Sorry about paucitude of post. Never the most tech-savvy person (I'm Alan but I think not logged in that way), I posted several items last week to an extinct account. I'll try to retrieve them or recreate them later in the day.
For now, I'm fascinated not just that Princess Di's driver the night she was killed was likely at three times the blood-alcohol legal limit, but that it turns out the U.S. "secret services" were watching Diana and bugging her phone calls. (Because the Brits have different ways of saying certain things, the newspaper items might not mean the -- capitalized -- Secret Service, charged with protecting the president and his/her family.)
This was during the Clinton administration. Mickey Kaus has appropriate links and appropriate questions on his blog over at Slate.com. Why? Was there a proper warrant? Could it have been because Diana had an "intimate relationship" with U.S. billionaire Ron Forstmann, an active Republican who once made noises about running against Hillary? Can it be that the Bush administration didn't invent warrantless wiretapping?
Can it be that abuse of intelligence power is more or less built into the system rather than being the province of a particular president, party or administration?
Years ago -- I read a couple of books and interviewed several former LAPD officers some 20 years ago -- the LAPD used to spend an inordinate amount of its intelligence resources digging up dirt on Hollywood celebrities. The department seldom leaked the info but was known to hold deleterious information (which would probably be a career-enhancer these days) over peoples' heads to get cooperation or deter criticism. Can it be as simple as that intelligence services are almost as celebrity-obsessed as the media? Doesn't say much for their seriousness about "protecting" the American people.