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  • Patriot Act

    What do you guys think about the Patriot Act?

    Is it good, is it bad?

    Does it violate the 4th Ammendment?
    Run fast, shoot straight.

  • #2
    Its a loooooong read, It certainly erodes freedom to some extent by giving Govt authorities more power. Good or bad? hard to say at this point, have to wait for histories judgement I suppose.
    " If it be now, tis not to come: if it be not to come, it will be now; if it be not now, yet it will come: the readiness is all"

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    • #3
      Very obviosly bad. I don't take kindly to the "erosion" as you put it of my freedoms. That is why the Bill of Rights, All of which, I consider should be inviolate. I might not agree totaly with people but that is my right. It's like the saying My right to punch you in the nose stops an inch before I touch it. I have seen alot of personal attacks in the boards that verge on slander. Personal attacks are one of those things that without proof should be kept out of polite society.

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      • #4
        I'm of the solid opinion it's not a good thing given how much it allows government to hide behind the words 'national security' for everything dealing with the military (which is acceptable) to energy policy, the environment, and health care (which is not).:nonono: The government has a cop-out for everything now (and uses it like it's going out of style)... and I though it sucked when my parents used to tell me "Because".

        Orwell was only off by 25 years...not bad.
        If voting could really change things, it would be illegal.

        Comment


        • #5
          Thoughts on PATRIOT Act

          Certainly the PATRIOT Act is a matter for some concern. Standards for the application of electronic surveillance, listening or other means of intercepting conversation have been considerably liberalized. As well, through a process called "minimization", Federal agents are expected to avoid the eaves- dropping on non-involved persons, especially US citizens. However, there are broad exceptions that will often exempt the agents from notifying the aggrieved party, even when the case for which the "bugging" was authorized is finished. Indeed, even several years after the case, dislosure of information is denied, generally under FISA on grounds that the information is "national security information.

          So what is the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (50 USC, Chapter 38)? It was signed into law by President Carter in 1978, and laid out the methods of conducting surveillance, wiretaps and other means, against "foreign powers", or "agents of a foreign power". According to FISA, it may never be used against a United States citizen, though it was not a law for long before that proviso was violated.

          Cases under FISA are heard by a special court, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, by 11 appointed judges who each serve seven year terms. Virtually everything that occurs in this court is highly classified, therefore, the defense is denied access to many of the items offered into evidence against them. Also, they are not permitted to confront many of their accusers.In a more fiendish twist, the prosecution may ask for (and is uniformly granted) a hearing in camera, ex parte . That is, a meeting is heard in the judge's chambers (in camera) , and without the notification of one of the parties (ex parte) , invariably the defense.

          It is interesting to note that NOT ONE of the warrant applications over the last 26 years has ever been denied. As well, prosecution motions in the court (including in camera ex parte motions, have ever been denied.

          While the "bugging" provisions of the PATRIOT Act are dangerous, they pale before FISA's trampling on constitutional rights. In fact, the restrictions that do exist under FISA have been considerably liberalized by the PATRIOT Act.

          In closing, if the PATRIOT Act is the flu, FISA is the plague.
          Mens Est Clavis Victoriae
          (The Mind Is The Key To Victory)

          Comment


          • #6
            What about those "prisoners of war" we've taken and detained without any legal proceedings? Sure, they don't have to be, due to the POW status, but these are U.S. citizens. Saying we are at war with terrorism and can detain anyone in offense to National Security is a sort of broad fight, don't you think? If terrorism is the systematic use of violence as a means to intimidate or coerce societies, then, on it's very lowest level, say kidnapping, or 1st degree murder by a single party, why can't the government detain him/her for any amount of time without trial? Isn't that a basic right? The Writ of Habeus Corpus, if I remember correctly.
            :terms: :terms:

            That may of not made any sense, but I've been up for about 30 hours now. :drool: About to leave for the bahamas tonight! Woohoo!

            I just think of this as a slipery slope. Most people know it, if you go x distance, what's to stop you from slowly creeping to y distance? Where can you draw the line? After the market crash ('29) and what-not, the people of the U.S. wanted the government to 'protect' them from further harm, and now, who's to say we aren't about to live in another 1985? I think someone already said that in this forum, so, sorry chris...

            I guess I'll shutup now....

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Kilo_11
              What about those "prisoners of war" we've taken and detained without any legal proceedings? Sure, they don't have to be, due to the POW status, but these are U.S. citizens.
              I may be wrong but I don't think there has been ANY status applied to those detained at Guantanamo; POW or otherwise. That's why they are still refered to as detainees.
              Scientists have announced they've discovered a cure for apathy. However no one has shown the slightest bit of interest !!

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              • #8
                I may be mistaken, but I was pretty sure that regardless of status, you are still required to at least be read the charges against you in a court of law, the lone exception being a POW. I'm probably wrong on this, but that's how I've understood it.

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                • #9
                  I think whatever status is accorded the detainees, it opens up a can of worms the US administration would rather keep closed.
                  Scientists have announced they've discovered a cure for apathy. However no one has shown the slightest bit of interest !!

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                  • #10
                    As long as it's in limbo, they can use leagalese to get themselves out of any pigeon-hole some tries to put them in. There isn't a DA in the US who doesn't wish for such 'easy' hold and prosecute action.
                    If voting could really change things, it would be illegal.

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                    • #11
                      The part of the world that sees American Democracy as just and fair with a limited vocabulary of Legalese will support the Patriot Act as long as it does not affect them personally. Another part of the world sees the Patriot Act as a clear and present danger to indiviual rights.
                      I personally see it as a means to an end. An end to Islamic Terrorism.

                      The Detainees at Guantanamo, i would like to believe are mostly hardcore terrorists, suicide bombers, leaders.
                      Now, if most of them are, what US administration wants to be responsible for releasing them? And what country wants them?
                      As a fair and just nation, Americans want to do the right thing. What if the right thing is terrorist detainee for life?
                      :quest:
                      Only Tearful, Animal Man Through the Nature of his Being is Destined to
                      a Life of Warfare...

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Kilo_11
                        What about those "prisoners of war" we've taken and detained without any legal proceedings? Sure, they don't have to be, due to the POW status, but these are U.S. citizens. Saying we are at war with terrorism and can detain anyone in offense to National Security is a sort of broad fight, don't you think? If terrorism is the systematic use of violence as a means to intimidate or coerce societies, then, on it's very lowest level, say kidnapping, or 1st degree murder by a single party, why can't the government detain him/her for any amount of time without trial? Isn't that a basic right? The Writ of Habeus Corpus, if I remember correctly.
                        :terms: :terms:
                        Most probably the POWs are being held under FISA (which was strengthened by PATRIOT) rather than PATRIOT. Those FISA is prohibit for use against American citizens, that may be bypassed by declaring such persons as "agents of a foreign power". This being done, all manner of surveillance may be undertaken against them. Search applications under FISA are hear by the Foreign Intelligence Survellance Court, a panel of appointed judges (11, if I recall), and though there are strict standards for granting such warrants, it is interesting to note that no application has ever been denied. The trials under FISA are a farce, to a large extent shifting the burden of proof to the defendant. The prosecution may request hearing that are in camera, ex parte , meaning that they are held in the judge's chambers, and the defense need not be informed. As well, the defendant does not automatically have to right to confront his accusers, nor is he entitled to view all the evidence (yes, under that rubric "national security". In addition, the testimony of federal agents (FBI, CIA, Marshalls, etc.) is generally accepted as "expert testimony". Essentially, every Constitutional guarantee is turned on its head.
                        Mens Est Clavis Victoriae
                        (The Mind Is The Key To Victory)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          The only thing I worry about is that the Patriot Act may snowball and before we know it, we'll all be living in "police states".

                          Mark
                          Deo Vindice
                          Si vis pacem, para bellum. (If you want peace, prepare for war.)

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                          • #14
                            As a fair and just nation, Americans want to do the right thing. What if the right thing is terrorist detainee for life?
                            But with this arises the possibility of change. Can a person really change? Once a terrorist, always a terrorist? There will probably never be a measure to really gauge the 'change of heart', so what if a twenty-two year old gets involved in some form of terrorism, and is detained. Will he spend the next 60 years of his life in a camp? Can he learn from this?

                            hogdriver, do you have more resources on FISA? Thanks

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                            • #15
                              FISA

                              Originally posted by Kilo_11
                              But with this arises the possibility of change. Can a person really change? Once a terrorist, always a terrorist? There will probably never be a measure to really gauge the 'change of heart', so what if a twenty-two year old gets involved in some form of terrorism, and is detained. Will he spend the next 60 years of his life in a camp? Can he learn from this?

                              hogdriver, do you have more resources on FISA? Thanks
                              I have that it is in 50 USC, Chapter 36 (http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/50/ch36.html) also check the Congressional Record during 1978 (1st Session, I think)
                              Mens Est Clavis Victoriae
                              (The Mind Is The Key To Victory)

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