Democrats & Liberals Archives

Abolish the Patriot Act

The Patriot Act is the driving force behind this administrations belief that they have some sort of divine power to ignore the United States Constitution and our civil rights.
The Patriot Act gives them a means to usurp power from the other branches of government and ignore the rule of law.
Let’s get rid of it.

The Patriot Act of 2001, also known as “The Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001”has nothing whatsoever to do with “Patriotism” and even less to do with “uniting” or “strengthening.”

This act has increased government secrecy, trampled on civil liberties and is used to justify the kidnap, torture and indefinite imprisonment of foreign citizen’s. It is also used to justify the illegal information gathering of its own citizens by this administration. The FBI, the Justice Department and many agencies whose very purpose is to protect Americans rights, have used the Patriot Act to circumvent the constitution and violate the very laws they vowed to uphold.

The Patriot Act should be abolished.
This administration has demonstrated time and again to be both power-mad and incompetent. Why would we want them to have the ability to take our rights away behind closed doors and without oversight?
Why would Americans regardless of party affiliation want Cheney, Bush and Gonzalez to have the right, through signing statements that ignore the rule of law to have their own little theocracy that goes against what America stands for.

We’ve already allowed our government to be bought and sold out from under us by large corporations and MIC. Can we afford to allow it to suffer any longer under these three stooges?

Why would any American citizen want laws changed and dictated in secrecy by these three elitist, paranoid ideologues who have demonstrated their utter lack of thought and regard for America time and time again.
I don’t want my rights dictated by three men who could change their middle names to “mistakes have been made.”
We need to stand up and as a country respond with a rousing “no shit!”

We have had to live with their mistakes long enough.

We need to take this power away from this administration before any more abuse can occur. We’ve seen enough already.

The Patriot Act has fueled this inept and corrupt administration long enough. We must strip them of this shield and allow Congress and the Senate to baby-sit these idiots until we can get rid of them.

Posted by Andre M. Hernandez at March 28, 2007 9:04 AM
Comments
Comment #214132

The Patriot Act has kept us safe. The enemy is the one that would benefit the most from the abolishment of the Patriot Act. Oh, and, the enemy I’m referring to is the Islamofascists pigs that want to destroy us and our way of life.

Posted by: rahdigly at March 28, 2007 10:11 AM
Comment #214135

Andre

Let’s see….abolish the Patriot Act….Pass a Senate Bill that tells the enemy when US troops are leaving….cut off their funding too…

What’s next?

I know…burkas for all the women….ya, that’s the ticket…..Geez….

Posted by: Sicilian Eagle at March 28, 2007 10:51 AM
Comment #214140

Andre, great post!

Yes, I agree. Abolish the Patriot Acts — but first we need both the House and Senate to have a real discussion about what is necessary to our security, and what is Constitutional. The first Patriot Act was flawed legislation that was rushed through without debate, the second was rubberstamped by the GOP — both contain provisions that are contrary to American principles. We need Congress to start from scratch and carefully craft something that we can all live with for many years to come.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 28, 2007 11:32 AM
Comment #214143

NO! Let’s revise it so it conforms to the Bill of Rights. We still need Constitutional police powers to interdict and halt terrorist plots, Andre.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 28, 2007 11:45 AM
Comment #214146

Just remember that it may be Hillary who is dictating what is happening with these laws next. Do you really want her to have the same power that Bush has had? Think about this long and hard, if the answer is no to her having the power then it should be no for anyone haveing it.

Posted by: timesend at March 28, 2007 12:13 PM
Comment #214148

How is the Patriot Act used to “justify the kidnap, torture and indefinite imprisonment of foreign citizen’s (sic)? Even if those things were being justified, what does the Patriot Act have to do with them?

Oh, I see. You don’t know what the Patriot Act IS.

No wonder you want to abolish it. It’s just a catch-all for every bit of left-wing drivel you’ve ever picked up on the internet.

Why don’t we abolish the Bogeyman too. And what about vampires?

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 28, 2007 12:20 PM
Comment #214151

Why don’t you just keep the Patriot Act and abolish Bush?! He’s the reason you don’t like anything in this country; so abolish him and you can start liking policies again! Ridiculous!!!

Posted by: rahdigly at March 28, 2007 12:53 PM
Comment #214154

Andre
Much as I disagree that things will change or would different if Bush wasn’t President and some brave real American Democrat was, I too believe something has to be done about the Patriot Acts. Much like Adrienne and Remer mentioned.

And I believe timesend has given the best reason as to why it must be changed.

Posted by: kctim at March 28, 2007 1:32 PM
Comment #214162

I’m with David. Modify the Patriot Act so it conforms to the Bill of Rights.

Posted by: Paul Siegel at March 28, 2007 2:08 PM
Comment #214172

Andre,

The Patriot act is flawed legislation, like many other acts passed in times of conflict and fear.

We are supposedly a Nation of laws, but like most nations in the world we are subjects of those who we empower to rule.

The revelation about the US Attorneys being used as political attack dogs and profligate FBI spying is worrisome, but not new.

There are evils in the world and oft times they are internal. I am for repeal of the Patriot act I and II as well as abolishing Homeland Security. Homeland Security is a simply a new bureaucracy that wastes money. This does not mean I endorse stopping active pursuit of terrorists or release of suspected terrorists.

Bush should be removed from power for his abuse of power. I doubt that will happen prior to the election. We are not a nation of torture, and should not engage in destabilizing other sovereign nations. Removing Sadam was encouraged by OPEC members, and was an attempt to realign the second largest oil reserve in the world. It was an economic as much as political move, and both the Democratic and Republican power brokers know this. It’s the lie to Americans much like the lies about the Native Americans, Slavery and Central America that we’ve been told to hide our agressive power grabs. It was more about Petro dollars and Euros than WMD. The real terror war is in Pakistan. Secrecy is used to hide bad conduct and should be limited to only true threats to our security.

The phony issue of being soft on terror is used as justification for the abuse of power. Americans aren’t soft on terror, it’s just that some of us don’t believe that engaging the US in it’s own forms of terror moves us toward safety. Distinguishing between aggression and forceful defense is an important issue. The difference between leadership and tyranny is absolute.

What will see America to the future will be her attraction of free thinkers, not agressive expansionism. Expansion of our positive ideals to Mexico and the rest of the Americas is what will expand our power base. Exposing tyranny in Cuba or Venezuela will defeat our enemies. We cannnot do that if we are as evil as they are.

Posted by: gergle at March 28, 2007 3:31 PM
Comment #214174

Loyal opposition,

“Why don’t we abolish the Bogeyman too. And what about vampires?”

I’m all for it. My children thank you.

Rahdigly,

“Islamofascists pigs that want to destroy us and our way of life.”

The problem is we don’t have an islamofscist pig detector and are using the ethnic profile wide net method instead.

They want to destroy my way of life? Or our governments policies in the middle east and it’s perceived insult to whatever muslim doctrine the terrorists yell about?
I vote the latter. Besides I have no life;)

Sicilianeagle,

Welcome back my ultra-conservative Bush loyalist, buddy.

David,

I say scrap-rethink and redo, immediately.

Adrienne,

Thanks.

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at March 28, 2007 3:57 PM
Comment #214178

Abolish The Patriot Act and perhaps Homeland Security. Wait, don’t we have to notify our enemy first. Certainly Congress should do the right thing and consult with terrorist first, they may have some ammendment to add. My first ammendment rights are just fine and I certainly don’t feel threatened by either of these entities. Oh, wait, that’s because I am not an enemy of this country. What I can’t figure out yet, is where the liberals are going to spend all the money saved by thrashing our security.

Posted by: Jim at March 28, 2007 4:21 PM
Comment #214179

Yes, government is violating the Constitution by spying on citizens without civil oversight.
Already, there are reports that the actual spying has been under-reported.

And how about the Supreme Court upholding legal plunder via abuse of eminent domain laws (6.6 cases per day)?

And the government ignores existing laws or chooses to enforce certain laws selectively (e.g. such as illegal immigration).

Congress is also violating the Constitution by denying an Article V Convention that has already been requested 568 times by ALL 50 States (far in excess of the two-thirds requirements stated in Article V of the Constitution)?

Congress ain’t likely to ever be responsible and accountable until the voters are too, and that ain’t likely to ever happen as long as voters keep rewarding irresponsible incumbent politicians by repeatedly re-electing them; giving them a cu$hy 90% re-election rate.

That ain’t likely to happen until the voters’ threshold for pain is finally reached.
We’re on our way.
Where are we now and how much longer do we have?

,-(1) Corruption, oppression,
| (2) courage, Responsibility, rebellion,
| (3) liberty, growth, abundance,
| (4) selfishness, complacency, fiscal irresponsibility
| (5) apathy, dependency, fiscal & moral bankruptcy,
` - - return to step (1)

Some people think a crises is improbable.
Why, when history is strewn with crises after crises?
Just look at the past two hundred years.

A significant economic meltdown as a result of all this is not that far fetched.

Posted by: d.a.n at March 28, 2007 4:35 PM
Comment #214181

There are a few provisions of the Patriot Act that could be abused (as can any law), and I see nothing wrong with adding additional safeguards on top of some of the adjustments already made by the courts.

Hell, even the traffic laws are subject to constant update and review, and there is the “potential” there for them to be abused by the authorities.

However you cut it, though, the Patriot Act is not something just dreamed up by Bush, so calling it a an “abuse” of his power is ridiculous.

It is a fully ratified act of the US Congress, who has as they always do, the right to change it if they wish.

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 28, 2007 4:39 PM
Comment #214225

Andre, I agree get rid of the Patriot Act or at the very least make it so small we can drown it in the bathtub.

Posted by: j2t2 at March 28, 2007 10:20 PM
Comment #214227

LO,

“However you cut it, though, the Patriot Act is not something just dreamed up by Bush, so calling it a an “abuse” of his power is ridiculous.”

What was an abuse of his power however, was the signing statement he added to the Patriot Act renewal that basically says he can ignore the oversight provisions if he saw fit to do so.

http://www.boston.com/news/nation/washington/articles/2006/03/24/bush_shuns_patriot_act_requirement/

“In the statement, Bush said that he did not consider himself bound to tell Congress how the Patriot Act powers were being used and that, despite the law’s requirements, he could withhold the information if he decided that disclosure would impair foreign relations, national security, the deliberative process of the executive, or the performance of the executive’s constitutional duties.”

Posted by: Rocky at March 28, 2007 10:21 PM
Comment #214312

There are times when I find myself wondering just who the actually threat to my American Way of life comes from.

For years I was taught that the enemy to the American Way was the Communists. Any one here remember the Senate Hearings, Joe McCarty and his campaign against everyone he believed might be a communist?

Then it was the Cubans and of course the Soviet Union. Can anyone say “Duck and Cover”?

This of course was followed quickly by the Domino theory. Still fear of the Communists, only this time in Vietnam. “GI Go Home.”
President Johnson became my personal enemy when he sent out solders to Vietnam without actually telling anyone. The Tonkin Gulf Resolution I believe it was named. I still think of him as sort of ‘hiring a hit men’, murderer.

President Nixon became the enemy when he played games with “plumbers”

This anti-communist fear was suddenly replaced and we were in fear of some kind religious takeover when it became obvious the Iranians hated us.

Of course, at first, I had no doubt who the enemy was when Iran took the American hostages. I remember watching their release and telling myself I’d done the right thing for them when I voted for Reagan, even though it sort of felt like submitting to blackmail. It appeared to me that the negotiations for their release apparently occurred during Carter’s time office. I didn’t like giving Reagan credit for something I didn’t really think HE had done. I finally realized I wasn’t real sure who the enemy was for sure that year - Iran, Reagan or Carter. Iran for taking the Hostages but negotiating with Carter, thus making me feel as if the only way to get our people back was to vote for Reagan.

Then of course I had no doubt that Kuwait needed out help. After all they asked us for help. Iraq was clearly the enemy then. One country had no right to invade another country - that was my battle cry. Help the little guy out over the big, strong, tough bully.

Now that brings me today. After 9/11, I was told the enemy was Obama Bin Ladin and the Taliban. Ok, that was simple enough, go get him, bring him to justice, and then execute him ( The idea being that he was truly guilty). The same for very member of the terrorist group involved in 9/11.

Because I was told the training bases for Bin Laden were in Afghanistan, I could sort of see taking troops there. After all, if Afghanistan wasn’t gong to give us our enemy we had a right to take him. Right? Wellllll - Maybe

Then suddenly the enemy was Saddam, in Iraq. Wait a minute. I THOUGHT WE WERE GOING AFTER TERRORISTS? Not Iraq. Why were we no longer trying to find Bin Ladin? I even heard our President state that Bin Ladin was not our target anymore, Saddam was because he refused to comply with the UN orders. Hey wait a minute - I thought this War of Terror was about the TERRORISTS - not dethroning Saddam, but getting justice for the deaths during 9/11.

Just who was our enemy any way? Then I also discovered it was okay for our President to do Exactly what Saddam had done to Kuwait, INVADE them. So instead of seeking justice, we were now acting as some kind of hit men unofficially appointed by the UN? Hummm - I don’t know about that one….

We suddenly had laws allowing our own laws to be broken - the biggest of which was the Patriot Act. And why - Certainly not because we are seeking justice anymore.
Instead we have instigated invasions that require some sort of modification of the Rights of AMERICAN CITIZENS, and subjugate the laws of the International World. Suddenly it’s okay to hold people with out charges, trials, and subject them to torture. All of the values we had held as Americans are under attack. In the name of FREEDOM? What kind of freedom will we have if we allow ourselves to become no better than our worst enemy.

Who the Hell is our real enemy now - Communists, terrorists, Iraq, Iran,North Korea, or ourselves - our own government. I find myself leaning more and more towards the last. I at least need a score card. What about you?



Posted by: Linda H. at March 29, 2007 2:23 PM
Comment #214313

The Patriot Act (a joke of a name for this act) was a predictable over reaction to a crisis. Everytime something bad happens there is a tendency to go way overboard in trying to make sure it never happens again. Even if the Patriot Act was written with the best of intentions (which I seriously doubt) it trades a false sense of security for liberty. As Ben Franklin once said, “those who are willing to trade their liberty for security deserve, and will likely recieve, niether.” Well, America, that’s exactly what we deserve. We let Bush and a lapdog Congress force this piece of garbage through and we have essentially given up habeas corpus and other rights we hold dear for what? Nothing. We are not safer, we are not better able to fight terrorists, we are not more free.

The sad thing about this whole episode is that it made my party’s representatives look like a bunch of cowards when they were essentially right in thinking that the best way to fight terrorism is through intelligence and law enforcement not through military action. We have been waging this joke of a war on terror (btw - you cannot wage war on a tactic geniuses) like killing mosquitoes with a sledge hammer. Sure, you kill a few mosquitoes but you wreck your house in the process. The Dems let the GOP paint them as weak and cowardly when it is, in fact, the GOP that has behaved like cowards. The GOP is nothing but a bunch of “chicken littles” yelling “the sky is falling … the sky is falling” when what is really falling is our Constitution, our liberty, and our democracy. Instead of standing tough and telling those responsible for 9/11 that you can’t scare us into giving up the freedoms we cherish even if it makes life in a FREE country a little more hazardous, we caved in. We have done exactly what we shouldn’t have done, let the terrorists win. Bush & GOP - you have done that and the Dems who stood by and did nothing or complied to this stupidity share the blame as well.

Posted by: Tom Snediker at March 29, 2007 2:35 PM
Comment #214346

Linda H., quite right. The Nazi Hermann Goering had it right, too! The politicians job is to use fear to move public support in whatever direction the politician needs it to go. It takes a pretty sheepish and ignorant public to play along. So, far, we seem to be doing a lot of bleating.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 29, 2007 6:47 PM
Comment #214349

Linda H,

I can’t tell you who your enemy is. May I make a suggestion however? Thruout your post you keep stating that you were “told” this or that. I suggest you investigate, read some history, look at ALL sides of an issue and your enemy will become obvious.

I personally have several enemys. Anyone who threatens my way of life and the constitution of the country that I love is my enemy.

Good luck finding yours.

Posted by: tomd at March 29, 2007 7:19 PM
Comment #214377

Tomd,
Actually, I do a lot of studying, and reading. The problem as I see it, is trying to figure out how to read between the lines, so to speak.

You see, even I know that history is written by the extremists. Usually by the victors. Occasionally the losers get their two-cents worth. The problem seems to however that one has to wait centuries before the actually truth comes out.

In the meantime, I rely as do you and just about everyone else, on the perspective of the writer.

Whether I have been told, read, or heard, I still feel I can be too easily manipulated, not only by the media, but by our own government. I too know who my enemy is. It’s what I can do about it that is really the question.

Posted by: Linda H. at March 29, 2007 11:58 PM
Comment #214390

“In the meantime, I rely as do you and just about everyone else, on the perspective of the writer.”

I rely primarialy on my belief system which coincides rather well with the US Constitution. I know what is right and wrong according to my morals and compare what I read, see, and hear to those beliefs.

” Actually, I do a lot of studying, and reading. The problem as I see it, is trying to figure out how to read between the lines, so to speak.”

I’ve found that sometimes there is nothing between the lines to read.

” Whether I have been told, read, or heard, I still feel I can be too easily manipulated, not only by the media, but by our own government.”

If you learn the FACTS and use logic instead of emotion to look at an issue, you won’t feel manipulated.

“I too know who my enemy is. It’s what I can do about it that is really the question.”

If you think life is a game, then you complain and whine. If you think life is serious, you do everything in your power to destroy your enemy.

How serious are you?

Posted by: tomd at March 30, 2007 8:42 AM
Comment #214394

Linda,

The media does not have the power to manipulate if you don’t rely on one source. Take it all in.
The government is not our enemy. They have seperate priorities than most of us. If we have an educated electorate, we can eliminate most if not all of America’s problems by making elected official’s priorities and ours become one.
The wealthy, who are currently and unfortunately solely represented by the current GOP do not want an increase in the number of people who vote. They can manipulate enough of the 35% -60% of voters using god, abortion and bigotry to take office every few years. The GOP love fear and hate. They’re strong motivators for the weak minded. Democrats have many flaws as well. They throw money at problems instead of solving them. They follow the ACLU like puppies, sometimes right off a cliff. They allow too many people to use the welfare system to the point of enabling the very people they’re trying to help.
One party thought, utilizing one media source and most of all complacency are the real dangers to America. We know the government is screwed up. The GOP and the Democratic party are not to blame. The people, the actual human beings that are being voted into office, in both parties, with seperate agendas’ than their constituency are the preoblem.
We have to take risks and build a true party of the people.
Screw red and blue. It’s another divisional tactic that keeps only wealthy, connected people in office. We no longer have the best and brightes in office(see current administration for verification). We have people who are groomed from a young age to ensure wealth disparity will continue to grow and that the people who are offering connections on the way up will become connected when that person reaches office. You cannot have a free thinking person with backbone and courage in office or the wealthy folks who actually get representation from the government cannot be guarenteed benefits.
Tell everyone you know to vote. Not for the best actor. Vote based on how close their priorities are to yours.
I can throw on a cowboy hat and tug at brush. I can fake a southern accent. Does that make me a leader?

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at March 30, 2007 8:59 AM
Comment #214457

thom,
I fail to truly understand your points. In particular “the facts” are part of the problem. Just exactly where does one get the FACTS? That is my point. Facts these days are rather like statistics - it depends on how they are interpreted.

I don’t know that one can ‘think’ emotionally. Logical deductive reasoning is in my opinion the best method to understand, relate, and resolve an issue.

I, too, have found that my beliefs tend to run in accord with our US Constitution, and I believe I live I too, understand the differences between right and wrong.

I am, however, equally certain that there are many in government,(not merely ours, but others as well,) media,religious institutions, educational institutions, etc. and etc, whose moral beliefs could well differ from my own.

I also know that one of the reasons we have the US Supreme Court is to help understand and define just what our Constitution says and means. There have been times I totally disagreed with their interpretation of our Forefathers writings.

I don’t like complainers or whiners any more than the next person, however, I at least attempt to figure out what it is they are trying to say, analyze, and go from there. Even a moron can be right once in a while.

As I stated in my original post - I simply need to figure out just who my enemy is - because frequently it wears many disguises.

Posted by: Linda H. at March 30, 2007 3:47 PM
Comment #214460

Andre M. Hernandez,
I also fail to follow your post. It appears to me that you are contradicting yourself.
Example:

The government is not our enemy. They have seperate priorities than most of us…

We know the government is screwed up…
The GOP and the Democratic party are not to blame. The people, the actual human beings that are being voted into office, in both parties, with seperate agendas’ than their constituency are the preoblem.

The other point you attempted to make regarding the media:

The media does not have the power to manipulate if you don’t rely on one source.
is equally mis-leading.

The media most certainly does attempt to manipulate, if merely by choosing what they report.

Yes, I know understand how a free media is supposed to work, however, it does not take a dunce to realize our media can and is frequently slanted. Not necessarily because they want to be, but merely because they are actually people who then interpret what they believe to to true.

One hopes that several sources are relied upon before making a decision about an issue. The problem however is tri-fold:

1. Our Media is run by PEOPLE. People who have differing ideas from one another. It is virtually impossible to write anything without bringing ones’ own views in to the report. Human error if you will.

2. Our media responds to money. Because it needs money to function, it is not difficult to realize that the sanitizing of reports so as to not lose readers is common place.

3. Unless they are very fortunate, reporters rely on what they are told, see, read and hear. If their sources are incorrect, lie, or mis-guide the reporters, then the truth of their reports become tainted.

One would certainly hope that many media outlets are pursued before coming to any specific conclusions. I’m afraid, however, that most people either don’t have the time, energy or understanding of the necessity of this.

Posted by: Linda H. at March 30, 2007 4:15 PM
Comment #214732

The corporate media, these days, certainly does influence our opinions by what they report as well as how it is reported. One must go to the international press to get something close to an objective view, and then you have to read as many sources as possible to have any confidence in what you are getting. In other words, it’s hard work to get objective information. And the majority of the US population just does not have the time, access, or inclination to do what is necessary to get all of the real news.
I have to agree with much of what Linda H. is saying in this regard. It’s hard to tell the players without a scorecard. Everybody has an agenda. You must take everything you hear with an ample grain of salt.
Our national press (including tv and radio as well as print) has gone from attempting to deliver, objectively, news that is needed for our citizens to make informed decisions to bashing everyone and each other for ratings or political agendas. The blogosphere, often touted as the equalizing influence of modern times, is no better. In fact, it’s making it worse. There’s no responsibility in the blogosphere; no journalistic standard to hold sway over what appears on the virtual page.
So, now we can’t trust the government or the media. They have us all at each others’ throats in the intentional unstable environment which allows them to gather more power. The winners? Not us.

Posted by: Cole at April 2, 2007 8:59 PM
Comment #214773

Linda H.,

The fact that you know it’s slanted and “attempting to manipulate” gives you the power to not be manipulated.
How is that confusing?
The government is not an enemy means the government works for us. The people we vote into office have corrupted that system.
How am I contradicting myself?

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at April 3, 2007 7:30 AM
Comment #253741

Though I fully agree that the Patriot Act is unconstitutional, and violates all basic civil rights and equalities, you don’t back yourself up at all in this article, you simply say that Bush, Cheney, and Gonzalaz are “stooges”, yet don’t state any facts to back yourself up, again, though i do agree with your position, you cannot expect to persuade anyone if you don’t state facts.

Posted by: Samantha at May 27, 2008 1:44 PM
Comment #276236

Have you read the Patriot act? any one? any one?
Any american can be stripped of their citizenship.
Hitler passed the same act after bombing his own parlement and
blamed it on terrorism.

Posted by: jc at February 26, 2009 1:47 AM
Comment #332569

i fell like im getting a f****** nuclear war head shoved up my a** when i read this d*** thing

Posted by: gumbo at December 1, 2011 1:47 PM
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