backtop


Print 172 comment(s) - last by aharris.. on Oct 13 at 7:31 PM


A young U.S. citizen busted cops spying on him without warrant, in clear violation of the U.S. Constitution. He was subsequently subject to a threatening confrontation with a group of armed law enforcement officials who demanded their tracking device back.  (Source: Wired)
ACLU is salivating at the opportunity to challenge the legality of GPS tracking

Think the U.S. Constitution protects you against searches on your property without warrant?  Think again.  The so-called "open field" precedent has allowed searches for some time now, and recently federal courts even upheld that federal agents can invade your driveway and plant tracking devices on your car without your knowledge and without a single warrant.

That practice has been brought into glaring focus by
Wired.com in the case of Yasir Afifi, a young Arab-American.  Unbeknownst to Mr. Afifi -- a 20-year-old U.S.-born citizen who attends the business marketing student at Mission College in Santa Clara, Caifornia -- he was under surveillance by the FBI, presumably due to the fact that his father was an Arab American community leader who died last year while traveling in Egypt.

Mr. Afifi had just taken his Lincoln LS for an oil change at Ali's Auto Repair when something unusual was found attached attached to his vehicle.  It was a wire that led to what appeared to be a multicomponent tracking system, complete with a large battery pack and transmitter device.  The wire was protruding by the right rear wheel and exhaust. 

The young man recalls, "I wouldn’t have noticed it if there wasn’t a wire sticking out."

Garage owner Mazher Khan confirms that the device was indeed there and that he helped Mr. Afifi remove it.

Unsure whether it was real or a prank, Mr. Afifi posted the pictures online on 
Reddit a CondeNast Digital site for user-generated content.  Mr. Afifi was apparently concerned the device might be a bomb or something.  He comments, " My plan was to just put the device on another car or in a lake, but when you come home to 2 stoned off their asses people who are hearing things in the device and convinced its a bomb you just gotta be sure."

A savvy reader identified that the device was indeed a GPS tracker -- a Cobham Orion Guardian ST820 that sells exclusively to U.S. law enforcement.  Former FBI agents have since confirmed that the model is indeed used by the bureau to track individuals within the U.S.

What happened next was a surprise for Mr. Afifi.  A team of a half-dozen armed FBI agents and police officers showed up at his door demanding that he return the device.  The agents indicated that they may have been monitoring Mr. Afifi for as long as three to six months. 

Reportedly Mr. Afifi asked, "Are you the guys that put it there?" and the agent replied, "Yeah, I put it there. We’re going to make this much more difficult for you if you don’t cooperate."

Mr. Afifi cooperated with the law enforcement team, returning their tracking device to them.

An FBI spokesperson at the bureau's San Francisco headquarters -- Pete Lee -- contacted by CondeNast's site 
Wired.com comments, "I can’t really tell you much about it, because it’s still an ongoing investigation."

The FBI also indicated that aside from concerns about Mr. Afifi's father, it also might be investigating Mr. Afifi because of a blog post that one of his college friends wrote that involved "something to do with a mall or a bomb."  The friend, Khaled (who helped Mr. Afifi post on
Reddit), recalls writing "something stupid", but says it wasn't anything serious.  Mr. Afifi defends his friend, stating, "He’s a smart kid and is not affiliated with anything extreme and never says anything stupid like that. I’ve known that guy my whole life."

Now the FBI may be the ones facing the heat.  Mr. Afifi has retained a high profile lawyer -- Zahra Billoo of the Council on American Islamic Relations .  He comments, "The idea that [government monitoring[ escalates to this level is unusual. We take about one new case each week relating to FBI or law enforcement visits [to clients]. Generally they come to the individual’s house or workplace, and there are issues that arise from that."

The ACLU is reportedly salivating at the case, which it believes could be used to try to overturn the government's ability to invade personal property and track citizens without warrant, something it considers a clear abrogation of due process.

Mr. Afifi recalls Mr. Alseth telling him, "This is the kind of thing we like to throw lawyers at."

While it's tempting to make this an issue of race or religion, it's important for readers to consider that the U.S. government under the Obama and Bush administrations has increasingly sought to increase the government's ability to spy on its citizens without warrant.  These changes impact all Americans, so this is a universal issue for citizens of the United States, not just Arab-American U.S. citizens.

 



Comments     Threshold


This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

Wow
By Motoman on 10/8/2010 12:05:38 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
"something to do with a mall or a bomb."


Really? Something to do with a mall OR a bomb?

"hey, let's go to the mall!" <-- has something to do with a mall OR a bomb.




RE: Wow
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 10/8/2010 12:11:52 PM , Rating: 5
All I know is, somebody set us up the bomb ;)


RE: Wow
By solarrocker on 10/8/2010 12:26:46 PM , Rating: 2
Bomb Bomb Bomb, come get me FBI!

Tin Foil hats for all...


RE: Wow
By MrBlastman on 10/8/2010 12:28:03 PM , Rating: 2
They already have. I'd go check your car. :P


RE: Wow
By solarrocker on 10/8/2010 1:50:48 PM , Rating: 2
It was starting funny, must have been "Them"


RE: Wow
By thrust2night on 10/8/2010 3:21:53 PM , Rating: 3
Lee: "You said it was a bomb"

Carter: "No. I said she was da bomb."

Lee: "She was da bomb?"


RE: Wow
By JonB on 10/9/2010 10:42:48 AM , Rating: 2
and for contraception, she uses an IED instead of an IUD ?

Scanning internet messages can be explosive. If you drive your diesel pickup to get a load of fertilizer, you might get flagged.


RE: Wow
By Omega215D on 10/8/2010 12:27:03 PM , Rating: 5
He was going to the mall to get a bong. A BONG! Not a bomb....


RE: Wow
By smegz on 10/8/2010 12:39:45 PM , Rating: 5
Dude! Let's go to the mall! Cinnibon is the bomb, and I got the munchies!.


RE: Wow
By quiksilvr on 10/8/2010 1:01:02 PM , Rating: 2
I'm pretty sure that's exactly what really happened.


I don't get it
By superPC on 10/8/2010 12:20:29 PM , Rating: 5
i thought we all believe in liberty and justice for all. innocence untill proven guilty. due process.

whatever happened to all that?

do we really want to go down this road?




RE: I don't get it
By SpaceRanger on 10/8/2010 12:24:16 PM , Rating: 2
It's basically too late. We're going down this road already. This is only an incident where the FBI was caught spying on a citizen. How many other people are being tracked, that don't even know it? (all being done without warrants and such)


RE: I don't get it
By Spivonious on 10/8/2010 12:26:34 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. I'm waiting to hear the FBI's reasoning as to why this was legal.


RE: I don't get it
By Ristogod on 10/8/2010 12:44:26 PM , Rating: 2
Um because they make it legal? All forms of our government are running rampant with excessive power. If something doesn't benefit them or empower them, they simply change the law to give them power. There is not constitutional boundary and no one is doing anything to stop them.


RE: I don't get it
By MozeeToby on 10/8/2010 12:46:33 PM , Rating: 2
Similar agencies have given the reasoning that it is little different from assigning an undercover agent to tail the car, which does not require a warrant (or even probably cause) since the road is a public place. This complete ignores the fact that it is impossible to trail 100% of the cars on the road 100% of the time; whereas it is theoretically not impossible to track 100% of the cars 99% of the time using a GPS device.

Maybe this isn't a big deal now, but in 50 years when a GPS device costs $0.25 and they can put them on as many cars as they want it is going to be a significant problem. There's obviously incentive to just track everyone's car automatically, then you can see who was at the crime scene even if you never would have suspected them otherwise. Of course, you can also see where your wife was when you were out of town, or what asshole parked was parked next to you when you first noticed that ding on your car door, or where that SOB is that was sleeping with your wife.


RE: I don't get it
By solarrocker on 10/8/2010 2:27:57 PM , Rating: 4
Should start offering some removal service for these devices. "Believe you are being watched, you most likely are. Come get your car checked at 'Loose Change Garage'! Vehicle check comes free with lawyer, federal lawsuit and tin foil hats for the kids."


RE: I don't get it
By Ammohunt on 10/8/10, Rating: 0
You want your tracking device back??
By Scotteq on 10/8/2010 1:18:10 PM , Rating: 4

..."you guys want your tracking device back??.. OK - It's at the bottom of Solids Holding Tank #2 at http://www.ci.la.ca.us/san/wpd/Siteorg/general/hyp...

Bring a shovel. <smile_sweetly>

(If you guys don't know - that link is for the Hyperion Sewage Treatment Plant in Los Angeles. Probably the largest "Waste Water Recovery Plant" in the country. I'm sure you can guess the contents of "Solids Holding Tank #2", as well as the need for a shovel.




By RivuxGamma on 10/8/2010 5:16:51 PM , Rating: 2
I love that the unit of measure at a wastewater treatment plant is abbreviated as "MGD."


Wow
By Motoman on 10/8/2010 12:05:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
"something to do with a mall or a bomb."


Really? Something to do with a mall OR a bomb?

"hey, let's go to the mall!" <-- has something to do with a mall OR a bomb.




RE: Wow
By Motoman on 10/8/2010 12:20:32 PM , Rating: 2
For the record, when I initially tried to post this comment, I got a DT error saying the article no longer existed...thinking that was odd, I clicked the submit button again, and got the same error again.

Going back to the home page - yup, the article had disappeared. Now it's back with 2 copies of my post...oy.


Sad
By Touche on 10/8/2010 1:38:25 PM , Rating: 2
Just sad...

BTW Would it be illegal for him to destroy the device and/or not give it back?




RE: Sad
By fic2 on 10/8/2010 8:54:41 PM , Rating: 2
Yes. Under the well known doctrine of "Finders keepers, losers weepers".

He should have put it on ebay.


Drug investigation?
By dgingeri on 10/8/2010 1:54:27 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Mr. Afifi was apparently concerned the device might be a bomb or something. He comments, " My plan was to just put the device on another car or in a lake, but when you come home to 2 stoned off their asses people who are hearing things in the device and convinced its a bomb you just gotta be sure."


Who says the FBI was investigating terrorist ties? How about a drug investigation? That's certainly feasible.




RE: Drug investigation?
By aharris on 10/13/2010 7:31:11 PM , Rating: 2
"Stoned off their asses" + signs of paranoia: likely referring to Marijuana.

California.

Drug investigation? Doubtful.


Ok, so what if...
By iceonfire1 on 10/8/2010 7:23:17 PM , Rating: 2
...the FBI were just following the person around in a car or on foot? They could see through a fence, see you in your car, report to a satellite, etc.
Looks like a GPS device is just a tail, but doesn't give you the chance to escape by clever maneuvering. Should it be illegal simply because it's convenient?




this is awful
By OBLAMA2009 on 10/10/2010 4:05:49 PM , Rating: 1
what the u.s. government is doing is much scarier than the terrorists!




RE: this is awful
By roykahn on 10/11/2010 10:21:21 PM , Rating: 1
Terrorism used to be defined as violence and oppression committed by a government upon its population. Since then, the definition has been twisted and shaped mostly by the US government so that it basically describes "things that others do to us". Some have said that the difference between terrorism and a military invasion is the scale.

As long as you keep the definition of terrorism solely to the actions of others, then you can justify any offensive of your own.


Get over it
By Shadowmaster625 on 10/11/2010 8:21:22 AM , Rating: 2
Just take your vaccines, bend over, and shut up.




It's now mine @#**!es
By ol1bit on 10/11/2010 11:45:27 PM , Rating: 2
All I know, is if I found it, it would be mine. The FBI would have to buy it back, sell it on ebay, after all they didn't just lose it under the car.

Our government is getting crazy!




When will they get it?
By JonnyDough on 10/9/2010 5:50:20 AM , Rating: 1
Its this kind of crap that makes people want to post things like "bomb" and "mall" in a sentence. When will OUR government realize that trying to tell citizens how to live just doesn't work? You can't spy on us. We should be spying on YOU Uncle Sam. You work for US.

The fear goes both ways, its like the Cold War but between the citizens and the Fed. As Theo Roosevelt said:

"...the only thing to fear is fear itself."




REALLY?
By Dr of crap on 10/8/10, Rating: -1
RE: REALLY?
By MrBlastman on 10/8/2010 1:02:38 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
I'll say it again, if you're not doing anything wrong, what do you have to hide???


That isn't the point and our Founding Fathers realized that over 200 years ago as well. We live in a free country, where our rights are guaranteed to us in the Bill of Rights and the Constitution.

The Government has no business performing unwarranted surveillance on innocent citizens. Period.

If you watch anyone, long enough, you'll find something they are doing wrong which will give you cause to jail then or worse. Places that have done this in the past include Nazi Germany and Stalinist Russia (secret police anyone?).

What do you have to hide? Nothing--the question should be changed to: What do you have to fear from an unchecked Government?

Answer: Everything.

This activity that we are seeing from Federal Authorities goes directly against what the Bill of Rights and our Constitution stand for.

Never, ever give the Government more power than they need to do their basic, fundamental jobs. Not even an ounce. If you give it, they _will_ find a way to abuse it.


RE: REALLY?
By dgingeri on 10/8/10, Rating: -1
RE: REALLY?
By thrust2night on 10/8/2010 3:39:20 PM , Rating: 2
Wrong. Surveillance in public areas is perfectly legal and proper. Following someone around is perfectly legal. Police need to do this in order to maintain our laws.

I'm not too sure about following people around being perfectly legal. For a short time sure, but if a police officer or other federal agent keeps following you all day every day without proper justification, that would look like stalking to me. Also, police don't follow people around to maintain our laws. There aren't enough police officers to follow every citizen so following someone for a long time in the grand scheme of things would mean that the police officer is doing a worse job since he/she is following one person and doesn't know anything else that might be happening in his route.

If no to all these questions, then you don't have anything to worry about with someone following where your car goes.

It's a shame when someone says something like this. Just because I am not doing anything wrong doesn't mean it is ok for any government official to keep following me. Especially without any justification. Would you still say the same if civilians started following police officers and federal agents? How would they feel to be on the other side of this debate?


RE: REALLY?
By dgingeri on 10/8/2010 5:38:55 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
It's a shame when someone says something like this. Just because I am not doing anything wrong doesn't mean it is ok for any government official to keep following me. Especially without any justification. Would you still say the same if civilians started following police officers and federal agents? How would they feel to be on the other side of this debate?


When I was in college, I had a cop pull me over for speeding just south of my college town. He got me doing 69 in a 55. I admitted my error in going so fast, paid my fine, and adjusted my driving. That stupid cop proceeded to pull me over every single weekend (I had to work back at home to pay for my car insurance or lose my car) and even had my car searched on 2 occasions with him claiming he smelled pot. (I don't, and never have, smoked any pot or any other drug. I did drink a little under age, but only about 9 months under age, and never before or while driving.) I couldn't do anything to stop him. He had no justification for any of it. Believe me, I know about police abusing their power.

I also had a cop shoot and kill my cousin. I can obviously see from the crime scene photos that my cousin was lying on the ground when he was shot. the GSR, blood spatter, and ricochet are obvious in one photo. Heck, I could convict him if I could ever get him in court just with the crime scene photos, and I'm nowhere close to a prosecutor.

I've gotten to the point that I hate cops in general. Most that I've dealt with are bullies given free reign to bully whomever they want just because they have badges.

However, I know that certain things have to be allowed for police officers in order to maintain the peace. If people keep fighting on this, then the gangs and drug dealers will take over the cities even faster than they are. (Uncivilized, selfishly evil, stupid bastards that are even worse than cops.) Cops are the best we have to keeping the most evil people from taking over. We don't want to become like Africa, where there is no top authority with everything run by just a bunch of gangs. Take away powers like this from police and we'd end up there.


RE: REALLY?
By Kurz on 10/9/2010 10:40:44 AM , Rating: 2
The main reason gangs exist is because of the Illegal Drug trade.

All drugs (except Antibotics) legal no problem. Gangs dissappear within a short few months.

Thats how you can limit the fear in society.
Free society is a healthy society.


RE: REALLY?
By Descenteer on 10/8/2010 8:01:16 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Would you still say the same if civilians started following police officers and federal agents? How would they feel to be on the other side of this debate?


Easy. They'll arrest you: http://www.pixiq.com/article/oregon-man-sues-after...


RE: REALLY?
By clovell on 10/11/2010 12:15:41 PM , Rating: 2
In many states, a personal vehicle is considered an extension of the home.


RE: REALLY?
By Teancum on 10/12/2010 7:51:39 PM , Rating: 2
"When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny." -- Thomas Jefferson


RE: REALLY?
By MozeeToby on 10/8/2010 1:11:34 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
If you are doing nothing wrong - what do you have to fear in being monitered?
You have to fear the definition of 'wrong' changing .

What if someone decides that the some group you belong to is dangerous and warrants you being tracked at all times. What if someone passes a law that sodomy is illegal (oh wait, there's still a few of those laws on the books) and the cops track your car driving to your partner's house. What if some cop just decides that they don't like you and uses the GPS device to track your movement until you do something wrong (the average American performs 5 illegal actions a day).

Go read 1984 and tell yourself that Winston would have been fine if he had just not done anything wrong. All he had to do was follow the law, do his job, and act like a good citizen and he never would have been arrested, sent to room 101, betrayed the only person he ever cared about, and erased from history. Yes, by your logic Winston was the one who was wrong in the story, and that's just... completely insane to me if I'm being honest.


RE: REALLY?
By Invane on 10/8/2010 1:41:23 PM , Rating: 2
Bingo. Give this man a cookie.


RE: REALLY?
By teamhonda81 on 10/8/2010 1:12:27 PM , Rating: 4
Dr of crap:

Could you please post your full legal name, all of your phone numbers, street address, city, state, zip code, and the name and address of your employer? If you have nothing to hide, this shouldn't be a problem.


RE: REALLY?
By Loveless on 10/8/2010 5:58:29 PM , Rating: 2
How likely is it that someone named "Dr of crap" has something to hide?


RE: REALLY?
By Descenteer on 10/8/2010 8:47:40 PM , Rating: 2
He could be planning to drop a dirty bomb...


RE: REALLY?
By superPC on 10/8/2010 1:13:41 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
if you're not doing anything wrong, what do you have to hide???


because of all the gray area

an example is in order: me and my best friend works in competing companies. i've known him for 10 years, even longer than my girlfriend. say there's a corporate leaks and because of this illegal surveillance FBI knows that i often meet a person from competing companies. that makes me a suspect. even if i did nothing wrong the damage is done.

that's why we need and want privacy. not because we're afraid someone knows about our wrongdoing. but because we, all of us spends most of our time in a grey area. and once more light shone into that grey, it would look more and more black to some people...


RE: REALLY?
By SGforce on 10/8/2010 4:19:02 PM , Rating: 2
If a similar law was in place when the country was a British colony then there wouldn't even be a United-States of America. Most of the constitution was put in place to prevent government from overstepping their bounds.


RE: REALLY?
By YashBudini on 10/8/2010 8:20:33 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
If you are doing nothing wrong - what do you have to fear in being monitered?

Proving one's namesake?

DNA evidence has never overturned a wrong prosecution?

Where do people like you come from?


RE: REALLY?
By shortylickens on 10/8/2010 10:49:27 PM , Rating: 2
http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Drum...

Or, in terms you can understand..........
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0708793/

For a 40's white guy you dont know much about the world around you.
"If you are doing nothing wrong you shouldnt be afraid" covers about 3 or 4 of the 7 logical fallacies. It should never be used as an argument advocating or supporting ANY actions. Least of all actions that infringe on civil rights which are always more important than feeling "safe", a right which is not provided in the US Constitution.


RE: REALLY?
By Lerianis on 10/9/2010 2:25:01 PM , Rating: 2
I notice that people are downrating your post, but you hit the nail right on the head with the idea that this is the same sort of fearmongering in that ST:TNG episode that is happening in real life today.


RE: REALLY?
By YashBudini on 10/9/2010 3:03:38 PM , Rating: 1
Mitt Romney has been doing his rendition of Joseph McCarthy for years now. How do you think the 2004 election was won?


Sad thing is
By bill4 on 10/8/10, Rating: -1
Hmmm
By msheredy on 10/8/10, Rating: -1
RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 12:42:39 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
This is the difficult part of this situation. Had there been no attack on 9-11 this case would take on an entirely different vibe. I'm literally on the fence on this one...


Err why exactly can't law enforcement officials do their job and get a warrant?

Oh yes, let's throw away our freedoms to stop those liberty-hating terrorists, because we're too lazy to do our jobs properly... That makes perfect sense.

I can't believe that people are "on the fence" about the violation of our nation's proudest achievement, the Constitution -- or that they're letting the government get away with this kind of behavior.

Sigh.
</rant>


RE: Hmmm
By msheredy on 10/8/10, Rating: -1
RE: Hmmm
By superPC on 10/8/2010 1:16:30 PM , Rating: 4
if they got a warrant they can install that tracking device without the suspect knowing about it. they can even install recording devices without telling the suspect. it is you who fail to see the bigger picture here.


RE: Hmmm
By MrBlastman on 10/8/2010 1:18:15 PM , Rating: 3
The moment you give up your civil liberties out of fear of terrorists in order to protect against them--the terrorists win.

You can now call yourself officially terrified.


RE: Hmmm
By dgingeri on 10/8/2010 1:57:34 PM , Rating: 3
no, the moment terrorists kill 3000 innocent people and send our economy into a tailspin is when the terrorists win short term.

The minute we give up and turn our country into a Sharia law run state is when the terrorists win long term. I'm not willing to let that happen.


RE: Hmmm
By The Raven on 10/8/2010 3:24:55 PM , Rating: 2
I think it is very difficult/impossible to know why a crazy person or even a sane person under duress does crazy things. Sometimes easy after the fact, but it is hard to foresee why someone might attack someone with some sort of terror attack.

Through varying degrees, it could be
a) planes hitting towers (as you mentioned)
b) bombs on abortion clinics
c) gay rights anger (As a libertarian, I'm trying to be non-partisan here with b and c ;-) )
http://zombieurl.com/Prbq
d) lynchings
e) protection rackets
f) or some random crazies like the DC sniper or the Columbine kids.

Can the gov't protect us from all of this? No. Can they find out who did it after this stuff happens, sure. But everyone else is terrified that it will happen again as a result. And if you live in fear, then the terrorists win. To be shocked and scared as an initial response is understandable. And that would mean that the terrorists win short term. And hopefully very short term, as that duration is up to us as a society.

But if you change your laws and depart from the principles of freedom that you used to cherish, then the terrorist win in the long run.

And I define a 'terrorist win' as our loss. The terrorist will never truly 'win' because they can't. Hypothetically speaking, if they did manage to win (like in your example with Sharia law), the people would revolt and freedom would be reborn as it has many times throughout history.

But we can win (ensuring a terrorist loss) by living free.


RE: Hmmm
By NullSubroutine on 10/8/2010 6:00:05 PM , Rating: 2
In addition, each individual person is responsible for their OWN SAFETY. The government is not the steward of our lives, it is not here to make sure every individual never dies, it is not here to hold our hands while we cross the street, feed us, clothe us, or feed us while we suck on its supple nipple. The government is the embodiment of our collective laws, so when individuals violate another individuals sovereignty, law (not mob rule) will be clearly defined and act as the arbitrator, then if necessary executor of justice.


RE: Hmmm
By priusone on 10/8/2010 6:04:43 PM , Rating: 2
Sure the government can protect you from a lot of things on the list, but you sure as hell won't have any liberties or privacy. Welcome to a police state.


RE: Hmmm
By Skywalker123 on 10/9/2010 2:23:25 PM , Rating: 1
Bin Laden is winning right now, he and his ragtag band are running us broke, at virtually no cost to them.


RE: Hmmm
By mudgiestylie on 10/9/2010 4:35:06 AM , Rating: 2
our economy has gone into a tailspin without another 9/11. the bankers are fleecing us, and they are the ones who run our country. they are doing far more damage than any terrorist could do, and they are doing it with support from our government.


RE: Hmmm
By JonB on 10/9/10, Rating: -1
RE: Hmmm
By Skywalker123 on 10/9/2010 3:17:05 PM , Rating: 2
That would be great!


RE: Hmmm
By FaaR on 10/9/2010 11:24:57 AM , Rating: 2
Uh, so in order to protect yourself from trrrists who kill 3000 people, and your country becoming a sharia law state, you must throw away your liberties and give far-reaching warrant-less power to the government to invade your life and your privacy?

Right... That makes perfect sense.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/9/2010 11:54:28 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
you must throw away your liberties and give far-reaching warrant-less power to the government to invade your life and your privacy?


That's not happening and that's not GOING to happen. Stop with the straw man please.

This was ONE guy, and we don't even know all the details. I wouldn't be surprised if next week Jason posts a follow up article in which we learn the details of this one were majorly hyped up and sensationalized. Have we forgotten the endless Wikileaks Jason Mick saga already?


RE: Hmmm
By Lerianis on 10/9/2010 2:14:51 PM , Rating: 2
The government has a history of doing something like this to 'one guy', then to two guys, then to three, then to the entire nation!

You cannot trust the 'law enforcement' and intelligence agencies farther than you can throw the Statue of Liberty when you are two years old.


RE: Hmmm
By Master Kenobi (blog) on 10/9/2010 4:34:15 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
You cannot trust the 'law enforcement' and intelligence agencies farther than you can throw the Statue of Liberty when you are two years old.

This country is still in one piece because of the military and law enforcement and most certainly the intelligence agencies. Leave them alone, they aren't the boogey man you are looking for.


RE: Hmmm
By Kurz on 10/10/2010 9:06:14 AM , Rating: 3
The laws that inhibit liberties are the boogyman.
Which turns cops into boogymen.


RE: Hmmm
By The Raven on 10/11/2010 4:17:13 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
and most certainly the intelligence agencies.

Tell that to our men in Iraq. Our country is in one piece but some of them aren't. I'm sure they feel really secure over there thanks to the CIA finding WMDs.

Iraq War US Troop Casualties:
"As of May 28, 2010, there were 4,404 dead and 31,827 wounded in action (WIA)."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casualties_of_the_Ira...
That is worse than 9/11 and it is thanks to our gov't. (And that is only the US side of it!)

I'm no pacifist and I 'supported' (read: gave the gov't the benefit of the doubt) the war effort at the beginning, but in hindsight it is easy for me to see that the gov't made a bad situation worse.


RE: Hmmm
By Skywalker123 on 10/9/2010 3:21:00 PM , Rating: 2
It IS happening and will continue to get worse.


RE: Hmmm
By foolsgambit11 on 10/10/2010 12:30:07 PM , Rating: 2
It doesn't matter if this was one guy or all 300 million of us. The question is, do we as Americans have a right to privacy that prohibits this kind of activity, without a warrant, by our government? I, for one, am not sure. It is difficult to argue that information that could equally well have been obtained without a warrant by tailing the man should be prohibited when performed by electronic means. On the other hand, I don't think the government should necessarily know where every citizen is at all times, which would be allowed under that logic.

So there must be a pragmatic middle ground, and prohibiting electronic surveillance without a warrant allows the government to get the information they need by active tailing until they have enough suspicion to get a warrant, at which time the use of electronic bugging would be authorized. Citizens' privacy is protected, and law enforcement can still be effective.


RE: Hmmm
By Fritzr on 10/10/2010 8:47:19 PM , Rating: 3
Read the article again. A little more carefully this time. This is one reported incident involving the FBI.

This is just one of many newspaper reports warning people that police at all levels from small town to the Feds are now using GPS tracking without warrant. The reasoning is that the car is outdoors and therefore the police do not need permission to approach it. They then extend that reasoning to say they can plant anything they like on the car, such as a GPS tracker. Since the GPS tracker can be planted without a warrant & the police do not have to do anything but sit in a control room and monitor the readout, the courts tend to rule that this is a high tech tail.

The ACLU argues that the police are invading privacy without a warrant in violation of the constitution. Even without the tracker, the police still have the old fashioned option of having real live people watching where you go. All they need is 3 or 4 unmarked cars with radios handing off tail duty so none of them are seen to be following for an unreasonable time, of course when the target gets out in the country with no traffic or enter private property with multiple exits, the old fashioned method is a little more difficult :)

For those situations light aircraft have proven to do a fairly good job of tailing without being noticed.


RE: Hmmm
By DNAgent on 10/11/2010 5:29:06 PM , Rating: 2
What is the point of saving those 3000 people if you have to destroy everything this nation stands for to do it?

A LOT more than 3000 people have died so that we can have the rights and privileges we enjoy today.

What happened to "land of the free , home of the brave " ?


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/11/2010 9:06:05 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
What is the point of saving those 3000 people if you have to destroy everything this nation stands for to do it?


Aren't you being just a little melodramatic? This hasn't even hit the courts yet, which it most certainly WILL, and you're claiming the nation is destroyed? Come on!


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/10, Rating: -1
RE: Hmmm
By Descenteer on 10/8/2010 7:56:32 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
So if you are spied on via a warrant that you don't know about, that's ok. If you are spied on without a warrant, you gave up your civil liberties?


Warrant or not, if the government is spying on you your liberties are being violated. This is not the issue. What IS the issue is whether there is just cause to violate your liberties. THIS is the reason for the warrant - a balance to ensure that civil liberties aren't violated just because Agent Richard felt like you should be checked out.

quote:
The only difference is a piece of paper, written by the same bureaucrats who 9.5 times out of 10 will side with the Government over you anyway. Either way, the outcome is the same.


What makes you say that the authorizing judges will issue a warrant 95% of the time? Even if that's the right ballpark, who's to say that the reason warrants are approved at that rate aren't because law enforcement isn't being very careful about requesting those warrants?

I don't entirely disagree with the sentiment of this statement, but neither do I have reason outside of distrust of the government to agree.

quote:
Is it just me or is the basis for most of the arguments here saying it's ok if the government does what it wants, as long as there is some type of due process to it? If you aren't aware of the warrant of the surveillance, then what due process?


It is NOT OK for the government to just 'do what it wants,' which is the entire point of due process. It is not due process if the government does as it wishes without regards to the individuals rights and liberties.

What is due process? The barest bones of it means that no activity is taken against an individual by the government without careful consideration of the aforementioned individuals legal rights. That said, another important component to due process is to ensure that the laws regarding the individuals rights indeed follow the tenets of the Bill of Rights and the Constitution as a whole (if you live and are a citizen of the USA, that is). Absolutely no part of this requires the individual in question be involved - or even aware of - the application of due process.

In my mind, the entire point of the warrant system and due process at large is to protect the citizen from power abuse and guard his/her Constitutional freedoms. If I trusted the government to respect my right to freedom and liberty, I might be inclined to relax my standards of due process.

However, this is not the case. I do not think the government is malicious, but is it not perfect and the wrong people in the right place can and do abuse government-granted authority. Even simple stupidity and oversight can bring an individual grief. Due process acts as a balance against that.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/10, Rating: 0
RE: Hmmm
By Descenteer on 10/8/2010 8:44:42 PM , Rating: 3
Honestly, I sympathize. That doesn't mean I'm going to throw my hands in the air and say "why bother?" however. If things are going the wrong direction, taking them further the wrong direction is hardly the way to go:-P


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/9/2010 9:40:34 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
If things are going the wrong direction, taking them further the wrong direction is hardly the way to go:-P


I'm not doing that, but I mean look at us! Does anyone really think what we post here can change anything?

I mean hell, if you takes Mick's approach that both parties are the same and do the same things, why even go out and vote? What's the point?

p.s. I'm extra cynical early in the morning :P


RE: Hmmm
By Etsp on 10/8/2010 1:18:22 PM , Rating: 4
You're making a wrong assumption here. Just because they have a warrant to put a tracking device on his car does not mean they have to notify him that they are doing it.

It used to be that you needed to have a warrant to tap someone's phone, and they never told the person that they were investigating.

There would be nothing wrong with this person being tracked if due process was followed and other branches of government were involved in the decision. As is stands right now, the FBI can track someone on a whim (within their own internal policies).


RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 1:18:46 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Doesn't that defeat the purpose of spying on someone? If they know they're being watched they'll watch their step, not exactly conducive for conducting an investigation concerning national security wouldn't you agree?

"We've got a warrant here to install a tracking device on your car. Just sign here."


U.S. citizens should have the right to due process and if that interferes with the government's ability to "spy on them" so be it.

Just for the record, you're suggesting we scrap the Constitution or parts of it to help the government spy on citizens, correct?

quote:
Jason you fail to see the biggest picture here, not the bigger picture–the biggest, and that is our nation's security and this is what is not being focused on here.


Thank you for clearing that up to me. I now see the error of my ways. How could I not have seen that protecting our national security was worth sacrificing our ideals? Oh forgive me, great national security God! Praise the watchful government!

quote:
It's funny I bet all these f-ing hypocrites who criticize the Feds for this GPS tracking would be the same f-ing idiots who'd criticize the Feds if they didn't do anything to track this guy if he did end up being a terrorist.


Actually I completely forgot to write a post praising Constitutional violations and government monitoring. Wow how could that have slipped my mind? I'll get right on it...

quote:
You can't please us all!


Not the ones that lack common sense at least...

quote:
They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. --Benjamin Franklin


RE: Hmmm
By Invane on 10/8/2010 1:37:27 PM , Rating: 5
I'm 100% with Mick on this one. I'm tired of seeing citizen's rights being trampled for the big bad 'War on Terror'. It ranks right up there with all the crap legislation that gets pushed through 'for the children'.

We have had how many people die from terrorist attacks on US soil in the past 5 years? 10 years? 50 years? Since 1920 I'm counting ~3100 (http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0001454.html). And you know where almost all of those came from. You know how many people die in car accidents? About 115...a day. That's 42000 a year. But we're spending trillions of dollars, putting our service men in harm's way, and giving up more and more of our rights for that 3000 number. Does this ring the WTF bell for anyone else?

This whole war on terror has been blown out of proportion to monumental levels. I am NOT scared of terrorists in my backyard. I do not live in fear. I god damn certainly don't need any more government 'protection' at the expense of my rights. I'm a hundred times more scared of my own government at this point than some bogeyman from the middle east.


RE: Hmmm
By dgingeri on 10/8/10, Rating: -1
RE: Hmmm
By FaaR on 10/9/10, Rating: -1
RE: Hmmm
By Skywalker123 on 10/9/10, Rating: -1
RE: Hmmm
By robinthakur on 10/11/2010 5:36:20 AM , Rating: 2
Wow, as well as being known for egregiously ignorant posts you are now a homophobe. Go you!


RE: Hmmm
By Skywalker123 on 10/12/2010 8:43:56 PM , Rating: 1
Thanks!


RE: Hmmm
By Spuke on 10/8/2010 3:59:24 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I'm a hundred times more scared of my own government at this point than some bogeyman from the middle east.
I would go into massive debt to fight this BS in court!! I don't care if I was living in a refrigerator box after I was done. My rights and my freedoms are of the utmost importance to me. If you ain't free, you ain't shit!


RE: Hmmm
By gorehound on 10/8/2010 4:21:20 PM , Rating: 3
this is supposed to be the land of the free but it is turning into our worst nightmares................1984

little by little inch by inch so they think you won't notice it but we do and we are getting pissed.


RE: Hmmm
By sonnygdude on 10/8/2010 1:44:59 PM , Rating: 2
I'm still a little unclear here - what is it that makes you believe that due process wasn't followed? Are you sure a warrant wasn't issued?


RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 1:52:56 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
I'm still a little unclear here - what is it that makes you believe that due process wasn't followed? Are you sure a warrant wasn't issued?


California is one of the states where warrantless GPS tracking is legal. The case linked in this article about GPS tracking involved a similar GPS plant by federal agents on a suspected drug dealer.

Of course we won't know whether for sure whether a warrant was issued until this gets dragged through the courts, but chances were one wasn't because that's how police/federal agents in California are currently operating.

e.g.
Most plant workers wouldn't check for quality defects if they weren't mandate to do so by their supervisor. Likewise Californian federal agents are unlikely to spend time filing for warrants when they don't need to.

And invading personal property without warrant violates due process.


RE: Hmmm
By sonnygdude on 10/8/2010 2:05:09 PM , Rating: 3
In general, federal agents do not operate under the state/local laws of the location where they're stationed. They observe the FRCP, because evidence they obtain will be scrutinized in the federal court system according to those rules. The FBI also has different procedures than other agencies - in general their procedure is to always get a warrant when practicable. Why? Because it looks better when it comes to trial and it removes all doubt in suppression hearings. Your analogy to the quality inspection just isn't true. You're purely speculating about something you appear to know nothing about.

I agree - invading of privacy without a warrant does violate due process, but the courts have decided what constitutes an "invasion" of privacy. The fourth amendment protects us from unreasonable search and seizure. Unfortunately, your opinion of what's unreasonable doesn't really count. If you want it to count you need to become a supreme court justice.


RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 2:12:00 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
The FBI also has different procedures than other agencies - in general their procedure is to always get a warrant when practicable. Why? Because it looks better when it comes to trial and it removes all doubt in suppression hearings. Your analogy to the quality inspection just isn't true. You're purely speculating about something you appear to know nothing about.


Yep, but the legalization of warrantless GPS tracking was done at a FEDERAL level (Federal 9th Circuit Court). And it was none other than FBI agents in California who planted the tracer in the above discussed narcotics case without warrant and had their actions validated by the federal court throwing out the suspect's appeal.

Granted, I wouldn't expect FBI agents to break the law and engage in this kind of behavior in states that haven't legalized warrantless tracking.


RE: Hmmm
By sonnygdude on 10/8/2010 2:18:44 PM , Rating: 2
Gotcha - i didn't know it was FBI guys involved in that case, I assumed it was DEA - I don't keep up with current events very well!

Actually, I'm not sure that feds are considered to be breaking the law if they do this in states that haven't authorized warrantless tracking. Again, they're following the FRCP, in the federal court system, enforcing federal statues, so I don't think the question of the local laws comes up. If the feds decline prosecution, and a local agency wants to prosecute using evidence gathered by the feds in a local court, that's a different matter.

The same thing question comes up with medical marijuana - a person might be completely compliant to all local laws, but still be busted by the feds for violating federal statutes. That pesky supremacy clause gives the federal laws precedence.


RE: Hmmm
By Fritzr on 10/12/2010 11:46:24 AM , Rating: 2
Actually based on their track record I would expect it to happen on occasion.

The FBI has a long history of believing that they are permitted to ignore laws that might hinder an investigation.

The most recent major embarrassment was when the FBI apologized for the misuse of National Security Letters and asked that none of the agents responsible be held responsible for violating the laws regarding those letters. Instead it would be handled 'internally'.

For those unfamiliar with these letters. They require a warrant before issue. They are considered classified material and may not be disclosed or verified without permission. They are used to obtain confidential information without the target of the investigation being made aware of the 'request'. FBI agents quickly noted that the recipient was not, by law, permitted to find out if the letter was legitimate & streamlined the process by writing and serving letters without the permission of the court. This of course greatly enhanced their ability to get the letter approved, since approval required only access to FBI letterhead and a printer.

The FBI never breaks the law. Actually this can be said because the FBI usually asks for charges to be dropped first and if that fails then 'It was a rogue agent...we never do that'

Closer to my home an FBI sniper was charged with murder. He shot the wrong suspect on a live fire training exercise. The correct target had been accused of Failure To Appear on a court hearing where the clerk of the court had given him an incorrect date for the hearing. The charges of that hearing were based on the testimony of an agent who asked the target to sell him a cutoff shotgun.

Yes the target was associated with a white supremacist group, but is that good reason for sending a sniper team to kill him for not knowing that the court had not given him the correct information. And of course asking that an illegal weapon be made specially for the agent was completely legal since this crime was committed for the purpose of gathering information. (yes the courts have ruled that purchasing illegal materials is ok if it is strictly for the purpose of entrapment)

There are reasons for the restrictions placed on law enforcement. Those restrictions are ignored by many officers. Once in a while they are even punished, but more normally the material is simply filed and forgotten until it is time to use the illegally gathered info to support a later claim that otherwise would be denied.

As for other crimes, Internal Investigation is given the task of investigating and bringing charges when violations are found. However politics often demands that those violations not be found and the IA supervisors are well aware of this reality. If it can be kept quiet, then usually there will be no apparent punishment, though if a supervisor feels embarrassed there may be an unexplained personnel shuffle.

The FBI is famous for surveillance files. Use FOIA sometime to see if you have an FBI file. You'd be surprised at how many innocent people the FBI investigate for suspicious association. McCarthy was flashy, the FBI is efficient. Do you visit a bar regularly where members of a local 'suspicious' group hang out...if yes then you probably have file even if you never knew the 'suspicious' group exists.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/2010 4:16:31 PM , Rating: 1
Mick don't come in here as some Constitutional Crusader. Your view of the Constitution is highly selective at best. Oh sure, like most Liberals, you get all huffy if some brown persons "rights" are being violated, but you're perfectly willing to ignore huge swaths of the Constitution if it supports your political agenda.

My favorite was your support for a massive Estate tax increase, justifying it with "They're dead, they don't need the money" Followed up by your hundreds of pro-Government takeover of private business articles regarding GM and Tesla.


RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 4:58:59 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Mick don't come in here as some Constitutional Crusader. Your view of the Constitution is highly selective at best. Oh sure, like most Liberals, you get all huffy if some brown persons "rights" are being violated, but you're perfectly willing to ignore huge swaths of the Constitution if it supports your political agenda.


Eh? It bothers me if any U.S. citizens' Constitutional rights are being violated. I don't care if you're brown, black, blue, or white -- it's you that seems to draw some sort of distinction there.

quote:
My favorite was your support for a massive Estate tax increase, justifying it with "They're dead, they don't need the money"


I think this is OT, but...

Sure I have some unique ideas about taxes (adopt a flat tax, tax inheritances more to relieve the tax burden on the living&working, etc.).

Flat income taxes/inheritance taxes would be more in line with the eighth amendment which states:

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

And the 16th Amendment, which states:
quote:
The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.


I don't see anything out of line with my opinion here in terms of constitutionality. I think you don't understand the Constitution as well as you think you do. Sure you can debate my opinions re:taxation on the basis of other existing laws, etc. but saying they're unconstitutional shows a lack of understanding of the Constitution.

quote:
Followed up by your hundreds of pro-Government takeover of private business articles regarding GM and Tesla.


Whoa there fella! My what what? No government has ever took over Tesla. And as for the GM bailout I tend to be critical to a degree, though I cut them a bit of slack due to the fact that no bank could have underwritten the resulting bankruptcy and GM itself sought government takeover, not the other way around.

My general opinion on the topic is that the U.S. gov't has no place taking over businesses.

As to whether such takeovers are Constitutional, to me it seems that takeovers/bailouts not sought by the individuals involved is clearly UNCONSTITUTIONAL, in so much that its depriving person(s) of property.

Takeovers like GM's where the business itself approaches the gov't about debt relief are imo a Constitutional gray area in so much as no one is being robbed of their property.

That's my full opinion on the topic.

Again I think you're very confused about me, my opinions, and the Constitution.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/10, Rating: 0
RE: Hmmm
By sprockkets on 10/8/2010 6:00:09 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
You cannot debate the Constitution on a per-article basis. It's clear that wealth redistribution based taxation is unconstitutional and directly opposes everything the Founders believed in. And you are CLEARLY in favor of that.


ANY TAX is redistribution of "wealth". You opposed to all taxes? Cause you can't be "kinda sorta" on it either.

quote:
See this is what I'm talking about. You people always get into an uproar when law enforcement or the military "violates rights", suddenly you're Constitutional lawyers. But when the Federal government rapes the Constitution for social or political reasons, it's a gray area. A GRAY AREA? Really? It's no more of a gray area than the FBI putting a GPS device on your car, as a matter of fact. So it's alright because they were "approached" to do something Unconstitutional?


Ummm, the constitution SPECIFICALLY outlaws searches without due process. Where does it SPECIFICALLY limit the stuff you brought up?


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/2010 6:35:14 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
ANY TAX is redistribution of "wealth".


I'm not even going to get into how absurd you saying that is. You obviously don't know what wealth redistribution is.

quote:
Ummm, the constitution SPECIFICALLY outlaws searches without due process. Where does it SPECIFICALLY limit the stuff you brought up?


The Constitution doesn't have to limit, it's a document of granted powers. Anything not specifically mentioned, is unconstitutional.

Again, please don't take my arguments as arguing FOR illegal searches. However in this case, I believe the "due process" would still have the same net effect. The only difference between a legal and illegal search in this case would be a warrant that the subject has no knowledge of anyway. What's the difference?


RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 6:57:52 PM , Rating: 3
quote:

The Constitution doesn't have to limit, it's a document of granted powers. Anything not specifically mentioned, is unconstitutional.


Err that is entirely wrong and shows you have no understanding of the U.S.'s founding principles. The Constitution gives power to the legislature to make laws.

As long as these laws don't violate the Constitution, they aren't unconstitutional.

For example, there's no direct mention in the constitution of public schools, but clearly, there is a need to fund them. Making legislation to do so is NOT unconstitutional.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/2010 7:22:37 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
The Constitution gives power to the legislature to make laws.


Sigh Captain Literal, OF course it does! Do you think I'm retarded?

quote:
For example, there's no direct mention in the constitution of public schools, but clearly, there is a need to fund them. Making legislation to do so is NOT unconstitutional.


Terrible example, as usual. Where did I say the Constitution needed to specifically mention every single thing?

The point is that the Founders created a system of AMENDMENTS to the Constitution if you wanted to change it. And that system is just ignored today.


RE: Hmmm
By sprockkets on 10/8/2010 8:51:30 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
I'm not even going to get into how absurd you saying that is. You obviously don't know what wealth redistribution is.


Then clarify it. Because if you actually do, we'll all see its another republican BS talking point.

quote:
Sigh Captain Literal, OF course it does! Do you think I'm retarded?


I think we both do.

quote:
Terrible example, as usual. Where did I say the Constitution needed to specifically mention every single thing?


Right here:

"The Constitution doesn't have to limit, it's a document of granted powers. Anything not specifically mentioned, is unconstitutional."


RE: Hmmm
By mudgiestylie on 10/9/2010 5:15:59 AM , Rating: 2
actually the constitution does limit... thats the unquestionable purpose of the bill of rights... to limit the powers of government. and it doesn't say anything not in the constitution is "unconstitutional". it says any power not granted to the federal government is reserved for the states... though that particular amendment seems to have been tossed out a long long time ago. redistribution of wealth is not JUST being taxed, its taking property from one private body and giving it to another (taking land from one individual and giving it to a corporation under the guise of imminent domain, or taking half of a rich guys income and giving it to a bunch of poor guys), that doesnt mean taking money from a rich or poor guy and building a road that can be used by everybody including the person the money was taken from.

did kinda burn him on that last point though.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/9/2010 12:07:13 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Then clarify it. Because if you actually do, we'll all see its another republican BS talking point.


AHAH are you joking? You're right, wealth redistribution doesn't exist. It's just a "bs" Republican talking point.

Look here's more BS propaganda from that oh-so Conservtive Wikipedia!

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


RE: Hmmm
By sprockkets on 10/9/2010 2:20:13 PM , Rating: 1
From the VERY source you quoted:

quote:
Redistribution of wealth is the transfer of income, wealth or property from some individuals to others caused by a social mechanism "such as tax laws, monetary policies, or tort law"


Uh oh, there's that word, TAX. So, back to my first point, are you against taxing or not?

Another point from the article, quoting United States President Grover Cleveland:

quote:
A prevalent tendency to disregard the limited mission of this power and duty should, I think, be steadily resisted, to the end that the lesson should be constantly enforced that, though the people support the Government, the Government should not support the people. ...


which again, is a REPUBLICAN way of doing things.

quote:
The friendliness and charity of our fellow countrymen can always be relied on to relieve their fellow citizens in misfortune. This has been repeatedly and quite lately demonstrated. Federal aid in such cases encourages the expectation of paternal care on the part of the Government and weakens the sturdiness of our national character, while it prevents the indulgence among our people of that kindly sentiment and conduct which strengthens the bonds of a common brotherhood.


Good point. So, when my house is on fire or is being robbed, I'll just rely on my good ole neighbors to help me out.

Medicare, welfare, all those community services, of course, 100% of the time is evil redistribution of wealth.


RE: Hmmm
By thurston on 10/10/2010 8:29:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Do you think I'm retarded?


Yes.


RE: Hmmm
By drando on 10/9/2010 8:52:02 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The Constitution doesn't have to limit, it's a document of granted powers. Anything not specifically mentioned, is unconstitutional.


As much as I hate to agree with reclaimer, he's right. The constitution is a document which enumerates powers to the federal government. It establishes each of the three branches of the federal government and then grants them their powers. Each branch then has the right to act within their granted powers. They aren’t allowed to do anything unless the constitution grants them the right, if they do then it’s unconstitutional.

For a better explanation than I could ever offer, check out this short and very well explained video:

The Powers of Government
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5R7MYItoo20


RE: Hmmm
By drando on 10/9/2010 8:57:20 PM , Rating: 2
I misread that statement and didn't fully read the replies before posting previously. I retract my comment about reclaimer being right. I think what he meant was right but it was poorly worded.


RE: Hmmm
By drando on 10/9/2010 9:08:44 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, the federal funding of public schools is unconstitutional. I'm not saying it's wrong, just unconstitutional. If it's going to happen then the constitution needs to be amended to allow the government to establish it. As it is now, federal funding of public schools is against Article I section 8.


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/8/2010 7:52:33 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
ANY TAX is redistribution of "wealth".


Uh, if you're making the big bucks like $14/hour did you have any wealth to begin with? Don't the main taxes come from the purchases of 40 ounce bottles of beer?


RE: Hmmm
By sprockkets on 10/8/2010 8:56:54 PM , Rating: 2
Money is "wealth", duh.

The "wealthy" already still pay a higher rate of taxes, so what's your point?

I guess we should just kill welfare, child support, medicare, since that also is taking money from the rich (and everyone else who pay taxes), and giving it to someone else.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/9/2010 10:15:32 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
The "wealthy" already still pay a higher rate of taxes, so what's your point?


You seem really confused about wealth redistribution and what it really is. It's NOT simply taxation.

I mean what are you really arguing here? That wealth redistribution doesn't exist? Or that's it's valid and justified? Or what? You're acting oblivious or blind, I can't figure out which.

James Madison, author of the Constitution, wrote, "I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents."

In layman's terms, it's not the role of the government to play Robin Hood!


RE: Hmmm
By sprockkets on 10/9/2010 2:23:23 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
In layman's terms, it's not the role of the government to play Robin Hood!


And where does it forbid that in the constitution? After the great depression, helping people in need is considered a job of the government by the people, because in this case and the current case, the people have very little power to do otherwise.

All the things enacted save the FDIC act were repealed later on the basis of being "unconstitutional." But I'm sure we should have just let everyone rot, because the only people doing well was the movie industry.


RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 6:54:49 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
You cannot debate the Constitution on a per-article basis. It's clear that wealth redistribution based taxation is unconstitutional and directly opposes everything the Founders believed in.


How is a flat tax wealth distribution or unconstitutional? Ron Paul, one of the Constitution's greatest defenders currently in gov't supports the idea. The Constitution clearly grants the gov't the power of taxation. You clearly lack any understanding of the document you're claiming to defend.

quote:
And you are CLEARLY in favor of that.


Hellz no.

quote:
Ok so without using the Interstate Commerce Clause, show me where the Constitution granted the treasury the power to give huge sums of money to private industry, for WHATEVER reason? It's clearly unconstitutional. You are, again, clearly in favor it if as long as the ends justify the means.


Again I don't think my comments in anyway said I was in favor of it. You must be high.

quote:
But it DOES have a place taking huge sums of public money and giving it to them, as long as it's "green" of course?


REALLY? What does any of this have to do with "green"-ness. You are so OT it hurts.

quote:
But when the Federal government rapes the Constitution for social or political reasons, it's a gray area. A GRAY AREA? Really? It's no more of a gray area than the FBI putting a GPS device on your car, as a matter of fact. So it's alright because they were "approached" to do something Unconstitutional?


Like what? Name and example and LIST THE SECTION OF THE CONSTITUTION IT VIOLATES versus just spouting off a bunch of vague nonsense and saying "oh yea, that's unconstitutional!"


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/8/2010 7:56:33 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
just spouting off a bunch of vague nonsense and saying "oh yea, that's unconstitutional!

Here's an idea. How about Mick and Retread both post their education backgrounds?


RE: Hmmm
By Kurz on 10/9/2010 9:43:35 AM , Rating: 2
How is your educational Background matter?
You can either agree with what Jason or Reclaim says.
Or you can disagree with them both.

This isn't public office.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/9/2010 9:57:39 AM , Rating: 2
It's Yash. He's not happy unless he's making personal attacks.

I use Yash as a kind of truth barometer. If I see him disagreeing with me and insulting me, I know I'm on the right path. It's when he starts agreeing with me that I know something is off.


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/9/2010 11:11:25 AM , Rating: 2
Zealot dismissall. Only you could make a question a dirty idea. So, do you have any schooing or not? Where's the truth?


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/9/2010 11:07:54 AM , Rating: 1
@Kurz

This issue is if one even has the background to speak logically and trurthfully, to which Retread can't prove neither.

Notice his hypocritical response. Who's done more name calling here than him?


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/9/2010 12:15:01 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
This issue is if one even has the background to speak logically and trurthfully, to which Retread can't prove neither.


Speaking logically and truthfully doesn't come from higher education. Neither does intelligence, which you are trying to prove I'm lacking. It's a fallacious argument and, typical of you, mean spirited. By it's very nature you are instigating an ad homenum argument. Defeating the argument by trying to defeat the person himself.

It's the Internet, I can't "prove" either to you. If I told you I graduated with top honors from MIT it could be a lie or the truth, either way you wouldn't believe it anyway.


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/9/2010 2:56:34 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Defeating the argument by trying to defeat the person himself.

The kettle is really verbal today.

I was just curious education-wise if you're ever not just shoot from the hip.

quote:
Speaking logically and truthfully doesn't come from higher education. Neither does intelligence


You just had to bring up GWB again.


RE: Hmmm
By Skywalker123 on 10/9/2010 3:31:11 PM , Rating: 2
You're right! If you said you graduated with honors from M.I.T. NOBODY would believe you


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/9/2010 7:26:02 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
If you said you graduated with honors from M.I.T. NOBODY would believe you

Would you believe Faber College?

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0077975/


RE: Hmmm
By thurston on 10/10/2010 8:39:40 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
You must be high.


I think people that like to get high may take offense to you blaming Reclaimer's stupidity on being high.


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/11/2010 1:52:56 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah, every coin has 2 sides.

Except Reclaimer's.


RE: Hmmm
By clovell on 10/11/2010 12:40:25 PM , Rating: 2
Question to Mick, et al. :

What happens when the FBI / Homeland Security develops satellite visual tracking software (a la enemy of the state)? Will they need warrants to track / analyze images? Google is halfway there. A dozen satellites in geosynchronous orbit could canvass about half the population.

It's rhetorical, really - moreso bc I don't have an answer. We need legislators that truly understand this stuff. Scientists, lawyers, scholars. Not the typical goons you see. There's one guy running for the House in my district whose only real experience was running a bank into the ground... but that's another rant entirely.


RE: Hmmm
By Fritzr on 10/12/2010 12:00:46 PM , Rating: 2
Actually that case is currently covered by the various rules on surveillance in public. Tails following you as you travel in public areas, surveillance cameras monitoring the surroundings, aircraft watching the ground. Here in Washington State the Washington State Patrol uses light aircraft to look for speeders. The actual stop & ticket are done by a patrol car, but the car is just acting on instructions, the charge of speeding is from the spotter in the plane.

Being able to target and track an individual is what they are currently working on. You might have heard of real time Face Recognition being used at sports stadiums and airports :)


RE: Hmmm
By surt on 10/8/2010 1:45:16 PM , Rating: 3
Having a warrant does not require allowing the target know they are being surveilled. It just requires a court to certify the need for an excessive intrusion into the privacy of an individual.


RE: Hmmm
By msheredy on 10/8/10, Rating: 0
RE: Hmmm
By sprockkets on 10/8/2010 9:17:06 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
...are conveniently forgetting the fact that this kid's Dad raised a red flag to the Bureau [read] a terror threat .


Since when is being a community leader who died in Egypt a terrorist?

quote:
I'm sure that when they [FBI] get a lead they need to jump on it not waiting for a warrant because I'm sure that in itself takes quite a bit of time and could potentially trigger a warning to that particular individual.


Wrong again. The current law always allowed for a warrant to be obtained days later for cases just like this.

quote:
If you all are upset about this then how come no body is getting mad at Dateline and Chris Hasen for tapping into the chat rooms for child molesters? You think they are issuing warrants for that? I think not.


Since when is talking to a person online constitute an invasion of privacy since the person voluntarily is giving himself away?


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/9/2010 10:03:37 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Since when is talking to a person online constitute an invasion of privacy since the person voluntarily is giving himself away?


Well I think now we're on a slippery slope. Be honest, he made a good point. A lot of those conversations were assumed to be private. People support that kind of stuff when the results are good and the goal novel.


RE: Hmmm
By sprockkets on 10/9/2010 3:06:34 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Well I think now we're on a slippery slope. Be honest, he made a good point. A lot of those conversations were assumed to be private. People support that kind of stuff when the results are good and the goal novel.


If you think ANYTHING you do on the internet is private (including striking up conversations with random people you don't know) you are a lot stupider than I thought.


RE: Hmmm
By Fritzr on 10/12/2010 12:04:05 PM , Rating: 2
The police would need a warrant in cases where they are monitoring a private discussion that is not being shared with anyone who wants to join in, but if it simply involves joining a public chatroom and taking part in the discussion there is no need for a warrant.


RE: Hmmm
By Fritzr on 10/12/2010 12:10:14 PM , Rating: 2
Also Dateline NBC is not a law enforcement agency. When gathering information for news reports, investigators have a lot more freedom than the police do. This probably has something to do with their inability to do anything more than report what they learned. The police might use the investigative report to justify a warrant & they may be able to use some of the results of the private investigation in court, but there are limits on what can be done with information gathered outside the legal system. Even with the looser restrictions, investigative reporters can be charged with crimes for their actions. It doesn't happen often though, even when the news report explains how the investigator broke laws to get the information.


RE: Hmmm
By Siki on 10/8/2010 4:28:58 PM , Rating: 2
I have no doubt that the law enforcement agencies have screwed over more "innocent people" than Islamic terrorists.


RE: Hmmm
By Emryse on 10/8/2010 5:51:17 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, it's you who fail to see the biggest picture here, not the bigger-bigger picture--the biggest, and that is our nation's *FREEDOM*, and this is what *IS* being focused on here.

"They that would give up a little liberty to obtain a little security deserve neither liberty nor security, and will lose both."

I'm sorry, but I would rather be more free and less safe any day of the week, and so would hundreds of thousands of people who have shed their life's blood to ensure that we are free, not so we can be comfy-cozy safe with our government spying on everything we do.


RE: Hmmm
By chick0n on 10/8/10, Rating: 0
RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/10, Rating: 0
RE: Hmmm
By iwanttobehef on 10/8/2010 5:02:51 PM , Rating: 3
funny how its only liberals and democrats are responsible for the gov't expansion of powers not given by the constitution, because this most recent maddness started under whose watch? please don't make the contitution a pawn for your politically charged rants.


RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 5:18:52 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
funny how its only liberals and democrats are responsible for the gov't expansion of powers not given by the constitution, because this most recent maddness started under whose watch? please don't make the contitution a pawn for your politically charged rants.


Well who it started under is a moot point as it's been ongoing under both parties' watch.

But I do agree that he seems to be content if it's his own party of choice that's screwing him and violating his rights, but is indignant if the other party does it.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/2010 5:59:09 PM , Rating: 2
What?

Can you name me ONE essential liberty that Conservatives took from me that I'm "content" with? What right's have I lost?

Name them please. I'm waiting.


RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 6:43:00 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Can you name me ONE essential liberty that Conservatives took from me that I'm "content" with? What right's have I lost?


So-called "conservatives", have supported intiatives to limit free speech, limit citizens' freedom of travel, limit your right to due process and more.

You're living in a world of your imagination if you think that's not true.

Both parties are to blame for the current state of affairs.

And I think your blind obedience to your party of choice is an outstanding example of why America is in the mess its in today. You're just as bad as those who blindly support an agenda pushed out by the Democratic party.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/2010 7:46:28 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
So-called "conservatives", have supported intiatives to limit free speech, limit citizens' freedom of travel, limit your right to due process and more.


A few conservatives or a whole movement?

Jason it's more than a "few" Liberals that's leading us down this path. You might have noticed...

quote:
Both parties are to blame for the current state of affairs.


Oh no you don't. Every SINGLE THING that happened under Bush and Republicans was his fault. There is none of this "oh it's BOTH of them" pandering talk when Republican's are in control. So I'm not going to hear that now. NONE of your articles back then had this view in them, only now when the true colors of the Democratic party are on full display, do you make this concession.

quote:
And I think your blind obedience to your party of choice is an outstanding example of why America is in the mess its in today.


Conservatism isn't a party. And it's always nice to see your contempt for someone who patronizes Daily Tech. Very professional.


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/8/2010 8:03:32 PM , Rating: 2
Look up the definition of "small favors" and you'll find this:

quote:
And it's always nice to see your contempt for someone who patronizes Daily Tech


quote:
Oh no you don't.

Ah, my arguments are perfect and yours are all wrong. The same "reasoning" used to justify 9/11.


RE: Hmmm
By thurston on 10/10/2010 8:45:56 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
And it's always nice to see your contempt for someone who patronizes Daily Tech.


Then why do you continue to do it?


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/8/2010 7:48:20 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
You're living in a world of your imagination if you think that's not true.

You need to understand in his zealot world he sees an Oreo sandwich cookie as 2 shades of gray.

quote:
Both parties are to blame for the current state of affairs.

Congrats, you win the cookie, yeah good luck with it.

quote:
And I think your blind obedience to your party of choice is an outstanding example of why America is in the mess its in today. You're just as bad as those who blindly support an agenda pushed out by the Democratic party.

I just got a tinge of deja vu just know.

But about that, let's look at Gerald Ford, a "go along" guy with never an objectionable comment. After he died he made it known that he disapproved of the Iraq war. He never said a word while he was alive because he didn't have the balls to stand up to his party. He set his own personal sense of justice, what's right and what's wrong, aside to "get along." No person can commit a more cowardly act than this one. How many more are like him? Who knows?


RE: Hmmm
By sprockkets on 10/8/2010 9:20:00 PM , Rating: 1
Conservatives never stop trying to outlaw flag burning, even though it has time and time again been upheld as free speech.

Got something Liberals have done today? No, health care doesn't count.


RE: Hmmm
By Fritzr on 10/12/2010 12:14:17 PM , Rating: 2
Lets start with the most recent famous attack on liberty. The Patriot Act. Nothing new though, even the Founding Fathers complained about attacks on liberty by government...that is why the Bill of Rights exists.


RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 5:15:13 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
People are on the fence about the Constitution on Daily Tech every day. They are called Democrats and Liberals.


And republicans and conservatives. I think an alarming number of BOTH conservatives and liberals either don't understand the Constitution or are willing to give up essential parts of it for convenience.

quote:
They vote for an ever expansive government and then act all shocked when something like this happens.


A bigger government isn't unconstitutional inherently. In fact it can be the sign of a healthy national economy (e.g. more parks, better schools, better roads, better law enforcement).

However, expansion of government can be unconstitutional if the expansion involves the violation of an amendment, e.g. the violation of protection against unwarranted searches from the Fourth Amendment that's at issue here.

That's an important distinction to bear in mind.

Don't cry wolf about big gov't being inherently unconstitutional lest you draw apathy at real expansive violations like this one.

quote:
To prove my point, I will now probably get a -1 for saying this.


You get rated down because your observations are oft off topic, you are wholly biased against the Democratic party, and you over-generalize.

If you'd focus on the fact that BOTH Democrats and Republicans have, by and large, been violating the Constitution recently then you'd get more respect. By letting Republicans off the hook and focusing solely on Democratic party you look like a hypocrite and aren't helping remedy the overarching situation.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/2010 6:17:37 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
A bigger government isn't unconstitutional inherently. In fact it can be the sign of a healthy national economy (e.g. more parks, better schools, better roads, better law enforcement).


Insanity. A government TAKES from the national economy. The bigger the government, the disproportionately more it needs from the private sector to continue. Large governments directly work against healthy national economies. Are you high right now Jason?

Massive sized governments and thriving economies are a complete oxymoron.

quote:
If you'd focus on the fact that BOTH Democrats and Republicans have, by and large, been violating the Constitution recently then you'd get more respect.


So if I lied I would get more respect? That's basically what you're saying. I noticed this whole "both parties are the same" line only gets thrown out when Democrats get called on something. Am I in a time-warp or is this 2010 and this happened under the Obama administration?

I never said Republicans didn't "do the same" sometimes. But help me figure something out. Is it just a crazy coincidence that the broadest expansion of government powers we've ever seen started taking place right around when Democrats won a super-majority in the House and a majority in the Senate?

That's ok Jason. When I'm sitting in jail because I didn't buy government Health Care, I'll remember you told me both parties are the same...


RE: Hmmm
By JasonMick (blog) on 10/8/2010 6:49:17 PM , Rating: 4
quote:

Insanity. A government TAKES from the national economy. The bigger the government, the disproportionately more it needs from the private sector to continue.


Not necessarily true. Say there was only one interstate in the U.S. How would that effect the economy? Or what if there was only five public schools in the whole country. Get real and stop generalizing.

quote:
Large governments directly work against healthy national economies. Are you high right now Jason?


No.

quote:
So if I lied I would get more respect? That's basically what you're saying. I noticed this whole "both parties are the same" line only gets thrown out when Democrats get called on something. Am I in a time-warp or is this 2010 and this happened under the Obama administration?


You're right! So we're now calling a Democrat out, four years back we were calling a Republican out. But by we I mean me, because you were blinding swallowing the refuse that your party was forcefeeding you.

I've said it to you once, and I'll say it again. BOTH parties are part of the problem. Try to get that in your head, please.

quote:
I never said Republicans didn't "do the same" sometimes. But help me figure something out. Is it just a crazy coincidence that the broadest expansion of government powers we've ever seen started taking place right around when Democrats won a super-majority in the House and a majority in the Senate?


Very broad expansion of government occurred when the Republicans had a large majority early in Bush's term, post 9/11. Did you miss that somehow?

Again BOTH PARTIES ARE TO BLAME. DUH.

quote:

That's ok Jason. When I'm sitting in jail because I didn't buy government Health Care, I'll remember you told me both parties are the same...


Well when that happens let me know, I'd be happy to write an article criticizing that policy. :)


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/8/2010 8:13:42 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Or what if there was only five public schools in the whole country.

Look at what education has produced in his state, assuming he didn't drop out. Seems futile from here.

quote:
Get real and stop generalizing.

But then how could he make any points? This is how bigotry works, huge generalizations. Far more damaging than pinpoint attacks, because they are far more inaccurate.

quote:
BOTH PARTIES ARE TO BLAME. DUH!

Corrected.


RE: Hmmm
By sprockkets on 10/8/2010 9:24:17 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Insanity. A government TAKES from the national economy. The bigger the government, the disproportionately more it needs from the private sector to continue. Large governments directly work against healthy national economies. Are you high right now Jason? Massive sized governments and thriving economies are a complete oxymoron.


Yes, because a big government cannot at all spend more on the economy or the private sector either.

Like Mick said, both sides suck, and for different reasons. Humans cannot and never have and never will be able to rule themselves.


RE: Hmmm
By snyper256 on 10/12/2010 7:25:13 PM , Rating: 2
Nah.. we're just being ruled by people with superiority complexes. There are many mechanisms used to impose the conditions found throughout the world.

If human values (like cooperation for example, in place of power and money) were recognized by anyone in control, there would be fewer problems overall.


RE: Hmmm
By YashBudini on 10/9/2010 7:22:02 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
You get rated down because your observations are oft off topic, you are wholly biased against the Democratic party, and you over-generalize.

But other than that Mrs. Lincoln how was the play?


RE: Hmmm
By Targon on 10/8/2010 6:00:58 PM , Rating: 4
You clearly are not a "detail oriented person", since painting Democrats and Liberals as people who want a larger government only applies to a very small percentage of those two groups.

You really need to break things down to get a clear understanding when it comes to political affiliation and how people look at things, and you clearly are the sort to jump to conclusion about a group based on the actions of a small few.

So, let's look at the categories here:

Fiscal policy tends to fall under those who are conservative, and those who like to throw money around like there is a never ending supply.

Most non-politicians tend to fall more under the conservative side here, though SOME programs that invest in the people of this country tend to annoy conservatives. Note that I say invest in the people, because if the government can help people go from needing help all the time to being productive and taxpaying citizens, that should be seen as a good thing. At the same time, many government agencies are incompetent and fail to properly motivate people into becoming productive citizens. That is where we could discuss this at length, but this isn't the time for that.

Then you get into the whole "social policy" side of things. This is where there are a lot of people get upset, and where government should really not get involved. You want freedom, then the libertarian way of looking at things is a bit more rational than the conservative way of looking at things.

Now, trying to label all Democrats, myself included, as people who want to see big government, is just foolish. In the same way that the ultra-conservatives go too far in that direction, there is a group that goes too far in the other direction. At this point, we have too many people who are at the extremes in government, and neither is a good thing.

I am very much in favor of sticking with a more constitutional view of things, BUT, you also have to look at the intent, not JUST the wording. Gay rights for example just were not an issue, but it doesn't mean that homosexuals were not intended to NOT have rights either, just because they were not mentioned. This is the sort of thing where people can be on the fence about the Constitution.

So, stop jumping to stupid conclusions, because I do NOT go out and scream that every "conservative" hates everyone who isn't a white Christian who goes to church every Sunday and feels that everyone should be walking around with a gun just because ONE interpretation of the Constitution says they have the right to own a gun. I do feel that the stupid conservative Republicans may feel that way, but most have a more moderate view of the issues and have a more common sense perspective.


RE: Hmmm
By Reclaimer77 on 10/8/2010 6:28:27 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
You clearly are not a "detail oriented person", since painting Democrats and Liberals as people who want a larger government only applies to a very small percentage of those two groups.


Even if that's true, which I'm not saying it is, that almost doesn't even matter because that "very small percentage" right now ARE those in power.

quote:
You really need to break things down to get a clear understanding when it comes to political affiliation and how people look at things, and you clearly are the sort to jump to conclusion about a group based on the actions of a small few.


Again, if those few are the ones making policies that effect mine and everyone else's life, then they ARE who define the party.

quote:
Now, trying to label all Democrats, myself included, as people who want to see big government, is just foolish.


Where did I say they wanted big government? Their goal isn't big government per-say. Big government is just the accumulative EFFECT of their belief system though. The road to big government is paved with lots of tiny tiny little stones, all innocent and benign and well meaning.

quote:
So, stop jumping to stupid conclusions


Please stop characterizing me as one who does so.


RE: Hmmm
By LRonaldHubbs on 10/8/2010 4:52:25 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed 100%. There is nothing to be on the fence about. Anyone who values freedom and privacy cannot support this type of invasive, unconstitutional, illegal activity by the government.


RE: Hmmm
By Makaveli on 10/8/2010 7:35:38 PM , Rating: 2
Instead of arguing with the posters Jason.

Why don't fix the horrible use of English here.

"Unbeknownst to Mr. Afifi -- a 20-year-old U.S.-born citizen who attends the business marketing student at Mission College in Santa Clara, Caifornia"

Read that again and tell me it makes sense.

Does this not sound better?

a 20-year old U.S. -born citizen and business marketing student who attends Mission college in Santa Clara.

My lil brother who is in Grade 6 read this and said his english teacher would fail you lol.


RE: Hmmm
By jhb116 on 10/9/2010 12:14:15 PM , Rating: 2
For this particular type of situation - I agree with you. We do need to be careful in where that protection versus freedom line falls.

It sickens me, though, that the ACLU is getting involve because they oppose basic tools to make it easier for law enforcement to do their job. The instance that sticks out in my mind is the ACLU's opposition to the police connecting computers to cameras (cameras that have been in cars for many years now) to automatically scan license plates in view on the street or from the street.


RE: Hmmm
By Master Kenobi (blog) on 10/9/2010 4:24:46 PM , Rating: 1
Well, law enforcement can't just say hey let's track Joe down the street. They still need approval from pretty high up in the government to actually do it. The fact that a half dozen agents from the FBI showed up would lend weight to the idea that they had this approval from whoever they needed it from and were actively investigating this guy or his family.


RE: Hmmm
By jezzza234 on 10/9/2010 4:42:18 PM , Rating: 3
I agree. From an outsiders perspective (I live in New Zealand), I'm glad that I don't live in the US. That situation sounds awful and you are completely powerless. The arrogance of those people!

It actually looks from the outside increasingly like the US doesn't really have freedom, just pretend freedom.


RE: Hmmm
By sleepeeg3 on 10/10/2010 4:15:35 PM , Rating: 2
I can't believe people are on the fence about letting the federal government force people to buy healthcare when this violates the 10th Amendment "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

I can't believe people are on the fence about letting illegal immigrants automatically become American citizens without doing anything to prove they care about this country, when millions waited and did.

I can't believe people are on the fence about deporting illegal immigrants when unemployment is near 10% and they are stealing jobs from American citizens and millions of legal immigrants.

I can't believe people are on the fence about nuclear power when we have been using it for over 50 years and the other alternatives are many times more expensive.

I can't believe people are on the fence about Obama being an American citizen, when he has spent millions to hide a non-existent birth certificate.

So there are a lot of things I can't believe people are on the fence about, but this is the least of them. The general paranoia of the people is likely to expose any incidences of midnight, FBI kidnappings.


RE: Hmmm
By Fritzr on 10/12/2010 12:36:43 PM , Rating: 2
The reasoning is as follows.
The residents of each State select a few people to represent their interests in the operation of the Federal government (there used to be a balance in that the Senate was selected by the Legislatures, but that was ended by Constitutional Amendment)

The Representatives of the States acting as agents of their respective States declare their will to delegate authority to the Federal government.

Upon approval by a majority of the State Representives and a separate majority of the State Senators, the President is then asked if he/she approves.

Once the President has approved the delegation of authority it is then a power granted to the Federal Government by a majority of the States.

This law will then remain in effect for the period stated in it's enactment unless the States by majority vote withdraw their permission or the Supreme Court declares that the Representatives of the States did not have the authority under the Constitution to pass that law (normally phrased as "declared unconstitutional")

Now if you believe that the Congressional Representatives and Senators do not represent the interests of their respective states for the purpose of meeting the definition in the Constitution, then who does?

The common belief is that the "Federal Government" makes laws. Nope, it is the Representatives of the various States that make the laws. The 'Federal Government' is mostly the beauracracies that implement the laws.


RE: Hmmm
By Iketh on 10/10/2010 5:34:59 PM , Rating: 2
i think it has to do with how many warrants would overload the system, and then the time lost on top of it...

i don't want it this way, but i still understand...


RE: Hmmm
By RivuxGamma on 10/8/2010 4:06:58 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I'm literally on the fence on this one...


Really? Can I take your word that you are sitting/standing or otherwise physically on not just a fence, but the fence right now?

You are doing to the word "literally" what Alanis Morissette did to "ironic."


RE: Hmmm
By msheredy on 10/8/2010 6:15:28 PM , Rating: 2
Some where along the lines it was assumed that I am in favor of the Government to spy on everyone . This is however not how I feel, let me explain.

Now if Joe the plumber was the unlucky recipient of said GPS tracking device with no link to anything illegal, terrorists in this case. I would consider the FBI going to far. So as you can see my view largely depends on the situation at hand and why I'm literally "on the fence."


RE: Hmmm
By Fritzr on 10/12/2010 12:42:00 PM , Rating: 2
If it was Joe the Plumber the court would probably refuse the warrant. If the target was a known associate of those involved in drugs and there was other evidence he was a valid target then the warrant would likely be approved.

Even in cases where there is no time for a warrant, a warrant is required to use the evidence for any legal purpose and there is a procedure for getting that after the fact warrant.

In this case I doubt they ever considered getting a warrant as they are stating that one is not legally required.

Look up "FBI surveeilance files" sometime. You'll probably be amazed at what consitutes 'good reason for surveillance' :P


RE: Hmmm
By poohbear on 10/9/2010 1:47:38 AM , Rating: 3
Herman Göring (head of Luftwaffe): Why, of course, the people don't want war. Why would some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best that he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece. Naturally, the common people don't want war; neither in Russia nor in England nor in America, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy or a fascist dictatorship or a Parliament or a Communist dictatorship.

Gilbert (psychologist): There is one difference. In a democracy, the people have some say in the matter through their elected representatives, and in the United States only Congress can declare wars.

Herman Göring: Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country.


"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher














botimage
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki