John D. Rockefeller IV

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In the immediate aftermath of Sept. 11, the Bush administration had a choice: Aggressively pursue potential terrorists using existing laws or devise new, secret intelligence programs in uncharted legal waters.

Unfortunately, President Bush often chose the latter, and the legitimacy and effectiveness of our efforts to fight terrorism were dramatically undermined.

The president's warrantless surveillance program and his decision to go it alone -- without input from Congress or the courts -- have had devastating consequences. One is that private companies, which would normally comply with legitimate national security requests, now have incentive to say no.

Here's why. Within weeks of the 2001 attacks, communications companies received written requests and directives for assistance with intelligence activities authorized by the president.…  Seguir leyendo »