Skip to comments.'Protect America violates Constitution' (More Ron Paul Lunacy)
Posted on 02/16/2008 7:49:09 AM PST by no nau
Presidential hopeful Ron Paul opposes the extension of the Protect America Act of 2007 as the legislation violates the US Constitution.
"The misnamed Protect America Act allows the US government to monitor telephone calls and other electronic communications of American citizens without a warrant, which violates the Fourth Amendment," Paul said.
Speaking before the US House of Representatives on Wednesday, he said the Protect America Act sidelines the FISA Court system and places authority over foreign surveillance in the director of national intelligence and the attorney general with little if any oversight.
The 10-term congressman added that it does not provide for the Fourth Amendment protection of American citizens if they happen to be on the other end of an electronic communication where the subject of surveillance is a non-citizen overseas.
"We must remember that the original Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act was passed in 1978 as a result of the US Senate investigations into the federal government's illegal spying on American citizens," said Paul.
The libertarian-leaning Texan noted that the only legitimate 'upgrade' to the original FISA legislation would be to allow surveillance of conversations that begin and end outside the United States between non-US citizens where the telephone call is routed through the United States.
"Congress should not use this opportunity to chip away at even more of our constitutional protections and civil liberties. I urge my colleagues to oppose this and any legislation that violates the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution," Paul concluded.
Constitutionalist Ron Paul is an outspoken critic of current US fiscal and monetary policies. He advocates a full troop withdrawal from Iraq and the abolishment of income taxes.
That's a hell of a lot of "potential terrorist" activity. Either that, or a lot of indiscriminate spying on US citizens by the Executive branch. Makes Hillary Clinton's 900+ FBI files look positively amateur by comparison.
The point is that the 4th Amendment is not absolute. It implicitly allows reasonable searches, as determined by objective standards. If an American citizen is speaking on an overseas call with a person he has reason to believe is terrorist-affiliated, he has no reasonable expectation of privacy.
Seems like 33 out of 34 of their ideas have initial ideas (whether or not it should be addressed, extra-or contra-constitutional aspects of programs or goals, etc) result in a precedent that could be used by tyrants to subvert the healthy tyrant-roadblocks put in by our Founders. The precedent of "hate crimes" can be used to horrible effect by a tyrant.
But FISA? You're being manipulated about FISA. What FISA in the 1970's did was make it explicit (where it wasn't before) that if a communication that was suspect either originated IN or had a destination TO either US Territory OR a US Citizen, then Constitutional protections kicked in and you had to justify a court order (FISA COURT) just like any agent investigating Mafia control of sewage hauling in Kansas City would have to get from the District Court. That's consistent with the Constitution. In fact, it protects non-citizens in our territory with the assumption of innocence (we assume they aren't illegal until proven guilty of the crime, so to speak). That's a big heavy burden that is rightfully borne by law enforcement.
It isn't one that is Constitutional if you apply it to foreign nationals on foreign soil calling other foreign nationals on foreign soil. They don't get the Constitution - they're not covered. See?
Can you prove that there are absolutely no abuses of the monitoring system?
Or do you assume that since it is the Government, and a Republican administration, that all is good?
If these are known identities on the other end of these phone calls, what is the problem with getting a warrant?
That’s all intercepts, because they are counting the foreign-to-foreign intercepts in that count because of the MIS-application of the Constitution to those foreign nationals on foreign soil who have their coms routed THROUGH the US. It is an artificially high number because they forced the US to go to the FISA court for calls that were explicitly not covered - foreign to foreign. The dems supported a horrible lawsuit that in effect said that our Constitution protected every citizen of every country in the world, even if they never step inside our borders.
THAT’S the crime against the Constitution - not the PAA or the FISA court.
“Nobody is spying on American citizens.”
How is the weather in LaLa land? If you believe that statement you are a lot more of an idiot than Mr. Paul!
The Sheeple have been duped with the WOT. They follow the leader blindly into the Constitutional Rights Slaughter House gladly and obediently raising their necks to have their throats cut. We have always had terrorist. They were here in the 1700's. Only a fool would believe in the WOT while our elected leave our borders wide open yet wish to be more intrusive in our private affairs.
Homeland Security? A loaded 12 gauge. A concealed weapon while out with the family. The willingness like the passengers on the last hi-jack plane not to become victims. That is Homeland Security and nothing Bush is pushing can match it in effectiveness. The Bush WOT is nothing but a ruse designed to put us under complete government authority. BAA Blind Sheep.
The Founding Fathers were all good enough writers that had they intended for there to be a right to privacy they would have EXPRESSLY put it in there.
You are such a dumbass.
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
I’ve always said, when it comes to Liberty, Americans will give it up faster than a drunk prom date when faced with the right threat. We just don’t have the stones for it anymore.
I'm keeping all of these RP threads in pdf format for when a rat president gets some more of these swell "if you ain't done nothing wrong, you got nothing to hide" ideas. Those "abortion clinic terrorists", "right-wing gun nut militia groups", and those guilty of "hate crimes" (or even better, "hate terrorism") are going to come in real handy.
For ease of access wiki:
US Citizens have been tapped for years and are continuing to be tapped. Since 9/11 it has skyrocketed. your statement that US Citizens are not being taped is a bold faced lie and stupid to boot.
Do you want Hillary or Obama to have these “patriot” act powers?
You’re not serious, and if so, you’re not rational. Bye tinfoil, be sure to post exactly how you can use sheep’s bladders to predict earthquakes.
It disturbs be a great deal when even Rush talks about not having rights unless they are written in the Constitution.
The Declaration of Independence and Constitution were written in times of National Crisis, yet they still installed protections against heavy handed government actions.
And I do think that one’s position on McCain is the Conservative litmus test.
And the number of freepers who are STILL big wussies afraid of "the terrorists".
Don’t worry about ol’ Rush, he’ll change his tune when Hillary’s in office. He knows how to serve up the Kool-Aid, all flavors.
Anyone with two functional brain cells can see the end our nation is headed toward and that both parties intend to take us there. If you want to be enablers to those wishing to destroy this nation from within by suspending the Constitution through fearmongering so be it. As for me I'd rather take my chances in a society the founders intended. I hope you enjoy your government issued security. Think nothing about it when you find yourself on their bad side. It fer der good of der nation dat you sumbmit. Heil whatever. I'm certain the Germans who bought into Hitlers security and WOT thought they were right also.
When you consider that the people who will be likely wielding these powers are the same group who refer to suicide bombers as "militants", and yet have the penchant for calling any group to the right of Hillary (especially if they advocate the ownership of fireatms--like the NRA) "terrorists", I think concern is warranted.
By MICHAEL J. SNIFFEN, Associated Press Writer The FBI engaged in widespread and serious misuse of its authority in illegally gathering telephone, e-mail and financial records of Americans and foreigners while hunting terrorists, the Justice Department's chief inspector said Tuesday. The FBI's failure to establish sufficient controls or oversight for collecting the information through so-called national security letters constituted "serious and unacceptable" failures, said Glenn A. Fine, the internal watchdog who revealed the data-gathering abuses in a 130-page report last week. Testifying before the House Judiciary Committee, Fine said he did not believe the problems were intentional, but were generally the result of confusion and carelessness.
Look, I’m not saying you’re all crazy, nor am I saying that you aren’t conversant with possible violations of the Constitution - I’m saying you guys are factually incorrect.
I’ll make a compromise. I’ll leave off my critique of your “FBI Over-reach” rants if you agree that the Contitution does not apply to a Turkish national in Turkey calling a Jordanian national in Phillipine National waters. If you can see that as reasonable (That the Constitution covers US territory and US nationals and not other citizens in other nations), then you should re-read the PAA and FISA legislation - and you’ll see that having FISA extend to Foreign-to-foreign calls simply because the comms go THROUGH the US is an unwarranted attack on the Constitution.
I’m not talking about your supposed FBI overstep and other frantic concerns - if you can’t agree on the above, then we cannot possibly understand each other’s points.
One, I lost friends on 9/11 so your point is quite moot.
Two, I never fly commercial airliners anymore. Stale nuts, horrific scheduling, and seats made for midgets.
I prefer the train....even if Amtrak’s government run, hehehe.
Not become victims? As heroic as the passengers on Flight #93 were, they still died.
Their heroism is small consolation to their families and loved ones.
Again, bad reasoning and the sort of bad reasoning that gave us terrible law like “Roe”.
Funny that our national patron saint Abraham Lincoln did far worse during the Civil War and FDR suspended much of the Constitutional guarantees during WWII.
Or has that little elementary school history lesson been forgotten in your dotage?
Oh boy...Wikipedia is sure a credible source......
We’ve had RICO for thirty plus years. The same dire predictions were made about that law, too.
Funny, I don’t worry about RICO because I’m not a made man. I don’t fear this law either because I’m not a terrorist or sympathizer.
Use some common sense, people! How bad do you think the rights suspensions will happen if another major attack on a scale or larger than 9/11 happens?????
I wish to prevent such a thing.
And some of you claim to be for national security. Yeah, right!
Despite this positive sign, however, a number of disturbing statistics in the same report reveal that we have a long way to go in preventing death and injury on the rails. While accidents, as the FRA defines them, have declined for two years in a row, they are the cause of only a tiny fraction of total train-related fatalities. Last year a total of 12,833 train-related accidents or incidents are reported to have occurred in the United States. 2,834 of these were actual train accidents, primarily involving train collisions or train derailments. This is the category of train wrecks traditionally used by the FRA in press releases claiming progress on rail safety. The number in 2005 was 3,225, demonstrating a decline of 391 "accidents" from 2005 to 2006. Another 2,897 wrecks involved highway-rail collisions. Highway-rail accidents are considered separately from train accidents and are statistically far more deadly. While 6 people were killed in train accidents in 2006, 362 people were killed in highway-rail accidents. As the FRA admits, fatalities in the highway-rail accident category actually increased 1.4% from 2005 to 2006. Finally, an additional 7,102 "other incidents" occurred in 2006. The vast majority of fatalities in 2006 resulted from highway-rail collisions, or from other incidents, often involving trespassers on the rails. To reiterate, the number of fatalities due to train accidents, that is, involving individuals riding trains and killed as a result of impact in a crash, was just 6 last year, down from 33 the previous year. Sadly, the combined number of fatal train accidents, highway-rail accidents, and other train-related incidents increased from 808 in 2005 to 850 in 2006, resulting in a total of 915 deaths, up from 888 in 2005.
Your chance of dying in a terrorist attack According to one estimate, your chance as an American of dying by accidental drowning is 66 times greater than your chance of dying in a terrorist attack. (Or it might be seven times greater; see the post.) As many Americans have been killed by lightning, accident-causing deer and allergic reactions to peanuts as terrorism, since they started keeping track, they say. You're twice as likely to die crushed under a vending machine as you are to die in a terrorist attack, according to this source. You are 225,409 times more likely to die in an auto accident, another source says. More people accidentally shoot themselves to death than die in terror attacks, it says here.
I am sorry about your friend.
However, if we stop living our way the terrorist win.
I won’t fly for two reasons. One is I refuse to surrender myself to search without warrant. The other is security now has everything so screwed up you stand a far better chance arriving on time by driving. Terrorism is nothing new. It’s just that people are now gullible as hell and buying into government generated fears.
It was a loser argument then and it was the loser argument again in a Supreme Court decision regarding the rights of American citizens.
The dissenting opinion claimed that ‘...the Constitution is not a suicide pact...” but the overwhelming opinion was that when it comes to our rights, it was the government’s duty to protect them despite the risk.
I’m sorry that I can’t recall the case but IIRC, it was in the late 1940s and the dissenting justice was Feinberg or Feinstein.
What? Do you think only non-citizens were on the receiving end of these calls into the United States?
According to the article, RP thinks that's perfectly allowable under the Constitution. Whoever posted the article seems to consider this "lunacy".
Terrorism per se is nothing new.
Terrorism on the scale of 9/11 is. The potential for losing a city and half a million citizens in seconds makes the threat one that must be dealt with.
By any means necessary.
If that means listening into overseas calls, so be it. If that means closing all mosques and arresting all imams, so be it.
Incidentally, I have no problem driving anywhere. I have an Escalade. It certainly has better seat room and a better ride than any airliner and a much better sound system. Plus my Akita/Shiba Inu mix dog can ride shotgun with me.
people here getting calls from the Mideast deserve to be watched, too.
Are you under the impression that Americans only have those rights "EXPRESSLY" stated in the Bill of Rights.
If that's the case then you are wrong.
Well, Lincoln had the stones to threaten to lock up the entire Roger Taney court.
We’re at war. get with the program.
Psst! There were Islamists around in Ben Franklin's day.
They didn’t have any way of blowing up Philadelphia back then, either.
All they did back then was seize some ships, and Decatur handled that.
Instead, now PAA lapses and ALL the stuff goes through FISA, which blinds us to activation calls, coordination calls, and disposable contact numbers for action groups positioned previously if they are in US territory.
Some of those last will get through now. For the next 10 days, the terrorists have been told how to operate in the clear on our soil with an assured number of untraceable calls for a pre-determined level of security.
This is a lot more complex than Wired lumping all intercepts of all types under one classification that changed only once in our entire history.
Amazing what passes for "war" anymore.
I don't own any guns, if they want to repeal the Second Amendment, to use your words, "then they can be my guest". BARF
Yea, that pesky 4th Amendment thingy is sooooo outdated.
Ben didnt have to contend with savages like the Islamists.
Actually he did. Read up on the Barbary Pirates you twit.
It's unreal how historically ignorant Freepers are....
I am for national security. I would jerk every perfume prince 0-7 and above in the Pentagon out of their chairs and put their lazy hides back on watch in our skies 24/7/365. I would have armed planes on alert status sitting on Tarmacs at unannounced airbases. I would close our borders to anyone who doesn't have a legal Visa. I would make the hiring of illegals a felony punishable by no less than 5 years prison and make company CEO's and owners do the time for the crime.
I would stop the United States dependency on foreign goods. I would stop supporting China's national defensee with American dollars. Change before trade. No change in national policy? No Trade! All military and national defense needs would be Made In USA no exception. I would halt 8 year military obligations and put it back to a reasonable 6 year one with the GI Bill restored. I would call for an immediate raise of Active Duty Armed Forces End Troop Strengths by one third.
I would place security for commercial air travel where it actually belongs. I would turn it over to the airliners themselves. In doing so they could do as they wish security wise as it would be THEIR private property.
I would encourage private gun ownership and suspend the Brady Bill. I would allow concealed carry and make it a felony for any law enforcement agency to try and harass the gun owner or subvert that right of a law abiding citizen. No records would be kept by the government as to ownership beyond a theft report filed by owner. Note I said law abiding.. Notice Bush has not proposed any of this. Why not? It's easier to herd a nation of willing cowards perhaps?
“Amazing what passes for “war” anymore.”
Ain’t that the truth!
The Constitution restricts government, not individuals.
The 9th Amendment clearly states that there are other rights that are not enumerated.
You are not in any position to say that free citizens should not have a right to privacy. In fact, stating the opposite pupts you in opposition to freedom and liberty
Lincoln may be your patron saint but not mine.
Really? Then explain this one. Look up hijacked airliner +Oak Ridge, Tennessee +Weapons Plants and get back to me. BTW I live ground zero from there. You tell me how the threat was dealt with both then and future.
As opposed to the kooks screaming and pleading with conservatives to get behind McStain.
You guys made your bed; now lie in it. You called the best conservative Republican in the race with huge grassroots support & who was the only one who can defeat Hillary or Obama all the names under the book.
Now you're stuck with a liberal RINO who has cut more deals with the Dems than any other Republican presidential candidate in history with no backing from the conservative base. And we all know those vaunted "independents" and "moderates" will just vote for the Dem, when a guy like Paul could have attracted the independents and cross-over Dems needed to defeat Hillary.
I'll be writing in Paul's name in the general election, and I'll be grabbing the popcorn as McStain loses in a landslide and the GOP will still be clueless as to why they lost another election.
Sic semper tyrannus.
Lincoln was a tyrant who trampled the Constitution and the principle of States Rights and you hail him as a hero. No wonder you like expansive federal powers. It also goes with your screen name quite well.
Just who and what do you think that we are at war with? American citizens and individual liberty? That seems to have been the focus of this war so far along with increased power for the government.
Why would you surrender your liberty to our own government in a so called effort to defend that liberty from attack by terrorists?
Ron Paul...Mr Cut and Run isolationist.
Oh, he’s a racist with ties to WAR, et. al., too.
If I mocked you previously, please accept my apologies, it was meant in good humor, not in meanness or with a jaundiced eye.
I will not willingly impugn anyone's clear dedication as Americans to our Republic's Founding Documents, though I may call into question someone's full knowledge and understanding. This is to inform and to possibly BE informed, and I always come away from such discussions with more to learn about and a deeper appreciation of how universal our Americanism runs throughout the political spectrum. Yes even Democrats, I trust, feel much the same as us in most cases. This even though we can spot the looney easiest on the other side pretty often and those loonies (Michael Moore, etc) are clearly UN-American. Remember that a bunch of your neighbors are Democrats but aren't Leftists. They're our opponents, not our enemies.
But it is foolish, I think we all agree, to assume we have no domestic enemies. We should pause every once in a while and clear our heads, and make sure we differentiate between our neighbors who are just mainly interested in arguing about traffic light placement, and our enemies (far Left and terrorists).
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