http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/20/washington/20fisa.html So - the US is officially a surveillance state. Also read: Dan Froomkin - Follow the Leader - washingtonpost.com What do you think about the Democratic leadership's calculations in all of this? Obviously they're seeking a repeat of the last election, where they pledged to oppose the Bush- administration, but then backed out of it in practice. Up until the point where they fronted more radical bills than the republican majority managed to get on the table, in their attempts to appease the leader. I sure can see how they would assume this would be useful - I.e., that those who support them will vote for them anyway, but caving to the Bush- administration will also net them some democrats who would otherwise side with the republicans. And who might, when November comes, upset things and split the party. Is it worth permanently turning into a surveillance state? That is, a state where the government decides in secret who shall be under surveillance, with no oversight?