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On civil liberties:

An administration currently run by supposed liberals thinks that it's ok for government to secretly seize phone and Internet records of citizens, without the kind of explicit search warrant contemplated by the Fourth Amendment.
Sounds pretty ominous, right? But what is the government actually "seizing"? If a data search includes an anonymous telephone number, which the government, by law, cannot further distinguish or analyze because it is not "terrorism information," what exactly has the state seized, and is it protected by the Fourth Amendment? There's an existing data-mining technique available to the government with your phone number, address and name already in it. It's called a phone book. To answer the question about what the government has "seized," I've begun to use what I like to call the Green Shirt/Green Hat analogy:

Let's say the government can know where everyone in a green shirt with a green hat is at one specific time but doesn't know who that person is, where they're going, whether they're going to change out of the shirt and hat at any time soon, their address or any other distinguishing information. Moreover, specific rules state that the government cannot inquire further about that person at all. Is the government's knowledge of that information a privacy rights violation of your or my green-shirt-and-hat-wearing selves? I don't think so. In fact, I don't think it's even close, and that's because the government really doesn't know shit and, furthermore, the compelling interest to know that information is the potential for preventing the mass death of Americans. As an example, the census is about 1,000x more invasive. What compelling interest does the government have to take a census? Answer: The state does have a compelling interest to take a census, but it is not the potential for preventing the mass death of Americans.

Now, I don't pretend to speak for Democrats or Liberals or Progressives, and I certainly can't speak for anarcho-Libertarians, Libertarians or the People's Front of Judea, but as a baseline for reasonable people I'd say that governments have to keep secrets. General and then-President George Washington kept state and military secrets from the other colonists and then-American people. So did Abraham Lincoln, and Franklin Delano Roosevelt kept a lot of them.

What are some key areas where you might find the government maintaining secrecy? I would think that matters to do with war and counter-terrorism are a good starting point. And if a government can keep citizens safe without violating their Civil Liberties, shouldn't the government have the power and even the duty to do so? If a government with that power and duty failed to exercise it, wouldn't that government be negligent?

 


On private vs. public sector:

More and more of the government is being contracted out and privatized, even the most sensitive state secrets, not to mention basic public services. Even the U.S. armed forces depend increasingly on private mercenaries. ...
This is the first recession in a century when government employment and public services were cut rather than expanded to compensate for the weakness of the private sector.
Now I can see where this would be a huge divide between the anarcho-Libertarians and the Libertarians. You see, the Libertarians want everything privatized, and the anarcho-Libertarians hate private companies. Big problem there. Me? I hate many private companies because they gain too much power through monopoly, shared interest (i.e. the oil consortium, trade and lobbying groups), as well as the ability, through money, to buy votes and public opinion. I do, however, realize that capitalism is the system that we live in, and it has been pretty good to Americans in the past as long as we ensure strict regulation. I don't want to have to barter with my dentist, as I don't have a single chicken to my name. On the other hand, I also don't want to pay $10,000.00 (US) for a simple cleaning because dentists have finally realized that getting together as a monopoly would benefit them financially. As for the recent move to privatize government functions, I would point to this:


redstates


The states colored in red above are what we like to refer to as "Red States." They do a lot of silly things in Red States, and even in some Blue States like Wisconsin or Michigan, where Red Republican governors have decided to strip the government bare. Also, in those Red States, they have the right by virtue of the Constitution to send legislators to Congress, and those Red Legislators have decided to strip the government bare.

I like government. It is important to have one--and one that works well--to maintain a civilized society, to regulate business, to maintain a safe environment and balanced ecosystems, to thwart terrorism and, if absolutely necessary, fight wars. So, for me the solution to the "privatization problem" seems pretty simple: We need more Blue Governors and Blue Legislators, and much fewer Red Governors and Red Legislators.

Finally, on the issue of privatizing the function of government, I believe the quote above is incomplete in such a way as to render it misleading and harmful. In that quote, there is no distinction between what Democrats, for the most part, and Republicans, almost unanimously, have attempted to do on this subject. Just by way of a tiny example, there's the fact that a Democratic President demanded approximately a trillion dollars in economic stimulus; whereas, a Tea Party House of Representatives has not voted on a single jobs bill and has voted on numerous occasions to de-fund government. Quite an important distinction in my mind.

On financial sector reform:

The financial collapse and presidential election of 2008 were a moment for political reformers to dismantle the Wall Street power that caused the financial collapse and did such damage to ordinary people. But the moment passed with only feeble reforms, which are being dismantled daily as lobbyists eat away at the regulations...


Again, this looks like a bone of contention between the anarcho-Libertarians and the Libertarians. Not speaking for any other Democrat or Progressive or Liberal except for myself, I also want increased regulation, no more monopolies, and the end of "Too Big to Fail." The best answer to this plight is one we've seen before: We need more Blue Governors and Blue Legislators, and much fewer Red Governors and Red Legislators. Specifically, and most importantly, we need a Blue House of Representatives. Cynical anarcho-Libertarian types might argue, "But, Blue Legislators in the House wouldn't get the job done, they're too beholden to special interests." The somewhat-less-cynical reply is, "What is your solution, and, please, 'burnng down shit' is not a solution?"

On health care reform:

A health reform that professes to use government to move us closer to universal insurance coverage is actually a command for people to buy insurance from private industry, which is fatter and less efficient than ever.
Well, on this, at least, the anarcho-Libertarians and Libertarians can agree, if for different reasons. The former don't think they'll ever get sick ("So why should I have to pay into any system?"), and the latter think the government should have no involvement whatsoever in the health care system ("If I want to curl up in my own den and die like a free, but fatally-ill, wolverine in the wild, then that's my business!"). Of course, this is the very epitome of anti-social behavior. It is all about the "I" and the "me," and not about the "we" and the "us."

Speaking only for myself as a Democrat, a Liberal and a Progressive, but not speaking for those groups, or the anarcho-Libertarians or the People's Liberal Front Movement of East Judea, I believe that a government not only has the power but the duty to ensure that as many people as possible have access to health care, that as many people as possible are not turned away from health care because of pre-existing conditions, and that as many people as possible who can't afford health care be provided it. (I understand the economic argument for providing health care as it costs less in the long run; but my belief is that health is so intertwined with "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness," that it is a duty of the state.)

Now here's the thing: I'm also realistic enough to understand that in our form of government change doesn't always happen quickly, and that it sometimes happens incrementally. It is not always perfect or even close to it. With that in mind, then, the government's duty vis-à-vis health care becomes the duty to enact the best possible system feasible at any particular time. I believe we did that.

In conclusion, I believe that government is necessary, that it should be available to help us, to regulate our behaviors, and that it should have the power and the duty to protect us when necessary and appropriate. I'm not paranoid about "Slippery Slope" arguments--such as we are becoming a police state watched over by the East German Stazi--because I know that we are here to stop that from happening, and even if one branch of government should ever be compromised, we have two others and a military to stop it. I believe that cynicism is trending, but like all trends, it will go away, probably as soon as our economy booms again. I believe that the best solution to all of our short- and long-term problems is to elect a majority of Blue Legislators in the federal government and Blue Governors in as many states as possible. I will admit to being cynical about how the cynics seem to ignore this very possible solution.

Finally, I am not cynical about today's youth and young Democrats. First of all, they've grown up in both the least racist age in America and the most conspiracy theory riven. They, for the most part, will know not to believe everything they read on the internet or see on Fox News. Secondly, they're not Fox News viewers. Thirdly, they know which party or splinter group started two wars and which one ended them; who's policies caused the Great Recession, and who's brought us back to recovery; which party or splitter ended DADT, and which one fought it tooth and nail, and etc. And, lastly, they're too intelligent to fall for thinly-veiled invitations to join Rand Paul's peculiar freakshow.    

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Comment Preferences

  •  Excellent - thanks (7+ / 0-)

    "Tax cuts for the 1% create jobs." -- Republicans, HAHAHA - in China

    by MartyM on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 04:14:05 AM PDT

  •  I would like to ... (6+ / 0-)

    ... apologize up front for presenting the meanderings of a sane mind, which, you have to admit, aren't that interesting. I hope, though, that I'm just crazy enough to have kept your attention for a little while. I understand that competition out there in the Marketplace of Ideas is intense, and the crazier the better, it seems, so I do appreciate your time. Here's a funny picture:


    boehner3

    I would tip you, but the man took away my tips.

    by Tortmaster on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 04:19:35 AM PDT

  •  Thank you for the insight (10+ / 0-)

    into the strawman construction process. I never knew you folks put so much effort into it.

    "Let’s just move on, treat everybody with firmness, fairness, dignity, compassion and respect. Let’s be Marines." - Sgt. Maj Michael Barrett on DADT repeal

    by kyril on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 04:27:08 AM PDT

  •  Enjoyed this immensely. n/t (6+ / 0-)

    At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

    by serendipityisabitch on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 04:31:37 AM PDT

  •  Thanks for the good laugh to start the day! (9+ / 0-)
    But what is the government actually "seizing"? If a data search includes an anonymous telephone number, which the government, by law, cannot further distinguish or analyze because it is not "terrorism information,
    Yeah, "by law" - funny, funny, funny stuff! (note that I usually only use two "funny's" for this type of statement).
    •  We are a society of laws. (6+ / 0-)

      Cynicalists and anarchists don't recognize that. Libertarians hate them. Thank the FSM for our laws! In that way, we are civilized, and we can get away from the selfish, the greed-centric and develop more of the "us" mentality. Yep, thank the FSM for our laws and our government because without them, I'd probably be in the street fighting off a pack of zombie anarcho-Libertarians! ; )

      I would tip you, but the man took away my tips.

      by Tortmaster on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 05:10:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The thing is laws apply to some in our society (7+ / 0-)

        but much less so to others.

        If you haven't noticed that yet, perhaps you are young enough to still "live and learn"  - just keep your eyes open, it won't be difficult.

        •  Of course I've noticed that. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Jeff Simpson, Deep Texan, JoanMar

          It happens all the time. I hate it too. My best possible solution is to elect more Blue Legislators and Blue Governors (and Blue City Councilpersons) and vote out more Red Governors and Red Legislators. Then, I'm betting shit gets real for the banksters, the polluters, the Tea Party grifters and the like.

          Nobody can see a future that never happened, but it is my belief that we'd've dealt with a few more of those inequities if President Obama and a Blue Congress didn't have to face two wars and a Great Recession right out of the gate in 2009. We'll never know, but that's my impression.

          I would tip you, but the man took away my tips.

          by Tortmaster on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 05:37:10 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Seriously? (7+ / 0-)

            Who is Gen. Clapper.  What is his job?  At whose pleasure does he serve?  And why isn't he being held in contempt of congress right this very second?

            Who is James Brennan?  What information has he leaked?  What was his punishment for having leaked classified information?  Why isn't he in the same cell that Scooter Libby once occupied?

            Who is Bradley Manning?  Thomas Drake?  John Kirakou?  Ed Snowden?  John Yoo?  Jay Bybee?  Dick Cheney?  David Addington?

            What are all the Blue Legislators, Blue Justice Dept. Lawyers, Blue Executive Branch Officials doing to ensure that we are a country which respects Rule of Law with respect to those named above?

          •  You forgot the (0+ / 0-)

            army of self-important keyboard-warriors who think that the revolution will be blogged and not slogged.

            but it is my belief that we'd've dealt with a few more of those inequities if President Obama and a Blue Congress didn't have to face two wars and a Great Recession right out of the gate in 2009.

            Maya Angelou: "Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can't be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest."

            by JoanMar on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 08:44:43 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Thanks, JoanMar, but ... (0+ / 0-)

              ... trying to have a rational discussion with people who want to protest airport security as if it was the end of the world and then anonymous telephone numbers as if they were the end of the world is fruitless. If you think about it, they'd protest you trying to stop terror acts, and when terror acts occurred, they'd protest any security measures. I think they'd just as soon see a bunch of dead bodies.

              Take care!  

              I would tip you, but the man took away my tips.

              by Tortmaster on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 04:15:39 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  You really should (0+ / 0-)

        read up a bit on real anarchist theory before characterizing the ideas falsely.

        Anarchists are not a disorganized band of wild thugs, but rather advocate an egalitarian social structure that is organized horizontally, rather than vertically and hierarchically. Anarchism is a non-statist, non-authoritarian form of socialism.

        The basic component is the participatory community, which come together to form federations, and delegates are sent to the federations who are mandated and recallable, and have no autocratic authority of their own, but serve the communities which delegate them.

        It takes a bit of reading to get a good sense of how this works, but it is a viable, intelligent system of self management that is truly based on freedom and democracy.

        Here's something I wrote in another post:

        Anarcho-capitalism is an oxymoron, since anarchism has traditionally meant non-authoritarian socialism, and is definitely anti-capitalist. An-archo means without ruler or without authority.

        Libertarianism, as well, in Europe has always meant libertarian socialism (anarchism).

        In the US, the right wing has tried to adopt these terms, and some are so ignorant they think the right wing invented the usage, but the terms anarchism and libertarian date back to the mid 1800s in Europe, and are still used around the world today to indicate anti-capitalist, anti-authoritarian forms of socialism.

        Libertarian is the opposite of authoritarian.

        And anarchists are not against organization in the slightest degree, rather, they prefer an egalitarian,  horizontal form of social organization, rather than vertical, hierarchical forms that are top down in governance, with elites calling the shots. Worker owned co-ops which are democratically organized using consensus or other forms of direct democracy is an example of a horizontal form of community self-management.

        The reason right wing usage of the terms is self-contradictory is because capitalism is by nature vertical and hierarchical in social structure, and is rife with authority and rulership over workers by the owner class who control the means of production. So, this isn't truly anarchic or liberating in any sense, except for those few who mange to become the owner class.

        Just a brief history about the terms for anyone interested.

        "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

        by ZhenRen on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 03:59:23 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  There's an old country song... (7+ / 0-)

      Nobody knows what goes on behind closed doors.

      The law doesn't matter behind those doors.  

    •  They're Seizing Nothing, They're Copying (4+ / 0-)

      Which is one of countless points going back to 1789, when it failed to step up to address the nature its own times, where our system falls completely off the rails.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 06:04:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Speaking of 1789, as long as they don't (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kyril, alain2112

        put a quarter of a troop in my house, which by reading the Bill of Rights seems to have been an issue back then, I'm good!

        •  Misreading (3+ / 0-)

          You misread this:

          No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house...
          What the founders meant was that no soldiers could be sliced into four roughly equal parts in your house. Which makes sense: that has to be really messy.

          Join the fight for student power on campus: ForStudentPower.org

          by Liberaltarian on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 09:45:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Oh, so if the soldier had already been quartered (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kyril

            it was kosher for him or her (or at least 1/4 of him or her) to be stored in my basement?

            Since presumably he or she (or at least 1/4 of he or she) would have already been nicely and sanitarily wrapped in saran wrap, aluminum foil (or even tinfoil) as the case may be and not have been objectionably messy?

            OK, that all makes good sense.  But points out another flaw in my Kansas education - they never taught me * any * of that.  

      •  I like this distinction, (0+ / 0-)

        though I'm not sure it will make any difference. It offers the possible (though far-fetched) argument of copyright infringement against any data seizure of more than, say, two paragraphs of an email, or the use of such material in a prosecution.

        Oy.

        At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

        by serendipityisabitch on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 05:26:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The beatings (7+ / 0-)

    Will stop when morale improves!  Nice campaign strategy.  But thanks for not speaking for liberals or progressives.  I appreciate that.  

    Bad things aren't bad! And anyway, there's mitigation!

    by Nada Lemming on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 05:19:04 AM PDT

  •  As is often the case when people here (13+ / 0-)

    start talking about details of libertarianism, most people here don't understand it.  I had trouble understanding the thrust of the diary until I just finally had to come to the conclusion that, yeah, despite the throwing around of terms like anarcho-libertarianism, the author doesn't understand it as anything more than some fragmented hippy philosophy he disagrees with.

    I don't think it's worth trying to educate people about the matter because then they think that I'm actually endorsing and promoting libertarianism if I talk about it in cool rational language.

    I also think that you're confusing many of the arguments from the previous diary with those that A LIBERTARIAN (of some stripe) might make.  When, in fact, the arguments in blockquote in the diary are probably ones that most liberals on DailyKos might make or agree with.  Labeling them with libertarian vs. anarcho-libertarian doesn't do anything to make them less true or potently divisive to us.

    So your arguments, for instance, that the growing police state in this country isn't so bad because we're all here to watch out for it and keep it under control -- that's an argument you can make, certainly, but I won't buy it, and many of the rest of us won't.  And being logical for a moment, how can you actually monitor and control the institutional growth of something which is kept hidden in so much secrecy?  

    Secrecy IS important for certain vital government functions, like gathering intelligence about foreign threats, but it's also as dangerous as a tumor.  It needs frequent biopsies.  

    Failure to perform those frequent biopsies because of the fetishization of secrecy will mean that institutions take on their own life like cancers, creating their own institutional cultures and spin machines and defense mechanisms against state interference.  We've seen this too many times before, and the results are bad.

    Furthermore, an attitude of benign faith in and neglect of secret government security apparatuses is bound to make many people (perhaps even young people trying to figure out where they are on the political spectrum -- the point of the diary being challenged here) wonder how much of the government they CAN trust, and if rather than just one secret tumor there are many tumors.  This damages hope for liberal programs, because the Tea-Partyish suspicion of malign intent becomes less paranoid and more grounded.  

    Lastly, your faith in this one solution to all things: more blue state governors, more blue congressmen, etc., etc., etc...  Exhibits a great deal of faith in what some of us think is a flawed understanding of what the problem is and a flawed faith in the good intent of the people who run our government in our name under the name of Democrats.  I call myself a Democrat still, but some of those people that fall under the same blanket umbrella are no better and some are worse than their red state equivalents.

    Chris Hayes did an interesting list of the positions that many on the right and left have taken recently on the NSA disclosures, of those who are disturbed by the NSA disclosure and want it all out in the open and those who want to protect it.  Most interesting of all, is that in Chris Hayes list, THERE WAS NO PARTISAN SPLIT.  The support for the NSA domestic spying programs is great with certain Democrats and Republicans (like Obama and McCain) and it is opposed strenuously by certain Democrats and Republicans (like Wyden and Rand Paul)...  So there's no Red versus Blue solution to this.  This is a bipartisan agreement on what the role of government should be and a bipartisan disagreement as well.  To think that simply voting for more Democrats would have any beneficial effect on this matter seems ludicrous.

    •  Call out diary which... (6+ / 0-)

      ...I assume, is a rebuttal of this diary:

      http://www.dailykos.com/...

      But yes, this diarist has no understanding of Libertarianism, but simply wanted to let everyone know how the other diarist was wrong and what a good this administration has done (in his opinion as a liberal and a progressive and a Democrat).

      The other diary, if you haven't read it, is by FAR the better read.

    •  Why do you apparently want to ... (4+ / 0-)

      ... aggrandize the libertarianism philosophy on this site by linking it to the word "hippy"? I can't think of a word less connected to libertarianism. Do you think that using one term next to another will make libertariansim seem cooler to some people lurking and reading? I ask about your motives because the juxtaposition of those two words is shocking to me. The hippy culture is all about "we" and "us," collectivism and sharing. Libertarianism is about as cold and dead and selfish a philosophy as one could possibly have.

      On another note, I take exception to your "fetishization of secrecy" argument. There is no such thing in the diary, and it exists only as hyperbole in your imagination. I mentioned two areas in which the government must keep some secrets: Wars and terrorism. Do you disagree? Moreover, I'm all for the whistleblower who takes a file showing exactly why the government is being negligent or violating the Constitution immediately to the nearest FBI office. On the other hand, I'm appalled that anyone would think that what Bradley Manning did--akin to shooting off a shotgun of information in the public square not looking at who his gun was pointed at ... 700,000 times--is in any way the right way to do anything. People with a conscience will always be around to blow the whistle, and like I said, there are other branches of the government involved as well, including congressional oversight committees and courts all the way up to the Supreme Court.

      Finally, Dumbo, about this bit:

       

      I call myself a Democrat still, but some of those people that fall under the same blanket umbrella are no better and some are worse than their red state equivalents.
      I'm sorry but that's simply ridiculous. If by "some," you mean one or two versus the 279 Tea Party Republicans in lockstep in Congress right now, then you may have something there. However, the basic math of 2 or 3 versus 279 should tell you that your argument is misleading. (And that doesn't even go into the respective "damage" caused by the different parties' legislators.) If I need to explain further, please let me know. Thanks!

      I would tip you, but the man took away my tips.

      by Tortmaster on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 06:06:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hippies and libertarians... (9+ / 0-)

        I was deeply, deeply involved in libertarianism back in the late seventies and early eighties.  Everytime I mention that, it seems to alarm some people who can't understand that people might be able to change their political views from what they were 30 years ago.  However, I think that it gives me some insight into what the libertarian movement was like, at least when I was involved, and the different flavors, as they existed, and QUITE a bit more about the underlying historical lineage of it.  

        Back when I was involved, though, I can tell you that the libertarians I met weren't stock brokers.  They were stoners, life-style doms and subs, out gay men (at a time when that was more controversial), and SFcon people that spoke Klingon.  They weren't respectable society.  That's probably changed.  The young ones, like me, were generally more anarchic and less philosophical in their points of view.  The older ones were delightfully eccentric and conspiracy theory prone.  

        It's a philosophy that has a strong appeal to young people pissed off at having been told by their family how to live their lives.  It's easy to make a generalizing leap from "my overbearing dad's a tyrant telling me how to live" to "the government is tyrannical and telling me how to live."

        So, no, not exactly hippies, I suppose, although hippies had an equally disparate melange of different anti-establishmentarian people.

        Second, the way Bradley Manning has been treated is fucking atrocious.  So is the way we have treated many other prisoners, including the ones that were tortured in black site prisons by CIA contractors under Bush.  Obama says he stopped the waterboarding, but you and I don't really know what has replaced it.  Rather than trying those participants as war criminals and clearing out the corruption, he gave them all a pass and kept them on board, giving some of them, like Brennan, promotions.

        As for this statement that I made: "I call myself a Democrat still, but some of those people that fall under the same blanket umbrella are no better and some are worse than their red state equivalents."  I should amend that to say "ON SPECIFIC VERY IMPORTANT ISSUES."  And then deal with those one at a time, because it's too difficult to make so broad an argument.

        However, there are some Democrats that really are hardly better on issues that count.  I'll be glad to see Max Baucus gone.  I'd be quite glad to see Diane Feinstein gone, as well, although she wasn't as bad as Baucus or Lieberman.  I voted against her in two elections over the past eight years, and she rarely fails to make me feel that I made the right call.

        So just saying "More red senators," is a weak answer to fixing problems like lack of NSA oversight.  If the people we elect find their own identity as part of the same establishment that used to torture (and might still) and that still spies on Americans, rather than the people who vote for them, then I say to hell with them.  

        We need better people, not just Democrats.  There are too many compromised Democrats in high positions of power in the Democratic Party leadership for me to expect any help from that end until some awful shake-up first happens.  

        •  spot on. (4+ / 0-)
          Secrecy IS important for certain vital government functions, like gathering intelligence about foreign threats, but it's also as dangerous as a tumor.  It needs frequent biopsies.
            A number one answer.
          We need better people
              Also a great statement. I don't care if we get more democrats, or more republicans. I want better democrats, and better republicans. How much better would things be, if we had better of both. People whose first care isn't their party, their base, their contributors, but rather society as a whole.

          "To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." T. Roosevelt

          by Lowgun on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 06:33:42 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  If a Kossack (5+ / 0-)

    throws a pie in the forest, and nobody is there to throw one back, does it make a sound?

    Tyrion Lannister: "It's not easy being drunk all the time. Everyone would do it if it were easy."

    by psychodrew on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 06:08:10 AM PDT

  •  Propaganda. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Victor Ward, poligirl, kyril

    He who would trade liberty for security deserves great customer service.

    by Publius2008 on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 06:13:51 AM PDT

  •  here's the short and sweet response on the NSA (8+ / 0-)

    to give to anyone anywhere who declares "the NSA has legal oversights, so it can't do anything illegal like spy on citizens or read content, especially under a Democratic President, so there."

    The short, sweet, irrefutable answer to that is crushingly simple:

    They. Already. Have.

    The last time the NSA was given this power, they promptly began spying on US citizens within the US, reading every communication they had the technical ability to, and then sending all the information on to the CIA to use in its equally illegal COINTELPRO program to "neutralize" political activist groups like antiwar, environmentalist, and civil rights. And it either evaded, avoided, or flat-out lied to all its "overseers".

    The whole thing is laid out in sordid detail in Volume 5 of the US Senate Church Committee Report on illegal activities by US intelligence agencies. The whole report is available online. Read it twice.

    I welcome any response explaining why you think now that the NSA won't do that illegal thing it already did before, again.

    There's an old saying we should all keep in mind.  It goes, "Never take a fence down unless you know why it was put up".

  •  Don't know about (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Victor Ward, kyril

         all the other Libertarians, anarcho or otherwise, I like to consider myself a pragmatic libertarian. My objection to the ACA, isn't that I don't think I'll get sick(I know I and almost everybody else will) or that I object to the government being involved. I object to the idea of being forced to buy an overpriced product from a corporation whose goal isn't my health, but their profit.

        I am a Libertarian, I believe the government that govern the best governs the least, but I am also pragmatic about it. There are things, that can only be accomplished by coming together as a group, as a society if you will. Police, military, education, environmental protections and others. If we as a society decide something needs to be provided by society(government), like say healthcare, it should be the job of society through its tool government to provide it.

       I am a libertarian, I think government should have very little say so when it comes to mom and pop's corner store. However when a business becomes a corporation, it gain various advantages and protection that mom and pop don't get, They (the corporations) need to have more control and oversight.

    "To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." T. Roosevelt

    by Lowgun on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 06:21:39 AM PDT

    •  That's not an unreasonable philosophy, (3+ / 0-)

      and your particular version of libertarianism is one I can coexist with.  Unfortunately, the ones like Rand Paul are way out in the economic laissez-faire woowoo and not coming back anytime soon.  So you're part of a tribe of one right now.

      I do think mom and pop stores do need a certain minimum level of regulation, though.  Like minimum wage.  Like not selling products that make people sick or kill them.  Like not violating written contracts the way health insurance companies do (and still do and get away with it.)

      •  Whoa! Now you're starting to ... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        serendipityisabitch

        ... talk about a nanny state. Actually, I'm cool with all of those regulations and thousands more dealing with health insurance, overtime, working conditions, safety, taxes, federally-insured loans, time clock regulations, sexual harassment laws, worker's compensation, specific trade-related regulations and codes, holiday pay, vacation pay, vacations, and on and on. Much like the grid of thousands of laws that ensure that employers don't take advantage of workers we now have on the books, but better. Because you know that many moms and  pops would as soon screw over their employee and keep all of the money for themselves.

        I would tip you, but the man took away my tips.

        by Tortmaster on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 07:43:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Make that a tribe of two, at least. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        serendipityisabitch, Dumbo

        Although I usually describe myself as a "left-libertarian" or "civil libertarian" social democrat, Lowgun and I could share a political party with less friction than your average two random Democrats.

        I object to the idea of being forced to buy an overpriced product from a corporation whose goal isn't my health, but their profit.
        and
        If we as a society decide something needs to be provided by society(government), like say healthcare, it should be the job of society through its tool government to provide it.
        are perfect summations of my feelings on the matter.

        (I'm with you on the regulation of small businesses, though.)

        "Let’s just move on, treat everybody with firmness, fairness, dignity, compassion and respect. Let’s be Marines." - Sgt. Maj Michael Barrett on DADT repeal

        by kyril on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 01:01:35 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  asdf (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    poligirl, semiot, kyril
    The liberties of a people never were, nor ever will be,  secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them.  

    - Patrick Henry

    Government ought to be all outside and no inside. . . . Everybody knows that corruption thrives in secret places, and avoids public places, and we believe it a fair presumption that secrecy means impropriety.

    - Woodrow Wilson

    Secrecy is for losers. . . . It is time to dismantle government secrecy, this most persuasive of Cold War-era regulations. It is time to begin building the supports for the era of openness that is already upon us.

    - Senator Patrick Moynihan, Secrecy: The American Experience, 1998

    We must remain vigilant against agency's like the NSA, not give them free reign:

     

    The NSA used that freedom, according to a Congressional investigator who discovered SHAMROCK, to establish secret facilities in several cities, including New York, San Francisco, Washington DC, and San Antonio. In each city, NSA employees would go to the major telegraph companies and copy telegrams, with the companies’ permission but without warrants.

    As Bamford describes it, agents would “bring [the telegrams] to an office masquerading as a television tape processing company. There they would use a machine to duplicate all the computer tapes containing the telegrams, and, hours later, return the original tapes to the company.”

    This program, conducted illegally yet with full cooperation with the US government and the communication giants of the day, went on for 30 years. It didn’t end until 1975, when the secret finally came out thanks to the Church Committee.

    •  Forgot the link. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      poligirl, kyril

      No shock, no surprise for those of us who understand that there will always be agencies like the NSA that want to operate above the law.  Secrecy is a a powerful drug for these agencies.

      As citizens, it is our duty to ensure that they are not allowed to operate outside of the law.

      http://www.vice.com/...

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