Thursday, May 18, 2006

Hayden nomination hearing
"Reasonable just changed"

Under a grilling by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) about the NSA's adherence (or not) to the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution, Hayden refuted the notion that searches may be conducted only by warrant. According to the amendment, Hayden said, and according to "relatives of mine who are in law school," (emphasis added by blogstress) the comma that comes between the clause between the protection against "unreasonable searches and seizures" and the one defining the terms of warrants means that a warrant is not necessary for a search that is deemed "reasonable" by the NSA.

So let's get this right: Hayden is saying that he gets to decide what constitutes a reasonable search based on the judgment of law school students to whom he is related. Your Webwench is no constitutional scholar, but she suspects and absence of checks and balances in this scheme.

Later, in trying to explain himself further to Sen. Feinstein, Gen. Hayden described the standard for reasonableness as something rather elastic. Once a new technology comes along, said Hayden, "reasonableness has just changed."

Sphere: Related Content

No comments: