Shutting Down the Opposition

The Senate is scheduled to vote on the FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act of 2017, which will keep the government’s surveillance powers as they have been for ages now. I’m of the opinion that the bill will pass with little or no alterations. However, several of my political friends have challenged my opinion on the grounds that Rand Paul announced that he was going to filibuster the bill. I responded by stating that Rand Paul won’t accomplish jack shit and if history is any indicator his act of filibustering the bill will just ensure its passage. I’m not one to not say I told you so, so let me just say that I told you so:

The Senate voted 60-38 this afternoon in favor of cloture to end debate and to prevent any amendments prior to a formal up-down vote on the FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act of 2017. (Small clarification: Debate will be limited to 30 hours prior to the vote. So Paul and Wyden and others will be able to speak at length, but they won’t be able to stop the vote.)

Where is your god now?

I’ve noted on many occasions that the State has builtin redundancies. Any apparent exploit that could be used to hold back its expansion can be bypassed with another form of defense. For example, the threat of a filibuster can be bypassed by voting to put a cap on the length of each individual’s argument. These redundancies prevent upstarts or well meaning individuals from accomplishing anything of note via the political process.