June 20, 2002

Challenging the 'Not in Our...

Challenging the 'Not in Our Name' Petitioners: San Francisco Chronicle columnist Debra Saunders, who I forget to read often enough, asks a spokesperson for the 'Not in Our Name' petition to come up with examples of who, exactly, said criticism of U.S. policy "verged on treason"; and what, exactly, were some of the examples of the "destruction of ... the very right to dissent." The reactions are interesting. Saunders then concludes:

The shame of it is: There will be times when the left is right, when the feds push too far, when innocent people are harassed and detained, or when academics lose their jobs because of their politics. Too bad, the political center won't listen to them. In their hysteria and self-aggrandizement, they shred their credibility.
She's right, I think, but that does not excuse the political center (or right, or whatever) from paying close attention & calling B.S. when "the feds push too far, when innocent people are harassed and detained," and etc. There's a lot of stuff I don't want the U.S. government to do "in my name," plus a bunch of other stuff I'd like it to get busy with. Rubber stamping from the citizenry will not further those goals. Fortunately, rubber stamping does not seem to be in the nature of the Americans I read and pay attention to. (Via Henry Hanks)

Posted by at June 20, 2002 12:36 PM
Comments

Matt... you forget that most everyone that reads NR doesn't want the Feds to do anything in our name except the Dept. of War and alot of those at Reason don't even want that... liberal bias is showing through a bit...

Posted by: bugs bunny at June 20, 2002 08:35 PM

I'm not going to "pre-emptively ridicule" anybody for worrying about the Bill of Rights, but I'm tired of people complaining. There was no security before Sept. 11, people say, so now we're (hopefully) getting some, and people complain.

We were upset that we weren't warned about Sept. 11, and now we are warned about possible terrorist attacks, and people complain. Today, Salon compared the world of Minority Report to a version of "an Ashcroftian security state."

You know what? The government can snoop all they want for all I give a shit. They can find the porn on my hard drive, tap my phone to find out I occaisionally smoke some ganj, even find out what days I do my laundry and when I throw out the garbage.

And I'm hiding, what, exactly? If it means the possibility of me getting blown up on a train or in a shopping mall is diminished, then I'm fine with it.

Strange, I hear no one complaining about all the privacy that's been stripped from the Internet population. You can find, for instance, a phone number (323-XXX-0771) for Matt Welch, along with his address (I won't go there) in about two minutes, and it's completely legal.

And, yes the hysteria and self-aggrandizement are key components in people like myself getting aggravated at those who demand protection but would have our government sitting on their collective federal asses while things escalate.

P.S. - Mess with me, Welch, and I'll post your phone number in its entirety next time, along with those pictures from your drag queen days in San Fran......hahahahah!

Posted by: Delgado at June 21, 2002 12:22 AM

Hey "Delgado" and "Bugs" -- how about some real names, soldiers? Delgado, you can post my phone number all you want (it's listed), but if you do it under a pseudonym, and/or without listing your own, you are a contemptible chickenshit, in my book. I'd love to see a real name on a statement like "The government can snoop all they want for all I give a shit."

And Bugs, I envy your omniscience about people who read certain publications, but I'd rather see you put your own name behind such cheap insults.

Posted by: Matt Welch at June 21, 2002 12:31 AM

Mr. Welch; I pretty much agree with Ella Taylor's article also. I consider myself a moderate conservative, and am a veteran. The biggest complaint I have with the "Not in our name" crowd is that there are serious issues involved here. Miss Taylor is right, these people risk nothing, being unpopular doesn't count. They are annoying more than anything else. Even the Guardian, at least from my prespective, printed it with a raised eyebrow. I would be willing to bet that that signing that petition had more to do with trying to boost flagging careers, than with any heartfelt fears of opression.
I really enjoy visiting your site, and I try to check it every couple of days.............Thanks

Posted by: Mark Edwards at June 22, 2002 07:44 AM

The fact of the matter is that the republicans HAVE gone so far as to equate criticism of the war effort with treason. For example, Spinsanity quotes a republican congressman as saying about Sen. Daschle that his critical comments have the effect of giving "aid and comfort" to our enemies--which of course is a quotation from the constitutional definition of treason. See http://www.spinsanity.org/columns/20020304.html

Posted by: rea at June 23, 2002 10:33 AM

The San Francisco paper just reported that the FBI, under the Patriot Act, has the right to demand libraries and bookstores to open their records to them.

This law was passed without debate, and most likely without it being read.

The whole process is done in secret. Those giving up the information are threatened with legal action if they reveal what they gave out. The person being checked out has no way of finding out they're being investigated.

There's no oversight at any point in this process and no way to defend yourself.

We're heading back to the old days, folks, when people who did no more than write a letter to the editor found themselves investigated and ostracized. What's worse, this is being done with the cooperation of the public who equates giving up their hard-fought rights to privacy (among other things) with peace.

I don't believe in that. I have nothing to hide, but seeing the FBI's incompetence in previous investigations does not inspire confidence that they can handle unlimited authority over our lives.

Posted by: Bill Peschel at June 23, 2002 05:10 PM

Gee, the FBI can finally find out what my daughter's reading at the library and I still can't?

Our hard-fought right to privacy was lost a long time ago. If one wants privacy, one needs to pay cash , purchase homes, etc., using off-shore dummy corporations and stay off the internet.

Posted by: Sandra Pedersen at June 23, 2002 08:40 PM

Delgado,

We were warned about 9/11. The intelligence community was incompetent (or complicit) and let it happen. The changes they've made might make a difference in their ability to prepare for the next attack but it doesn't make them any more competent (or less complicit). These changes definitely make a difference for those of us who care about the Bill of Rights.

They won't come for you until they've neutralized the mechanisms that could save your porn-lovin' ass. If you're too lazy or stupid to see the relevance of it, go back to sleep or try to find the TV remote in your rolls of blubber and let the patchouli-wearing leftists fight this one for you, OK?

Matt,

This administration shows open contempt of the Bill of Rights by suspending habeus corpus to indefinitely imprison a US citizen suspected of plotting a terrorist attack. I know the "Patriot Act" effectively cancelled the fourth amendment. I don't think it suspended habeus corpus. There are existing mechanisms for handling this case, short of tearing up the Constitution.

The Bush administration is using Padilla (or whatever his name is) to force the issue of individual rights. They want to see who will rise to defend individual rights. They can then paint groups defending individual rights as terrrorist organizations. The difference between defending the rights of an accused terrorist and defending an accused terrorist may be obvious to you and I. This difference is easily glossed over in headlines and in most peoples' "common-sense".

As befitting the most artful and well-practiced of reprobates, the Bush administration uses the attorney general to target an embodiment of the "enemy of the moment" for this assault on our fundamental civil liberties.

If you or I protest the abrogation of this would-be terrorist's rights, well, we must be in league with them. We've definitely got a problem when I have to wonder if speaking up to defend the Bill of Rights makes me a target for government investigation.

Links examining aspects of the new playing field:

Increased powers given to fbi

Maybe one of the reasons the fbi is so incompetent has less to do with legal constraints and more to do with harassing targeted political figures and railroading Leonard Peltier (among others). The fbi will misuse their increased powers. This tidbit has come to light after almost 40 years.

Analysis of new
fbi powers

The "Patriot Act" infringes on the security of online communications.

Broad examination of many aspects of the "Patriot Act".

"Free-speech zones.

Are journalists next?

See you in the gulag!

Posted by: John Kovach at June 24, 2002 11:03 AM
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don't think it suspended habeus corpus. There are existing mechanisms for handling this case, short of tearing up the Constitution.

The Bush administration is using Padilla (or whatever his name is) to force the issue of individual rights. They want to see who will rise to defend individual rights. They can then paint groups defending individual rights as terrrorist organizations. The difference between defending the rights of an accused terrorist and defending an accused terrorist may be obvious to you and I. This difference is easily glossed over in headlines and in most peoples' "common-sense".

As befitting the most artful and well-practiced of reprobates, the Bush administration uses the attorney general to target an embodiment of the "enemy of the moment" for this assault on our fundamental civil liberties.

If you or I protest the abrogation of this would-be terrorist's rights, well, we must be in league with them. We've definitely got a problem when I have to wonder if speaking up to defend the Bill of Rights makes me a target for government investigation.

Links examining aspects of the new playing field:

Increased powers given to fbi

Maybe one of the reasons the fbi is so incompetent has less to do with legal constraints and more to do with harassing targeted political figures and railroading Leonard Peltier (among others). The fbi will misuse their increased powers. This tidbit has come to light after almost 40 years.

Analysis of new
fbi powers

The "Patriot Act" infringes on the security of online communications.

Broad examination of many aspects of the "Patriot Act".

"Free-speech zones.

Are journalists next?

See you in the gulag!

Posted by: John Kovach at June 24, 2002 11:03 AM
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Remember personal info?






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