As Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) continues to fight a one-man battle against reauthorizing an unamended PATRIOT Act (live on CSPAN2!), you may ask yourself, where is Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.)? Answer: Voting, once again, to ram the PATRIOT back through.
Was it really just 18 months ago when Sen. Funnypants was theatrically reading the 4th Amendment to a PATRIOT-supporting Justice Department official?
Since we just today received our advance copies of The Declaration of Independents: How Libertarian Politics Can Fix What's Wrong with America, the best Gillespie/Welch mashup since the John Birks Society, allow me to quote a relevant passage from Page xiv:
This book intends, in part, to document the fact that the two major parties are not what they say and that you are right to be angry with their false claims about core beliefs. It is a shock to tender ears, we realize, but by any meaningful yardstick, Democrats do not care about free speech, and Republicans do not care about free enterprise. They are much more concerned with convincing you that the other guy is a Nazi than they are about relaxing government's control over activities it has no business meddling in.
As we watch a Democratic administration use the exact same fearmongering bullshit deployed so effectively by the Republican administration it claimed to repudiate, let's stand back and remember this truism: Politicians from these two parties lie like rugs, hew to no recognizable principle except for the extension of their own power, and become red-faced with indignance when not treated with sufficient respect by the people whose money they misspend. With vanishingly rare exceptions, they are worthy of our mockery and contempt.
** UPDATE: Franken was one of 23 senators to vote against the final underlying reauthorization. He also voted to table both of Sen. Paul's amendments, and joined the 74-8 cloture vote earlier this week that smoothed the way for final passage.