Or at least, that's the thinking of George Bush (channeling the ghost of Richard Nixon).
The government said to those who have alleged to have helped us that it is in our national interests and it’s legal. It’s in our national interests because we want to know who’s calling who from overseas into America. We need to know in order to protect the people.
It was legal.
Of course, they could have simply had their attorneys do a quick check of the law to see that it was illegal.
So on the one hand the civil liberties of our citizens are guaranteed by a lot of checks in the system, scrutinized by the United States Congress.
Right. Those checks are called laws. Like the FISA law. The one you violated. And you didn't bother informing Congress until you were worried they wouldn't rubber stamp your retroactive immunity bill.
As for whether the phone companies will help you monitor terrorist's phone calls -- Well, you could always get a warrant.
Image credit: Bell System Telephone by seychelles88