I think the terrible news from India, coupled with intelligence reports of the al-Qaeda desire to do something similar here, may well prompt Obama et al. to think very carefully about repealing the FISA accords, elements of the Patriot Act, immediately closing Guantanamo, and other homeland-security measures.
Those around Obama have already dropped most of the campaign nonsense of Bush shredding the Constitution, and will come to appreciate, once they have the responsibility of governance, that there may well be a reason other than chance that we have not had here the periodic attacks post-9/11 that we’ve seen abroad–coupled with the politically incorrect view that we have attrited a lot of insurgents and terrorists abroad on the borders of Pakistan, as well as those who flocked to Iraq, and met there a bad end.
They know that the public is volatile and amnesiac, and that, while in the last seven years of quiet at home many of influence developed the luxury of talking loosely about the Bush people as some sort of anti-constitutional monsters (cf. the Washington State Supreme Court Judge Richard Sanders shouts
of “Tyrant! You are a tyrant!” before the AG Mukasey collapsed), these same critics, should we be hit again and thousands of innocents murdered, will turn on a dime, and suddenly even louder damn any in responsibility for criminal laxity. The media will be worse–in a few hours it can go from abstract lamentations about the Patriot Act and radical loss of civil liberties to “He’s criminally negligent about our safety!”
The India matter should–and indeed I think it will–be a sobering reminder to the new administration to “make haste slowly.”