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Author Topic:   George Bush protecting your civil liberties by breaking them
Silent H
Member (Idle past 3992 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 1 of 220 (270383)
12-17-2005 6:11 PM


For those not in the know, George Bush as admitted to granting secret eavesdropping rights to the NSA allowing them to act without court warrants. Here is an article from which all quotes will be taken.

"The activities I have authorized make it more likely that killers like these 9/11 hijackers will be identified and located in time," Bush said. "And the activities conducted under this authorization have helped detect and prevent possible terrorist attacks in the United States and abroad."

Bush said his authority to approve what he called a "vital tool in our war against the terrorists" came from his constitutional powers as commander in chief. He said that he has personally signed off on reauthorizations more than 30 times.

And with an incredible sense of irony...

"The American people expect me to do everything in my power under our laws and Constitution to protect them and their civil liberties," Bush said. "And that is exactly what I will continue to do, so long as I'm the president of the United States."

So does this make sense to anyone? And I am particularly looking toward the conservatives at EvC. Supposedly Bush and conservatives are strict constructionists. Where do they find this justification? If not, what does this say about Bush?

Are people so scared of terrorists they are willing to allow this direct violation of civil rights by a single man?

What do people who have studied the NSA and such legal issues have to say?

James Bamford, author of two books on the NSA, said the program could be problematic because it bypasses a special court set up by the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to authorize eavesdropping on suspected terrorists.

"I didn't hear him specify any legal right, except his right as president, which in a democracy doesn't make much sense," Bamford said in an interview. "Today, what Bush said is he went around the law, which is a violation of the law — which is illegal."

Susan Low Bloch, a professor of constitutional law at Georgetown University Law Center, said Bush was "taking a hugely expansive interpretation of the Constitution and the president's powers under the Constitution

Apparently some congressmen (rep and dem) knew about this. What do dems feel about those who knew and did not disclose this activity?

Final question, if all of these people felt it was worthy and they had the information required to make and assessment, why did they not avail themselves of the court system in place to protect our rights?

For a guy that says courts should not legislate, why is the executive and legislative branch being judicious? Do conservatives not see the irony?

Oh please let this blow up into something big. Maybe congress and the courts will give me something I want for the holidays.

AbE: I forgot to mention that Bush is blasting people for revealing this activity claiming that it risks national security. Another irony since he doesn't seem to are about leaking names of actual intelligence agents.

In any case, I'm wondering if people believe it is a bad thing for people to leak this kind of story (when it involves secret activities by the govt)? Is this something that should be stifled in the name of national security? Or is this important to protecting liberty regardless of the fact that the activity is secret and in the name of security?

It seems to me we are worse off the less transparent of govt we have (the very thing we argued about with Iraq), and the govt should not be doing things for our benefit which violates our rights. Isn't that the beginning of dictatorships and oppression?

This message has been edited by holmes, 12-17-2005 06:12 PM

This message has been edited by holmes, 12-17-2005 06:50 PM


holmes
"...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
Replies to this message:
 Message 2 by joshua221, posted 12-17-2005 8:10 PM Silent H has not yet responded
 Message 5 by randman, posted 12-18-2005 12:05 AM Silent H has responded
 Message 6 by jar, posted 12-18-2005 12:58 AM Silent H has responded
 Message 11 by Hangdawg13, posted 12-18-2005 12:53 PM Silent H has responded
 Message 59 by Tal, posted 12-20-2005 1:19 PM Silent H has responded

    
joshua221 
Inactive Suspended Member


Message 2 of 220 (270396)
12-17-2005 8:10 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Silent H
12-17-2005 6:11 PM


Fact is..
Fact is, that we've known about these obstructions for a long time now. I see none of it being implemented directly into my life, so why protest, or complain? Because I am not affected at all. Bush's policies will go down in history as unconstitutional. As americans we are all content, we have no impetus from which to argue because we can all admit it, we are living so damn good. Even the few who can argue and debate from the standpoint of reason and with validity express why they hate bush's policies, it is of no use, because these people will proably not affect anything in the long run anyway.

We are Rome.
This message has been edited by prophex, 12-17-2005 08:14 PM

This message has been edited by prophex, 12-17-2005 08:15 PM


Your body may be gone, I'm gonna carry you in.
In my head, in my heart, in my soul.
And maybe we'll get lucky and we'll both live again.
Well I don't know. I don't know. I don't know. Don't think so.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Silent H, posted 12-17-2005 6:11 PM Silent H has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 3 by Funkaloyd, posted 12-17-2005 9:06 PM joshua221 has not yet responded
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 Message 36 by macaroniandcheese, posted 12-19-2005 11:09 AM joshua221 has not yet responded

  
Funkaloyd
Inactive Member


Message 3 of 220 (270404)
12-17-2005 9:06 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by joshua221
12-17-2005 8:10 PM


Re: Fact is..
phrophex writes:

why protest, or complain? Because I am not affected at all.

First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out
because I was not a communist;
Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out
because I was not a socialist;
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist;
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew;
Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak out.

~ Martin Niemöller


This message is a reply to:
 Message 2 by joshua221, posted 12-17-2005 8:10 PM joshua221 has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
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Lammy
Member
Posts: 3610
From: Chicago
Joined: 03-29-2004


Message 4 of 220 (270424)
12-17-2005 11:39 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by joshua221
12-17-2005 8:10 PM


Re: Fact is..
Prophex, you would have made a very good nazi.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 2 by joshua221, posted 12-17-2005 8:10 PM joshua221 has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 12 by Hangdawg13, posted 12-18-2005 12:58 PM Lammy has not yet responded

    
randman 
Suspended Member (Idle past 3072 days)
Posts: 6367
Joined: 05-26-2005


Message 5 of 220 (270429)
12-18-2005 12:05 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Silent H
12-17-2005 6:11 PM


time of war
Right or wrong, if we are considered in a time of war, and under threat, Bush's actions are entirely consistent with other president's in our nation's history. It's not a new precedent. Lincoln suspended aspects of Constitutional rights when he felt necessary.

Heck, we were probably closest to a police state while Woodrow Wilson was president.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Silent H, posted 12-17-2005 6:11 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 8 by Silent H, posted 12-18-2005 5:07 AM randman has responded
 Message 20 by Nuggin, posted 12-18-2005 3:48 PM randman has responded
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jar
Member
Posts: 30997
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 4.3


Message 6 of 220 (270435)
12-18-2005 12:58 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Silent H
12-17-2005 6:11 PM


While we will likely get to see this play out over the next few months, from what has been said so far this does appear to be a clear violation of the Constitution. While this may not be on the level of criminality of a Ronald Reagan or Andrew Jackson, it will certainly turn out to be yet another black mark on what is turning out to be the most disastrous Presidency since Reagan and among the worst in our history..


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Silent H, posted 12-17-2005 6:11 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 7 by Lammy, posted 12-18-2005 1:29 AM jar has not yet responded
 Message 9 by Silent H, posted 12-18-2005 5:20 AM jar has responded

  
Lammy
Member
Posts: 3610
From: Chicago
Joined: 03-29-2004


Message 7 of 220 (270437)
12-18-2005 1:29 AM
Reply to: Message 6 by jar
12-18-2005 12:58 AM


...it will certainly turn out to be yet another black mark on what is turning out to be the most disastrous Presidency since Reagan and among the worst in our history..

You kidding?

Whether it's a black mark or not depends on what the majority view is. Unfortunately, the majority of Americans have a similar, if not hte same, view as the post right above yours.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 6 by jar, posted 12-18-2005 12:58 AM jar has not yet responded

    
Silent H
Member (Idle past 3992 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 8 of 220 (270447)
12-18-2005 5:07 AM
Reply to: Message 5 by randman
12-18-2005 12:05 AM


Re: time of war
Right or wrong, if we are considered in a time of war, and under threat, Bush's actions are entirely consistent with other president's in our nation's history. It's not a new precedent.

Stop right there. How does that address at all what I am asking? I don't think you hit even one of my questions.

1) Bush and Co are self-claimed constructionists. If that is true, you find me where "time of war" grants him such rights, or that all constitutional rules revert to the whim of the President. If not, doesn't this suggest patent hypocrisy on their part?

2) Bush and Co appeal to that same philosophy when arguing about how activist judges are wrong in legislating from the bench. The Constitution is quite clear who is to interpret the laws and Constitution and that is the Judicial branch. It does not disappear in a time of war. Doesn't his acting as both judicial and executive violate this position that Reps are claiming is a solid wall?

3) Following from what you said above... Do you truly claim that if another war happened while a dem was in office, that president would have the right to outlaw all guns and station troops in people's homes? If not, why not?

4) What past presidents do or have done is irrelevant. This is our turn on watch. What we allow to happen is what is important. I am unsure exactly what Lincoln may have suspended (I'd be interested in hearing it) but that does not get Bush off the hook. That just means that I'd have held Lincoln responsible. Our Presidents are not Gods nor Kings. They are Men, and it is OUR RIGHTS which stand above THEM. Otherwise it is just words on paper. But assuming what you say has relevance, could you explain what connection there is between Bush's actions and what Lincoln did? It seems to me they were in vastly different circumstances.

5) Do YOU think it was a good idea for him to do this? If so, why? As in why did he need to go around a court if his evidence was as good as he said? (Indeed we are now entering Boy Who Cried Wolf Territory as he has made previous claims of intelligence only to be shown to be 100% wrong.)

6) Do you believe that people outing secret actions by our govt which patently violate our rights are more of a danger, than those who engage in secret actions to violate our rights?


holmes
"...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 5 by randman, posted 12-18-2005 12:05 AM randman has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 15 by randman, posted 12-18-2005 3:14 PM Silent H has responded
 Message 17 by Modulous, posted 12-18-2005 3:23 PM Silent H has not yet responded
 Message 67 by custard, posted 12-21-2005 7:13 AM Silent H has responded
 Message 127 by Theus, posted 12-27-2005 12:22 AM Silent H has responded

    
Silent H
Member (Idle past 3992 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 9 of 220 (270449)
12-18-2005 5:20 AM
Reply to: Message 6 by jar
12-18-2005 12:58 AM


from what has been said so far this does appear to be a clear violation of the Constitution.

Although I agree with your assessment that whatever happens, it is just another black mark on the inkiest presidential seatwarmer in our history, I am unclear how this is not a violation of the Constitution.

He himself admits that he is acting in secret council which theoretically enough should be odious to people who believe in a transparent govt.

But more pointedly, he says that he has this power in time of war. Where is this power granted? Indeed that is self-interpretation of the Constitutional powers which is completely off limits by the Constitution. At the very least if he had had the SC deliver a ruling that that was avalid interpretation of his war powers that would have made sense.

Instead he (and perhaps a couple members of congress) interpreted the Constitution (in violation of Judicial powers as stated in the Constitution) to grant him powers of the Judiciary, not only including further interpretations of the Constitution, but applying legal formula to specific cases.

As far as I know there is no concept within the Constitution which suggests that "time of war" abolishes the separation of powers, and invests all power in the executive who will act as a King.

That to me is blatantly antiConstitutional in nature.

In addition, we have laws providing for the right to bear arms and not to have troops quartered in our homes. If the rights overridden by the president so far are valid, then those fall away as well, and then what was the meaning of their writing in the first place?

I don't see wiggle room here. And frankly, even if it were technically allowed, then that to me would be something we should be closing as a loophole very quickly.

We are very quick to remove the rights of individuals, this is one case where the rights of the govt need to be removed even quicker. That is of course if it is a valid loophole which I just don't see being the case.

I had quotes from two people arguing it was clearly not kosher, and ran around current law regarding such activity. Why were they not suggestive to you?


holmes
"...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 6 by jar, posted 12-18-2005 12:58 AM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 10 by jar, posted 12-18-2005 12:32 PM Silent H has responded
 Message 16 by randman, posted 12-18-2005 3:18 PM Silent H has not yet responded

    
jar
Member
Posts: 30997
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 4.3


Message 10 of 220 (270489)
12-18-2005 12:32 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by Silent H
12-18-2005 5:20 AM


Huh?

jar writes:

from what has been said so far this does appear to be a clear violation of the Constitution.


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
This message is a reply to:
 Message 9 by Silent H, posted 12-18-2005 5:20 AM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
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Hangdawg13
Member (Idle past 3078 days)
Posts: 1161
From: Texas
Joined: 05-30-2004


Message 11 of 220 (270491)
12-18-2005 12:53 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Silent H
12-17-2005 6:11 PM


Are people so scared of terrorists they are willing to allow this direct violation of civil rights by a single man?

"They who would give up an essential liberty for temporary security, deserve neither liberty nor security." - Benjamin Franklin

Apparently some congressmen (rep and dem) knew about this. What do dems feel about those who knew and did not disclose this activity?

Perhaps this reveals that many Reps and Dems have the same goals in mind. They just fight over who will have the power when we get there.

Oh please let this blow up into something big.

Amen.

Is this something that should be stifled in the name of national security?

Only when a government is open and honest with its people will the people be safe from tyrrany.

It seems to me we are worse off the less transparent of govt we have (the very thing we argued about with Iraq), and the govt should not be doing things for our benefit which violates our rights.

I agree.

Isn't that the beginning of dictatorships and oppression?

Yep.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Silent H, posted 12-17-2005 6:11 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 14 by Silent H, posted 12-18-2005 2:43 PM Hangdawg13 has not yet responded

    
Hangdawg13
Member (Idle past 3078 days)
Posts: 1161
From: Texas
Joined: 05-30-2004


Message 12 of 220 (270493)
12-18-2005 12:58 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by Lammy
12-17-2005 11:39 PM


Re: Fact is..
Prophex, you would have made a very good nazi.

I think Prophex was attempting to show not his own attitudes per se but rather the general attitude of the American people. We are Rome. And yes the American people could easily be led down that horrible path because Americans are mostly so apathetic so long as they have it so damn good.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 4 by Lammy, posted 12-17-2005 11:39 PM Lammy has not yet responded

    
Silent H
Member (Idle past 3992 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 13 of 220 (270520)
12-18-2005 2:38 PM
Reply to: Message 10 by jar
12-18-2005 12:32 PM


Huh?

Isn't it clear? You obviously meant "doesn't" otherwise I wouldn't have replied as if you had. The fact that you wrote "does" only shows how devious you are!

Heheheh... sorry about that.

AbE: Just so everyone is clear, the first paragraph is a joke. I made a HUGE mistake while reading Jar's post. The apology is real.

This message has been edited by holmes, 12-19-2005 06:06 AM


holmes
"...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 10 by jar, posted 12-18-2005 12:32 PM jar has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
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Silent H
Member (Idle past 3992 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 14 of 220 (270523)
12-18-2005 2:43 PM
Reply to: Message 11 by Hangdawg13
12-18-2005 12:53 PM


Perhaps this reveals that many Reps and Dems have the same goals in mind. They just fight over who will have the power when we get there.

Very true. Thanks for the general backup.


holmes
"...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
This message is a reply to:
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randman 
Suspended Member (Idle past 3072 days)
Posts: 6367
Joined: 05-26-2005


Message 15 of 220 (270531)
12-18-2005 3:14 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by Silent H
12-18-2005 5:07 AM


Re: time of war
Bottom line is this is how the government operates, and has so since it's inception. Nothing new here.

Now, the question of strict constructionism, I agree that Bush does not hold to truly strict constructionism. If he did, I don't think we would have the No Child Left Behind Act, no Dept of Education, and certainly no federal gun laws whatsoever.

But anyone that thinks this is the first time the CIA or NSA has secretly spied on Americans is very naive. It's propaganda time. You've got to understand that the president is expendable, but the national security apparatus is not, from their perspective. So the story comes out that Bush allowed tapping into e-mails, phone calls, etc,....and you guys jump on it like a hungry spot-tail bass on a free-lined live mullet.

The unstated message is that the NSA only spies on Americans in such extreme circumstances rather than the truth, which is they spy on virtually all electronic communications in the entire world via Echelon and Carnivore systems. They can easily do this legally via their partnerships with the Aussies and Brits who are technical partners in the Echelon spy system.

So while you're fretting about the possible Constitutional infringement of a hundred or so wiretaps, you aren't paying attention to the fact every single phone call, e-mail, and electronic communication world-wide is monitored, run through computer analysis, and specific people targetted at whim.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 8 by Silent H, posted 12-18-2005 5:07 AM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 21 by Nuggin, posted 12-18-2005 3:53 PM randman has responded
 Message 25 by Silent H, posted 12-18-2005 4:28 PM randman has responded
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