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The Real History of Domestic Spying

Occam's Razor

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If Our Gov't is so Interested in Our Daily Activities, Shouldn't We Return the Favor?

This is NOT a partisan issue, this is citizen rights vs gov't power issue

person1: Oh my gawd, Obama is spying on us, see, I told you he was bad news...
person2: Bush started it, hypocrite
Moe: **smack**

Since most of you won't make it through all the information here, let me say now... anyone still acting as a partisan and not joining the citizens v gov't overreach movement is a tool of our would be oppressors.

The trail of legislation that led to this abuse of our rights did not start with Obama, or Bush... but goes back to 1995.

President Clinton signs the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act, which the New York Times calls “broad legislation that provides new tools and penalties for federal law-enforcement officials to use in fighting terrorism.” The Clinton administration proposed the bill in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City terrorist bombing (see 8:35 a.m. - 9:02 a.m. April 19, 1995). In many ways, the original bill will be mirrored by the USA Patriot Act six years later (see October 26, 2001). Civil libertarians on both the left and right opposed the legislation. Political analyst Michael Freeman called the proposal one of the “worst assaults on civil liberties in decades,” and the Houston Chronicle called it a “frightening” and “grievous” assault on domestic freedoms. Many Republicans opposed the bill, and forced a compromise that removed increased wiretap authority and lower standards for lawsuits against sellers of guns used in crimes. CNN called the version that finally passed the Republican-controlled Congress a “watered-down version of the White House’s proposal. The Clinton administration has been critical of the bill, calling it too weak.
CNN, 4/18/1996; NEW YORK TIMES, 4/25/1996;
Ahh... but who wrote the bill and what does he have to say about it?

Months before the Oklahoma City bombing took place, Biden introduced another bill called the Omnibus Counterterrorism Act of 1995. It previewed the 2001 Patriot Act by allowing secret evidence to be used in prosecutions, expanding the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and wiretap laws, creating a new federal crime of “terrorism” that could be invoked based on political beliefs, permitting the U.S. military to be used in civilian law enforcement, and allowing permanent detention of non-U.S. citizens without judicial review.* The Center for National Security Studies said the bill would erode “constitutional and statutory due process protections” and would “authorize the Justice Department to pick and choose crimes to investigate and prosecute based on political beliefs and assoc
iations.”

Biden himself draws parallels between his 1995 bill and its 2001 cousin. “I drafted a terrorism bill after the Oklahoma City bombing. And the bill John Ashcroft sent up was my bill,”
And what was the opposition saying at the time...

CENTER FOR NATIONAL SECURITY STUDIES Gelman Library, Suite 701
2130 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20037
tel: (202) 994-7060
fax: (202) 994-7005

April 26, 1995

Clinton Terrorism Legislation Threatens Constitutional Rights

On February 10, 1995, a counterterrorism bill drafted by the Clinton
Administration was introduced in the Senate as S. 390 and in the House of
Representatives as H.R. 896.

The Clinton bill is a mixture of: provisions eroding constitutional and
statutory due process protections, selective federalization -- on political
grounds -- of state crimes (minus state due process rules), discredited
ideas from the Reagan and Bush Administrations, and the extension of some of
the worst elements of crime bills of the recent past.

The legislation would:

1. authorize the Justice Department to pick and choose crimes to
investigate and prosecute based on political beliefs and associations;

2. repeal the ancient provision barring the U.S. military from civilian
law enforcement;

3. expand a pre-trial detention scheme that puts the burden of proof on
the accused;

4. loosen the carefully-crafted rules governing federal wiretaps, in
violation of the Fourth Amendment;

5. establish special courts that would use secret evidence to order the
deportation of persons convicted of no crimes, in violation of basic
principles of due process;

6. permit permanent detention by the Attorney General of aliens convicted
of no crimes, with no judicial review;

7. give the President unreviewable power to criminalize fund-raising for
lawful activities associated with unpopular causes;

8. renege on the Administration's approval in the last Congress of a
provision to insure that the FBI would not investigate based on First
Amendment activities; and

9. resurrect the discredited ideological visa denial provisions of the
McCarran Walter Act to bar foreign speakers.

Once again, the impatience of those charged with upholding the Constitution
has led them to seek authority to circumvent it.

The U.S. has not been a fertile breeding ground for terrorism. Part of the
reason lies in the values at the core of our unique system of governance --
diversity, religious and ethnic tolerance, acceptance of change, openness to
new ideas, constitutional limits on government discretion, reliance on legal
proceedings open to public scrutiny. These values make it hard to nurture in
the U.S. the ethnic or religious hatred that fuels much terrorism. Unfortunately, these values would be undermined by this legislation.
But wait... it doesn't end there... Not only do the provisions the republicans so vehemently (and rightly) objected to come back in 2001 even stronger, but now anyone still heading GOPs own warning of a danger to citizen rights, is aiding the enemy, unpatriotic, and wants to see america destroyed...

So far... The left should feel extraordinary shame for not knowing who they were voting for, nor the origin of the Patriot Act in the Clinton era, thus being unwitting hypocrites in their condemnation of Bush

And the right should feel oceans of shame because they had the right stance and did the right thing the first time, only to reverse and demonize anyone holding their first position... witting hypocrites.....

Now we've reversed again... the right acts indignant and the left says no big deal...

YOU ARE ALL BEING PLAYED!

First of all, our rights should not be a partisan issue. It was and forever should be a citizen v gov't issue. There is one historical constant in gov'ts... they all go bad eventually precisely because of another historical constant... tyranny seeks power.

Now, it's very difficult to be tyrannical if you're not stepping on rights... therefore we should all be hypersensitive to ANY transgression or open path to transgression of those rights. This has been an open invitation for nearly two decades.

It's exactly this precedent that is dangerous. It's not a question of if tyrannical forces arise, but when... so if you leave the door open for one administration... a future administration may pick up that ball and run with it, to the detriment of us all... and all you will be able to do is point fingers somewhere other than at the person in the mirror.

WHO CARES HOW OR WHY IT STARTED... IT'S TIME TO BE UNITED AND DEMAND AN END TO...

Domestic intelligence gathering
Blanket Warrants
A return of National Guard to State control
A ban on military assistance in civilian policing
Indefinite detentions of Americans
 

Objective Voice

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I gave your post a "Like" because for the first time someone digs deeper into this issue than just the politics of today.

Well Done!

However, I do believe that the way Pres. Obama is going about it is far different than either Clinton or GWB did and does more to protect and preserve our civil liberties yet still seek out the terrorist where they hide (or should I say lurk...among our telecommunications network which is tied directly into our Internet access). If you don't go after them where they hide, how exactly are we to stop them before they attack short of putting assets deep inside enemy territory? The spy-game cost money and lives. Innocuous telecom and Internet data mining (at least that's what it was until the cat was let out of the bag) stands to hurt them far more than it would us. And while I respect the civil libertarians out there, we have to be honest about this point: Ben Franklin would never in his wildest dreams envisioned an America where the threats came from within with such violence, brutality and death to the innocent.
 

Occam's Razor

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I gave your post a "Like" because for the first time someone digs deeper into this issue than just the politics of today.

Well Done!

However, I do believe that the way Pres. Obama is going about it is far different than either Clinton or GWB did and does more to protect and preserve our civil liberties yet still seek out the terrorist where they hide (or should I say lurk...among our telecommunications network which is tied directly into our Internet access). If you don't go after them where they hide, how exactly are we to stop them before they attack short of putting assets deep inside enemy territory? The spy-game cost money and lives. Innocuous telecom and Internet data mining (at least that's what it was until the cat was let out of the bag) stands to hurt them far more than it would us. And while I respect the civil libertarians out there, we have to be honest about this point: Ben Franklin would never in his wildest dreams envisioned an America where the threats came from within with such violence, brutality and death to the innocent.
Digs Deeper? I lived it. I have a memory longer than the last election. But thank you.

Quite telling there have been 36 views and only your reply. People don't want the truth, they don't like the truth, it disrupts too many agendas it seems.

When the republicans put down Clinton's bill, and did so in enumerated well defined constitutional reasoning, it was one of the most hopeful moments in US politics... then they passed a more far reaching version five years later before anyone could read it.

And the left defending the program while their constituents cry precedent because Bush did it too... completely ignorant of the fact that Biden wrote the first draft.

But yes, I agree... we all need to dig deeper, history matters. And the more you dig, the more you realize the founders were right... always be vigilant of the whole gov't, country before party, citizens v gov't, not right v left or whig v dem, or federalist v antifederalist...

Thanks for having the courage to post on the thread!
 

Objective Voice

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Not a problem. As an old Rhode Islander once said, "I've never met a topic that was too taboo to debate". :)

Still, I try not to deal in absolutes where holding firm to idealism is trumped by reality. In that, we can no longer pretend that holding 100% to privacy (civil liberties) will keep us safe from those who wish to do us harm. I get your point very clearly, however, that one side wrote a sweeping law that cut into those liberties while the other all but trampled all over them. But I think the current Administration has learned from past mistakes and found some middle ground in which to work from in order to protect our privacy yet continue to pursue the bad guys where they hide - within our telecommunications and Internet networks (not to mention our non-profit organizations..."follow the money trail").

We live in a far different and somewhat more perilous time then we did during the Reagan, Bush-41, Clinton or Bush-43 eras. I think once the American people come to accept this reality and at least try to understand that this PRISM program only pulled out a small segment of the "warrant" portion of the FISA law in order to conduct the type of surveillance program that's now in question in an effort to stop terrorist activity before an attack is carried out, more people would be less offended by it. As it stands, it's bad enough that our intelligence agencies dropped the ball on the Boston Marathon bombing. I can only imagine the fall-out if such bombings took place all across the country that day. Then people would be complaining that the government didn't use a program like PRISM to its full affect.
 

Occam's Razor

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Not a problem. As an old Rhode Islander once said, "I've never met a topic that was too taboo to debate". :)

Still, I try not to deal in absolutes where holding firm to idealism is trumped by reality. In that, we can no longer pretend that holding 100% to privacy (civil liberties) will keep us safe from those who wish to do us harm. I get your point very clearly, however, that one side wrote a sweeping law that cut into those liberties while the other all but trampled all over them. But I think the current Administration has learned from past mistakes and found some middle ground in which to work from in order to protect our privacy yet continue to pursue the bad guys where they hide - within our telecommunications and Internet networks (not to mention our non-profit organizations..."follow the money trail").

We live in a far different and somewhat more perilous time then we did during the Reagan, Bush-41, Clinton or Bush-43 eras. I think once the American people come to accept this reality and at least try to understand that this PRISM program only pulled out a small segment of the "warrant" portion of the FISA law in order to conduct the type of surveillance program that's now in question in an effort to stop terrorist activity before an attack is carried out, more people would be less offended by it. As it stands, it's bad enough that our intelligence agencies dropped the ball on the Boston Marathon bombing. I can only imagine the fall-out if such bombings took place all across the country that day. Then people would be complaining that the government didn't use a program like PRISM to its full affect.
I don't buy the "times have changed" argument. The human condition hasn't changed in 12.000 years. That is, the paths to tyranny are the same. Men will always be a bit too ambitious, a bit too greedy, easily drunk on power, and quick to excuse violations of privacy with a need to keep you safe from outside threats.

I am 1000 times more likely to be killed by a gun by someone I know... I don't need half a trillion dollars worth of protection from terrorists at the additional expense of my inalienable, absolute rights. If our intelligence is so inept that it needs to resort to blanket searches to keep tabs on terrorists that CNN and al Jazeera seem to be able to find with little trouble... we must demand change.
 

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I don't buy the "times have changed" argument. The human condition hasn't changed in 12.000 years. That is, the paths to tyranny are the same. Men will always be a bit too ambitious, a bit too greedy, easily drunk on power, and quick to excuse violations of privacy with a need to keep you safe from outside threats.

I am 1000 times more likely to be killed by a gun by someone I know... I don't need half a trillion dollars worth of protection from terrorists at the additional expense of my inalienable, absolute rights. If our intelligence is so inept that it needs to resort to blanket searches to keep tabs on terrorists that CNN and al Jazeera seem to be able to find with little trouble... we must demand change.
Well said! You, sir, make a very good point.
 

Occam's Razor

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Well said! You, sir, make a very good point.
Ha! They said I was mad when I threw a hundred monkeys in a room with a hundred keyboards. It took a year, but they finally spit out something that made sense. I pass along your comment and an extra pack of smokes with the monkey chow tonight....

But seriously... thanks
 

American

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But...but....but Obama did it better. :roll: I'm a fan of early American history, I appreciate the perspective.
 

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Ha! They said I was mad when I threw a hundred monkeys in a room with a hundred keyboards. It took a year, but they finally spit out something that made sense. I pass along your comment and an extra pack of smokes with the monkey chow tonight....

But seriously... thanks
LOL...Not sure if I like that "the light bulb finally went off" analogy, but...um...you're welcome...? :neutral: :think: :2usflag: :thumbs:
 

Occam's Razor

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LOL...Not sure if I like that "the light bulb finally went off" analogy, but...um...you're welcome...? :neutral: :think: :2usflag: :thumbs:
Nah, no analogy... just a moment of silliness. The lightbulb has been brightly lit for years..

... :( and I have no monkeys...
 

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I gave your post a "Like" because for the first time someone digs deeper into this issue than just the politics of today.

Well Done!

However, I do believe that the way Pres. Obama is going about it is far different than either Clinton or GWB did and does more to protect and preserve our civil liberties yet still seek out the terrorist where they hide (or should I say lurk...among our telecommunications network which is tied directly into our Internet access). If you don't go after them where they hide, how exactly are we to stop them before they attack short of putting assets deep inside enemy territory? The spy-game cost money and lives. Innocuous telecom and Internet data mining (at least that's what it was until the cat was let out of the bag) stands to hurt them far more than it would us. And while I respect the civil libertarians out there, we have to be honest about this point: Ben Franklin would never in his wildest dreams envisioned an America where the threats came from within with such violence, brutality and death to the innocent.
"Seeking the terrorists where they hide" is a scam. It is rather a modern example of what H.L. Mencken described nearly a century ago: "The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of the imaginary."

In fact, the chances of you or me being victim of a terrorist attack are about the same as being struck by lightning. Is it smart to give away one's constitutional protections for such a low probability event? Especially considering the inefficiency of the government in general? Especially considering that the predicate acts of this Global and Interminable War On Terror were staged?
 

Trip

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However, I do believe that the way Pres. Obama is going about it is far different than either Clinton or GWB did and does more to protect and preserve our civil liberties yet still seek out the terrorist where they hide (or should I say lurk...among our telecommunications network which is tied directly into our Internet access). If you don't go after them where they hide, how exactly are we to stop them before they attack short of putting assets deep inside enemy territory? The spy-game cost money and lives. Innocuous telecom and Internet data mining (at least that's what it was until the cat was let out of the bag) stands to hurt them far more than it would us. And while I respect the civil libertarians out there, we have to be honest about this point: Ben Franklin would never in his wildest dreams envisioned an America where the threats came from within with such violence, brutality and death to the innocent.

I read the above bolded portion and I had to wrap my head in duct tape before finishing. ..

Obama is wanting to arm the terrorists in Syria, and this arming led to the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi. Obama already armed the drug dealers in Mexico in Fast and Furious, and got Americans and Mexicans killed with that. And then we have the early targeting of conservative groups as "Right Wing Extremists" and potential terrorists by DHS for no good reason, the targeting of liberty and tea party groups by the IRS, the denial of religious freedoms under the ObamaCare, and being threatened to lose tax status by the IRS, the media being targeted by the NSA, the denial of our most innate freedom of self-ownership under ObamaCare, the annulment of a full 80% of the Bill of Rights under that legislation; the administration repeatedly leaking information about Israel to put that country and risk; The DOJ refusing to presecute an open and shut case of Election Law violation and voter intimidation with the New Black Panthers;the "Presidential Memorandum on Scientific Integrity" actually working as a gag order to prevent any open discussion of scientific conclusions without government bureaucratic filter and scrutiny, rather than doing anything to actually improve scientific integrity... (didn't know about that one, did ya?), and FEMA training Police officers that the Christians are liable to behead them, and that the Founders were the original terrorists, and the Supreme Court deciding it's not a violation of unreasonable search and seizure for un-convicted persons to have their DNA taken from them and put on file. And the DOJ is charging Amish under federal hate crime legislation for cutting the hair and bears of fellow Amish, because the trimmers were made in one state and used in another.

In the meantime we have the government enormously expanding its data collection and storage facilities by proportions that few can even grasp the scope.


And this Oval Occupant has done "more to protect our civil liberties"? Y'er kidding, right? More than WHO? JOSEPH STALIN??????
 
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Objective Voice

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I read the above bolded portion and I had to wrap my head in duct tape before finishing. ..

Obama is wanting to arm the terrorists in Syria, and this arming led to the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi. Obama already armed the drug dealers in Mexico in Fast and Furious, and got Americans and Mexicans killed with that. And then we have the early targeting of conservative groups as "Right Wing Extremists" and potential terrorists by DHS for no good reason, the targeting of liberty and tea party groups by the IRS, the denial of religious freedoms under the ObamaCare, and being threatened to lose tax status by the IRS, the media being targeted by the NSA, the denial of our most innate freedom of self-ownership under ObamaCare, the annulment of a full 80% of the Bill of Rights under that legislation; the administration repeatedly leaking information about Israel to put that country and risk; The DOJ refusing to presecute an open and shut case of Election Law violation and voter intimidation with the New Black Panthers;the "Presidential Memorandum on Scientific Integrity" actually working as a gag order to prevent any open discussion of scientific conclusions without government bureaucratic filter and scrutiny, rather than doing anything to actually improve scientific integrity... (didn't know about that one, did ya?), and FEMA training Police officers that the Christians are liable to behead them, and that the Founders were the original terrorists, and the Supreme Court deciding it's not a violation of unreasonable search and seizure for un-convicted persons to have their DNA taken from them and put on file. And the DOJ is charging Amish under federal hate crime legislation for cutting the hair and bears of fellow Amish, because the trimmers were made in one state and used in another.

In the meantime we have the government enormously expanding its data collection and storage facilities by proportions that few can even grasp the scope.


And this Oval Occupant has done "more to protect our civil liberties"? Y'er kidding, right? More than WHO? JOSEPH STALIN??????
What does arming Syrian rebels have to do with American's civil liberties?

What does the death of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya (though tragic) have to do with Americans' civil liberties?

What does the US/Mexican drug war - which has been ongoing since the Reagan era - or trying to monitor a arms trafficking ring between the two countries have to do with American's civil liberties?

I can understand your concerns for the IRS alleged targeting of Right-Wing Conservative groups, but considering that many American are very concerned about corporate money interfering with the political process (and we all know that BIG money was being funneled towards Republican campaigns by unknown sources during the 2012 presidential elections) it stands in my mind as a reasonable course of action. Nonetheless, what does that have to do with American's civil liberties?

I can understand you concerns for the perceived encroachment on "separation of church and state," but considering that the government isn't telling people what religion to practice or how to pray or whether or not to pray, how does anything you've said concerning religious freedom have to do with American's civil liberties?

Collecting taxes has long been an enumerated power of Congress per the Constitution. Granted, folks still complain about including the income tax into the equation, but since Congress does have that power and all ObamaCare does in that regard is "mandate" that people take personal responsibility for their health care since the nation is so opposed to a national health care system, how does this impose on American's civil liberties?

I understand your concerns about the NSA's surveillance program and while I don't like the fact that the Obama Administration skirted around the requirement to obtain warrants to collect personal information on citizens who use wireless communications (as the criteria under FISA law should be taken in the aggregate, not in parts), but considering that this program has been in use since the GWBush Administration (even in a modified form under the Obama Administration) as a way to catch the terrorist before they do harm to Americans here or abroad, I'm willing to give alittle leeway on this matter. It's the only area where you have a valid argument on the possibility of gov't encroachment on America's civil liberties. But even here it was well contained until one of our own committed treason and went public with the information.

None of the rest has anything to do with civil liberties where the nation is concerned but you're free to speculate as you please. That's what "freedom of speech" - a valid civil liberty you're apparently enjoying right now - allows you to do. So, rant away!
 

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What does arming Syrian rebels have to do with American's civil liberties?

What does the death of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya (though tragic) have to do with Americans' civil liberties?
Those deaths of four Americans have nothing to do with civil liberties, but rather the utter disregard of this administration for this country's principles, while promoting an agenda and 'principles' entirely incompatible with this country, in arming Islamists that have been, are, and continue to be a direct threat to this country. However not responding to the attack upon, and the imminent death of those four individuals, allows this criminal administration to continue to promote the election period idea that it has beaten Al Quada and terrorism, while continuing to with its amicable intimate relationships with, and benefits to, a terrorism-promoting Islam

The connection of those deaths to civil liberties, is this administration's utter disregard for those civil liberties and our form of governance, while it promotes concepts like the Democratic "Arab Spring", which is entirely in conflict with THIS country's principles, and only resulting in the populist election of new forms of tyrannous government dictators. But this administration has no problem with government being tyrannous, any more than it does with the tyrannous all-encompassing social dictates of the Islamic religion, or its own Progressive Marxist fascism.

What does the US/Mexican drug war - which has been ongoing since the Reagan era - or trying to monitor a arms trafficking ring between the two countries have to do with American's civil liberties?
No part of the war on drugs, nor any attempt to 'monitor' arms trafficking, involve the provision of arms to those drug cartels, arms traffickers, and gangs, where those arms are not strictly traced, and arrests are not immediately made, thereby only directly causal to the deaths of law enforcement officers and civilians. A similar but far less destructive program under Bush known as Wide Receiver, also had no real positive prosecution, and was canceled due to its ill-conception, but this didn't stop the Obama administration, which has actual intentions entirely contrary to curtailing illegal trafficking of any sort across the U.S. borders, but rather desires that illegal trafficking across those borders increases and is unconstrained.

The entire intent of Fast and Furious was no sort of sting operation, but rather having those arms provide a pretext for gun legislation and the denial of the right to keep and bear arms to American citizens.

I can understand your concerns for the IRS alleged targeting of Right-Wing Conservative groups, but considering that many American are very concerned about corporate money interfering with the political process (and we all know that BIG money was being funneled towards Republican campaigns by unknown sources during the 2012 presidential elections) it stands in my mind as a reasonable course of action. Nonetheless, what does that have to do with American's civil liberties?
There is no direct tie with right wing conservative ideology and corporations, much less corporations legitimate desire to represent themselves and their interests in a political arena that is openly targeting them for economic fleecing, and dishonestly condemning their production and energy methods overall, scapegoating them.

The only people concerned about corporate money involvement in the political process, are those embracing an ideology supporting the confiscation of corporate assets by legal suits and other government actions abusive of its authority, dictating the terms of those corporation's production, and the claimed villain-ization of those corporations so as to justify these illegitimate government thefts intended to be made upon defenseless and voiceless corporations. Yet this is all going on while ignoring that those corporations are owned by individual citizen investors, and the very reason those leftist Marxist fascists are targeting those corporations, are those very economic assets those corporations are legitimately able to use to protect themselves and promote their interests.

Unfortunately, the laws of equity that allow this criminal administration to preferentially target, sue and dictate to those corporations, as if they were individuals, are the same laws of equity that give those corporations the legitimate interest of representing themselves and their interests as individuals in the political arena.

But we "ALL KNOW" that the Democrats want a political system wherein BIG MONEY flows only to that party, even from unions improperly able to confiscate monies from their legally-compelled membership, and not to the Republicans from their intended victims, like corporations and free individuals.

I can understand you concerns for the perceived encroachment on "separation of church and state," but considering that the government isn't telling people what religion to practice or how to pray or whether or not to pray, how does anything you've said concerning religious freedom have to do with American's civil liberties?
The 1st Amendment does not just prohibit government from telling people what religion to practice, or how to pray <even though it is questioning what they are praying>, but rather prohibits government from having any affect upon, or involvement in religion or religious beliefs. In fact the dictates of the federal government involving ObamaCare, itself entirely unsupported by the Constitution and flagrantly unconstitutional, are unable to legitimately compel those religious institutions to provide birth control, with that Progressive ideology itself being an unconstitutional state-supported social engineering agenda and religion.

Collecting taxes has long been an enumerated power of Congress per the Constitution. Granted, folks still complain about including the income tax into the equation, but since Congress does have that power and all ObamaCare does in that regard is "mandate" that people take personal responsibility for their health care since the nation is so opposed to a national health care system, how does this impose on American's civil liberties?
No, the collection of taxes is not an unrestrained enumerated power, but rather those taxes are only specifically supported in regard to the common Defense and general Welfare, the terms of which are specifically detailed in those enumerated powers that follow. The income tax was originally, and deliberately prohibited as a direct tax to the federal government, unless applied to the states under the census, due to the fact that such a tax is inherently tyrannous and able to be abused to enable unsupported federal government agendas, and by its nature inherently unconstitutional, regardless of the existence of a 16th Amendment. Only by an inappropriate <inherently unconstitutional> 16th Amendment and then even still altering the income tax to be an indirect excise, or "event" tax", which is clearly untrue, and is itself demonstrates the level of fraud and corruption advanced by the federal government, under the initial premise that it was only going to tax <wait for it> the still ubiquitous E-vil corporatons, and E-vil rich, but Americans, on the whole, are ignorant beyond words.


I understand your concerns about the NSA's surveillance program and while I don't like the fact that the Obama Administration skirted around the requirement to obtain warrants to collect personal information on citizens who use wireless communications (as the criteria under FISA law should be taken in the aggregate, not in parts), but considering that this program has been in use since the GWBush Administration (even in a modified form under the Obama Administration) as a way to catch the terrorist before they do harm to Americans here or abroad, I'm willing to give alittle leeway on this matter. It's the only area where you have a valid argument on the possibility of gov't encroachment on America's civil liberties. But even here it was well contained until one of our own committed treason and went public with the information.
The program has been in use long prior to GW Bush, going back to the late 60's, under SIGINT (Signals Intelligence), which many will recognize by the more popular name "ECHELON". By this, the overused defection that "Bush did it" just doesn't cut it. This has gone a long way beyond "catching terrorists" and has now turned every American into a suspected terrorist, and by that falsehood justified the federal intrustion and spying on each and every citizen, even as noted by the news lately. The federal government is even pursuing Snowden for revealing state secrets, which are actually state activities that the federal government has no legitimate business being involved in. It is actually the federal government itself which needs to be downed, hog-tied, held at gunpoint, shackled, and incarcerated in its 10x10 cell provided by the Constitution.


None of the rest has anything to do with civil liberties where the nation is concerned but you're free to speculate as you please. That's what "freedom of speech" - a valid civil liberty you're apparently enjoying right now - allows you to do. So, rant away!
All of which I cited, every single representation, has everything to do with the government's intrusion upon unalienable individual rights, resulting in a de fact Police State, and not "civil liberties" which is the corrupt result of government inherently involving itself in the grant of those "liberties",

In fact, I was personally and directly affected by the Orwellian corruption that is the "Presidential Memorandum of Scientific Integrity", and its influence acting as a total gag order on even activities that are only vaguely related to science, such as the communications between a tractor trailer driver containing two USGS track drill rigs, and those contracted to repair those drill rigs, regarding what geological drill activities those rigs are involved in at a National Park, otherwise known as the super-volcano that is Yellowstone. I myself am a geologist and geophysicist, and by request analyzed the publicly-available seismic data coming from Yellowstone, and recognized the immediate level of "volcanic distress" that that volcano was undergoing, and even anticipated the urgent, rushed field investigation witnessed only two days later, live on those seismographs used as geophones for seismic refraction surveys, in the dead of winter, with 8 feet of snow on the ground, so as to establish the level of chamber fill and the overall magma viscosity, which would indicate the difference between a passive volcanic flow, and a violently explosive super-volcano eruption that could easily put mankind's existence in jeopardy.

For my efforts, my IP address, online nickname, and real name, were all connected together, along with the same for persons vaguely involved in online chat, and myself and another individual had their IP's banned at the USGS site, when we had not abused that site, nor the data there, in any fashion, and I know for a fact that I was shadowed by two conspicuous individuals in a government vehicle for at least two days.

Our government is no longer acting in our own best interests, or in the interest of the America itself, and sure as hell not in the interest of "Scientific Integrity", but rather solely in support of its own tyrannic dictatorial agenda, which is in direct conflict with, and a deliberate threat to our freedoms, our rights, our liberty, and the very continuity of this country.

In short, your grossly false claim that Obama "does more to protect and preserve our civil liberties " is in conflict with not only the facts, but my own direct and very personal experience, which is why I am able to state with total confidence, and the total absence of hyperbole, that Obama is deliberately a direct threat to not just that liberty, but this country's very existence.
 

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Trip,

Noted.

But again, using your words which confirm what I said:

All of which I cited, every single representation, has everything to do with the government's intrusion upon unalienable individual rights, resulting in a de fact Police State, and not "civil liberties" which is the corrupt result of government inherently involving itself in the grant of those "liberties".
Show me where your rights to choose to worship and pray as you wish, to travel, to speak, to assemble, to protest, to purchase anything of your choice within logic or reason in accordance to common sense and/or the law, to marry whomever you wish (except where the gay rights argument hasn't been firmly established by federal court ruling) have been taken away and I'm with you 100%. Until then, all you have are strawman arguments. However, I will say this. Your theory on gun running in order to bring about gun laws that support a specific agenda is plausible. You'd still have to prove there was such an agenda, however.
 

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First of all, our rights should not be a partisan issue. It was and forever should be a citizen v gov't issue. There is one historical constant in gov'ts... they all go bad eventually precisely because of another historical constant... tyranny seeks power.
Totally agree. That's what governments DO. They initiate aggression against people and their property. Once they have established their privilege to do so, they will increase the level of aggression over time.

The problem is not HOW MUCH aggression is initiated. The problem is that we allow these people the special privilege of initiating aggression, and we don't consider them criminals from the get go.

As Murray Rothbard said, the government is simply a gang of criminals writ large.
 

Trip

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Trip,

Noted.

But again, using your words which confirm what I said:



Show me where your rights to choose to worship and pray as you wish, to travel, to speak, to assemble, to protest, to purchase anything of your choice within logic or reason in accordance to common sense and/or the law, to marry whomever you wish (except where the gay rights argument hasn't been firmly established by federal court ruling) have been taken away and I'm with you 100%. Until then, all you have are strawman arguments. However, I will say this. Your theory on gun running in order to bring about gun laws that support a specific agenda is plausible. You'd still have to prove there was such an agenda, however.
Honest to god, I am not saying this to deflect, but if you're an American citizen, and have any idea at all of what our freedoms should be, you should be able to provide numerous violations of each aspect of our rights on your own. The certainly have been in the news quite a lot for the past four years. ObamaCare alone abrogates a full 80% of the Bill of Rights, and in the meantime there's a global manhunt for a guy named Snowden who exposed the intrusion of the federal government into every aspect of our lives, while Obama is only able to give us a snowjob on a whole range of "crises", which are actually far more than that.


There is no 'strawman' to anything I've indicated. And it is not my own theory on the gunrunning, but something I've heard from media outlets, just not those major media outlets that are in unquestioning support of Obama, and do not recognize the fact that the Constitution prohibits any legitimacy to the form of government that Obama is forcing on America.

Furthermore, no matter how you true to present it, the gay marriage argument has nothing whatsoever to do with 'gay rights'. "Rights" don't have a "sexual orientation" to them, nor do they involve an pairing of individuals, nor do they involve recognition and outcome. While freedom of association is a right, there is no guarantee about any public recognition and reward for that association, particularly not for limited pairing of individuals, unless they one's accountant, lawyer, priest, or opposite-gender spouse . There is no 'right' to marry, not even for heterosexuals, as that ritual involves the participation of another human being. The claim that gay unions are the equivalent of marriage is a demonstrably false equivalency, as the result of heterosexual marriage's being the backbone to the promotion and extension of society.
 

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Trip,

Noted.

But again, using your words which confirm what I said:



Show me where your rights to choose to worship and pray as you wish, to travel, to speak, to assemble, to protest, to purchase anything of your choice within logic or reason in accordance to common sense and/or the law, to marry whomever you wish (except where the gay rights argument hasn't been firmly established by federal court ruling) have been taken away and I'm with you 100%. Until then, all you have are strawman arguments. However, I will say this. Your theory on gun running in order to bring about gun laws that support a specific agenda is plausible. You'd still have to prove there was such an agenda, however.
What you are failing to see perhaps is that the law is being knowingly violated by the federal government. It is knowingly violating both the letter and the spirit of the 4th amendment, that part that says "No Warrant shall issue, but upon Probable Cause". Do you have trouble understanding that part of it?
 

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Domestic spying by the federal government goes back to J. Edgar Hoover during the mid 20th century, first leader of the FBI, if not earlier. Hoover's FBI was illegally spying on many people for poltical and personal reasons and blackmailing some of them, part of the reason he held his position for so long. By the late 60-early 70s the COINTELPRO program was involved in spying on citizens and used the information to sabotage certain political organizations.
 

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What you are failing to see perhaps is that the law is being knowingly violated by the federal government. It is knowingly violating both the letter and the spirit of the 4th amendment, that part that says "No Warrant shall issue, but upon Probable Cause". Do you have trouble understanding that part of it?
And what you're failing to see is that the info being collected is not protected by the 4th

Pen register info on phone calls - not protected

Google searches - not protected. Ever read their user agreement?

What web sites you visit? - not protected. Ever hear of "cookies"?

What you post on DP? - not protected. Ever read DP's privacy policy?
 

Trip

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And what you're failing to see is that the info being collected is not protected by the 4th

Pen register info on phone calls - not protected

Google searches - not protected. Ever read their user agreement?

What web sites you visit? - not protected. Ever hear of "cookies"?

What you post on DP? - not protected. Ever read DP's privacy policy?

If private persons were gathering the information that the federal government has, they would be prosecuted under any one of a number of criminal actions.


You're taking ernst's comment out of context and exclusively applying your own select context. However under other context, Obamacare, the federal government has violated the individual right to provate medical records, and to bank information,and to prescription records, and even more based solely on the Secretary's mere deeming! Not even any law, and certainly not an sort of individual due process guaranteed and mandated by the Constitution!

Furthermore, the ObamaCare law stipulates certain powers to the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) for ObamaCare that are entirely extra-legal, and not only in utter disregard of the constitutional powers of the legislative and judicial branches, and but entirely in conflict with the Constitution - flagrantly unconstitutional and tyrannical!

Once the board acts, its decisions can be overruled only by Congress, and only through unprecedented and constitutionally dubious legislative procedures—featuring restricted debate, short deadlines for actions by congressional committees and other steps of the process, and supermajoritarian voting requirements.

The law allows Congress to kill the otherwise inextirpable board only by a three-fifths supermajority, and only by a vote that takes place in 2017 between Jan. 1 and Aug. 15.

If the board fails to implement cuts, all of its powers are to be exercised by HHS Secretary Sebelius or her successor.

reference

These stipulations and others, violate the constitutionally assigned powers of Congress and Judiciary, usurping authority to a specific Executive branch, entirely unanswerable to the electorate, answering to no one, not even the President, and doing so only by a mere law, not even by a constitutional amendment. and also violates other fundamental constitutional provisions.


Separation of Powers:

Separation of Powers, prohbits the aggregation of power to a single branch of the government, and exclusively assigns those powers, and obligations for those powers, to specific branches. However by the abrupt transfer of power under ObamaCare, separation of powers is denied by a mere act of Congress, with the power concentrated and diffused vertically in the IPAB, unable to be immediately challenged and questioned, its members unable to be removed at any given time, and being untouchable along with the Secretary of Health and Human Services, who only has authority if they board fails to do its prescribed duty.


Accountability:
Accountability enables the people to know what government entity is affecting them, so that they can hold officials responsible at the polls. Congress can also hold the executive responsible through oversight and measures like impeachment.


It is no accident that the IPAB's authority is godlike and unchallengeable, because the goal is to control Medicare spending in ways that are insulated from the political process. Not only is the spending being controlled, but every single citizen of the united States is being controlled with their lives and choices being dictated by ObamaCare, and NONE OF THIS being even slightly Constitutional - with rights being violated and discarded at every turn, even the most fundamental right to ownership of oneself, despite the entire purpose of the Constitution, and its every structure, being the protection of individual rights!
 

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What you are failing to see perhaps is that the law is being knowingly violated by the federal government. It is knowingly violating both the letter and the spirit of the 4th amendment, that part that says "No Warrant shall issue, but upon Probable Cause". Do you have trouble understanding that part of it?
I was speaking directly to those issues which Trip presented, and even he acknowledged that no civil liberties were being violated in the examples given. Now, I do agree with you that "secret warrants" do step right up to the edge of violating privacy rights. However, even warrants issued in secret remain warrants as required by law and the Constitution. Let's speak to that law for a moment.

While I don't believe that our privacy is being violated in the way that Snowdan has portrayed things, I do believe that the Obama Administration via the NSA took pieces of personal data and are using that information to create the type of anti-terrorist surveillance they want. However, I do believe that the Obama Administration is trying to go after the terrorist were they hide yet uphold the Constitutionality of their actions. Essentially, what they've done is look at the whole section of FISA law that requires a warrant if taken in the aggregate and are using a small portion of that criteria to establish their surveillance program. They're basically saying, "since we're not taking all of the data FISA requires a warrant to be issued but only using this small portion, does it violate the spirit of the law?" That's what the public is now debating. As things stand, it doesn't appear that they are.

What has people so up in arms about this is the secrecy of it all and the perceived volume of data that's being collected. But the Obama Administration is still adhering to the law; they're having warrants issues prior to listening in on private conversations, reviewing emails or following Internet activity of U.S. citizens. We may not like that this was happening in secret, but I don't think anyone can say they've violated the law - atleast not since having the program undergo judicial review as required by law.

Now, to the issue of illegal search and seizure per the 4th Amendment:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons (body), houses (property), papers (ID), and effects (i.e., baggage or other personal items belonging to the individual), against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
It is that last portion in bold that is in question. As sangha points out, we give up bits and pieces of our private information and, thus, a portion of our privacy every day. The question under the Obama Administration's anti-terrorist surveillance program is this: "Does collecting meta data which only equates to telephone numbers and dates calls were sent and received from and to constitute 'effects' under the Constitution and is such a search unreasonable in present-day anti-terrorism climate?"

Debate...
 
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If private persons were gathering the information that the federal government has, they would be prosecuted under any one of a number of criminal actions.
Once again I haven't bothered to read all your blather because you start out being so very, very wrong.

Right now, as we post, dozens of private and public corporations are gathering the very same information (with the exception of your phone's pen register info) the govt is.

Ever hear of Experian? How do you think Google makes its' money? Ads?
 

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There's a big difference between ignorantly giving someone your information (especially when they've given you TOS) so they can sell you something and the government blatantly violating the 4th amendment.

Once again I haven't bothered to read all your blather because you start out being so very, very wrong.

Right now, as we post, dozens of private and public corporations are gathering the very same information (with the exception of your phone's pen register info) the govt is.

Ever hear of Experian? How do you think Google makes its' money? Ads?
 

Trip

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Once again I haven't bothered to read all your blather because you start out being so very, very wrong.

Right now, as we post, dozens of private and public corporations are gathering the very same information (with the exception of your phone's pen register info) the govt is.

Ever hear of Experian? How do you think Google makes its' money? Ads?
How am I wrong? Talk about a non sequitur! I referenced private persons, not private corporations who are the original possessor's of the information, or acquiring that information. I'm talking about the deliberate intrusion upon and cataloging of information to stalk, not just suspect individuals, but each and every member of society, and not by private corporations in the public domain, but our very own government, using our own tax dollars to enslave us by means it has no constitutional authority to engage in.

Your response is akin someone pointing to Obama's wrongdoing and someone responding "But Bush ...!", but it's not even as cogent as that, with it being "but private industry!"

Not only have you not bothered to read, but you haven't bothered to think, taking a single-sentence comment in response to YOUR singularly narrow focus intending to validate government intrusion, and ignoring the entirety of my response beyond that one sentence, that was outside of the scope of your limited view and prejudicial validation, and actually the subject of my response!

The public availability of this information, does not validate the federal government's acquisition of every bit of this available information to create a cross-referenced database of each and every citizen, to advance the institution of a de facto police state, and intrusion on our freedoms.
 
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