Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Clinton's Wiretaps

Back in the 90's when terrorism reared its ugly head in New York with the World Trade Center bombing and the attempted bombing of the Holland and Lincoln Tunnels, Bill Clinton was on the job collecting information about terrorists. This huge Clinton surveillance scheme was VAAPCON, the Violence Against Abortion Providers Task Force.

Front Page Mag has a story by Lowell Ponte that might strike fear in the hearts of those who shared personal problems or sins with Roman Catholic Cardinal of New York John O’Connor... because Bill was listening.

According to the U.S. Justice Department, VAAPCON “was charged with determining whether there was a nationwide conspiracy to commit acts of violence against reproductive health care providers.” The more than 900 targets of all this surveillance included the Christian Coalition, Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, Women’s Coalition for Life, Feminists for Life, Americans United for Life, the 600,000-member Concerned Women for America, the National Rifle Association, the American Life League, the National Conference of Catholic Bishops, and even then-Roman Catholic Cardinal of New York John O’Connor.

VAAPCON was also designed to help enforce FACE, the Clintons’ 1994 law called the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act. FACE is a peculiarly anti-First Amendment law that denies the right to free speech to certain groups but not others. Union protestors could legally block an abortion clinic access with a picket line while carrying signs that read: “Abortion Workers on Strike for Higher Wages! Local 69, AFL-CIO.” But those same protestors could be arrested and imprisoned if their signs read, “Mothers, think twice before aborting your baby.”

“To put VAAPCON in perspective,” wrote investigative reporter Jack Cashill, “imagine the Bush administration targeting the Sierra Club, Robert Kennedy Jr., and Al Gore to deal with the issue of the Unabomber or environmentalist violence in general.”

In fact, such Bush spying might be less outrageous. When the Unabomber was apprehended, authorities found Al Gore’s anti-capitalist book Earth In The Balance by his bedside, heavily underlined. Democratic Congressman Bob Filner of California in one radio interview was unable to distinguish quotes from the Unabomber Manifesto and Gore’s ideological writing.

The entire article is worth your time. Ponte ends by writing:
Until leftist leaders speak out against VAAPCON and the Clintons’ other government surveillance activities aimed mostly at Christian groups, it is hard to take seriously their alarmist statements about today’s purportedly excessive government monitoring of international telephone calls that include Islamofascist terrorists.


SkyePuppy said...

Excellent post, Chris.

It all proves what we already knew: To the Left, there's domestic spying and then there's (gasp!) DOMESTIC SPYING.

The former is what's done by a Democrat administration, and it's no big deal.

The latter is a horrifying rending of the constitution--only possible by a Republican administration--and should be punished by impeachment followed by public hanging accompanied by the singing of "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead." At least, I think that might satisfy them.

Of course, that's the punishment for spying on foreign terrorists. True DOMESTIC SPYING would deserve worse.

The JerseyNut said...

Good exposition on the double-standards of the left...I think this "issue" will disappear soon enough; mist polling shows the American people behind W. on this one.
What's next? Hmmm, the "Mad Dog" Dick Cheney shooting episode lasted 15 minutes; maybe the Dubai/ports issue? After all, we should not spy on Islamists, not fingerprint them, not deny them visas, not wiretap them - BUT LET THEM BUY A LEGAL BUSINESS PROPERT IN THE U.S.???? That's a national security violation!
I am still unsure on this one, but the hypocrisy of the left is breathtaking...