Atty General John Ashcroft is a fascist!

According to Dictionary.com, fascism is defined as “1. a system of government marked by centralization of authority under a dictator, stringent socioeconomic controls, suppression of the opposition through terror and censorship, and typically a policy of belligerent nationalism and racism; 2. a political philosophy or movement based on or advocating such a system of government; 3. Oppressive, dictatorial control. ”

Now bearing the definition in mind, keep reading…

MSNBC is reprinting a story that originally ran in the Washington Post titled, U.S. will monitor calls to lawyers. Here are some especially revealing quotes from the story:

    Nov. 9 — The Justice Department has decided to listen in on the conversations of lawyers with clients in federal custody, including people who have been detained but not charged with any crime, whenever that is deemed necessary to prevent violence or terrorism. . .

    President Bush last week signed the USA Patriot Act, a bill that gives the government a freer hand to conduct searches, detain or deport suspects, eavesdrop on Internet communications, monitor financial transactions and obtain electronic records on individuals. The administration also has promised to crack down on immigration violations, Congress is considering legislation to tighten airport security, and Ashcroft announced yesterday that he is reorganizing the Justice Department and FBI to concentrate on terrorism. . .

    According to a summary published in the Federal Register Oct. 31, the monitoring will be conducted without a court order whenever the attorney general certifies “that reasonable suspicion exists to believe that an inmate may use communications with attorneys or their agents to facilitate acts of terrorism.”

    The definition of “inmate” previously covered only people in custody of the federal Bureau of Prisons, but it was changed to cover anyone “held as witnesses, detainees or otherwise” by INS agents, U.S. marshals or other federal authorities. Since Sept. 11, the government has detained nearly 1,200 people, many on immigration violations. The Bush administration has declined to say how many have been released.

This move by Ashcroft’s Justice Department is one of the most serious retreats from liberty that our country has engaged. I just hope that the ACLU can sue the pants off the justice department to get this measure thrown out by the US Supreme Court.