Democrats & Liberals Archives

Barr and Gore Together

“Congressman Barr” were the first 2 words uttered by Al Gore in his speech at Constitution Hall where he criticized Bush for seizing powers he does not have under the Constitution. Gore excoriated the president for acting as though he is above the law. Yes, Gore is a Democrat who lost the presidency to George W. Bush. Bob Barr, however, is a Republican, a solid conservative who led the Bill-Clinton-impeachment battle. Yet, both Barr and Gore, a Democrat and a Republican, are together in defending our Constitution against Bush’s assault on it.

Gore made it plain that his is a bi-partisan attack when he said this about Barr:

"In spite of our differences over ideology and politics, we are in strong agreement that the American values we hold most dear have been placed at serious risk by the unprecedented claims of the Administration to a truly breathtaking expansion of executive power."

Gore said he was upset by Bush arrogating to himself more and more power:

"An executive who arrogates to himself the power to ignore the legitimate legislative directives of the Congress [FISA] or to act free of the check of the judiciary becomes the central threat that the Founders sought to nullify in the Constitution - an all-powerful executive too reminiscent of the King from whom they had broken free. In the words of James Madison, 'the accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, self-appointed, or elective, may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny.'"

Gore was angry and ferocious in his criticism. He pointed out how Bush lied about warrantless wiretapping. He pounded Bush about his claim to have the power to imprison any American citizen, just on his say so. He blasted him for Administration approved torture and rendition practices. He attacked him for issuing a statement about the torture bill in which Bush said that he would disregard the new law if he felt it neccessary to do so.

Gore insisted that openness, truthfulness and accountability are needed, and we must follow the rule of law. Many times in the past leaders have transgressed. Gore mentioned the Alien and Sedition Acts passed by John Adams, the habeas copus suspension by Abraham Lincoln, the internment of Japanese by FDR, and more. In each case, Gore stressed that eventually we restored the rule of law. But now things are different. Gore offers several reasons, but one is the most fearful to me: We are faced with an unending "war on terror."

An important recommendation of Gore is to appoint a special counsel to investigate the illegal wiretapping. Read the whole speech.

Barr agrees. Here is his statement:

"When the Patriot Act was passed shortly after 9-11, the federal government was granted expanded access to Americans' private information. However, federal law still clearly states that intelligence agents must have a court order to conduct electronic surveillance of Americans on these shores. Yet the federal government overstepped the protections of the Constitution and the plain language of FISA to eavesdrop on Americans' private communication without any judicial checks and without proof that they are involved in terrorism."

As a matter of fact, Bob Barr has formed a new organization called Patriots to Restore Checks and Balances (PRCB). Here are a few of its members:

  • Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform (ATR)
  • David Keene, chairman of the American Conservative Union
  • Paul Weyrich, chairman and CEO of the Free Congress Foundation
  • Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Second Amendment Foundation
The group is in favor of using NSA hearings to restore our system of checks and balances.

In fighting the imperial presidency, Gore and Barr are together. Let's join them to restore the checks and balances of our democratic system of government.

Posted by Paul Siegel at January 18, 2006 5:25 PM
Comments
Comment #114407

By all means please advocate protection of your privacy. The goverment should not spy on anyone at all - in your country or anywhere else in the world. We are counting on all of you Liberals and the ACLU to help us in our fight

Sincerely,

Osama

Posted by: mike at January 18, 2006 5:54 PM
Comment #114418

Paul:

“The Department of Justice believes, and the case law supports, that the president has inherent authority to conduct warrantless physical searches for foreign intelligence purposes,” Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee on July 14, 1994, “and that the President may, as has been done, delegate this authority to the Attorney General.”

I am not sure what Gore’s point is.

Craig


Posted by: Craig Holmes at January 18, 2006 6:14 PM
Comment #114427

I was suprised to see Barr on some documentaries opposing the patriot act. I never had any repect for him because of his role in the Clinton thing. The rest of the names and their affiliations in Patriots to Restore Checks and Balances, give me the creeps.

Posted by: ray ohrealy at January 18, 2006 6:28 PM
Comment #114439

Paul, I thought Gore’s speech was AMAZING. He truly said everything that has needed to be said about the way this president has been usurping too much power, as well as calling everyones attention to Bush’s obvious disregard for the Constitution.
I think Gore is a brilliant man, who has in the past five years become a surprisingly impressive orator. So good in fact, that I really think he should try another run at presidential office again.

I also applaud Barr for what he is doing — even though it is rather hard for me to forget that he was exposed as being quite a shameless hypocrite during the Clinton impeachment.

Grover Norquist is a total crook and a liar who clearly does not believe in our system of checks and balances at all, no matter whose organisation he suddenly decided to join.
Any man who would say: “I don’t want to abolish government. I simply want to reduce it to the size where I can drag it into the bathroom and drown it in the bathtub”, and who was literally as thick as thieves with Jack Abramoff is someone I feel pretty damn certain has no respect for American government whatsoever.

Posted by: Adrienne at January 18, 2006 6:54 PM
Comment #114440

It is a curious form of argument to deliberately misconstrue the position of your opponent so that you have something to argue against, and it is a form of argument that repubes excel at.

mike, it appears that you support suspension of the 4th Amendment so that the government is free to conduct warrantless searches for domestic purposes at any time, and for any reason. If that is your position, own up to it. Revel in your willingness to give up core constitutional rights.

Craig, your quote was made by a DOJ attorney for the Clinton ( you remember Clinton, the guy you wouldn’t piss on if he was on fire) administration on July 10, 1994 (the year Republicans took over Congress) and Congress made Clinton back down. Jamie Goreick was also talking about much more limited searches then are at issue here. Really, there is a point, if you don’t take quotes out of context.

And I guess the question that I never see answered when these issues of unlimited presidential powers comes up is, what happens when your nightmare, Hillary Clinton (or someone you hate just as much) becomes president? Do you really think you can put the genie back in the bottle once you have let him out? Or is the Bush reign going to extend until the sun burns out?

Ernest

Posted by: Ernest at January 18, 2006 6:57 PM
Comment #114441

mike

What are we fighting for? If we lose our basic American rights, Osama has already won. If GW is allowing warrantless searches, I guarantee they have invaded some innocent person’s rights. Does anyone in your family call a foreign country on a regular basis? I guarantee your privacy has been invaded.

The bottom line is that we CAN fight terrorism without warrantless searches. To turn the republican argument around, if GW is doing nothing wrong, then why does he need warrantless searches?

Posted by: Loren at January 18, 2006 6:58 PM
Comment #114452

This speech electrified me. Somewhere there’s a parallel universe where Gore became president, there’s no war, the country is on track, and we have a big fat lockbox.

Some of the comments here suggest that wiretapping is necessary to the fight on terrorism. Ok… What makes you say that? Where are the results? According to Gore’s speech Bush has been doing this for years, so where are the terrorists he’s captured proving how critical it is we go on spying and torturing innocent people?

From the speech:

Over 100 of these captives have reportedly died while being tortured by Executive branch interrogators and many more have been broken and humiliated. And, in the notorious Abu Ghraib prison, investigators who documented the pattern of torture estimated that more than 90 percent of the victims were completely innocent of any criminal charges whatsoever. This is a shameful exercise of power that overturns a set of principles that our nation has observed since General George Washington first enunciated them during our Revolutionary War. They have been observed by every president since then - until now. They violate the Geneva Conventions and the International Convention Against Torture, and our own laws against torture.

and also…

If the President has the inherent authority to eavesdrop on American citizens without a warrant, imprison American citizens on his own declaration, kidnap and torture, then what can’t he do?

Even if it did lead to finding terrorists, spying on and torturing innocent people is unnacceptable, but it doesn’t even seem to be appreciably helping. How can anyone support this?

Posted by: Max at January 18, 2006 7:45 PM
Comment #114455

It is amazing that some on the right are so willing to give up their fourth amendment rights in the name of a little bit of safety. More people are killed every year in this country from gun violence than have ever been killed by terrorist attacks. The comparisons are not even close. In the United States, gun violence claims close to 30,000 lives each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. How many of those that are willing to give up fourth amendment rights, would be willing to give up their second amendment rights, that causes far more deaths every year? Personally, I am against any abridgement of our rights for any reason. The domestic threat to our way of life is far greater than any threat from abroad.

If, in the opinion of the people, the distribution or modification of the constitutional powers be in any particular wrong, let it be corrected by an amendment in the way which the Constitution designates. But let there be no change by usurpation; for though this, in one instance, may be the instrument of good, it is the customary weapon by which free governments are destroyed. — George Washington, Farewell Address, 1796

So long as the people do not care to exercise their freedom, those who wish to tyrannize will do so; for tyrants are active and ardent, and will devote themselves in the name of any number of gods, religious and otherwise, to put shackles upon sleeping men.
— Voltairine de Cleyre (1886-1912)

The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.
— Frederick Douglass, civil rights activist, Aug. 4, 1857

Rights don’t defend themselves. People have only those rights they are willing and able to unite to defend, with armed force if necessary. If you don’t defend others when their rights are violated, don’t expect anyone to defend yours , and those rights will be violated if they are not defended.
— Jon Roland, 1994


Posted by: JayJay Snowman at January 18, 2006 8:09 PM
Comment #114457

JayJay

Don’t you know, if you’re innocent, you don’t have to worry about being killed by a gun.

And don’t forget terrorism doesn’t kill people, people kill people.

Posted by: Loren at January 18, 2006 8:23 PM
Comment #114463
Craig, your quote was made by a DOJ attorney for the Clinton ( you remember Clinton, the guy you wouldn’t piss on if he was on fire) administration on July 10, 1994 (the year Republicans took over Congress) and Congress made Clinton back down. Jamie Goreick was also talking about much more limited searches then are at issue here. Really, there is a point, if you don’t take quotes out of context.

And I guess the question that I never see answered when these issues of unlimited presidential powers comes up is, what happens when your nightmare, Hillary Clinton (or someone you hate just as much) becomes president? Do you really think you can put the genie back in the bottle once you have let him out? Or is the Bush reign going to extend until the sun burns out?

Hillary is not my nightmare, and I don’t have feelings much for her either way. I don’t think she is the democrats best choice, because she is from a blue state, and very liberal. Northeastern liberals don’t seem to do that well. I think a better choice would be someone like her husband, more moderate and from a red state.

I think the genie has been out of the bottle since the founding of this country. Presidents in wartime have done some incredible things. There isn’t much uproar outside of liberals. Here is the latest gallup poll:

“Do you think the Bush Administration was right or wrong in wiretapping these conversations without obtaining a court order?”

50% said Bush was right, 46% said he was wrong. It is not a barnburner of an issue.

As for 1994, we were not at war then.

Craig

Posted by: Craig Holmes at January 18, 2006 9:04 PM
Comment #114465

Ernest:

Not that you might have been assuming anything, but I really have no nightmare senerios coming on the election.

I think democrats should put impeachment square on the ballot. “Elect democrats and we will have impeachment hearings”. I think Bush took us to war not because of lying and manipulation, as much as bad intelligence. I also think what I believe is worse for the country that what many democrats believe. It is easier to remove a president, than to fix intelligence!!

That be as it may, going to war is the most serious matter a president has to consider, and Bush is ultimately responsible. A price needs to be looked into. I think impeachment hearings like 1973 are not out of the question. And then take the votes. What that does is “resolve” the issue and allows democracy to work. I personally don’t think Bush would be Impeached, but the country would be better off.

And another thing. The best years in our country to me are when we have divided government, because nothing can get done.

Maybe you should be a bit more careful about stereotyping and jumping to conclusions. I own assumption about you is that you are in pretty good shape from jumping to conclusions.

Craig

Posted by: Craig Holmes at January 18, 2006 9:11 PM
Comment #114466

jay -

Thanks for that thrilling assesment of the situation. Read a bit more on it, though… I think about every point you mentioned is wrong.

“It seems only President Bush has the balls to do it.”

I think we now know the source for all of the faulty intelligence. It’s hard to make good decisions when thinking with your balls.

Posted by: tony at January 18, 2006 9:12 PM
Comment #114469

Jay Jay I was reasonably content till I read your statment. But now that I know there are Idealogs such as yourself out there IM depressed to the point of increasing my meds. Dont worry I will lock up my gun first.

Posted by: Commander JC at January 18, 2006 9:31 PM
Comment #114470

Hey Tony what do you think with your snatch?

jay, your comment violates our policy. Your comments are no longer welcome here. —WatchBlog Managing Editor

Posted by: jay at January 18, 2006 9:34 PM
Comment #114473

jay…

Oooof! That one hit hard. Yea, I’m being serious, that was an awesome retort. (Actually, I’m just amazed you thought that was worth sharing….)

In case your wondering, most thinking should not occur between your legs, regardless of gender.

Posted by: tony at January 18, 2006 9:39 PM
Comment #114477
Jay Jay I was reasonably content till I read your statment. But now that I know there are Idealogs such as yourself out there IM depressed to the point of increasing my meds. Dont worry I will lock up my gun first.

Commander JC,

What is an “Idealog”? Anything like a weblog?

Posted by: JayJay Snowman at January 18, 2006 10:02 PM
Comment #114480

Paul I watched and listened to Al Gore give his speech and thought it was incredible. It was well thoughtout and honest. I felt truly moved to act, based on that speech and others he’s given on the enviroment etc.,he’s earned my vote in the 2008 election. I hope he runs!

Posted by: jonitodd at January 18, 2006 10:11 PM
Comment #114488

Whoops… Last post was meant for another article and thread. Please forgive/ignore.

Posted by: Adrienne at January 18, 2006 10:53 PM
Comment #114491
If the President has to get a warrant everytime he wants to listen in on a terrorist (even if it only takes 10 minutes)the call would be long gone by the time it gets approved.

It has been widely published that the exec branch can legally request a warrant for a wiretap AFTER the fact. Where have you been Jay? The major advantage to warrantless wiretaps is that you can spy on anyone you want without a paper trail.

To say we have to play fair during a all out war on gutless murderers is ludicris.

According to you, all Americans apparently deserve the same treatment as gutless murderers. So our constitutional rights get caught in the crossfire while you shoot at the wrong guys?

Posted by: Loren at January 18, 2006 10:59 PM
Comment #114494

Can Al please get back in the closet? He’s still awkward to watch delivering so much as sandwiches nevermind delivering addresses and speeches.

Oh jeezus did all the hockey helmet kids come out to play or what? Hillary with her “they run it like were a plantation—and you know what I mean about plantation” stuff. Um who invited her limozine-toted behind again?

Are these people really our first string?

H. Dean
J. Kerry
A. Gore
H. Clinton
T. Kennedy

God I hope they don’t lose the 2006 elections for us. we need concise talking points that are more centrist and as the republicans are charging actual proposals (they have no ideas yada yada) that meet with what is really going on. Iraq could devolve into civil war and probably into a theocracy which would greatly derail all diplomacy in that region. I highly disagreed with this war from it’s inception but those who voted for it by the bogus, super bogus answer of “faulty intelligence” (what a crock people are willing to believe about that) are voicing such vocal dissent now. And giving no weight to the problems of the alternative, that being leaving and the ensuing aftermath.

Now as to FISA, this baiting that well then the terrorists would know if they filed stuff is such rhetoric that has nothing to do with the reallities of FISA. Where did they get? That any of those searches would be made public docket somehow? Anyone? the truth is it is as secretive as ever it just means that it is reviewable by intelligence should the needs arise. PLUS WE KNEW THEY WERE DOING THAT! WTF, they’ve been doing that for a decade or more. And we couldn’t catch Atta in time huh? Even after the documents were slapped down on the oval office desk that there was a chance of an attack. Yeah George is a super sleuth.

MY GUESS: HE PROBABLY HAD NO IDEA HE HAD TO FILE WITH FISA that’s pretty much the mentality of his cabinet of cronies anyway. They should have made it a pop-up book with lots of colorful pictures for him. WHY do I say that he doesn’t know??? Because he thought, obviously still thinks, that it would become public docket if he did file that’s what his dumb ass is saying—this man is really a bonified dolt, George Bush Quixote!

Listen to what he’s saying sometime about it and then read about what FISA courts actually are. It’s just like him chasing SS reform that was already on the books and faith-based initiatives that already were in place. Where’s the man in the yellow hat to explain it to George how this stuff actually works?

Posted by: Novenge at January 18, 2006 11:34 PM
Comment #114503

Novenge,
If Al Gore gave speeches during his presidential campaign with the same passion, clarity, and conviction with which he now speaks, he might be president today.

Gore has spoken repeatedly about Global Warming. This can and must be a core issue for Democrats. The issue must be addressed.

Six former heads of the EPA, five Republicans and one Democrat, just came out to call for action on Global Warming:

“We need leadership, and I don’t think we’re getting it,” he said at an EPA-sponsored symposium centered around the agency’s 35th anniversary. “To sit back and just push it away and say we’ll deal with it sometime down the road is dishonest to the people and self-destructive.”

All of the former administrators raised their hands when EPA’s current chief, Stephen Johnson, asked whether they believe global warming is a real problem, and again when he asked if humans bear significant blame.”

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10913795/

Remember, those are Republicans talking, that’s coming from the Republican leadership of the past and present!

Meanwhile, Bush appoints a man to represent the US in negotiations who was recommended by Exxon.

Gore was right about FISA, as was Barr. It’s worth pointing out Democrats and moderate Republicans alike are united in their concern for the environment, and their concern over Global Warming.

Addressing Global Warming means simultaneously addressing the question of energy, and oil.

The issue is our for the taking. Forget the War on Terror. Practically speaking, it ended years ago. There have been no major arrests in years. We’re down to bombing mud huts in Pakistan to nail a handful of bad guys, bad guys who can’t seem to operate beyond the Afghan border & Pakistan. That’s just not an adequate basis for a psychological focus, and that’s just not an adequate basis for forming a foreign policy.

Time to turn away, time to put away the fear of the Bush years.

Time to be positive, address Global Warming, and work with moderate Republicans on a problem which absolutely must be faced by all of us.


Posted by: phx8 at January 19, 2006 12:21 AM
Comment #114514

Paul
I really love your post’s. Although your writings have a way of bringing the loonies out. I checked and nope no full moon.
GW is an idiot that has the vocabulary of my son when he was five.
As for his supporters, BUSH has the right to request a warrent to wiretape, EVEN 72 hours AFTER the tapping of a conversation. SO, no info would ever be lost while waiting for a warrent. Are all of you just as ignorant as the man himself ?
silly question…

Loren
Nobody who is innocent ever gets shot with a gun? OMG
“And don’t forget terrorism doesn’t kill people, people kill people.”

YEAH the terrorist with the gun, the bomb or the plane.

As for the rest of you, who do you think sent out the message of WMD ? Bush did, He had Colin Powell go to the UN and show pictures as proof. But Bush and all his partners in crime knew the Info was made up. BUSH just had to get approval so he pulled the wool over our eyes, yes even some Libs and Dems agreed with him at first based on the faulty facts. UNTILL the truth came out and they formed a new opinion based on truth and facts.
It is called growth and wisdom.
He is a liar, a liar in control of the free world no less.
If America does not remove him , I fear the worst for the country.
That goes for everyone in it, yeah you all too.
If you all are as smart as you ya’ll claim to be, then wake up, smell the coffee, your Pres. got us into a big mess.

P.S. God Bless Al Gore, HE WAS ROBBED. It took alot of courage to speak out, knowing that people would think of it as sour grapes. He has true courage.

Posted by: gypsyirishgirl at January 19, 2006 1:13 AM
Comment #114525

I’m thinking that several years from now this speech by Gore, along with Murtha’s press conference back in November, will be remembered as the tipping point that led to the decline and fall of the Bush administration.

Either that, or it will be the clarion call that was ignored by the press, the pols, the pundits and the people. With the final destruction of democratic government in the US years from now, historians will point to this time and say, “That was when democracy fell silent.”

Which will it be, do you think?

Posted by: Tim Crow at January 19, 2006 2:24 AM
Comment #114555

gypsygirl

It was a joke, playing off JayJay’s clever 4th amendment argument.

Posted by: Loren at January 19, 2006 5:29 AM
Comment #114573

PHX8,

I personally have a hard time forgiving Gore for 2000 his whole campaign was painful to watch. Plus he never called for a recount of the whole state of Florida only a few districts. his weird activity at the debates, his ‘lawk-bawx’. It was embarrassing. Letting the republicans push him over so easily by not fighting against Justice Renquist’s ruling—the list goes on. He got screwed but he at the time was getting so much in corporate campaign contributions he couldn’t even talk about issues like healthcare or cost of prescriptions.

God Bless him too but the right is only going to pride in it. Wolf Blitzer, Jeff Greenfield and Candy Crowley at the watch for anything out of the ordinary ready to pounce (and they did). Calling them ‘strong words’ like there is no room in politics for that sort of thing but republicans can go whacko all the time with wild assumptions, powers and bull (you know what) all the time.

Maybe we live in a media age that is such horsecrap but it is the panacea, now contour the approach to get below the conservative mainstream’s radar so Ken Mehlman and other apparent sleazeballs don’t vulturize everything and take things entirely out of context for the news montage offering.

Hell I’m depressing myself.

Posted by: Novenge at January 19, 2006 7:21 AM
Comment #114574

PHX8,

I personally have a hard time forgiving Gore for 2000 his whole campaign was painful to watch. Plus he never called for a recount of the whole state of Florida only a few districts. his weird activity at the debates, his ‘lawk-bawx’. It was embarrassing. Letting the republicans push him over so easily by not fighting against Justice Renquist’s ruling—the list goes on. He got screwed but he at the time was getting so much in corporate campaign contributions he couldn’t even talk about issues like healthcare or cost of prescriptions.

God Bless him too but the right is only going to pride in it. Wolf Blitzer, Jeff Greenfield and Candy Crowley at the watch for anything out of the ordinary ready to pounce (and they did). Calling them ‘strong words’ like there is no room in politics for that sort of thing but republicans can go whacko all the time with wild assumptions, powers and bull (you know what) all the time.

Maybe we live in a media age that is such horse (you know what) but it is the panacea, now contour the approach to get below the conservative mainstream’s radar so Ken Mehlman and other apparent sleazeballs don’t vulturize everything and take things entirely out of context for the news montage offering.

Hell I’m depressing myself.

Posted by: Novenge at January 19, 2006 7:24 AM
Comment #114580

The physical searches authorized by the Clinton Administration were not covered by the FISA law at that time.

But we keep hearing Clinton did it too.

When are you guys going to get past the macho adrenaline rush from this nebulous war on terror so some other things can get some attention like preserving out living conditions on the planet like phx8 suggests?

Oh I forgot, the Ann/Rush/Sean crowd knows more about these things than those pesky scientists who went to liberal universities.

Posted by: Schwamp at January 19, 2006 7:50 AM
Comment #114581

Finally, something that all American’s who truly believe in liberty and freedom, to rejoice about. When people from different and oposing ideologies come together to fight a common cause it indicates that concern and awareness is starting to act. The real nightmare is that it may already be too late to change anything. Since Bush has acted and stated that he cannnot be checked by either the Judicial or Legislative Branches there is really no reason to believe that he would follow any Law or Superme Court decision to limit his authority. Given Bush’s Admninstrations’s (Regime) paranaoic secrecy no one could ever know.

Equally frightnening is the explicit politicizing of the Military, re Murtha, by the Bush appointed Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. We can only hope thte there are still enough patriots in the Executive Branch who are not afraid to inform on Bush’s evil deeds and conspiracy against the American People.

Given his acknowleged actions to date, who can say with any reasonable certainty, that Bush will actually leave ofice at the end of his term or ever?

Posted by: Richard at January 19, 2006 8:03 AM
Comment #114595

I think that this overtly macho facade is masking the fear these people have of actually risking a sacrifice to be truly American. They are realizing that to actually maintain the freedoms our soldiers are dying to protect, they might actually have to risk something themselves. I know Bush refuses to even suggest such a thing, but that doesn’t mean the risk does not exist.

We either face the dangers and live as truly free Americans (with every freedom worth fighting for), or we hide in our homes, give up whatever freedoms our leaders demand and hope that the bad guys stay ‘over there.’ If that means keeping our military in the field to act as moving targets so that the enemy might stay ‘over there’, then so be it.

I choose to be free… but I could see how people might feel scared. Freedom will always require that we face dangers and make sacrifices. (And simply volunteering others to do it will not cut it.)

Posted by: tony at January 19, 2006 9:01 AM
Comment #114605

“According to you, all Americans apparently deserve the same treatment as gutless murderers. So our constitutional rights get caught in the crossfire while you shoot at the wrong guys?”

Works when dealing with the 2nd Amendment, why not the 4th?

Posted by: kctim at January 19, 2006 9:51 AM
Comment #114606

Loren,
So sorry, I really was hopefull that you may be just kidding.

I was even going to ask just that, however you never can tell around here.

Posted by: gypsyirishgirl at January 19, 2006 10:08 AM
Comment #114608

Al Gore is an utter boob but he’s right on this one. Bush’s contempt for the Constitution and his claims to the powers of a king are reprehensible. He and his daddy are the reason I’m an EX Republican. America isn’t worth saving if it can only be done by destroying the republic and replacing it with an imperial police state.

Posted by: steve at January 19, 2006 10:32 AM
Comment #114617

If “Clinton did it too” is a valid Republican argument in favor of warrantless searches, does that aplly to blowjobs as well?

Monica

Posted by: monica at January 19, 2006 12:10 PM
Comment #114650

Think you guys would ignore Bush getting one like you did with clinton?
Yeah, I don’t think so either.

Posted by: kctim at January 19, 2006 2:19 PM
Comment #114687

Novenge:

Can Al please get back in the closet? He’s still awkward to watch delivering so much as sandwiches nevermind delivering addresses and speeches.

phx8:

If Al Gore gave speeches during his presidential campaign with the same passion, clarity, and conviction with which he now speaks, he might be president today.

I completely agree, phx8. And I’m so stunned that Novenge could say such a thing about a speech as sincerely and impressively delivered as the one that Al Gore just gave. Because it’s so rare to see that kind of intellect and total conviction on display by ANY politician nowadays. I mean, the man didn’t even look at his notes once while giving that very long and impassioned oratory! While I watched and listened to it, I knew with absolute certainty that not only did Gore write every bit of that himself, but that he firmly believed every word he was saying. And in my view, it honestly can’t get any better than that.

It makes me wonder, did all of the posters to this thread actually watch the whole speech? Short clips just don’t cut it in this particular instance. It may be kind of long (especially for those with rather short attention spans), but IMO, it’s so worth it to see it from start to finish:
Al Gore on “Restoring the Rule of Law”

Posted by: Adrienne at January 19, 2006 3:56 PM
Comment #114689

Where was this Al Gore when we needed him in 2000? I mean he would’ve won the election….again.

Posted by: chantico at January 19, 2006 4:11 PM
Comment #114690

kctim:
“Think you guys would ignore Bush getting one like you did with clinton?
Yeah, I don’t think so either.”

Oh for heavens sake, Tim! I hate to say it, but this comment makes you seem like such a prude. Who the hell really cares where any president wants to stick his package? I honestly couldn’t care less. I do however, think we should all be extremely concerned when the president thinks he can treat our Constitution like the rag he uses to mop up afterwards.

Posted by: Adrienne at January 19, 2006 4:11 PM
Comment #114691

While we all know that neither Barr nor Gore will be standing at eithers convention it is nice to see a few Repubs standing up to Bush.
What bothers me most is when some on here question the patriotism of anyone who takes the time write in.While no on here ever wants to see another 9-11 we do not either want our rights trampled on.
By making Bush or whoever is in power follow the same laws that we do will keep us all stronger and safer.

Posted by: Roy at January 19, 2006 4:16 PM
Comment #114692

Adrienne
Hardly a prude.
Simply answering Monica’s question based on experience: If Bush did the same thing, the left would find a way to say it was ok with clinton but wrong for Bush.

I don’t care about stuff like that either. In fact, I give him credit for getting a 20 year old.

There were and are, more important things to worry about, especially with clinton.

Unlike most on this side though, I was extremely concerned when clinton was treating our Constitution like the rag he used to mop up afterward Monica.
AND
I am concerned with what Bush has been doing.
IF he is even half as guilty as clinton, I will be right there with you in calling for impeachment.

“By making Bush or whoever is in power follow the same laws that we do will keep us all stronger and safer”

Well said Roy.
But as long as people keep making excuses when its their side that is in power, it will never happen.

Posted by: kctim at January 19, 2006 4:46 PM
Comment #114714

Why do we continue to rename the defense of our country from enemies the “War on Terror”?

I am not asking this question rhetorically.

The defense of this country against spies is not a new phenomenon and has been the resposibility of the government since before this “war”. A terrorist, in simplest terms is a spy with a more disruptive, visible target and allegiances to a group rather than a state. We have ample laws and agencies to address this.

But here we are, abidicating the language of national defense and internal security to the Bush Administration and thus enabling his power grab.

Why didnt we call it a war on terror after they tried to blow up the WTC the first time?

I would like to suggest that the first step in fighting the tyrannical behavior of GW is by rejecting the “war on terror” label.

An immediate benefit is the next time Bush tramples on the constitution, he can no longer justify it by the “war thing”.

Am I missing something here? I submit that every use of the label the “war on terror”, where it does not address an internal security need unmet by existing federal powers, is an illegal justification for a usurpation of power by the Bush Administration.

If you eliminate “War on Terror”, you can still justify Afghanistan (national defense), Iran (national defense) and arresting suspected terrorists (treason) but you can’t justify wiretapping American citizens, Abu Ghraib or Guantanamo.

I say, enough of the politics of fear. For how long after 9/11 are we going to justify police state actions based on the amorphous, unending “War on Terror”?

Posted by: CPAdams at January 19, 2006 5:59 PM
Comment #114718

Talk about sleeping with the enemy…or dancing with the devil! Norquist? Keene? Weyrich? Are you kidding? Here’s what someone with more sense has to say about this new “Patriot” group:

These people haven’t stopped being our enemy just because they are the enemy of our enemy on one issue. And they have their own disreputable reasons for being Bush’s enemy even on that issue. There’s the common gun-nuttery, to be sure. Weyrich doesn’t trust a government led by Bush and Cheney because he considers them dangerously liberal, mainly because they’ve failed to deliver on the promise to criminalize abortion and roll back the rights of women and minorities. The Gun Owners crowd objects to the Patriot Act extension on exactly the same grounds that the Militia movement objected to any federal police powers under Clinton.

As for Grover, let’s remember he’s the Starve the Beast messiah, the guy who wants to shrink government to a size where it can be “drowned in a bathtub.” Of course he doesn’t like excessive executive powers; he doesn’t like any government powers, other than the power conferred on him as a big Washington Wheel. As for the Patriot Act, have we all forgotten Norquist’s obsession with turning American Muslims into a GOP constituency group? Could that have something to do with his motives for opposing a Patriot Act extension?

I make these points in no small part because I’m concerned that some progressives have gotten so obsessed with one set of Bush outrages that they are forgetting about all the rest of them.

You can read the rest of the article HERE.

We need to be careful who we’re “sleeping” with before jumping into bed with them! Al Gore may have made quite an impression naming Barr as on the same page with him, but he needs to look further before doing any more business with him. I don’t believe their motives are anything alike…they only agree that we need to get rid of Bush. The PRCB groups’s motives are anything but sincere.

Posted by: Gnostic Guru at January 19, 2006 6:05 PM
Comment #114720

“Think you guys would ignore Bush getting one like you did with clinton?
Yeah, I don’t think so either.”

Yea - what experience are you talking about. You tend to toss this out at least per post, and I have yet to see you proven right… even once. I know, I know, it’s your assumption and you’re sticking to it… but it does make you less credible.

Posted by: tony at January 19, 2006 6:17 PM
Comment #114722

I find it hysterical that the same people who continue to use labels like baffoon, idiot, numbskull, etc. about George W. Bush give him such overwhelming credit for hoodwinking the United Nations, the U.S. government, the American public, and the world public.

Poor guy.

If he was any dumber, he’d rule the world.

Jonathan

Posted by: Jonathan at January 19, 2006 6:21 PM
Comment #114724
I think the genie has been out of the bottle since the founding of this country. Presidents in wartime have done some incredible things. There isn’t much uproar outside of liberals. Here is the latest gallup poll:
“Do you think the Bush Administration was right or wrong in wiretapping these conversations without obtaining a court order?”
50% said Bush was right, 46% said he was wrong. It is not a barnburner of an issue.

Craig;

The rest of the poll was “Do you think it is alright for the government to listen to your phone conversations and read your e-mails without a court order?”

Guess what, half of those 50% said NO. I guess its not a barnbarner of an issue if its someone else’s rights being violated.


Posted by: Pat at January 19, 2006 7:02 PM
Comment #114725

Looking at the membership list of Patroits to Restore Checks and Balances one would have to be pretty naive to expect any real changes to come from that group. Instead they will set up some straw dogs to knock down to mollify the real conservatives of their base. You know, the ones that actually believe in the Constitution. They are probably taking their marching orders from Rove. You can say the same thing about Mc Cain.A weak anti-torture measure that Bush Co. can easily ignore but looks good to independants.
The people you mentioned are corporate fascist,plain and simple. They can no more express a real commitment to democracy than pigs can learn to fly. It is not in their nature.

Posted by: Bill at January 19, 2006 7:12 PM
Comment #114728

CPAdams,

Finally! A post that is well written and actually is a sane and arguable point. I don’t agree with your recommended action, but at least a good conversation can be made with you.

The reason that ‘War on Terror’ could not be used with the first WTC bombing is the failed effect of the blast. I believe, that if the first had the same result as 9/11, then we would have had the ‘War on Terror’ starting with Clinton. Don’t forget that Clinton sent our forces to protect citizens of another country who were being attacked. Would he not do at least as much for his own citizens?

I will try to post more later tonight in answer to your other points.

Thanks for the intelligent post.

GO

Posted by: GO at January 19, 2006 7:17 PM
Comment #114731

membership list of Patroits to Restore Checks and Balances

They’re people who are trying to cover their own asses, distance themselves from an administration that is losing popular support, and trying to find democrats to share the blame.

Posted by: ray ohrealy at January 19, 2006 7:37 PM
Comment #114751

Didn’t Bush recently justify taking out Saddam because he arrested and imprisoned Iraqi citizens without due process, tortured them, spied on them, and otherwise acted like a tyrant? I mean, of course, after he realized that there were no WMD’s.
So, if that argument is no longer valid, and it’s OK for Bush to do it, what did we invade Iraq for again?

Posted by: Cole at January 19, 2006 8:50 PM
Comment #114753

GO,

the efforts required to find the conspirators of the first WTC attack and prosecute them were no less arduous than 9/11. I agree with your point - because the first attack was unsuccessful, the tagline “War on Terror” would not have gotten any traction with the media.

Because 9/11 caused catastrophic loss, we accepted, to tell the truth, we WANTED, a “War on Terror”. I just don’t think anyone understood the price. The term frames the discussion (do you support the war v. are you willing to trade liberty for greater internal security).

Many dictators come to power in times of national need and use security as the leverage for the population to relinquish its rights willingly. I know this sounds excessive to many, but I use the analogy to highlight the tactics, not the severity of the behavior.

I am not suggesting that we live in a totalitarian state, I am saying that this administration has used the politics of fear to thwart dissent and to cause a population to relinquish freedoms.

GO,

you can disagree (I welcome spirited debate!), but I am certain that by relabeling our national security needs as the “War on Terror”, the GOP has co-opted the debate and has left critics of the administration playing defense ever since.

Posted by: CPAdams at January 19, 2006 8:57 PM
Comment #114763

The argument that Clinton did it even would have is really getting stretched and tiresome. Give it a rest. Even you can do a little better than that. But on the other hand if you want to keep at it,if Clinton had been president he might have read the intell reports or had competent advisors and prevented 9/11 from happening in the first place. Lets face it. Your boy was asleep at the switch.
You might actually read Gores speech. That is why we elected him. If that election had not been stolen the so called war on terror would be over , the perpetrators killed or captured and we would not be in the Iraq mess.

Posted by: Bill at January 19, 2006 10:00 PM
Comment #114810

Paul,

You threw me for a loop here. I had to do some research on Barr, Norquist, Keene, Weyrich, Gottlieb, etc.

Afterwards I came away with the same opinion I had when I first heard Al Gore speak. Damn, he sounded downright “Presidential”.

I can’t think of a better word to describe his speech. I’d never have thought our man Gore could pack a wallop like that. He showed strength and wisdom. The wisdom we all knew he had, but now he comes out with a strength I’d never seen before.

What is that? A mixture of “I’m mad as hell and I’m not taking it anymore”, and the Popeye the sailor phrase “I’ve took all’s I can take and I can’t takes no more”!

What it was, was strength without arrogance. It was a display of what every Democrat in the USA needs to say, and needs to be, over the next few years to once again be truly strong, proud and free.

We’ve been unfairly portrayed as weak on defense, budgetarily irresponsible, pro-abortion, big government, etc. The past 5 years have proven that the Republicans are the ones who are irresponsible regarding every aspect of American life.

It’s time to follow Al Gore’s lead and say, “enough is enough”!

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at January 20, 2006 12:50 AM
Comment #114983

Adrienne,

Wow. Thanks for providing the link to Gore’s speech; I just finished watching the whole thing. I liked the excerpts of his speech that I had already heard, but you were right that it’s even more powerful in its entirety.

Although I liked Gore in 2000, my vote for him was more driven by my fear of Bush (I surely would have died in fright back then if I had truly known what was in store). After hearing Gore’s speech, if he were to run for president again I can honestly say I would vote for him because of what he stands for—not just because of who his opponent is.

Posted by: Charles Wager at January 20, 2006 6:44 PM
Comment #115048

Adrienne,

I finally got some time to sit down and watch Gore’s speech, and all I can say is who is this man and where was he five years ago?! I have never been a big Al Gore fan, but if he keeps giving speeches like this, I may become one. Excellent.

Posted by: JayJay Snowman at January 21, 2006 2:05 AM
Comment #115057

“By all means please advocate protection of your privacy. The goverment should not spy on anyone at all - in your country or anywhere else in the world. We are counting on all of you Liberals and the ACLU to help us in our fight

Sincerely,

Osama”

(Brought to you by another radical extremist not altogether unlike the man he pretends to be… Mike 01/18)


Funny how people like this will “poo-poo” such liberties. But I know that this sort of person would be the first to scream bloody murder if their rights and privacies were trampled upon…

Hypocrasy is the word for today, children.

Hail, hail, to a nation currently thriving on hypocrasy… May we soon learn to relinquish our inherent freedoms so some radical right wingers can get on with their agenda…


Posted by: MJ Shaw at January 21, 2006 5:14 AM
Post a comment