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Leading Conservatives Call for Extensive Hearings on NSA Surveillance; Checks on Invasive Federal Po
http://releases.usnewswire.com/GetRelease.asp?id=59381 ^ | January 17, 2006 | Patriots to Restore Checks and Balances

Posted on 01/18/2006 8:10:29 AM PST by Perlstein

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To: pissant
"President determines who gets monitored based on national security threats."

This is not exactly true. According to NSA, the decision can be made by a shift supervisor.

151 posted on 01/18/2006 12:15:55 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: lugsoul
You already concede that we are NOT at war with all 'radical Islamists aligned with Al Qaeda,'

No I didn't ever agree to that, you made that up.....and as far as I am concerned, you're not worth the time, you're simply irrational.

See ya, don't bother posting, I won't answer, cause you're not worth the time.

152 posted on 01/18/2006 12:17:23 PM PST by Lakeshark (Thank a member of the US armed forces for their sacrifice)
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To: conserv13
How long does this 'time of war' last?

You tell me.


This is a ch__ch. What's missing?

153 posted on 01/18/2006 12:18:18 PM PST by rdb3 (What it is is what it was.)
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To: Lakeshark
Ah....so it's the fault of Congress

For cowering before the executive? Absolutely.

Now how about answering my question, if you can. (don't worry about it if you can't; it's not like I had all that high expectations)

154 posted on 01/18/2006 12:18:27 PM PST by inquest (If you favor any legal status for illegal aliens, then do not claim to be in favor of secure borders)
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To: inquest
So, you think we need a revolution? Is that your point?

If not, what is your point?

155 posted on 01/18/2006 12:21:11 PM PST by Lakeshark (Thank a member of the US armed forces for their sacrifice)
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To: lugsoul

It depends on how tangental it is. If its a caller who called a caller who called a caller and is 4 layers removed from a direct connection to the terror number, then its absurd and a waste of time for them to tap that line. But if you are 1 layer removed, and after every call that our direct link caller makes to Osama, he calls you a minute later, then there is reasonable cause to be suspicious. Should we get a warrant for you so we can see where else you are calling. No.


156 posted on 01/18/2006 12:21:28 PM PST by pissant
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To: Lakeshark
So, you DO think we are at war with Saudi Arabia.

But go ahead and duck the question. Because I know you can't answer it and maintain any semblance of logical consistency.

157 posted on 01/18/2006 12:21:28 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: Justanobody
Your post has a great set of links that point out the true situation and the due dilegence that the administration utilized in crafting the program that was underway.

I can't imagine that these fellows are so craven as to parrot the leftist media line that this was a "domestic spying program against citizens at home."

I think that when the true history of what and how comes under non-biased examination it will be clear the Bush would have been subject to claims of wrong doing IF HE HADN'T taken the course of examining foreign contacts.

158 posted on 01/18/2006 12:22:43 PM PST by KC Burke (Men of intemperate minds can never be free....)
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To: pissant
Okay. You are almost there. I'm not asking you if it is 'absurd and a waste of time' to tap them without a warrant. I'm asking if it is ILLEGAL for them to do so.

And, just to be clear, I'm talking about the 'tangential' types we've been discussing. NOT those who called terrorists and are called by them. And NOT those who are called as a pattern right after Osama calls our suspect. Simply those who happened to get caught up in a big net.

159 posted on 01/18/2006 12:25:21 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: Lakeshark
So, you think we need a revolution?

Where the hell did that come from? Is it your usual habit to start talking about things that have nothing to do with the argument at hand?

what is your point?

I already told you what my point was. Congress has no more constitutional authority to transfer the war-declaring power to the President, than it has to allow lower military officers to second-guess his power as commander-in-chief. An act of Congress purporting to do that is void.

160 posted on 01/18/2006 12:26:33 PM PST by inquest (If you favor any legal status for illegal aliens, then do not claim to be in favor of secure borders)
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To: lugsoul
A repeat for you of my last post, for you I'll copy and paste it one last time:

No I didn't ever agree to that, you made that up.....and as far as I am concerned, you're not worth the time, you're simply irrational.

See ya, don't bother posting, I won't answer, cause you're not worth the time.

161 posted on 01/18/2006 12:29:13 PM PST by Lakeshark (Thank a member of the US armed forces for their sacrifice)
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To: rdb3

Doesn't Congress have the power to declare / undeclare war?


162 posted on 01/18/2006 12:29:39 PM PST by conserv13
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To: inquest

Well, if congress was that bad, what are we to do?


163 posted on 01/18/2006 12:30:10 PM PST by Lakeshark (Thank a member of the US armed forces for their sacrifice)
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To: Carolinamom

It might be pretty to think that "The President took an oath to protect this country," but it's not factual or true.

Here's the oath the president took:

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."


164 posted on 01/18/2006 12:34:03 PM PST by Bleeding Kansan
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To: Lakeshark
Either you do believe that or you don't. You denied you said we were at war with them. Then you deny that we are. Is the question so hard that you are afraid of either answer?

"Irrational"? Yes. Irrationally posing questions that you are incapable of answering.

165 posted on 01/18/2006 12:34:47 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: lugsoul

Yes, it's illegal to me if it is random. It is not illegal to me if it "reasonable". That is my criteria. That's why I gave the post Osama caller example. To show that there can be a reasonable cause even if tangental. Is it a fine line? Perhaps.

But the way you deal with a CIC who oversteps what is reasonable is to impeach him.


166 posted on 01/18/2006 12:35:26 PM PST by pissant
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To: lugsoul
Is a warrant required? If they proceed to do so without a warrant, is it a violation of law?

Yes and yes.

167 posted on 01/18/2006 12:38:15 PM PST by conserv13
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To: Perlstein

Looking to do another article on FReepers, eh?


168 posted on 01/18/2006 12:40:52 PM PST by metesky ("Brethren, leave us go amongst them." Rev. Capt. Samuel Johnston Clayton - Ward Bond- The Searchers)
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To: Bleeding Kansan

I have my own copy of the Constitution, thank you.


169 posted on 01/18/2006 12:41:53 PM PST by Carolinamom (New member of Sam's Club)
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To: pissant
"Yes, it's illegal to me if it is random. It is not illegal to me if it "reasonable". That is my criteria."

You are just edging in the right direction. But you are still avoiding exactly what I'm asking you. I'm not talking about 'random'. I'm talking about being subject to surveillance by criteria that are far more broad that "calls to and from terrorists" or even "calls demonstrating a pattern of being connected to calls from terrorists." I'm talking about exactly the kind of '4 steps removed' things you said a minute ago were not okay.

So - NOT 'random' - Let's say '4 steps removed' since that's what you used earlier. Do you think it is 'reasonable' to conduct of warrantless wiretap of someone 4 steps removed? Illegal to do so?

170 posted on 01/18/2006 12:41:59 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: conserv13

Of course you are correct. But I want to see pissant's answer before I take the next step into where we differ.


171 posted on 01/18/2006 12:42:53 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: Perlstein

The only thing worse than a Po is an Invasive Federal Po.


172 posted on 01/18/2006 12:43:35 PM PST by avg_freeper (Gunga galunga. Gunga, gunga galunga)
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To: atomicpossum
It would be a pretty good essay if it weren't so full of holes.

For example, if one assumes that a person being wiretapped is not an agent of a foreign power, huge chunks of the rationale fall completely apart.

You don't really believe that everyone who has been surveilled under this 'program' is an 'agent of a foreign power', do you?

173 posted on 01/18/2006 12:45:00 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: lugsoul

I do not think 4 steps removed is legal to wiretap, warrant or not. And I can't see how they could get a warrant either.

Legal to look at their calling history to see if it has even more tangents to other shady numbers? Yes.

If that cursory check does not reveal any more reasonableness, then it is illegal in my mind and should be under the Justice Dept's governing code.

4 steps removed is awful close to random to me.


174 posted on 01/18/2006 12:48:54 PM PST by pissant
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To: Perlstein

As noted on the NRO, The Corner, these are all Republicans, not conservatives, and have all been opposed to the war on terror on all levels. Bob Barr works for the ACLU, for Pete's sake.


175 posted on 01/18/2006 12:53:08 PM PST by Eva
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To: Lakeshark
You're avoiding the issue by asking that. This discussion isn't about what to do (feel free to start another thread if you want to discuss that), but about the fact that the Constitution's being disregarded, as I described. If your point is that that simply can't be happening, because that would mean you'd actually have to do something in response, then you're not making a terribly impressive argument.
176 posted on 01/18/2006 12:54:20 PM PST by inquest (If you favor any legal status for illegal aliens, then do not claim to be in favor of secure borders)
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To: pissant
Ah - your last sentence clarified a lot. I view random as literally 'plucked out of the clear blue sky' - not even a connection to a connection to a connection as a justification You know, like 'a guy Atta called's landlord's sister's husband.' That's not random.

Now, we come to where we likely disagree, and it is a point that neither of us knows. Do you believe that the NSA surveillance of US citizens includes only persons who call or are called by terrorists, or are suspiciously tied to them (like your pattern of calls after every Osama call)? Or do you believe it includes the type of '4 step-removed' people we've been discussing?

177 posted on 01/18/2006 12:54:28 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: inquest
No I'm not. I'm asking you what you're going to do since you think it's so awful.

I disagree that this is awful.

178 posted on 01/18/2006 12:56:09 PM PST by Lakeshark (Thank a member of the US armed forces for their sacrifice)
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To: lugsoul

I believe it may have been 10 steps removed right after 9-11. LOL.

Followed by the appropriate recalibration to what the President described in his press conference. I would and could not support a program that included the 4 steps removed standard.


179 posted on 01/18/2006 12:58:35 PM PST by pissant
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To: pissant
Your lack of support is noted and appreciated. Can you think of any way in which such a program would be LEGAL?

Because - as is painfully obvious - I think those who believe that we are only tapping those "who call and are called by terrorists" (a) have no understanding of electronic eavesdropping and its power and (b) have no understanding of getting a FISA warrant. I believe we are obviously tapping people who fall well outside the 'call or be called' category, if for no other reason that we could snag a FISA warrant for such people if the person presenting the application was passed out drunk.

Now, you seem to be saying that you would find such '4-step removed' warrantless surveillance to be contrary to law. If it is revealed that such surveillance has been occurring - and not 'a couple of times by accident', but by design - would you think something needs to be done about it?

180 posted on 01/18/2006 1:05:00 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: lugsoul
If the Federal government wants to wiretap a US citizen who has not made phone calls to or from terrorists and does not have any "serious indicator of belonging to Al Qaeda", on the basis that the tap 'has to do with national security' based on reasonable cause determined solely by the President, are they required to seek and obtain a warrant?

The one thing you left out here as it currently stands, is that these warrantless taps are on international communications. That's a key point. Your scenario leaves out that Al Qaeda, or any other Islamist terrorist group, could very well be operating within the States.

Anything within the United States and/or its territories still requires a warrant, even on those Islamist groups.


This is a ch__ch. What's missing?

181 posted on 01/18/2006 1:08:29 PM PST by rdb3 (What it is is what it was.)
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To: lugsoul

I only support the direct call scenario and cases like the post Osama call. The rest should be done through the more traditional methods if they want to follow up on further removed persons.

So to answer your question, if it is demonstrated that the 4 steps removed system is being used on US CITIZENS, then I would want it curtailed. That is too random to be legal.

But they claimed that only about 5000 people have been subject to this. So I'd be quite suprised if more than a handful of 4 steppers were being monitored.


182 posted on 01/18/2006 1:12:12 PM PST by pissant
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To: conserv13
Doesn't Congress have the power to declare / undeclare war?

Yes, it surely does have the power to decare war. Don't know about undeclaring war. But that takes us a long way away from what we're talking about here.

I'm not about to follow you around your endless number of circles. Stick on one subject, please.


This is a ch__ch. What's missing?

183 posted on 01/18/2006 1:14:21 PM PST by rdb3 (What it is is what it was.)
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To: rdb3
None of the legal rationales asserted by the Administration require this distinction.

And, as far as what is being monitored, we only know what we are told...

184 posted on 01/18/2006 1:16:59 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: pissant
IF the 5000 number is accurate, or true, our difference on this issue may end up being the scariest of all. I think that 5000 MUST include the kind of 4-step-removed folks discussed above. Because otherwise, if (as you seem to think) it does not, then there are AT LEAST 5000 people in this country having direct communications with terrorists trying to attack us, or at least with suspicious patterns connecting their commications to these people. 5000 is a lot of people. More than the number of 'hard-core insurgents' in Afghanistan.
185 posted on 01/18/2006 1:20:27 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: Dane
Gee, I guess your "logic" says that bob barr and other "true conservatives" joining hands with moveon.org and al gore means nothing. """

My "logic" says that the Constitution means something. Checks and balances are there for a purpose. Marxism and liberalism believe in government power without restraint. I don't.

186 posted on 01/18/2006 1:20:43 PM PST by churchillbuff
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To: pissant
It took a long way to get here, but this is why, IMHO, some conservatives are angry about this program and some aren't. Some simply don't believe that it is limited to those who call terrorists or are called by them. Or people of similar proximity. Some do believe it.

I don't believe it. For a second. It is contrary to the very nature of government to be self-constrained.

187 posted on 01/18/2006 1:22:37 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: Dane

Ah - it is perfectly clear now. You don't have 'positions.' You have 'sides.'


188 posted on 01/18/2006 1:23:47 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: lugsoul

There are bound to be at LEAST 5000 terror sympathizers in this country with contacts as diverse as the commie insurgents in the Phillipines, the questioanble Saudi supported "charities", to british bred terror scum, etc etc. The number seems small to me.


189 posted on 01/18/2006 1:26:48 PM PST by pissant
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To: pissant

"Sympathisers" usually far outnumber those who either take any action or communicate with those who do. There are a few hundred million AQ 'sympathisers' around the world. If there are 5000 that have actually taken some action that would subject them either to a FISA warrant or the standard of 'reasonableness' you have expressed, I'd be amazed. I'd also think we need to be making lots of arrests.


190 posted on 01/18/2006 1:35:12 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: Boundless
And just where these heroes when Echelon first went on line under Clinton?

Weyrich and Barr were bitching about Echelon well before Bush was ever President. But fyi, this isn't even about Echelon, so your question is rather irrelevant.

191 posted on 01/18/2006 1:35:17 PM PST by Sandy
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To: KC Burke
Thank you.

parrot the leftist media line

There is a lot of that around here these days.

192 posted on 01/18/2006 1:36:35 PM PST by Just A Nobody (I - LOVE - my attitude problem! WBB lives on. Beware the Enemedia.)
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To: lugsoul

We've made some arrests. But I'm guessing out of those 5000, a good percentage are deemed to be non threats and dropped. And of the remaining percentage, it's more valuable to keep tabs on them unless they are planning something imminent. Catch the big fish that way.

Of course with the publicity due to the stinking leakers, it probably scuttled a bunch of leads.


193 posted on 01/18/2006 1:40:02 PM PST by pissant
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To: pissant
Yep. We are catching all those big fish here.

Yes, that was sarcasm. Except for those folks who really believe that someone could do any significant damage to the Brooklyn Bridge with an acetylene torch, without being REALLY obvious for a REALLY long time.

194 posted on 01/18/2006 1:42:34 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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To: rdb3
I think the argument was that the President has expanded powers in times of war. What exactly is a time of war is my question. Is it whatever the President says? Is it what the Pentagon says? Is it what Congress says?

My view is that it is dangerous for a President to have expanded powers and justify that by saying 'war on terror' when that war has no definable end.

195 posted on 01/18/2006 1:45:03 PM PST by conserv13
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To: lugsoul

Most big fish are overseas, I hope. If I recall, the way they blew that big fish up in Yemen with a hellfire missile was because he called here and got tracked.

I hope you don't think every arrest of a terrorist here, especially a non citizen, is being reported. In fact, I'm guessing a few foriegn nationals have just vanished. As it should be.


196 posted on 01/18/2006 1:50:33 PM PST by pissant
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To: Eva
As noted on the NRO, The Corner, these are all Republicans, not conservatives, and have all been opposed to the war on terror on all levels. Bob Barr works for the ACLU, for Pete's sake.

Let's see some specifics (aside from Barr; we all know about him). Have any of them come out against the war in Iraq, for example? I'd have to doubt that David Keene could be opposed to the WOT "at all levels" and still write for FrontPageMag.com. So pardon me if this NRO canard sounds just a little bit on the tinfoilish side.

197 posted on 01/18/2006 1:54:17 PM PST by inquest (If you favor any legal status for illegal aliens, then do not claim to be in favor of secure borders)
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To: Lakeshark
I'm asking you what you're going to do since you think it's so awful.

In other words, you're looking for an excuse to avoid the debate, because you've been checkmated since #145. There's only one way out for you, and that ain't it.

198 posted on 01/18/2006 1:57:45 PM PST by inquest (If you favor any legal status for illegal aliens, then do not claim to be in favor of secure borders)
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To: lugsoul
Ah - it is perfectly clear now. You don't have 'positions.' You have 'sides.'

They don't call them 'bots for nothing.

199 posted on 01/18/2006 2:01:28 PM PST by inquest (If you favor any legal status for illegal aliens, then do not claim to be in favor of secure borders)
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To: pissant

No, I don't think it is all being officially reported, or should be. But things happen when folks are being arrested that don't escape notice. Like when you heard a bunch of noise last night, and walk out into the hall of your apartment building and note that the door down the hall has been smashed to splinters. And then you notice that you don't ever see that guy around anymore.


200 posted on 01/18/2006 2:03:35 PM PST by lugsoul ("Try not to be sad." - Laura Bush)
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