The news media has correctly described the Bush administration’s use of a “domestic spying program,” a “warrantless spying program,” “domestic eavesdropping,” and “warrantless surveillance of some U.S. citizens.”
But because the administration does not want the public to think President Bush authorized “an illegal and unnecessary intrusion into the privacy of all Americans,” they are pushing back with a new name for the program:
With congressional hearings set to begin on this issue Feb. 6, Bush kicked his administration’s new intensive public relations effort to win support for the program run by the National Security Agency. As part of that, he attempted to give it a new label – the Terrorist Surveillance Program.
The White House unveiled the name yesterday in a press release. Where would the administration get such an idea? It looks like credit goes to the right-wing internets. On New Year’s Day, the conservative news outlet Newsmax dubbed it a “terrorist surveillance program,” and a poster on RedState.org wrote last Friday, “I’m switching to ‘terrorist surveillance’ as a more appropriate moniker.”