by the court, that option was also unavailable.
The other reason, of course, is that King George and his courtiers believe they are not required to observe the Constitutional and statutory inconveniences intended to prevent we individuals from suffering tyrants.
Remember a couple of years ago when Bush said something to the effect that being President would be lots easier if he were a dictator?
UPDATE: General Hayden expresses his abject ignorance of the content of the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution. While asserting “Just to be very clear — and believe me, if there’s any amendment to the Constitution that employees of the National Security Agency are familiar with, it’s the Fourth” the general asserts the standard established by the Fourth Amendment is “reasonable”, rather than “probable casues” as the amendment explicitly establishes.