Who Hijacked Our Country

Friday, July 22, 2005

Patriot Act — More Bigger Better

Those Limited Government Republicans have struck again. The House has voted 257 to 171 to approve the new, extended Bigger and Better Than Ever Patriot Act. If you like having your phone tapped, your home and workplace searched without your knowledge and your library records monitored, then it’s time to start whoopin’ and hollerin’. The fun is just beginning.

If your response to the above paragraph is “what are you hiding?” or “they can tap my phone and search my records; I don’t have anything to hide”: You’re in the wrong country. Please do yourself and everyone else a favor and buy a one-way ticket to the police state of your choice.

News items during the past 3½ years have shown repeatedly that vigilance, competence and coordination between agencies are the way to fight terrorism — not stirring up fear and hatred and taking a shit on the Constitution.

Several of the 9/11 hijackers had invalid passports; they only got into the country because of incompetent Customs agents. Several days after the 9/11 attacks, one of the passenger screening stations at Boston’s airport was completely unmanned — All of the security personnel were taking their coffee breaks at the same time. Duuhhh!!! Now, how is increased wiretapping and surveillance going to counter this kind of incompetence and stupidity?

According to the Justice Department, the FBI missed at least five chances to uncover vital intelligence that might have prevented the 9/11 attacks. Not only did the FBI fail to get this intelligence information; it also didn’t effectively use the information it had. And the communication and cooperation between the CIA and FBI — who were supposed to be working together on some of these cases? None. Zilch. Zip point shit.

In July of 2001, the acting head of the FBI approached Attorney General John Ashcroft about terrorist threats. He had some intelligence about a possible al Qaeda attack, which he needed to share with the Justice Department. According to the FBI director: “It wasn’t something he wanted to hear more about. Ashcroft had other things on his mind.”

And as we all know, the White House received several intelligence memos during the summer of 2001, warning of al Qaeda terrorists and possible airline hijackings.

Again, the underlying problem is the incredible complacency, incompetence and the right-hand-doesn’t-know-what-the-left-hand-is-doing syndrome affecting our government “leaders.” That's the problem — not the fact that American citizens have too many civil liberties.


Blogger Jeanette said...

Exellent Post! Thanks for visiting and leaving your comment at wordslightfires.

July 23, 2005 at 1:04 AM  
Blogger Nariel said...

Ahh yes.. land of the free and home of the brave.. *sigh*

You know.. have you ever just tried to write something on this mess we call goverment and the larger mess of world current affairs and just.. well.. SAT THERE?

You know the type of day.. you sit.. you've got something to say.. you know it needs to be said..
then you just sit there..
Because inside of you what you really know is this:

At some point.. they quit listening
At some point.. people gave up
At some point.. what you say,read, think or do may get you in alot of trouble.


I love this country.. I love its people.. and I'm truly at a loss for how we arrived here and how to get back to where we once were. Wishing my innocent trust had not been crashed on the rocks of reality as I grew older.

We need to get this Patriot Act under control.

Oh and yeah.. one other thing they are not telling us about too much is: Now they want to change our time for us too.
If they have their way with the current bill addressing it.. we will start Daylight Savings Time three weeks earlier. Yes, your children will be headed to the bus stop in the dead of night, or so it will feel and look like.

Tell them no, folks.
Keep telling them no.
They may never listen, but at least we will have used our voices for SOMETHING. Someday, history will tell our stories.

July 23, 2005 at 6:25 AM  
Blogger Kevin said...

PAPERZ-----ver are yooooor PAPERZ?!

**slowly looking for that exit door again**

July 23, 2005 at 8:39 AM  
Anonymous Tom Harper said...

Jeanette: Thanks. Wordslightfires is a great site.

Nariel: Yeah, sometimes it’s hard to describe what’s happening (or to even believe it, for that matter). And I don’t know what’s up with daylight saving time. I really don’t care which time we’re in; I just wish they’d pick something and run with it. I’ve never met anyone who didn’t think it wasn’t a total pain in the ass to set everything back or ahead, and then be totally out of kilter for a day or 2. About ten years ago they moved daylight saving time from the last weekend in April to the first weekend. So I was commuting in the dark again for those 3 weeks, just like it was January again. I guess it just gives them a thrill to be able to shift time on us.

Kevin: Ya, zat day vill be here soon.

July 23, 2005 at 8:52 AM  
Blogger Jake Porter said...

If we have nothing to hide we should just give up our rights and allow police to set up check points, have a national id card, allow the military with u.n. troops to search our towns and FEMA to throw us all in concentration camps after the president suspends the constitution. We must shut down blogs you never know what the terrorists and child molesters may be planning and after that we must force all Americans to have a mandatory wire tap on their phone and the government will censor your e-mails along with a five cent tax on every one sent. That will stop all freedom hating terrorists.

I think this is where were headed after listening to the people on fox news talk yesterday about how we need to secure the country.

July 23, 2005 at 9:19 AM  
Anonymous Tom Harper said...

Jake: Yes, I have unquestioning loyalty to Great Leader and I will prove it by asking to have my phone tapped and a government recording of every purchase I’ve ever made; every website I’ve ever visited. I also want to have a telescreen in every room so that Our Benevolent Powers can see for themselves that I’m doing nothing illegal or immoral.

Unfortunately, the above might not be satire for too much longer.

July 23, 2005 at 9:51 AM  
Blogger PoliShifter said...

This is just scarey.

The thing that frightens me even more is that once PA is permaent, how will if affect future generations?

It basically puts a mechanism in place to creat a Gestapo like force.

I am not saying the Bush Administration if/when PA2 passes the Senate is going to rush out and tap everones phones, crawl through their mail and banking records.

But what will future administrations do? IMO we could very well be living in a Police State 20 years from now if we don't do something about this.

July 23, 2005 at 2:44 PM  
Blogger Unadulterated Underdog said...

The GOP'ers should rename the Patriot Act the "GOP Power Forever Act", shouldn't they? They want to make it look like terrorism will be a major threat forever (which it will not) and thus they hope to continue gaining public support. The truth is that things will get better and then the act will not be necessary. We may never know things are better as long as they keep focusing on the negative. Whatever happened to that optimism of the Reagan and Bush Sr days? It's all gone now, replaced by this rhetoric of the semi-permanent war on terror. Republicans need to shake the Kool-Aid off and come back to Earth. Nothing, however awful, lasts forever. Stop harping and get back to working on defeating the REAL enemies instead of taking away the rights of your OWN people.

July 23, 2005 at 4:15 PM  
Anonymous Tom Harper said...

PoliShifter: That’s exactly right. Laws like the Patriot Act are laying the groundwork for future presidents and administrations to grab more power. Even if Bush actually is motivated by a concern for our safety and has no ulterior motives, a later president might be able to use these laws for more devious purposes.

10-15 years from now when massive surveillance is an accepted part of our national psyche, the government could push the envelope again and enact even tighter controls over the population. This whole approach is just a bad idea.

OK Democrat: Yeah, it does seem like a power grab. And Republicans, of all people, trying to expand government power — it goes against all their famous slogans. Reagan once said something like “the closest thing to immortality here on Earth is the life of a government agency.” His own party should remember this. Most (if not all) of the Patriot Act was supposed to be temporary. Now they’ve extended it by ten years. In ten years what will President Wolfowitz (bad joke) do, let it expire? Riiiight.

July 23, 2005 at 7:12 PM  
Blogger Jake Porter said...


You are correct. I think we need a constitutional amendment allowing the FBI to place cameras in our bedrooms I mean we can't have homosexuals doing whatever they fell like. And once we bring back the death penalty for non violent drug users aka cancer patients we will end a major problem. And remember if you vote for anyone but the Republicans the terrorists will when. I can see it now people burning flags, cancer patients taking drugs, and gays living together. If I actualy believed this I could work for fox.

July 24, 2005 at 8:56 AM  
Anonymous Tom Harper said...

Jake: Yup, one constitutional amendment coming up. Could happen, too. I hope it remains just something to joke about, but in today’s climate, who knows?

July 24, 2005 at 10:13 AM  
Blogger I.M. Dedd said...

you know, I keep seeing the same guy sitting across from me on the subway...every day...looking at me...writing in this little book...

July 24, 2005 at 5:01 PM  
Anonymous Tom Harper said...

I.M. Dedd: Uh oh, that's the guy. They're on to you now.

July 24, 2005 at 6:46 PM  
Blogger Brother Kenya said...

They've secretly been dying to impose something like the Patriot Act on us for a long time. Remember how quickly it was proposed back in 2001? And remember how nobody in Congress could have possibly read the whole damn thing before voting on it?

July 25, 2005 at 11:34 AM  
Anonymous Tom Harper said...

Brother Kenya: There's no way they read the whole bill. But even if they did, nobody wants to be labeled "soft on terrorism." Bush's spin machine would have blackmailed most of them into signing it anyway (and making it permanent like they just did).

July 25, 2005 at 11:42 AM  
Anonymous Becks said...

I'm sure you have seen this quote, but it seems appropriate...

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

Benjamin Franklin 1759, Historical Review of Pennsylvania

July 25, 2005 at 1:36 PM  
Anonymous Tom Harper said...

Becks: Yeah, that quote sure fits.

July 25, 2005 at 4:52 PM  

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