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Excellent 'Frontline' Tonight on Domestic Surveillance...

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by jgmacg, Nov 27, 2007.

  1. jgmacg

    jgmacg Guest

    ....and the continuing threat to our privacy, civil liberties and the rule of law. You can watch it online here:

  2. I don't know why I keep watching this stuff over and over again.
    I really don't.
  3. dixiehack

    dixiehack Well-Known Member

  4. Kaylee

    Kaylee Member

    So perhaps somewhere there's a Homeland Security spook that knows my rage when websites try to pass off world-weary porn stars as Real Teen Sluts.

    THAT'S why I love our representative form of government.
  5. jgmacg

    jgmacg Guest

    At least it's nice to know that someone, somewhere has copies of all my receipts. And if you're out there reading and listening, please, just pass 'em along to the IRS. Thanks.
  6. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    We should investigate people based on individual suspicion, not general suspicion. I see the potential for abuse that all of you do. I also wonder if they have crossed the line yet -- has someone innocent or has a political enemy been harassed or prosecuted because their fourth amendment rights were violated? I mean, let's say I was in Las Vegas and in some expansive dragnet, they got receipts of my car or hotel rental. Or let's say they are monitoring my ISP on some terrorist needle in a haystack investigation, and they gather records of what web sites I visited along with thousands of other people they have no reason to be investigating. There is great potential for abuse with this kind of unchecked warrantless power... But I'd also have a tough time claiming any harm, unless they come after me on some trumped up charge. To anyone's knowledge has this happened yet? I say yet, because I can imagine it happening, whether it has or not or may still happen. This all sounds so Nixonian. You want to give them the benefit of the doubt--that it's really more about safety and you have to give up some privacy in return--but you might then find out it is really some paranoid campaign to harass enemies. Is there any evidence of this yet?
  7. D-Backs Hack

    D-Backs Hack Guest

    It could be worse.

    You could be reading Joe Klein's take on the whole thing.
  8. Holy god, what a hack.
    Ragu -- one of the universe of problems with this administration's complete disregard for constitutional norms is that we don't know what they're doing because they've classified most of the data and refuse to discuss it, even with the relevant congressional committees because of (wait for it) "national security." I'd also argue that they very fact that they're doing this at all, in secret and without warrants, is damaging to my civil liberties, but you seem impervious to those kind of arguments.
  9. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    Not impervious. I think a fundamental difference between you and me is that I tend to look at end results. My response often is to say, "was there any practical harm done?" not "is this is a potential threat to something that I construe as a civil liberty." I am always suspicious. I think Nixon did more harm to our country (and actually had people fretting that our Constitution doesn't work) than any president in my lifetime. And if I had been old enough to understand what was going on then, I am sure my first response would have been to want to give him the benefit of the doubt and then I would have felt so betrayed when I found out he was just a paranoid fuck using the most powerful position in the world to harass people. I'm always afraid of that now. But I do take a more practical view of things usually. I basically WANT to give people the benefit of the doubt, and since a "safety" argument can be made with regard to vigilance toward terrorism, I WANT to believe that things like warrantless wiretaps (which I believe violate the fourth amendment) are being done with good intention, not so someone can make life hell for a political enemy, a la Nixon. That was why I asked the question the way I did. I really was curious about whether we know if they have crossed that line. Not conjecture, or a general, "this is a theat to our civil liberties," but my more practical way of looking things, which is, "Has there been any harm done yet?" I hope you really doesn't mean that makes me impervious to reason. It's just a different way of looking at the world.
  10. Please consult the architectural plans for The Road To Hell for my response.
    Thank you.
  11. JR

    JR Well-Known Member

    And then there's always the "slippery slope".

    The scariest part of this documentary (and thanks Jg) was the clown from WH security (I've forgotten his name) who basically said, "You are all suspects. And once we've sorted it all out and if we assume you've done nothing wrong, you're OK. But if something looks fishy, you'll go on a list". Yikes.

    And as Hedrick Smith pointed out, this flies in the face of hundreds of years of English Common Law.

    I should also point out that there are numerous episodes of Frontline on that site: the one on Dick Cheney will make your skin crawl.
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