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Print 187 comment(s) - last by mcnabney.. on Oct 22 at 12:11 AM

Your friendly phone company may have been listening to your calls.

Three top American telephone carriers -- Verizon, AT&T and Qwest -- have set what some believe may be an alarming precedent in refusing to turn over information on their wiretapping and snooping programs to the U.S. Congress.

A Congressional panel is investigating whether citizens' rights to privacy and personal freedoms were violated by executive branch mandated snooping programs, which allegedly monitor users' email and phone calls.

The phone companies claim they want to release the information, but can't.  They say that other branches of the government are preventing them from releasing the information about the Bush administration's spy programs to Congress.

AT&T Inc. General Counsel Wayne Watts wrote a letter to the House Energy and Commerce Committee stating, "Our company essentially finds itself caught in the middle of an oversight dispute between the Congress and the executive relating to government surveillance activities."

Congress had request three specific pieces of information.  The first was what information the carriers had turned over to government organizations without warrant.  The second question was whether they were compensated for any such occurrences.  The third question was whether they had installed any equipment for the express purpose of intercepting user emails or calls.

The three major carriers all claimed they were not at liberty to discuss any of these details.  All three carriers did submit limited reports to Congress, which did not contain any of the requested information.

Representative Ed Markey, D. Massachusetts, leads the telecommunications subcommittee and is among the congressional lawmakers frustrated by the carriers' refusal and the executive branch's secrecy.  He voiced his frustration in a public statement. "The water is as murky as ever on this issue, and it's past time for the administration to come clean."

AT&T stated that the Director of National Intelligence, Michael McConnell, invoked the state secrets privilege to block the information request.  Qwest and Verizon say that the Justice Department is blocking the request.

Scott Stanzel, Whitehouse spokesman declined comment, as did Justice Department spokesman, Dean Boyd.

Ross Feinstein, McConnell's spokesman, defended his actions stating that the director had the power to oversee all intelligence activities, as per the 1947 National Security Act.

Verizon did provide Congress with one piece of information.  It said that the Bush administration asked it to find information on the "calling circle" for specific telephone numbers, without warrant.  Verizon claims to have refused this request as it states that it does not have the capabilities to gain such information.

Michael McConnell has tried to defend these carriers and said that they should be given immunity from lawsuits and due process.

Currently AT&T and Verizon are the target of suits for providing customer information to the government.

Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois, the Democrats' No. 2 Senate leader, has vowed to fight giving these carriers immunity from due process of the law.

The Congressional inquiries follow a July temporary measure which allows spy agencies to continue intercepting, without a court warrant, phone calls and e-mails of suspected terrorists.  The measure, named the "Protect America Act of 2007" was covered here at DailyTech.

The Congress is researching the issue as it is mulling over new surveillance legislation.

House democrats are proposing legislation named the "RESTORE Act", which would perpetuate certain warrantless surveillance for antiterrorism purposes, but would impose clear limitations to the scope of the powers and a rigid process to be followed.  House republicans are largely opposed to this measure as they would prefer more open ended powers and freedom from oversight.

The issue of spying is a thorny one.  Phone companies are uncomfortable with their customers finding out that they have been spied upon.  The government is uncomfortable with its citizens finding out they are being spied upon.  Yet, for better or worse, the Bush administration is pushing for continued surveillance privileges as the Congress tries to limit and control these privileges.



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Let the paranoia begin...
By jskirwin on 10/18/2007 9:27:37 AM , Rating: 4
quote:
Yet, for better or worse, the Bush administration is pushing for continued surveillance privileges as the Congress tries to limit and control these privileges.


This is not a battle between the Bush administration and a democrat controlled congress regarding the legality of this surveillance. This is a battle between the Executive and Legislative branches over the limits to the surveillance.

This is more of a cat-fight between two of the three branches of government, with the telcos in the middle than it is a Bush-Cheney assault on the Constitution.




RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Proteusza on 10/18/2007 10:12:55 AM , Rating: 4
The government is all for openness and honesty.

That is, they want you to be open and honest, while they cover everything up, and in return allow their corporate lackies whatever they want.

Democracy is brilliant, isnt it? This is exactly what I would vote for, hell yeah I'd pay tax dollars to be spied on!


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/07, Rating: -1
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By OrSin on 10/18/07, Rating: -1
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/07, Rating: -1
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 10:51:00 AM , Rating: 4
The OP is really saying that lots of American companies are making a lot of money (billions, not millions) due to the Iraq war. It's obviously a spending free-for-all - they're practically giving away the money. Billions of dollars are lost or missing. You can't deny that.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 10:54:25 AM , Rating: 2
That part i would definately agree.

It sounded like he was claiming that individual companies are working with the government to profit billions from dead soldiers. Just wasnt explained right.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mars777 on 10/18/2007 6:54:07 PM , Rating: 2
The Oil industry and the Weapon industries make pleasant money from wars. If there is connection with the government this is a debate. But right now there is no evidence, and i hardly believe that there will ever be.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By JustinChase on 10/19/2007 2:22:16 AM , Rating: 3
The fact that Chaney is the former chairman and CEO of Halliburton before his current stint as puppet-master general is not evidence of corporate ties to the current administration!?!?!?

Hello, McFly, anyone home?

Halliburton was given Billions (yes, with a bit B) in no-bid government contracts to "help rebuild Iraq." Have a look...

http://www.truthout.org/docs_04/121004A.shtml

What more evidence would you like to see? Try Google.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Oregonian2 on 10/18/2007 9:10:41 PM , Rating: 2
AFAIK most of the missing money is missing in Iraq with Iraqi contractors.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 10:54:00 AM , Rating: 3
"Please tell me what executives are making millions on dying soldiers. "

Business partners of George Bush, and Dick Cheney for starters.

Ever wonder why Haliburton bids $50 million dollars to rebuild an Iraqi bridge destroyed in the war, and the Iraqi company that built it in the first place bids $.5 mill and Haliburton wins the bid? Haliburton bids 100x higher price and wins the bid... THAT is why Bush and Cheney have us there, and THAT is where our money is going. To feed the coffers of the Executive branches corporate allies. They dont care how many of our soldiers die, nor do they care what happens to Iraq and its people.

Welcome to reality folks. We've been had, and continue to take it, and act like its not happening.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 10:58:56 AM , Rating: 2
I think its absolutely absurd and sick to even say that.

The Bush administration I would agree is not acting like a typical Conservative administration because spending has been out of control and not controlled by a typical fiscally conservative adminstration.

But to say that they dont care how many of our people die is terrible. Of course they do, and for you to say that makes you just as bad as the extremist on the other side of the political spectrum.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 11:03:15 AM , Rating: 1
Then you, are both in heavy denial,and part of the problem.

I am not an extremist at all. People need to know the truth, and wake up to what our govt is doing so that we can make better choices.

Knowledge = better ability to make the right choice. The Bush administration is all about spreading lies to get what they want. They are the exact opposite of their term "support the troops" How is putting the troops in harms way to advance their own financial/political gains seen as "support". Lies, thats how.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 11:13:28 AM , Rating: 2
Your complete ignorance of what security means is the problem.

I like to use WWII as an example, so i'll use it again. Had we told the people in the US everything that they wanted to know about the war it would have been a failure. You cant give away infromation about who you are watching, etc without the enemy getting their hands on it as well.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 11:23:18 AM , Rating: 2
WWII as an example is totally bunk. That was a just war with a good cause and was not for financial gain, it WAS for freedom. And I believe YOUR complete ignorance of what security means is the problem (you and the shrinking #'s of others that still support this war).

"He who sacrifices freedom for security deserves neither" - Ben Franklin.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By tigen on 10/18/2007 4:00:59 PM , Rating: 2
"it WAS for freedom"

Except it wasn't really. The war started specifically because of Poland. Why did the Allies ally with Stalin, if they were concerned about freedom? At the end of the war, the Soviets controlled Europe from east Germany eastward, including Poland. Those countries weren't "free" until relatively recently.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 4:03:51 PM , Rating: 2
And Putin still wants them back. Another reason we should trust a thing out of that guys mouth. Thats just besides the fact that he supplies weapons to Iran and other middle eastern nations.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 4:05:32 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Another reason we should trust a thing


Supposed to read: Another reason we shouldn't trust a thing

*i hate not having an edit button* lol


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By evildorf on 10/18/2007 4:52:43 PM , Rating: 3
Putin is certainly a shifty one, but we (USA) also supply weapons to middle eastern nations.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 6:04:58 PM , Rating: 4
With regard to teh US involvement in both Europe and Japan it was. You are right about Stalin, but your post neglected 2 minor WW2 thing
1. Hitler (remember him?) He was working toward taking over the world.

2. Pearl Harbor (remember that?) We were attacked, a dorect sneak assault on our military base.

Those 2 things make it a just cause. Iraq is nothing like that.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By rdeegvainl on 10/19/07, Rating: 0
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By retrospooty on 10/19/2007 10:47:56 AM , Rating: 4
Pearl Harbor does not equal 9/11

PH was acountry attacking a US base - Our response was war on that country .

9/11 was Osama, and Al Qaeda attacking US soil. - Our response (and I agree with it) was attacking Afganistan and trying to get Osama, we also disrupted Al Qaeda ops worldwide. So far so good USA.

then came Iraq - they had nothing to do with 9/11, nothing at all.

It would be as if we attacked the Phillipines because of Pearl Harbor. Why do people not seem to get that?


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Pneumothorax on 10/19/2007 11:38:43 AM , Rating: 2
Hmmm.. I would think Hitler makes Saddam look like a kindergarden teacher...


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By XesBOX on 10/21/2007 4:35:19 PM , Rating: 2
First of all, don't quote a political figure to make your argument sound smarter; it doesn't.

Second of all, the warnings on Pearl Harbor went entirely ignored. Period. Not for any other reason than the fact that war is profitable. We committed many many acts AGAINST the Japanese to entice them to attack. It worked. We let it happen. It wasn't the first OR the last time a *MILITARIZED ZONE* was attacked as if every protective entity had it's back turned.

The problem with compassionate people being ruled by mongering dictators is those individuals will never admit they don't have a choice. Once they've admitted they have no choice, they would be admitting to slavery.

The administration isn't racist. The administration isn't biased or immoral. They are simply consumed by their own greed. And as much good as it would do to sit and have a lovely afternoon tea with insurgents to talk about their anger, asking a group of men (and women) like those involved in our currently installed government to be 'less greedy' would be just as successful.

Most of them know what's coming. They know that they will not forever be able to circumvent the compassion of the people. Like a grand-prize winner in a money tube, the president and his lackeys are merely doing what most slaves of the dollar would do; grab as much as you can as quickly as you can.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 11:23:24 AM , Rating: 2
I agree with to a certain degree, however, there is a balancing act between secrecy and accountability that has to be considered. In addition to our government's ability to keep secrets, it also has a long history of abusing its powers.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Polynikes on 10/18/2007 11:54:47 AM , Rating: 4
The simple fact of the matter is that the Executive branch wiretapped without a warrant. That's unconstitutional. Now Congress wants the records. That information should be open for the Legislative branch to see, as it was evidence of an unconstitutional action done by the Executive branch.

Any argument of "That's not safe, we need to maintain security" is bunk. The information is of no threat to anyone if Congress is going over it. It doesn't need to be seen by the public; Congress just needs to see it to act on it. The executive branch isn't allowing that, which is wrong.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 12:04:02 PM , Rating: 2
It's only a simple situation if you ignore the realities that actually make it complicated. For example, think about the political motivations behind the requests - clearly there are many in Congress that would like to use this situation for their own political gain, at the expense of the President.

In addition, can this Congress be truly trused with this type of information? There are so many leaks in Washington - there is some merit to the idea that the fewer people who know what is really going on the better.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Polynikes on 10/19/2007 8:12:44 AM , Rating: 2
I don't care if they have political motivations or not. Bush and his administration did something wrong and deserve to be held accountable.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By rcc on 10/18/2007 4:41:06 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Any argument of "That's not safe, we need to maintain security" is bunk. The information is of no threat to anyone if Congress is going over it. It doesn't need to be seen by the public;


That may well be the first time I've seen someone comment that Congress "can" keep secrets. Regardless of the way I feel about the rest of this issue, if you pass it to Congress you might as well publish it in the Washington Post.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Durrr on 10/19/2007 6:23:42 AM , Rating: 2
Where in the constitution does it say that you have a reasonable right to privacy? It doesn't, however, that is a precedent set by the Supreme Court.

I really hate when people interject constitutionality into every argument that comes up.

Just a FYI, those no bid contracts were bid on, but they are bid on in 10 year contracts for wartime support. It was an action set forth first in the Clinton administration in the US's support of rebuilding Kuwait.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mcnabney on 10/22/2007 12:11:35 AM , Rating: 2
The first and fourth amendments create the right to privacy.

And in this country the executive branch has to get a warrant from the judicial branch to seize evidence in order to enforce laws created by the legislative branch . It is called separation of powers and it is a very good thing.

What we have now is the executive branch taking whatever evidence it wants without working with justice and without oversight of the legislature.

When power is united strictly under the executive branch it is called a dictatorship. Learn from history!


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Frallan on 10/18/2007 11:15:18 AM , Rating: 1
Ohh they care just as much as you do when playing a C&C game...


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By redbone75 on 10/18/2007 4:08:07 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The Bush administration I would agree is not acting like a typical Conservative administration because spending has been out of control and not controlled by a typical fiscally conservative adminstration.

But to say that they dont care how many of our people die is terrible. Of course they do, and for you to say that makes you just as bad as the extremist on the other side of the political spectrum.


I would venture to say that you are a damned fool to think otherwise when all of the evidence points to the contrary. This whole f#$@ing war is a capitalist venture, and to have our soldiers remain there is an insult to the military men and women who continue to serve and die there. Bush is a cynic, and to say that he cares about the men and women dieing in Iraq above his own agenda is preposterous at best. This administration has used every tactic in the book, and has even created new ones, to sidestep the controversies of this war. I'm not calling into question at all your patriotism or anything of the sort, but it would seem you trust the government and what they tell you just a little too much. Trust the government, but only so far as you can question and witness their actions.

You talk about getting rid of welfare, and I'm for it, but so many programs that would be beneficial to this country are denied funding, funding that is a pittance compared to what is being spent on this war, and that's not counting the money that just seems to disappear there. We're talking about billions of dollars unaccounted for in audits. Billions. Tell me that this administration cares. Please. Tell me and make it believable.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/07, Rating: -1
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 4:13:30 PM , Rating: 1
As much as you might blame Bush, you do know the Senate has to approve the spending. Thats both democrats and republicans. And as I stated, this administration is frustrating even many republicans because they are not acting fiscally conservative.

However, your first paragraph about all the capitalist conspiracies is all liberal bullshit to end the war, get democratic control of office, and introduce socialism.

I do not buy the liberal mumbo jumbo that MSNBC uses to brainwash its viewers.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By sinful on 10/18/2007 7:51:19 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
do not buy the liberal mumbo jumbo that MSNBC uses to brainwash its viewers.

Yeah, watch Fox News instead - They're fair & balanced!

LOL


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/07, Rating: -1
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By sinful on 10/18/2007 9:02:02 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
ABC, NBC, MSNBC, etc are extremely liberal media


All I can do is laugh.

Fox has a Wikipedia article DEDICATED to their allegations of Bias!!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fox_News_Channel_cont...

Oh, in MSNBC's wikipedia entry, they have a section on bias - which includes accusations of them being CONSERVATIVE. LOL.

If you think FOX is "middle of the road", you need to watch other media sources. Try watching the BBC for a while (widely cited as the least tilted news organization). Your head will explode without the constant glowing praise that Fox heaps upon Republicans.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 11:08:55 AM , Rating: 2
Do you have specific details of this 100x the price bridge?

Lets assume you do for a minute (who knows maybe bill maher, al franken or dan rather gave it to you)... .

Do you know what the Iraqi company had to back up their bid? Most government contracts require more than just sayin oh yeah we can do it for this price.

Is the war working out perfectly? hell no. Is the problem what it's costing? No, its the time it's taking.

I beleive the problem is trying to fight a clean war. If we fought WWII the same way we wopuld all be under german rule right now. You can sit here an speak about liberty and freedom all day, but you dont seem to understand it comes at a price. Ask yourself. When is the last time I made a sacrifice for my freedom?


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By retrospooty on 10/18/07, Rating: 0
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 11:35:50 AM , Rating: 1
You dont buy my liberty at a price argument becuase we have become content with just bitching and never acting.

Iraq failed to comply with countless UN resolutions. The UN was ASKED to join the war, they failed to follow up on their promises. A resolutions is useless if there is no consequence.

It would be like saying murder is wrong, but if you murder someone we'll tall you again not to do it. Eventually you have to do something. Just because the UN has failed in their obligations doesnt mean that the country who supplies 22% of the UN funding has to sit on their hands too..

Sadam was also a madman. He butchered his own people. Just becuase it didnt threaten to spread right now didnt mean it wouldn't. There was a reason for the resolutions.

Should we be in Iraq right now? Not if G HW B had finished the job, but since he didnt his son got stuck doing it for him.

Since you want to talk political wrongdoing. Look up info on charlie tree and his connection to the clinton's specifically fundraising and sequentially numbered money orders all with the same mis-spelling. Also his background and connection to the chinese gov and how the Bill handed him security access.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By retrospooty on 10/18/07, Rating: 0
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 11:58:01 AM , Rating: 2
The problem is that the UN Security Council is ineffective. Writing resolutions without taking the initiative to enforce them doesn't work. Unfortunately, the side-effect of their disfunction is that the U.S. is forced to sometimes make decisions like with Iraq, which increases the opportunity to make mistakes.

I don't think the UN has "clean hands" in dealing with Iraq - they failed to solve the problem. Our solution isn't a good solution, but at least it is solved. The UN shares some blame for the outcome.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By retrospooty on 10/18/07, Rating: 0
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By FITCamaro on 10/18/07, Rating: 0
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 1:03:22 PM , Rating: 1
"And who do you think knows more about what is where? Bush who has access to some of the most sophisticated intelligence equipment in the world and the resulting data? Data that I doubt we share all of even with the UN. Or you? I won't even pretend to know or comprehend the stuff the CIA knows and we aren't told. Nor do I need to know. I'm sure there's things even Bush doesn't know."

You just buy it all hook line and sinker dont ya? But you do bring up a good point (for me, not for you). You are correct, the Bush admin had access to some of the most sophisticated intelligence equipment in the world and the resulting data. And that date, and the advisors including Colin Powell told him there aren't any and that there weren't any and not to go in. He willfully lied to congress and to the public to get what he wanted.

Steven Colbert had a funny one, that is really true, sadly you are still buying it...

This administration doesn't make decisions based on facts, they make facts based on decisions.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 1:36:05 PM , Rating: 4
Since we are talking comedy.
I think Louis Black said it best when he said. (not an exact quote).

the Republican Party is the party of bad ideas, and the Democratic Party is the party of no ideas.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 1:10:17 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Ever think they got moved out of the country before we got there?

I personally believe that if that happened, we would have found evidence to support that as well. Considering what was at stake, I believe that a very thorough effort was made to find WMDs, and I'm sure that a part of that was trying to track them if they were hidden, destroyed, or shipped out of Iraq. So far, no publicly-available evidence seems to support anything of the sort.

In any case, if he got rid of all the WMDs before we invaded, it again effectively made the "reason" we invaded Iraq disappear. So in that case it was a bad decision as well.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By geddarkstorm on 10/18/2007 1:51:48 PM , Rating: 2
For the record chemical WMDs have been found in Iraq. Moreover, Saddam used WMDs on the Kurds, so he certainly had them in the past too--and then after the agreement after 1991's war to destroy them all in defiance of that agreement.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/artic... (most recent finding showing stuff made just prior to the invasion)
http://www.katc.com/Global/story.asp?S=1873019&nav...
http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=0606220555... (which goes to show Saddam didn't comply. Wonder why the "there were no WMDs!" harping has stopped from the left and basically dropped from the news? Because we did find some.)
http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/08/30/un.gas/index.html (The UN also has chemical weapons! WE MUST INVADE! (if people don't realize that last one as a joke, I think we're all screwed too tight lol))


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By First on 10/18/2007 3:13:43 PM , Rating: 2
Your own links confirm your story is bunk; those were pre-91 non-functional WMDs, stated the very articles you link, i.e. NOT the WMDs the American people were told they were looking for. What we were told about was mobile weapons labs and functional WMDs that posed a direct threat to U.S. national security. Those WMDs found last year posed no threat according to our own gov't, i.e. the Pentagon.

And to top it off, the administration itself has conceded that no WMDs were found, and has conceded this far at least two years now. To claim otherwise is to be in some form of deep denial.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By sinful on 10/18/2007 8:12:16 PM , Rating: 3
Did you even read your cited articles?!?!?!

quote:
A Pentagon official who confirmed the findings said that all the weapons were pre-1991 vintage munitions "in such a degraded state they couldn't be used for what they are designed for." ........
The Iraqis were very capable of producing such shells in the 1980s but it's not as clear that they continued after the first Gulf War , so officials are reluctant to guess the age of the shell or the capacity of the Iraqis prior to Operation Iraqi Freedom to produce such shells.


quote:
Boylan said the suspected lab was new, dating from some time after the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 . The Bush administration cited evidence that Saddam Hussein's government was manufacturing weapons of mass destruction as the main justification for the invasion. No such weapons or factories were found.


Call me crazy, but "No such weapons or factories were found" seems to be completely opposite of the conclusion you've drawn. In fact, given the fact they started making them AFTER we invaded, I'd say we accomplished the complete OPPOSITE of what we wanted.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By FITCamaro on 10/18/2007 12:42:58 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. The UN is an ineffective body that has no ability to back up what it says. The US does that for them whether they like it or not.

Since its inception, the UN has been a powerless, spineless entity that does nothing but waste time and US taxpayer money.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By tigz1218 on 10/18/2007 12:13:25 PM , Rating: 2
people like you are why we havent won a major war since ww2 ...stop being a little sissy and man up ....i bet your one of those people who has a bumper sticker that says "support your country , Bring home the troops now!" ....thats just a liberals way of waiving the white flag like they have been since ww2...my 2 best friends are in the army and i would hate to see anything bad happen to them, but they knew full well of their duties before joining the army and ....i support the troops and i support the war and i support my country (and my friends like that i support them AND the war)... i havent forgotten 911 you prolly have...and if we leave iraq now what does that say to the rest of terrorists around the world ? it says that we lost and even the most powerful military in the world could not take them down, we would see a huge rise in terrorists attacks and when it happens you will be first one crying and yelling we should have never gave up in iraq .....im done ranting im getting too angry


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 12:23:14 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
people like you are why we havent won a major war since ww2 ...stop being a little sissy and man up

I don't think you're replying to me, but I'd like to respond anyway. I don't think you're being intellectually honest about the situation. The problem with the Iraq war is that it is not justified. The troops are doing a great job following their orders, but the problem is that the orders were wrong.

Worse yet, again due to a bad strategy, we have actually created a situation in Iraq that is worse for us than when Hussain was in power. I'm of course talking about the fact that Iraq is now a fertile ground for terrorist operations, whereas in Hussain's time, groups like al Queda were not tolerated.

And finally, you bring up 9/11, however I would remind you that there was no connection between Iraq/Hussain and 9/11 - none.

I think people sometimes mix up all these ideas and use these to criticize Americans who do not support the war. Please understand is it more complex than that.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By tigz1218 on 10/18/2007 12:46:29 PM , Rating: 2
i was replying to retro not you tom


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 12:55:14 PM , Rating: 1
Exactly, and thank you...

Tigs1218, you are seriously misguided and/or delusional to think that Iraq had anything to do with 9/11, and that leaving will make us less safe.

The Islamic extremists hate us and want us out of their region of the world. Us being there makes us less secure, the latest round of hatred for the US and our policies all started when (in their opinion), we butted our noses into Iraq in the early 1990's and we had no right to be there. They will continue to attack and hate us as long as we are meddling in their region, they want us out, and us being there only serves to magnify their hatred into small bands of terrorist candidates.

The Bush admin asks us believe that we are there to make ourselves more secure, but by now we should all be well aware that the Bush admin is WRONG in every assumption they have made about this war .Every single thing they say and every step they take is an error. We need to stop buying hte poop they are selling. How many incorrect descision must we let them make before we stop thier ability to make them.

Please, try and open your eyes just a little to the world you live in.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Gibby82 on 10/18/2007 5:21:34 PM , Rating: 2
Terrorists weren't tolerated? Are you kidding me? The Iraqi army was pretty much a huge government funded terrorist group, except they attacked their own.

You people...gahhh. War is bad, yeah I get it. But it's NOT going away. It's been around for our entire existence. It is happening now and it WILL happen again. Just face facts and realize the human civilization is not as "civilized" as we think.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 8:19:26 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Terrorists weren't tolerated? Are you kidding me? The Iraqi army was pretty much a huge government funded terrorist group, except they attacked their own.

Wrong. While the Iraqi army may have been a bunch of thugs, they were not out to kill Americans. Hussain also hated al Queda and didn't tolerate them within Iraqi borders. The Iraqi army certainly didn't pose any threat to us.

But now with the Hussein regime gone, al Queda has a lot more freedom (and motivation!) to operate in Iraq. Therefore, we have made that particular situation worse.

For the record, I'm just stating facts here; this is not a matter of opinion.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By athlonotaku on 10/18/2007 12:19:23 PM , Rating: 3
The reason the UN didn't respond was because some of the top UN countries were too busy getting rich off of the food for oil program...


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 1:54:18 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The reason the UN didn't respond was because some of the top UN countries were too busy getting rich off of the food for oil program...


DING DING DING...

We have a winner.

Except its actually called Oil for Food :)


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 1:56:01 PM , Rating: 2
If it were only that easy for me to trade in a crummy Crepe for a tank of gas! LOL


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Ryanman on 10/20/2007 8:29:01 PM , Rating: 1
Were the Iraqi's/Saddam giving the finger to the UN? Yeah. Wanna know why? it's a powerless, simplisticly hopeful and theoretical body. It wasn'ut our buisness to do something nobody else on the planet would do.
You know what I wish? We hadn't killed Saddam. Given, he was an evil dictator but do you have any idea how difficult it is to keep these zealot ANIMALS in check? they've killed more of each other than any soldier or army possibly could, short of nuclear weaponry.
All the bleeding heart liverals are right.. we should never have come to Iraq to keep innocent people from dying. Too bad the only reason that rings true is because you need a heartless dictator to keep fellow iraqis from killing each other.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By drebo on 10/18/07, Rating: 0
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 3:47:13 PM , Rating: 2
Huh, are you joking? The OP was talking about WWII. Are you drunk right now? :o)


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By drebo on 10/18/2007 4:36:30 PM , Rating: 1
Right, he was justifying our position in WWII based on the fact that we were attacked. I was simply pointing out that we were also attacked this time, and, that attack was what prompted our initiative in the Middle East in the first place.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 5:03:35 PM , Rating: 3
The only problem with that line of reasoning is that we were attacked by al Queda, and in turn, we invaded Iraq, which had no relationship with al Queda or 9/11.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Donkeyshins on 10/19/2007 4:46:34 PM , Rating: 2
Well, if you wanted to attack the country with the greatest connection to the people that committed the 9/11 attacks, then we should have invaded Saudi Arabia. Whoops.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By bodar on 10/18/2007 4:00:40 PM , Rating: 4
Hate to break it to you, but Japan is a country and the Middle East is a region. We were not attacked by an entire region, but an Islamic extremist (<- important word here) faction made up of people from that particular region.

To hold an entire group of countries responsible for the actions of a few is irresponsible at best, much in the same way that stereotyping all Muslims as violent and dangerous is ridiculous. Clearly that doesn't fit into your black-and-white, "they-hate-us-for-our-freedoms" world view. Islamic extremists have a similar one, and it's just as retarded.

In other news: I think I just 100% agreed with TomZ. I need to lie down... ;)


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By drebo on 10/18/2007 4:39:55 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
To hold an entire group of countries responsible for the actions of a few


When that entire group of countries is known for protecting and harboring the few, then they are responsible (albeit indirectly) for the actions of those few.

If I hide a murderer in my home, regardless of the reason, I am just as responsible for the people he murders as he is. The act of protecting and harboring enables future murders to take place, which makes me responsible. The same holds true for countries who harbor terrorists.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By bodar on 10/18/2007 8:13:46 PM , Rating: 2
Harboring is not the same as they hide out there, and there has been no proven link between Al Qaeda and Iraq, other than Al Qaeda comes to Iraq for their chance to blow up our soldiers. The biggest problem with the War on Terror is that it is borderless. In WWII, our enemies were sovereign nations, and now they are in many places at once. You can't put embargoes on them; you don't even know where they live exactly.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Oregonian2 on 10/18/2007 9:18:03 PM , Rating: 2
First of all, I think you're making up those bid numbers. Second of all haliburton can actually make the bridge (if that's what they do). Massive money has been paid to Iraqi contractors with an empty lot showing the result.

Haliburton is a very large company that actually successfully does stuff and has demonstrated abilities to do things that not many other companies can do. They aren't a fictitious company made up by Cheney to pocket money if/when he should ever work there again.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By glitchc on 10/18/2007 3:04:25 PM , Rating: 2
Try the ones at Boeing, Honeywell, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Hughes, Raytheon...

How about some private military contractors such as AirScan, Eastern Cross, Titan Corp. (Abu Ghraib incident come to mind?), the now infamous Blackwater Corp. ....

Need I go on?


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 3:07:45 PM , Rating: 2
So basically any company who is a supplier of the government - including all of them well before the war - are now guilty of profitting off the the war?

Thats pretty ridiculous.

And of course the contractors are getting paid to be there....and they should be. They are not part of our volunteer army. I dont see the problem with them.

As far as the Abu Gharib & Blackwater Corp stuff - neither you nor I know much about the true story - its all polical garbage and accusations by the democratic party because they want to pull out of the war.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 3:11:58 PM , Rating: 2
...and discredit the President.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By glitchc on 10/18/2007 5:40:56 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
So basically any company who is a supplier of the government - including all of them well before the war - are now guilty of profitting off the the war?


These are not "any" companies. These are defence contractors. As the defence budget doubles and triples, orders to these companies double and triple. Research money into new technologies for military endeavours grows substantially too. Simple economics states that if the market for your product is booming, there is a strong incentive for you to keep it that way for as long as possible. It's not ridiculous at all. It's just business.

Last I heard, none of these companies were non-profit charitable organizations. It's easy to cloud the issue with moral outrage, but we must not forget, in all of our morality how much money is actually involved. Businesses are not required to act from a moral standpoint, rather a profit one. War has always been a big business, and Western economies have padded their GDPs considerably, in the past and today, through the sale of products and technologies designed specifically for war, or "deterrence" of war, as is commonly used in such circles.

quote:
And of course the contractors are getting paid to be there....and they should be. They are not part of our volunteer army. I dont see the problem with them.


You're absolutely correct in that they have a right to be paid. Just as the volunteer army also has a right to be paid since they are putting their lives on the line for their country. Since they're both paid, the former rather extravagantly I might add, we have a moot point here.

The fact that you don't have a problem with them being there is another matter altogether. Volunteer armies function under oversight of the public. They are required to act ethically and morally, and the infrastructure possesses strong discentives in case one decideds to deviate from this moral standing. A private contractor for mercenaries, on the other hand, has only one incentive: money. Morality and ethics do not enter the equation. By providing them with immunity, we are further removing the critical oversight needed to ensure that they function under the code of ethics to which our "volunteer" army is subjected to.

quote:
polical garbage and accusations by the democratic party because they want to pull out of the war.


Political garbage and accusations? Pictures don't lie. Neither do testimonials from guards at the complex. Regardless of how you spin it, those prisoners are grossly mistreated. By who or what is irrelevant. Since they are under the care and protection, note I said "care and protection", of the guards at the complex, responsibility for their diminishing welfare falls squarely on the caretakers of said complex. Subsequently, the allegations for Blackwater Corp. are stemming from the Iraqi Govt.... Last I heard, they were put in power by Bush, so I don't know where your railing on Democrats comes in. Perhaps it would be better to factor out your political beliefs and focus on the facts.

Now, there's a common, fallacious line of reasoning which seems to sprout from the prior point, namely: "It's ok if we mistreat them, they're criminals anyhow." This would be true if we were retailiating against a country that had conclusively attacked us first. There were no Iraqis on those 9/11 planes. Iraq was never conclusively found to have WMDs. Period. The leap from Terrorists to Iraq (a dummy target) is the largest fallacy of the Bush administration.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Gibby82 on 10/18/2007 5:27:00 PM , Rating: 2
You named a bunch of aircraft manufacturers whose aircraft and projects were in existence long before 9/11 (Northrop Grumman and the B-2 for example). So yeah....you're argument is useless.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Gibby82 on 10/18/2007 5:27:51 PM , Rating: 2
*your*


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By glitchc on 10/18/2007 5:46:43 PM , Rating: 2
The OP specifically requested executives who were benefitting from the war, and I stated the companies whose executives are. The timeliness of their existence is irrelevant.

It is foolish to argue that increasing the defence budget is not benefitting these companies. If you buy more product from Company A, Company A is going to make more money. If you invest more research money for future technologies into Company A over Company B, Company A is more likely to produce a better product, or a new product faster. Then, Company A will make more money selling it to you for a premium, since no other company in the market has it.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Samus on 10/18/2007 8:37:27 PM , Rating: 2
Try billions. We spend $4,000 dollars a SECOND in Iraq.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By jtemplin on 10/18/2007 11:03:16 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
Id rather pay taxes to be spyed on and for security than pay taxes to support a ghetto mom with 3 kids who trades her food stamps for crack.


Mdogs, does this really add anything to the discussion?


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Lord 666 on 10/18/2007 11:46:57 AM , Rating: 2
Wow, considering you work for a not-for-profit... these are suprising statements. Maybe she is using the crack to barter for other goods or selling for a profit.

But to be spied on by your own country is unacceptable in any shape or form.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 11:50:27 AM , Rating: 2
I work in the IT department of a non-for profit. You are correct in that my views do not align with most people in this business. But non the less, I am here to help children....not the parents who don't care about them.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By gramboh on 10/18/2007 1:06:10 PM , Rating: 2
Do you know anything about the root causes of poverty and social strife? You have to help the parents to help the kids. The parents make poor life choices (and I agree, they are frustrating) for a reason, and you have to address the root causes or it will just be an endless cycle. Your harsh judgments are not helpful. You are more interested in feeling superior than helping fix the problem. Does working in IT mean rebooting the server and running AV updates? (Sorry, couldn't resist one cheap shot)


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 1:12:08 PM , Rating: 3
What you fail to realize by your statement is that many people in low income communities do not want our "help" because that also entails then working for it. That doesn't mean all low income families, but in today's world - get something for nothing - goes a long way. And how is raising the SCHIP bill to giving away insurance to families who make 80k/yr helping people want to work for their money instead of getting something for free?

And no im not interested in feeling superior. In fact, I volunteer more of my time than you probably to helping out low income people - but just becuase i dont want to give them my money doesnt make me a bad person. But i am more concerned with my life and my families life than I am about the lives of low income families. Call me selfish, call me what you want...but that is my priority. I want more of my money to spoil myself and my family because i work for it, and i should be entailed to that. There are plenty of charities and orgranizations out there that help low income families - and giving money to low income families, in my opinion, should be a choice not a requirement.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By FITCamaro on 10/18/2007 2:25:37 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
And how is raising the SCHIP bill to giving away insurance to families who make 80k/yr helping people want to work for their money instead of getting something for free?


That $80,000 a year number is the number that news agencies don't report much. They just spin it as "Bush is against giving free healthcare to kids". The program currently gives healthcare to families of 4 that make like $40,000 a year. I can get and accept that. But me paying for your insurance when you make $80,000 a year? Sure taxes are a bitch but I pay them too.

Bush supports raising the amount of money the program gives. Just not as much as the Democrats.

I'm with you man. I work hard for my money. And I don't mind giving to charity. But me giving you something for free against my will isn't charity. I want to spend my money on me. Whatever I've got left I'll decide what to spend it on.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 1:41:05 PM , Rating: 2
Give a mand a fish..
vs.
Teach a man to fish...

I'd rather teach all day long than handout.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 1:44:09 PM , Rating: 2
How funny, thats the same expression my father used for years:

"Democrats want to give people a fish per day to keep them happy, Republicans want to teach people to fish and allow them to catch as much as they can".


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Lord 666 on 10/18/2007 2:10:57 PM , Rating: 2
Wow, you really are out in left field.

Maybe in Ohio things appear as simple as party lines, but here in NYC there is truely groundbreaking work helping people help themselves.

Check out www.doe.org - its a not-for-profit that including their many projects, hires homeless and underprivelaged people to collect waste veggie oil and then sells the WVO to biodiesel firms. http://www.rwaresourcerecovery.org/

While this has nothing to do with wiretapping, your responses are wanna-be elitist.

PS - Thank GWB (a Republican) in vetoing the SCHIP bill. There is nothing like taking healthcare dollars from children.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 2:20:22 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
PS - Thank GWB (a Republican) in vetoing the SCHIP bill. There is nothing like taking healthcare dollars from children.


You only believe what the Democrats what you to believe about the Bill - why do you think it didnt pass?

It has nothing to do with the children. It has to do with the bill being developed to assist low income families. The democrats wanted to increase it to support families who make up to $82,000 per year which is hardly low income, much less middle class. Perhaps in NYC, 82k is not as much as it is in most parts of the country, but in Ohio the average salary is close to around $32k. Most families in Ohio have a home salary of under 80k, so we should pay everyones child health care?

You need to open your eyes and realize that it was a sham to target the republics and make the public think they dont care about kids - which obviously worked in your case becuase you probably watch NBC, ABC, or MSNBC - and is also just a step to Hillary's universal health care system to create more government power.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Lord 666 on 10/18/2007 2:35:06 PM , Rating: 2
No, its foresight requesting up to 82,000. Maybe in Ohio salaries have stayed stagnant, but elsewhere they have increased beyond minimum wage.

Let's pretend a family of 4 making about 160,000 and pretend that only one of the parents has health insurance since one of them is a consultant. If one of them looses their job (80,000) and they are living on one salary of 80,000, where is the healthcare coming from?

If you don't already know the history of the SCHIP, it started in 1997 to bridge the gap between Medicaid qualified families and private insurance familes. This request to increase up to 82,000 is an unspoken acknowledgement that the nation has some additional economic hardships ahead of it. There is much evidence of a current recession that could quickly turn into depression with the escalation of the sub-prime market and credit issues.

So if little Johnny gets sick without insurance, the bills quickly add up. What goes next? Credit card bills increase and then the house goes into foreclosure. If the SCHIP was passed, this family will have some breathing room and the ability to maintain their dignity.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 2:44:49 PM , Rating: 4
Thats still a terrible example because housing and waged in NYC are much different than the rest of America, you best do some research on that part first of all.

Secondly, its still completely feasible for a family of 4 to live on 80,000 per year. They just cannot live on 80k with a 160k lifestyle! Big difference. They buy a 3000sq ft house, have two luxury cars, and the kids are sitting in the family room playing xbox, but since the mother lost her job...its now the responsibility of people who make 50k/yr to pay the 80k/yr families health insurance?

80k/yr for a family of 4 is not even close to the poverty or low income level. Its called living within your means. If you choose to be a consultant, you know that you much purchase your own insurance, plain and simple. Its not my responsibilty because they want to be a consultant.

So now that their credit card bills go up, i should lower my standard of living, so their family can maintain their standard of living becuase only 1 person in the family is working and making 80/yr?

You are freakin ridiculous.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Moishe on 10/18/2007 2:45:58 PM , Rating: 4
I'm not here to maintain someone else's dignity.

I don't want to be harsh, but people need to feel the consequences of their actions if we ever want people to change. People who do stupid things and get in debt NEED to feel poor and in debt and unable to pay so that they learn not to make those mistakes. If they cannot afford NYC because it's an island only the rich can live on then they need to move and not expect the rest of the country to support their poor choice of living locations.

Enabling people does not help anyone. It simply applies a bandaid to a gaping head wound and makes everyone feel good about themselves.

There is no shame in being poor or not having health care. The things we take for granted are astounding. Wealth and freedom don't grow on trees. Living like you're financially OK when you're not is foolishness and I don't want my tax money to support it. The government cannot make wealth they simply take it from some people and give it to others.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By ebakke on 10/18/2007 12:02:03 PM , Rating: 2
To be spied on by your own country when you are not doing anything wrong is unacceptable. Anyone committing crimes (or conspiring to) deserves it. And they always have been! I love how if police, or the FBI are gathering information on a suspect it's called an "investigation", but if it's the NSA or any other section of the federal gov't, it's "spying".


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By darkpaw on 10/18/2007 12:10:02 PM , Rating: 2
I'm in agreement here. The problem is how they determine who "deserves it". It shouldn't be that hard for them to show just cause and GET WARRANTS. Its the lack of review in the process that makes a lot of people nervous.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Ryanman on 10/20/07, Rating: -1
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By jskirwin on 10/18/2007 10:32:41 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
The government is all for openness and honesty.


You forgot to use the /sarcasm tag.

And you also completely ignore the fact that all three branches of government are fighting this out - not acting in sync as a monolithic entity that seeks to deprive you of your freedom.

Seeing them fight is good. I am much more concerned about organizations that I can't vote for and don't control violating my privacy.

RIAA can bully ISPs to provide the data that it needs to sue your butt into bankruptcy, and you can't do anything about it. Google can control who you criticize, and how you do it - and you can't do anything about it.

At least when it comes to wiretapping and surveillance you have a say in electing the representatives who write the laws. RIAA and Google can do what they want and there's little you can do about it.

Except NOT share files and NOT criticize Moveon.org.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/07, Rating: 0
RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 10:42:25 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
Yes a little off subject, but couldnt pass up the chance at a comment about these wackjob groups and who is associated with them.

Yes, because after all, smear tactics and web sites are only used by liberals, not conservatives. Yeah right.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/18/2007 10:48:08 AM , Rating: 2
Ha,
That reminds me of the recent Ann Coulter (bestseller?), which had this priceless jewel of a description on its inside cover.

It said on the sleeve:
quote:
Do I think we should invade middle eastern countries, kill their leaders, and convert them to Christianity? Absolutely!


I know theres some overzealous liberals, but when Coulter is considered a major conservative voice, it kinda lets you know that their opinions are pretty far outside mainstream America.

I mean its kinda hard to take a line like that out of context.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 11:02:43 AM , Rating: 1
Ann Coulters books are actually pretty interesting to read. Although I dont think I would put my opinions into the same wording as she does, but she does bring about many good points.

I don't know that all conservative people really listen to Coulter and take everything she says to heart...but its nice to see someone say things how they really are instead of the all "politically correct" b.s. that everyone passes off.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/18/2007 11:09:01 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
she does bring about many good points.


Did you read her quote at all?

She advocates murder and religious extremism and hate and you support her and say she has "good points"??

That's sorta like saying Aldolf Hitler or Joe Stalin brought up some good points.

Ann Coulter is a sick puppy, and so are you mdogs, if you listen to her trash.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 11:18:01 AM , Rating: 1
Then i guess im a sick puppy.

I never said i agreed with 100% of everything she says. She is very much on the religious extreme and its not something that I condone, but then again, I dont condone people on the other side who dont want any religion in the nation at all either. She does say alot of sick things about "eliminating" the people she doesnt like - and whether she really means it or is joking in context is not up to me to tell you what she truly means. Those words are not coming out of my mouth, but im free to read her book.

Not everything she says is complete BS, its just not politcally correct. In a way, she is no worse than Chris Matthews, Harry Reid, Hillary's backing of MoveOn.Org.

You are free to think what you want, and so am I. But its typical liberal BS to take personal shots at people because you cannot brainwash them to think like you.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 11:18:33 AM , Rating: 3
I have to agree with you about Coultier. I haven't read her books, but I've seen her on TV lots of times and almost always, I am outraged by her statements. She is so wrong, it is almost painful to listen to. I find her deeply offensive.

I do realize, however, that she has mastered the art of "shock" in order to sell her books. But that doesn't make her any less reprehensible to me.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By PitViper007 on 10/18/2007 11:44:52 AM , Rating: 2
The point with Coultier is that she's TRYING to outrage you. Yes she says stuff that's out there, but she's doing it to get people's goat. When she's not in "shock" mode, she's actually quite sensible.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 11:52:04 AM , Rating: 2
Probably true, but I don't buy into the whole "ends justify the means" kind of thing.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 11:21:56 AM , Rating: 2
Jason,
I consider myself a conservative. But just like the liberal side the conservative movement has been hijacked by extremists. I am not a religious rigth type of person, I could care less about abortion (for example). I care about security, liberty, over spending, taxes, etc. I'm more of a fiscal conservative than anything.

There are deffinately problems with both political parties right now. Both seem to be at different extremes, although most of them try to lie and say they are in the center.

I dont think its anymore fair to make a blanket statement that all conservatives fall into the same category as coulter than it would be to say all liberals are michael moore fans or believe hilary clinton doesnt talk out of both sides of her face.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Ryanman on 10/20/2007 8:50:20 PM , Rating: 1
Mdogs keeps supporting facists like that. Ignore him. Coulter, Bush, Gore, Hillary, they're all the same. Greater power and governmental regulation of Morality (Welfare, etc. for the liberals)


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By jskirwin on 10/18/2007 11:14:00 AM , Rating: 2
Jason
What does Ann Coulter have to do with this?

My point was that we've got checks/balances in government - but not in the private sector. If it wanted to, RIAA could contact my ISP right now, find out who I am and sue me to shut me up even though I don't engage in P2P file sharing. I would be forced to either comply with their demands, or fund my own defense in civil court - which could ruin me and my family financially.

It can get my identity through lawsuits - or the threat of lawsuits - whereas the gov't would have to obtain a warrant from a judge.

Google's action was an attempt at stifling freedom of speech. Since it is a private company, it could do this legally. I don't see this as a dem/rep issue: I view it from more of a libertarian (small l) perspective.

Which is the greater threat to democracy?


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Etsp on 10/18/2007 12:09:24 PM , Rating: 2
What? Do you think it may have simply been a copyright violation that caused google to not display the ad?

On another note, honestly, I am a democrat and I am actually angry at the candidates for kinda sidestepping the moveon ad instead of blasting it like it they should have.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By jskirwin on 10/18/2007 12:42:31 PM , Rating: 2
Ron Coleman is a copyright attorney who blogs here. http://www.likelihoodofconfusion.com/?p=1194
Here's what he says:
quote:
...the Lanham Act has nothing to say when a trademark is being used by an “unauthorized third party” in connection with the assertion of political or ideological ideas. That is not a trademark use, and cannot be trademark infringement. Even if the trademark law did have something to say, the First Amendment would trump it.


In short, the basis of Google's refusal to allow advertising critical of MoveOn.org was that the name "MoveOn.org" is trademarked. This is akin to them saying that they cannot run any ad by someone using the name "Microsoft" because that name is trademarked. This is complete BS.

My guess is that a lower on Googlite played a CYA and refused the ad without understanding that the advertiser was legally within its rights to do so.

What is troubling is Google's refusal to acknowledge this error and run the ad. Once again it's not the crime that nails someone, it's the coverup . By refusing to run the ad critical of MoveOn.org they are in effect siding with Moveon.org against its critics. This - along with Google's kowtowing to China and the fact that its founder contribute heavily to the Democratic Party - makes the outfit appear that it is playing partisan politics.

To me, the issue of freedom trumps partisan lines. Members on both sides of the divide support the freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution, just like there are some idiots on boths sides of the aisle that want to limit those same freedoms to only their supporters.

Regardless, the greater danger our freedom faces comes from corporations like Google and syndicates like RIAA that use their power to curb our freedoms in business and in the civil courts - where the threat of a lawsuit means much more to an average person than the threat that the CIA is going to read his email.

Unfortunately, posters like the OP who want government involved in our economic decisions (e.g. regarding Global Warming) fails to recognize the real danger posed by these private organizations.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 10:51:37 AM , Rating: 2
Hey, I didnt say that, so dont put words in my mouth.

Just because I support the republican party doesnt mean that I agree with every person or group is "republican".

But in these cases - democratic senators blasting our troops by saying they are murderers and calling our general a betrayer of the US, then going out and accusing someone of being bad by saying he called all soldiers who do not agree with the war as phony, which is not what he said - its absolutely clear that the democrats tried a smear campaign and got busted. It was a smear to try and take the attention away from the messed up "General Betray-Us" add that was sponsored by MoveOn.org. But when you waste the senates time to go after a civilian who uses his free speach on the radio - and didnt even say anything bad or false - to cover up your own mistakes is a shame.

So basically, by democrats trying to pass the fairness doctrine and be able to say who can and cannot talk on the radio, tv, etc is much much worse than the government wanting to monitor phone calls of people who pose a threat to the nation.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Proteusza on 10/18/2007 11:38:12 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, I did forget to use the /sarcasm.

Fortunately for me, the US government is not my government.

But to see the different branches fighting each other? Have you ever heard the saying that parents should never fight in front of their children?

TomZ made a comment about the balance needed between security and accountability, and I think its extremely true. Congress is trying to keep Big Brother in order, but Big Brother is quite happy to continue on its own.

This undermines Congress's power if you ask me.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By rcc on 10/18/2007 6:44:49 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
But to see the different branches fighting each other? Have you ever heard the saying that parents should never fight in front of their children?


But that's why we have 3 branches, and when they disagree, we the people need to know. We get to choose which side we think is right. Keep it behind closed doors and you end up with the whole " you scratch mine, I'll scratch yours" issue.

We don't alway have the need to know on detail, but as far as the process of government goes, yeah, we are the people.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Ryanman on 10/20/2007 8:33:25 PM , Rating: 1
I'm glad that congress manned up enough to realize that they can't contine taking away our rights, and found a legit reason to try to make peopler realize how authoritarian this current exectuive administration is.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Shan Holo on 10/18/2007 11:45:49 AM , Rating: 2
Former constitutional lawyer Glenn Greewald clearly and comprehensively has been covering this tragedy for the past several months in a series of articles on his blog at Salon.com. It makes for an illuminating, angering, and depressing read about the executive branch's and the telecom industry's flouting of the rule of law in our increasingly nominal democracy: http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2007/10/18/...


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By aj4128 on 10/18/2007 12:17:01 PM , Rating: 2
Yes yes lest be honest like all the cover up UFO is only a host who is bean honest sure the the goverment it will the fist to say the because of nation securety I`m all for if it was true. In fact is they are violating our right to freemon of this nation.We has people and citizens have the rihgt yo say no, no, to all of wha t the goverment is going
they what to turm us into poppets is avount time the people of this great country say no.


RE: Let the paranoia begin...
By Donkeyshins on 10/19/2007 4:54:52 PM , Rating: 2
I'm sorry. What on earth are you trying to say? Something about beans from space?

I realize that not everyone on this forum has English as their first language, but this is a pretty confusing post. On the other hand, if you are a native English speaker, I weep for our future.


Balance Of Power
By OrSin on 10/18/2007 9:28:57 AM , Rating: 3
I can understand letting one branch do the wiretapping even if they should be be, but to even state for one second that they can do it with no one overseeing what or how they do it is insane. The phone companies head should be locked up if they dont answer Congress questions. And before you go wild look at the question. All 3 are did you do stuff that that is illegal? I see why they didn't answer it now. Lock them up then go after who requested them them to what we all know to be illegal.




RE: Balance Of Power
By FITCamaro on 10/18/2007 9:52:02 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
to what we all know to be illegal.


No we don't.

And I've got no problem with the government wasting its time by listening to me talk to my family or friends. I'm not doing anything wrong, so I could care less if they listen in. I don't think its illegal for them to do so either.

The fact is that they're only going to listen to someone's phone or monitor someone's internet if that person gives them a reason to. And in a situation like this where time is of the essence, they shouldn't have to wait to see a judge first before doing it. What if 9/11 had happened because government officials were trying to listen to what the guys were planning but missed the conversion since they didn't get approval in time? Yes its a dramatic example but its a possibility for future events.

At most I think they should be required to list who's conversations they listened to, when, and why. That way they don't have to get approval first but there is still some record and accountability kept. But those lists should be kept Top Secret since we don't need some aide leaking them to the media and blowing an investigation.


RE: Balance Of Power
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/18/2007 10:14:38 AM , Rating: 5
Somebody's obviously never read Orwell's 1984.

My Editorial:
Unmonitored, unprocedured, unregulated surveillance is dangerous because it establishes powers that can be easily abused.

You might not have a problem with people listening to your phone calls, but where do you draw the line?? Can the government watch you in your home? What if they develop computer programs to do so, so they can effectively watch or listen to mass amounts of people?

Now let's say that you oppose the current ruling party, be it dems or republicans or someone else entirely.

Whos to stop them from spying on and persecuting people with dissenting opinions? Everyone does little things wrong...walking around your house in your boxers might violate local indecency laws, you might have rolled through a stop sign by your house. You might have said something that could be taken out of context as a threat.

Itd be easy to prosecute dissenters. Soon people would be in terror of opposing the ruling party and BAM! (as Emeril says) you have a nationalistic dictatorship.

My point is not for people to be paranoid. Rather, it is that transparency is needed to prevent abuse of power. Giving a large amount of power to a small group who operates in secrecy is a recipe for disaster. That is one of the main reasons why communism failed.

And don't think presidents wouldn't love to abuse this power if they could. Richard Nixon had a widely known enemies list, of people who he tried to blacklist and prosecute. He wrote published emails to security directors telling them to get the citizens on the list "in any way possible". These weren't foreigners or terrorists. Many were simply American citizens with opposing viewpoints to Nixon's own.

If you follow your philosophy of "if you do nothing wrong you have nothing to hide" then why does the government not publish its information on its spy programs? Secrecy is the refuge of deceit.


RE: Balance Of Power
By Spivonious on 10/18/2007 10:28:03 AM , Rating: 2
I'm pretty sure Nixon wasn't emailing people back in the 70s.


RE: Balance Of Power
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 10:28:49 AM , Rating: 1
I think its pretty stupid to compare our government - trying to monitor the phone calls of people who they suspect may be a threat to our nation - to a communist government.

If we didnt have so many liberals that were against kicking out all the people who are here illegally and reducing the number of people we allow into the country, then we wouldnt have as large of a problem. But, for example, when two middle eastern college aged kids get pulled over by a military base, hundreds of miles away from school, with bomb making materials in their car, then a liberal & civil rights lawyer wants to protect them, we have a problem.

Dont blame the government for trying to keep us safe when the people who preach the "cant we all get along" crap are whats causing our insecurities.

Just my opinion and $0.02. Dont really care whether anyone agrees or not, or takes offense or not, just how i feel.


RE: Balance Of Power
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 10:47:07 AM , Rating: 4
quote:
If we didnt have so many liberals that were against kicking out all the people who are here illegally and reducing the number of people we allow into the country, then we wouldnt have as large of a problem. But, for example, when two middle eastern college aged kids get pulled over by a military base, hundreds of miles away from school, with bomb making materials in their car, then a liberal & civil rights lawyer wants to protect them, we have a problem.

You seem to be saying that due process is not important, or that somehow people don't have certain inalienable rights or equal protection under the law. I would say that makes you not much of a "conservative."


RE: Balance Of Power
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/18/2007 10:54:35 AM , Rating: 4
But Tom...you're forgetting!

True conservatives died in the 60s and 70s before the Republican party converted over into big spending/big government mode in the Regan era.

Conservative used to mean fiscal responsiblity, avoidance of conflict to the point of isolationism, and strict constitutionalism...defending people's constitutional freedoms.

Now it stands for coorporate tax handouts, agressive foreign policy, big spending, and "overrides" of the constitution that lows infringment upon basic liberties, "for our own good".

Abraham Lincoln and other venerable conservatives from days of yore are likely rolling over in their graves right about now.


RE: Balance Of Power
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 10:59:08 AM , Rating: 2
" Now it (conservative) stands for coorporate tax handouts, agressive foreign policy, big spending, and "overrides" of the constitution that lows infringment upon basic liberties, "for our own good"."

Excellent description of what is really going on here. Now if we can just get it through the thick headed masses we might be able to stop it.


RE: Balance Of Power
By Moishe on 10/18/2007 2:16:49 PM , Rating: 2
You obviously have no idea what conservatism stands for.

You're using the words "Republican" and "Conservatism" interchangeably.

And like mdogs, I'd like to make the statement that if you're going to pick on one side for these things, you should be fair and pick on both sides. These guys are the same corrupt self-interested entities on both sides. They're all sold to the highest bidder. If you want to start a pointless list of what the Republicans have done wrong, then you may as well compile and list for both sides and get some perspective on the same corruptness that exists.


RE: Balance Of Power
By Moishe on 10/18/2007 11:23:42 AM , Rating: 2
I'm a conservative, not a Republican and I simply have to correct you on this one point...

Conservatism has not changed... Republicans and Democrats have both slid left quite a bit. Democrats in the JFK era were as much conservative as Republicans are now.

The problem is that we have a two party system where both parties strive for the "middle" every election and the middle slides slightly left every time. It's slow going, but eventually the U.S. will be a socialist state.

The Bush administration (like any administration in the past) has done some good and some bad. It's always a mixed bag. For anyone to deny this just shows that they've already made up their minds and that their minds are closed.

The truth is that both parties are essentially the same. They are a mix of people who bend the truth for a living. People who you cannot trust because anyone with integrity has been weeded out, or slowly corrupted to fit into the system. Politicians do everything with ulterior motives. This includes picking their own labels. There are very, very few true conservatives in U.S. politics.

The beauty of "democracy" is that the power resides with the people. The problem with "democracy" is that people are generally lazy and easily manipulated. Our power has been reduced gradually for generations and in the guise of keeping us "safe" and "for the children". I hate to say it, but we're left with very little at this point.


RE: Balance Of Power
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/18/2007 11:30:15 AM , Rating: 2
Oh I agree absolutely, with you that there are some true conservatives like yourself out there.

Unfortunately the republican part has hijacked the term conservative for their own use, so conservativism in a colloquial sense has very much changed.

Its kinda like gay used to mean happy, but if you say you are gay today, people will think something else.

Likewise if you tell people you are a conservative, they may get the wrong idea these days.

I agree that their are similarities between parties and about the realities of democracy. However there are some good politicians on both sides. And the current poor state of affairs shouldn't stop you from demanding change.


RE: Balance Of Power
By Moishe on 10/18/2007 2:10:09 PM , Rating: 2
Anyone who is paying attention can see that Conservative != Republican. If there is ignorance it only lies with those who are too lazy or who choose not to see the truth (but then we could say that about anything :) ).

I believe that theoretically there are "some" good politicians... problem is, I don't know who they are. I have lost just about all faith in the system.

quote:
I agree that their are similarities between parties

I believe that they are essentially the same. The differences are so small and are only fringe differences. Both sides are interested main in power and not in what makes a strong country or a strong people. The members on both sides are largely the same, they spend too much, they lie and cheat and bend the truth.

While it might seem old fashioned, I lament the lack of integrity, not just in politicians, but in the world culture in general.


RE: Balance Of Power
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 11:26:12 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Conservative used to mean fiscal responsiblity, avoidance of conflict to the point of isolationism, and strict constitutionalism...defending people's constitutional freedoms.


I agree that this administration is not acting like fiscal conservatives, and it makes me angry.

But dont think for one minute that you can bash only the conservative administration and leave the socialistic democratic party innocent.

quote:
Now it stands for coorporate tax handouts, agressive foreign policy, big spending, and "overrides" of the constitution that lows infringment upon basic liberties, "for our own good".


And the new democratic party will stand for what? $5,000 baby bonds to every child born in the US? Now my taxes are going to support people for having kids? SCHIP increase by democrats to support families who make $80,000/yr and encourage them to drop private insurance so i can pay for it?

Neither side is without their flaws Jason, I hope you see that. The truth is that the democratic party does not do much to support middle class america, it is more geared towards low income.


RE: Balance Of Power
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 11:06:12 AM , Rating: 2
No, due process is needed, i agree 100%. But people who are not in this country legally do not have any rights at all. You know, its much easier to think what you mean, than it is to type it...especially when the headphones are blasting ;-)


RE: Balance Of Power
By themadmilkman on 10/18/2007 2:33:45 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
No, due process is needed, i agree 100%. But people who are not in this country legally do not have any rights at all.


Read up on the equal protection clause. Illegal aliens DO have rights. Yes, they are limited in comparison to say, a legal alien seeking citizenship, and even more compared to a naturalized citizen, but they DO have rights.


RE: Balance Of Power
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 2:38:23 PM , Rating: 2
The equal protection clause basically means that illegals are bound by US laws when in the US. It does not give them any constitutional rights because they are not citizens or in the country with legal permit.


RE: Balance Of Power
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 10:57:19 AM , Rating: 2
"when two middle eastern college aged kids get pulled over by a military base, hundreds of miles away from school, with bomb making materials in their car, then a liberal & civil rights lawyer wants to protect them, we have a problem."

I think you are blowing the left WAY out of proportion. When and where did this scenario happen?


RE: Balance Of Power
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 11:11:20 AM , Rating: 2
Ill have to look for a link to it. It was a pretty big story several months back. I guess the kids were in school in Florida, and got pulled over on a military base in North or South Carolina with pipe bomb materials in the trunk of their car.


RE: Balance Of Power
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 11:37:14 AM , Rating: 2
That sucks, but believe me, the mainstream "left" isn't defending these asses.

You say "a liberal & civil rights lawyer wants to protect them, we have a problem". - Once lawyer does not equal the entire "left" and due process is still a law in this country.

They may well be terrorists, and hopefully the trial brings that proof out, not hard to do, what with pipe bombs in the trunk. For all you know the pipe bomb material was planted by a jealous ex girlfriend or other person that heted them, and the police were tipped by the same plant. Its highly doubtful, but a trial is warrented, and everyone gets a chance to tell thier side of the story. That is part of freedom in society.


RE: Balance Of Power
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 11:48:18 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
You say "a liberal & civil rights lawyer wants to protect them, we have a problem". - Once lawyer does not equal the entire "left" and due process is still a law in this country.


Very true, but when the ACLU starts shouting for these people on national TV, i see it as a problem...especially when the two kids (in their 20's) were not citizens.

quote:
They may well be terrorists, and hopefully the trial brings that proof out, not hard to do, what with pipe bombs in the trunk. For all you know the pipe bomb material was planted by a jealous ex girlfriend or other person that heted them, and the police were tipped by the same plant. Its highly doubtful, but a trial is warrented, and everyone gets a chance to tell thier side of the story. That is part of freedom in society.


Anything is possible, no doubt. But for the ACLU and others to start defending these guys out of "racial profiling" when they were on an military base with expolsives is ridiculous. Its already been confirmed that the kids knew the materials were in the car. They also claimed they were on their way to a beach for a weekend vacation - but could not come up with a reason that they were on a military base, over 200 miles out of the way of where they said they were going. Sound fishy?


RE: Balance Of Power
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 11:57:21 AM , Rating: 2
"for the ACLU and others to start defending these guys out of "racial profiling" when they were on an military base with expolsives is ridiculous"

Agreed, totally. Lately the ACLU is about as extreme left as Ann Coulter is extreme right. Both are quite nuts and don't adequately represent the normal people of the left or the right.


RE: Balance Of Power
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 12:09:19 PM , Rating: 3
While some of their tactics and causese are questionable, the ACLU serves a very useful purpose in our society. They are very effective in helping to control the unchecked power of the government over their citizens. Let's not lose sight of the big picture.


RE: Balance Of Power
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 12:21:55 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed, the ACLU does serve a purpose.

Now, what to we let Ann Coulter stay here for? ;)


RE: Balance Of Power
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 1:02:00 PM , Rating: 2
If Ann Coulter has to go, then so does Michael Moore.


RE: Balance Of Power
By retrospooty on 10/18/2007 1:23:52 PM , Rating: 2
Ann Coulter talk out of her ass based on nothing at all.

Michael Moore, at least diggs up facts and exposes money trails to expose hidden flaws and conspiracies within our systems. There is a big difference between the two.


RE: Balance Of Power
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 1:31:35 PM , Rating: 2
I dont know about that. Michael Moore creates conspiracies out of different items that are unrelated. The government created 9/11, everyone wants a universal healthcare system, columbine, etc. Hes no better than Ann.

Alot of what Ann says is supposed to put a fire under your ass. Thats how she grabs attention, but she is definately very intelligent and there are many things that she discusses that are entirely accurate, just not politically correct.


RE: Balance Of Power
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 1:45:45 PM , Rating: 2
He never exposes his money trails does he? He's been invested in alot of the companies he flames.

I used to think he made sense, then i awoke from the coma.


RE: Balance Of Power
By Proteusza on 10/18/2007 12:19:25 PM , Rating: 2
[quote]I think its pretty stupid to compare our government - trying to monitor the phone calls of people who they suspect may be a threat to our nation - to a communist government.[/quote]

Why? Is your government above the law?


RE: Balance Of Power
By FITCamaro on 10/18/2007 12:29:57 PM , Rating: 2
Where those kids got pulled over is about a 3 minute drive from where I sit now. And yes the road leads to a Naval weapons station that has nuclear subs and many other classified areas.


RE: Balance Of Power
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 10:34:29 AM , Rating: 2
Also, what is the point of spying if everyone knows when and how you do it? Sort of defeats the purpose dont you think?!?!?!


RE: Balance Of Power
By aalaardb on 10/18/2007 8:27:22 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If you follow your philosophy of "if you do nothing wrong you have nothing to hide" then why does the government not publish its information on its spy programs? Secrecy is the refuge of deceit


It's one thing to have oversight, eg the executive branch requesting warrants from the judgicial branch (and there's an arguement to be made here about the inherent slowness here).

It's quite another to release information to the public, this "publishing" you talk about.

When The New York Times published to the world the exact means of how the government tracked terrorist finances a tool in the war on terror, the TFTP, was destroyed.

Personally, I like this quote here by The New York Times editor Byron Calame talking about the TFTP.
quote:
I haven't found any evidence in the intervening months that the surveillance program was illegal.... The lack of appropriate oversight—to catch any abuses in the absence of media attention—was a key reason I originally supported publication..


Right now we don't know that anything illegal has taken place in regards to phone companies helping implement wiretapping. You assume that because something is secret then something illegal must have taken place. I would just assume that one branch doesn't want to give political fodder to political enemies in another branch.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terrorist_Finance_Tra...


RE: Balance Of Power
By OrSin on 10/18/2007 10:34:27 AM , Rating: 2
You missed the whole piont. I dont mind them listen to me either. I have a problem with them not letting COngress know what they are doing. Oversite is what is needed. Let Bush do what he thinks he has to but but also let someone
question him as to why this is begin done. Remember Congress just want a report on who and what they are doing after the fact. And COngress can keep a secrest jsut as well as the White house if not better.

And you really thing Bush only spied on the people doing something wrong then why would not turn on over what he done to congress. The fact is you only hide stuff if you are doing something wrong. And for the record I don't want to information made public I just want some to keep him doing the right thing. Sorry but I dont beleive any one in government will not do the wrong thing is no one is watching. Balance of power is needed or the corrupt will do the wrong thing every time. democract or republican.

First question is what do they ask for. Congress has every right to know what they was monitoring.


RE: Balance Of Power
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 11:00:34 AM , Rating: 2
I personally don't trust this Congress to keep such information secret and not use it for political gain/games. I personally am also ashamed that I helped elect the current Congress. They have accomplished nothing of substance since taking control last year - nothing. We have gone from bad to worse.

Because of this, I agree with you in principle that there should be oversight and checks-and-balances, but in this situation, I'm not confident that the country would benefit from Congress having more information about these programs.


RE: Balance Of Power
By natebsi on 10/18/2007 3:50:42 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
They have accomplished nothing of substance since taking control last year - nothing. We have gone from bad to worse.


God I hope that was a joke! What exactly do you think was going to change now that democrats have a 51% majority?? Every time they try to make changes, GW barges in waving his fucking samurai sword, and they have to back down. 2/3rds majority or a democratic president is the ONLY way to get major changes done.


RE: Balance Of Power
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 3:55:18 PM , Rating: 2
That's not true at all - they're practically not passing any legislation at all - even in areas where they have common ground with the President. All talk, no action. The last Congress was the "Do Nothing Congress" - I'm not sure what we can call the current Congress. We need some more supurlatives I guess.


RE: Balance Of Power
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 4:00:14 PM , Rating: 2
If we had 2/3rds Dems and a Dem president, then it wouldnt be a very fair government would it? That would be ludacris for the middle class, I hate to tell you.

What exactly policies and bills are you referring to that cannot get passed?


RE: Balance Of Power
By Hakuryu on 10/18/2007 12:03:28 PM , Rating: 2
Good point.

It's funny that so many people make the argument - "Only those with something to hide dislike being spyed upon" when talking about individuals and the tactics of our goverment post 9/11, yet they don't find it odd when our executive branch will not themselves be spied upon.

Man is inherently shady, and politicians moreso than the average person as history has repeatedly shown. We need checks and balances as much as we need safety from terrorism.


Wait until '08
By HeavyB on 10/18/2007 10:42:50 AM , Rating: 2
Let's see now the neocons like unchecked executive power when Hillary is in the White House. I'm guessing they'll change their tune quicker than Larry Craig. I don't want Dumbya to have it, and I don't want Hillary to have it either.




RE: Wait until '08
By jskirwin on 10/18/2007 11:04:21 AM , Rating: 2
I'm a Conservative and I don't like unchecked executive power - which is why I'm pleased to see the legislative branch duking it out with the executive over this issue.

I don't expect the situation to change either if and when a democrat wins the presidency in '08. The issue of power sharing between legislative vs. executive vs. judiciary has been a constant since the Constitution was adopted. A President Hillary Clinton won't have her way with Congress just as a President Bush didn't have his way with the Republican Controlled Congress of '00 and '02.

quote:
I don't want Dumbya to have it, and I don't want Hillary to have it either.


As a conservative I don't refer to President Clinton as "Slick Willy" and I don't refer to President Bush as any of the myriad euphemisms floating around the leftist blogosphere. It's rude and really takes away from what otherwise would be a sensible comment.


RE: Wait until '08
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 12:04:08 PM , Rating: 2
I love the neocon moniker. It shows how people dont see that liberalism is way closer to communism than true conservatism.

True conservatives want less gov and less gov programs.

as for hillary, all I can do is hope that the republicans are smart enough to stop worrying about abortion and get Rudy up there to run against her. He would beat her hands down, and he's way more likeable.

Not that I wouldn't vote for a democrat (i have), I'd just like to be able to keep at least .50 of every dollar i earn.


RE: Wait until '08
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 12:13:23 PM , Rating: 2
I disagree - the Republicans are going to have to come up with someone better than Guiliani if they are going to beat Clinton. Guiliani really doesn't have much more going for him other than the 9/11 photo-op - his actual track record over his career is questionable as best. And worse yet, he does not hold views that will motivate Christian Conservatives to come out and vote. (Oh how quickly we forget the lessons of 2000 and 2004.)


RE: Wait until '08
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 12:52:03 PM , Rating: 2
What has Hillary done, ever (beside f'ing bill)?

I mean I know she supported the war and then didnt support the war. Supports the troops, but scowls as their commanders.

I know he has problems witht he crazy part of the republican party. There are a growing number of conservatives who are getting tired of their hijacking of the party and general term conservative.

Rudy could have beat her for the senate seat had he not gotten cancer. If he didnt drop out we wouldnt be hearing crap about hillary now. She would have fell off the map.

Rudy did a decent job of cleaning up NY. Did he make mistakes, you bet.. find me someone who hasnt.

The problem with the whole system is that its become a popularity contest. When this country was founded, farmers put down their tools and served the country. Now it has become a life long career.

Are politics flawed? Yes, and it stands to reason that politicians are aso flawed.


RE: Wait until '08
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 1:05:19 PM , Rating: 2
If nothing else, Clinton has more experience because of the 8 years she already spent in the White House. What other presidential candidate has that kind of experience? She knows 10X more about what it takes to be president than any other candidate. She also has the benefit of her husband's experience - both his stengths as well as the lessons from his mistakes - to call upon.

Look, I'm not saying I like Clinton or would even vote for her, but she is a formidable candidate, and the Republicans would be wise to come up with a very strong contender to go up against her. Guiliani is not the right person for that job.


RE: Wait until '08
By tjr508 on 10/18/2007 5:24:29 PM , Rating: 2
Hilary didn't even know what was going on in her husband's lap, let alone on his desk.


RE: Wait until '08
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 5:25:36 PM , Rating: 2
Thats exactly why she wants to be the first woman in the Clinton administration to sit in the Oval Office behind the desk....instead of under it.

:-)


RE: Wait until '08
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 1:05:09 PM , Rating: 2
I agree, Rudy's views on certain subjects are not in line with classic republican voters which may serve as a bad thing for the party.

I'm a bit dissapointed that Gingrich could not run, because I think he would have made a great republican candidate.


RE: Wait until '08
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 1:14:16 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I'm a bit dissapointed that Gingrich could not run, because I think he would have made a great republican candidate.

I agree with you on that - Gingrich is probably one of the most straight-forward politicians we have right now. Some of his views are a bit scary to me, but at least with him you know what you are getting when you cast your vote. The same cannot be said of many other politicians, e.g., Bush.


RE: Wait until '08
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 1:32:35 PM , Rating: 2
I dont think Gingrich could get enough left sliding conservative behind him.


RE: Wait until '08
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 1:35:28 PM , Rating: 2
I think he could by default. When it boils down to it, even left sliding conservatives would still probably vote for Gingrich over Clinton.


RE: Wait until '08
By zombiexl on 10/18/2007 1:59:16 PM , Rating: 2
I still think Rudy is the best chance against Clinton. I've been sayingit since before the 04 election.

There are a ton of people I would personally pick before him but thats how it goes.


RE: Wait until '08
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 2:00:47 PM , Rating: 2
Right now, I definately agree. I just hope having him as the republican candidate doesnt force republican voters to vote for an independant.


America, you are totally effed!
By dsumanik on 10/18/2007 2:15:11 PM , Rating: 2
I think this whole page is prime example of the state of affairs in the united states today, and there are many good arguments on all sides of this equation.

At the end of the day though I think we are starting to see a fundamental shift in the american people, and they are finally beginning to catch up with the rest of the world in regards to what is morally, politically, and effectually the right thing to do.

I gaurantee many of the posters here now saying the war is a mistake were the same ones warmongering after 911, and this hipocracy is a good thing, it means people are getting educated from sources other than cnn and the almighty president.

What a leader decides to be the right thing to do, must be held in check by his people, or he is a dictator. Make your government accountable now, and things could become much safer for us all.

The war in Iraq is going to have massive ramifications on your children's lives. They will be paying for it years and years from now, and the hate america is generating toward their country will only further subject your children to a terrorist threat.

I think one poster hit the nail on the head that america is trying to fight a clean war.....doesn't that sounds rediculous? War is hell, bloody, and horrible. It is organized killing and destruction, not tidy and glorified good guys and bad guys. All sides are bad guys.

You do what is necessary to win, or you don't do it all.

Because when you halfway attempt it people die for no reason, and that is the biggest shame for all of us. It is horrible the loss of life for any nation, but in WWII when it was to save a race, and stop a madman from destroying humanity, then everybody had to do what was necessary or die.

Were you in danger of being killed by saddam? Do you feel safer now that he is dead?

I don't.

In this case the USA shouldn't have started a war, and everybody on the planet knows it, but now that it has been done, america should not try and avoid disturbing the daisies and getting muddy shoes.

Wipe the F***cking threat off the face of the planet, once and for all or get the hell out of the country.

It is a waste of money, life, resources and is further subjecting all countries to more terrorist threat by doing anything otherwise.

Vote accordingly to achieve this goal, and stop criticising anyone on any side of this argument unless you have the backbone to do something about it. Get off your lazy butt and do something other than complain, the power is in your own hands, and you can join the army, vote for a new president or move to a better country, that is the freedom you so dearly purchase.




RE: America, you are totally effed!
By TomZ on 10/18/2007 2:28:15 PM , Rating: 2
What did your country do to help stem the threat of the Islamist extremests who declared they wanted to destroy the West?

Oh, nothing, that's right... And after all it's so much better to do nothing and criticize those that did when mistakes were made.

Sorry, but I have little respect for your right to criticize.


RE: America, you are totally effed!
By Strunf on 10/18/2007 7:22:56 PM , Rating: 2
It's not cause someone now says something that we all now have to be paranoid about it...

Between making things worst or doing nothing I prefer the later...

PS: BTW where are the WMD?


RE: America, you are totally effed!
By XesBOX on 10/21/2007 3:46:35 PM , Rating: 2
Nine eleven. Terrorist. TERRORISTS! Terror.

Terror. T E R R O R. Terrorist. Nine eleven. 9/11. The attacks at nine-eleven. The terror; terrorist; terrorism. TERROR! T.E.R.R.O.R. Terrorists, terror; terror. Terror terror terror nine eleven terrorism terrorist. Terror. Terrorism, and terror. Terroristsic terror TERROR! TERROR!

Terror. September eleventh. Terrorism. Nine-eleven. September eleventh. TERROR! Terrorists; terrorists; terrorism. Terror.... terror? TERROR! Terrorism, terrorist, terror... nine eleven.

September eleventh; nine eleventh, the terrorists of 9/11.

-Rudy Giuliani - Highly Praised Republican Candidate for the 2008 North American Union candidacy.

If you check the beast sniffing at the hinds of fear you will only find those that prey on it.

We have become complacent. Naive and disingenuous. "We know the mistakes of our ancestors; we will not be misled and lied to again." - Every generation of every empire that has ever fallen. Challenge a mans territory and he may admit defeat; challenge his beliefs and you will have an eternity of war.

http://zeitgeistmovie.com/

Vote. Vote all day long; vote passionately and vote with determination and faith. It means nothing as long as people sit idly by and watch those that would have us controlled succeed.

First, you have to get angry.


By Nik00117 on 10/18/2007 3:35:31 PM , Rating: 2
If one of those companies would of been REALLY smart they would of flipped this into a PR move.

I mean you could play the lil puppy dog who was pushed around and had no choice but to piss on the carpet so to speak.

I'd of answered all the questions, at the very end say that you apologize for all your actions and understand what you did was wrong, however feels that the government should not be so brave as to impose on the personal freedoms of Americans, flip it such a way that you come looking the hero and they come out looking the bad guy, very effective in my book. Whats the gov going do? Shut you down? LOL That'll look mighty smart of them you've just became a saver of the american way of life, you'll be untouchable. Just gotta know hwo to word it and twist it.




By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 3:43:36 PM , Rating: 2
As much as we may not agree with some things that the government does, its still not right to use the government as a pawn in your game profits & PR.

If they did what you suggest, then why wouldnt they be just as bad as the governmen.


By TomZ on 10/18/2007 3:52:04 PM , Rating: 2
I think the OP is making is that the telco's have to comply anyway, so why not try to spin it in a way that benefits them from PR perspective? I hardly think that qualifies as "using the government as a pawn" at all.

That said, I don't think that the telco's want to admit anything publicly because they don't want to lose the trust of their customers if they appear to be too giving of information to the government.


By Nik00117 on 10/19/2007 5:41:27 AM , Rating: 2
But if they sumbit to what we've suspected and flip it and twist they can come out looking better then they are now.


YAY..another political debate...
By rushfan2006 on 10/18/2007 9:37:03 PM , Rating: 2
now let's call each other idiots, insult our families and everyone's intelligenc and just get it over with already...

ever notice how there's always one guy who just "knows everything" and "the truth"....as if he was an insider or a fly on the wall of a high level pentagon briefing...

Debating politics is as useless as a row boat in the desert.




RE: YAY..another political debate...
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 10:13:59 PM , Rating: 2
I dont think debating politics is useless. I think the debate itself is very useful.

What i find to be useless is someone from one side of the political spectrum trying to convince someone on the other side of the political spectrum that you are right and they are wrong. Regardless of the facts, or what someone feels the facts are, you cannot try to convert someone who does not want to be converted. We are all guilty of this in one form or another, but thats what makes this country great - the way we can all agree to disagree.


By mindless1 on 10/18/2007 11:14:51 PM , Rating: 2
The debate is useful when it's among those who have the power to make change, but when those ask for information and are refused, the process is shot to hell.

As for our debates here, complete waste of time so far as effecting change. We can get other points of view but it makes about as much difference and putting the message in a bottle and throwing it into the sea.


RE: YAY..another political debate...
By XesBOX on 10/21/2007 4:10:04 PM , Rating: 2
That's good. Accept it. Roll over and let them pat your tummy a few times. Let the people fight it out, and while the people are busy bickering about who's right, who's wrong, the way things are and the way things should be, the people who have the control will never see the day that their power is checked.

This isn't about red vs. blue. This isn't about us vs. them. This is about America. This is about our government, stripped of any title, being manipulative and deceptive to it's own people.

When will it matter?

Will you cry-out when RFID's become as mandatory as state issued ID cards?

Will you cry out when you're finally old enough for social security, just to find out there's no money?

Will you cry out when you're best friends daughter is slain by an illegal immigrant rapist?

Will you cry out when it's you're daughter?

Will you cry out in anger when the government seizes your home because of a non-existent income tax law?

Since it appears that every person in this country only takes action at wrongs that have been committed against them... with a puny three hundred million people.. it might be a while.

But while you wait, there's plenty of porn on the internet and reality television for you to disconnect with.

As soon as you're ready to fight for your rights, you be sure and let me know.


Telco's ARE Responsible
By NaughtyGeek on 10/18/2007 10:37:10 AM , Rating: 2
The long standing precedent that all the Telcos were aware of was that it requires a warrant to tap someones phone. They had a legal and moral responsibility to require such before providing the information and programs the Executive requested. The POTUS does not have the right to randomly collect phone and internet usage patterns and called lists of anyone whom he desires. If there is an apparent need for this type of surveillance on the American public, then it is subject to oversight by Congress. I hope whomever gave the go ahead to release the requested information is held accountable and does a significant amount of time in prison. This was nothing more than Big Business giving "their boy" what he wants regardless of the laws governing the issue. I'm quite sure they were promised immunity by the Executive. May they all rot in hell for spitting in the face of all the men who have died in the name of preventing this type of blatant tyranny.

And to those who would defend this as a necessary evil, I hope your dreams come true and all these "security" measures bite you as hard as possible. Perhaps when you're sitting in a military jail, labeled as a foreign combatant and denied Habeus Corpus and right to counsel you might consider the ramifications of the programs you defend in the name of security. At that point, it doesn't matter why you're there because the fact remains you're there and have no way out. If you're that big a pu^&y, head on over to China. Their government will watch over you and keep you "safe."




RE: Telco's ARE Responsible
By Shan Holo on 10/18/2007 3:07:31 PM , Rating: 2
Update: Senator Chris Dodd to put hold on the FISA bill: http://tpmelectioncentral.com/2007/10/exclusive_se...


RE: Telco's ARE Responsible
By mdogs444 on 10/18/2007 3:11:33 PM , Rating: 2
It was a ridiculous bill that would have failed to pass through anyway. It was more to save face than anything after the SCHIP blowout that the democratic part of the senate received.


Where is the power?
By Amiga500 on 10/18/2007 10:00:30 AM , Rating: 2
Is it with the president?

Or with the elected representatives?

I think a situation where the president (read executive) is effectively operating behind the back of the representatives of the people is very dangerous.




RE: Where is the power?
By jskirwin on 10/18/2007 10:05:52 AM , Rating: 2
The president, like Congress, is elected.

The power is shared across all three branches - judicial, legislative and executive.

quote:
think a situation where the president (read executive) is effectively operating behind the back of the representatives of the people is very dangerous.


Agreed. But that's not the issue here. What is the issue is the limits of an existing law - not the legality of that law.


Ahhh...
By grenableu on 10/18/2007 11:59:19 AM , Rating: 2
What would a day be without a good Dr. Evil pic on Dailytech?




RE: Ahhh...
By Durrr on 10/19/2007 6:26:34 AM , Rating: 2
But all the misinformation on both sides could be done away with and I'd be happy :)


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