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A large segment of the conservative elite -- ranging from Peter Wehner of Commentary and Andrew C. McCarthy at NRO to Karl Rove, Dick Cheney, and George W. Bush on the political side, have come down in favor of the NSA on the basis of the national security argument. They're perfectly correct to do so, as far as it goes. Anyone present in NYC on 9/11, or for that matter Boston at the end of the last marathon, knows beyond any argument that we need some sort of proactive signals intelligence system to stay ahead of the Jihadis. (This despite the fact that these systems have failed to detect any of the recent terror attacks.)

But their thinking simply does not go far enough. None of these men can quite grasp the mentality of Barack Obama. To them, national security trumps everything -- and that includes personal benefits. They can't picture an American politician who would put anything at all -- particularly personal ambition -- ahead of the nation's welfare. None of the politicians involved would have ever thought of taking\advantage of the NSA. And despite all the left-wing ravings from 2001 to 2008, no evidence has ever been presented that any of them did.

But Obama? That's another story....
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