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I Once Dreamed of Liberty (Op/Ed)

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posted on May, 16 2006 @ 09:14 PM
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Thank you SO, after everything I've dealt with today, I needed that bit of inspiration.

Mauddibb, give the guy a break. Though it was just typed out and not somebody speaking in person, you could feel that his emotion went into what he was typing (or I did). You can disagree with someone without being so disrespectful, and IMO downright condescending.

Every day, I open my wallet and look at the picture of my little sister, and I think about how much I love her, and how much I hope that what I see and hear is not true. That the world really is all roses and violets, dancing in the wind on a summer day. It's not, and my motivation is to make it better for her. Make it better for all of us.

But putting such harsh negativity to something that I felt was sincerely heartfelt is just another example of how people are slamming others when it comes down to something so much easier. Say you don't agree, ignore the person, or don't say anything. Come on dude, show some respect at least.




posted on May, 16 2006 @ 09:22 PM
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Well, do you think as a nation we should just let the government tamper with our Constitutional rights and not do anything about it?

Should citizens be allowed a "redress of grievances" and the pursuit of "life, liberty and pursuit of happiness"?

And who as citizens should we respect more: a politician that has trampled on those rights and yet proclaims he's a patriot in the eyes of the public or a politician who hasn't trampled on those rights but doesn't claim he's a patriot at all?

And explain what you mean between America and the United States? I'm sure I get what you are saying, but then again, you might have a different interpretation.



[edit on 16-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 09:30 PM
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Interesting thread -- one question comes to mind as I read and ponder.

How long-suffering are the people?

The Declaration of Independence states "all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed."

In other words, the devil you know is better than the devil you don't.

So, one wonders, what will it take to wrest the people from their comfort zone into the sphere of activism? Will it be a single revelation (NSA wiretaps), or a string of usurpations that eventually break the proverbial camel's back?

When do the people finally wake from their slumber and say "ENOUGH!"



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 09:39 PM
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Originally posted by dgtempe
.............
Muaddib, can you look within yourself and tell me you are not just a little bit scared? I mean no disrespect either. It is not weakness if you are scared. Its just being human.


Scared of what? You want to know what i am scared of? i am scared that the majority of my family living in the States are in Florida and I am scared for them because this year is probably going to be worse than last year with the hurricanes hitting the south States.

Yesterday i was talking to my mom and she described that right before i called there have been hail falling in Hialeah Fl the size of golf balls. Something I have never seen before in Florida in about 16 years i have been in and out of that State.

Am I scared of losing any freedoms? i have not lost any freedoms, and i am not scared because i dont see any freedoms being lost.

I actually fear a lot more that some people in the U.S. and around the world, who have not seen what a real dictatorship is, are falling for the same agenda which installed some of the worse dictatorships in the world. Yet these people are trying to reinstall these "agendas which have allowed the worse dictatorships to flourish" these days to fight something which seems to be more in their minds than based in reality.

[edit on 16-5-2006 by Muaddib]



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 09:47 PM
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Again the question remains, when have any of you at all been subject to tyranny and loss of liberty at the hands of the government. Of course spying is wrong, but that does not change the fact it has been going on for as long as the technology has been there. So can I get a witness please?

How many of you have been taken from work or home after expressing dissent to another citizen? Anyone here been arrested for reading religous texts? No? Can you all still go to the club every weekend? Are you still allowed to drive at any time of the day or night you wish? Are you still allowed to own firearms (permitted you are not a a convicted felon like me
)? Has your freedom to protest been taken away? Nope. It is unchanged as the past. Depending on the location and/or size of your gathering/protest you will need a permit, like has been for many a years before Bush came into office.

I just honestly can not find anything that has actually had any relevance to our daily lives. How come nobody speaks of the Patriot Act anymore? Because you realize it had practically no effect on the daily life of the civlian American Citizen.



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 09:54 PM
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Originally posted by Muaddib
I actually fear a lot more that some people in the U.S. and around the world, who have not seen what a real dictatorship is, are falling for the same agenda which installed some of the worse dictatorships in the world.

You mean the "us versus them", let's create a common enemy agenda? Yea, I agree the "war on terror" is just one version of many used to dispose of guaranteed freedoms.

[edit on 16-5-2006 by Jamuhn]



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 09:54 PM
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Well, since you know, tell us what a real dictatorship is like, Muaddib.



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 09:56 PM
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Yet these people are trying to reinstall these "agendas which have allowed the worse dictatorships to flourish" these days to fight something which seems to be more in their minds than based in reality.


Oh rly? First off, since America has a fair share of corruption and abuse in its history, foresight should be easier. Yet, that courts are being sidestepped and that the security of rights is being curtailed does not evoke any foresight for what may come. Should we not show any prudence in prevention? Or should we only concern ourselves when the clamps become tighter? The process is already unfolding....

I posted these examples of an overaching US government in another thread, and I'll make them available here as well.


The government has a long record of abusing personal information that's gathered in the name of national security. From the Red Scare in the 1920s to illegal wiretaps during the Nixon era, Americans have struggled to find the right balance between individual rights and collective security.

"The potential for abuse is awesome," a Senate investigation committee concluded in a 1976 report detailing illegal wiretaps, break-ins and other abuses that government agents committed in the 1960s and '70s.
...
By the Red Scare in the 1920s, when the government made large-scale arrests of radicals and leftists after communists came to power in Russia, the bureau had assembled a rapidly expanding database of more than 150,000 names.

Abuses over the years cross party lines and political ideologies. Franklin Roosevelt wanted a file on Americans who sent him critical telegrams. Lyndon Johnson asked the FBI to get him the phone records of Republican vice presidential candidate Spiro Agnew.

Attorney General Robert Kennedy, remembered today as a champion of the underdog, approved wiretaps on the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

Government has long history of abusing personal information


Jack Anderson turned up plenty of government secrets during his half-century career as an investigative reporter, and his family had hoped to make his papers available to the public after his death in December — but the government wants to see, and possibly confiscate, them first.
...
Mark Feldstein, a journalism professor at George Washington University and Anderson's biographer, said he felt "intimidated" after two FBI agents showed up at his house. They asked if he had seen any classified documents or knew about how they could be accessed, and they wanted the names of all of his graduate students who had seen the papers.
...
"If the FBI can persuade a court that there is probable cause that there are stolen records in that collection, then they should go to court," said Steven Aftergood, who directs the Project on Government Secrecy for the Federation of American Scientists.

Late Journalist's Family Resists FBI Request for His Documents


The FBI came calling in Windsor, Conn., this summer with a document marked for delivery by hand. On Matianuk Avenue, across from the tennis courts, two special agents found their man. They gave George Christian the letter, which warned him to tell no one, ever, what it said.

Under the shield and stars of the FBI crest, the letter directed Christian to surrender "all subscriber information, billing information and access logs of any person" who used a specific computer at a library branch some distance away. Christian, who manages digital records for three dozen Connecticut libraries, said in an affidavit that he configures his system for privacy. But the vendors of the software he operates said their databases can reveal the Web sites that visitors browse, the e-mail accounts they open and the books they borrow.
...
Christian refused to hand over those records, and his employer, Library Connection Inc., filed suit for the right to protest the FBI demand in public.

The FBI's Secret Scrutiny



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 10:11 PM
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Originally posted by ceci2006
Well, do you think as a nation we should just let the government tamper with our Constitutional rights and not do anything about it?


What Constitutional right has been tampered? The Constitution does not say "let's allow terrorists use our Constitution to destroy the United States, which is what Islamic extremists and other groups are trying to do.


Originally posted by ceci2006
Should citizens be allowed a "redress of grievances" and the pursuit of "life, liberty and property"?


First, the Declaration of independence states "Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness", which is based on the writing of John Locke who said "no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty, or possessions". The phrase "life, liberty, and the pursuit of property" was actually a variation of John Locke's concept, which Adam Smith stated. Anyways, Thomas Jefferson wrote "Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness". BTW, did you know that Jefferson viewed the "right to property" tied to feudalism?

Anyways, back to the topic.

The definition on the pursuit of "life, liberty and property" means different things for different people. For some people, criminals/murderers, the pursuit of happines is in stalking their victims and making them suffer before their death.... So you see, it is more complicated than trying to proclaim, "everyone is looking for the same thing when people want life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness".


Originally posted by ceci2006
And who as citizens should we respect more: a politician that has trampled on those rights and yet proclaims he's a patriot in the eyes of the public or a politicians who hasn't trampled on those rights but doesn't claim he's a patriot at all?


First of all, your are twisting the question so it fits with your opinion. Just like there are people who keep saying the war in Iraq is illegal, when it is not.

Anyways, tell me, what do you do when you know that it is true there are people, such as Islamic extremists, who want to destroy the U.S., and these people have no morals in using our freedoms against us?

What do you do when you know there are groups of those people in the United States and you don't know exactly who they are?

I am pretty sure the government, and all intelligence agencies in the U.S. are not interested in the gossip you talk to with your best friend. They have been looking for those people who want to use our very freedoms against us, to destroy the U.S.



Originally posted by ceci2006
And explain what you mean between America and the United States? I'm sure I get what you are saying, but then again, you might have a different interpretation.


America nowadays is composed of many nations, North, South and Central America. The Caribean Islands such as Cuba and Santo Domingo were also part of America, and in fact, Santo Domingo is the oldest European city in the world. Nowadays the islands which were part of America are now called "caribean islands", but in reality they all are part of the new world called America.

[edit on 16-5-2006 by Muaddib]



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 10:31 PM
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Originally posted by MuaddibWhat Constitutional right has been tampered? The Constitution does not say "let's allow terrorists use our Constitution to destroy the United States, which is what Islamic extremists and other groups are trying to do.

Specifically? The fourth amendment with the right to privacy and probable cause needed for search and seizure. As well, the fifth amendment and the right to due process.


The definition on the pursuit of "life, liberty and property" means different things for different people.

Actually, it's not that complicated. Because if a murderer kills someone they are denying the other the pursuit of life.


Just like there are people who keep saying the war in Iraq is illegal, when it is not.

The Iraq war is legal according to the spirit of the law or letter of the law?


Anyways, tell me, what do you do when you know that it is true there are people, such as Islamic extremists, who want to destroy the U.S., and these people have no morals in using our freedoms against us?

Therefore we let the government take them away? That's preposterous logic.


I am pretty sure the government, and all intelligence agencies in the U.S. are not interested in the gossip you talk to with your best friend. They have been looking for those people who want to use our very freedoms against us, to destroy the U.S.

Oh rly? Yet, the government had advance warning of Osama bin Laden specifically using hijacked airplanes in the US and this wasn't enough to go on? You keep talking about terrorist this, terrorist that as an excuse to take away the security of rights and in many cases, the rights themselves of Americans. What good is security if the rights of this nation is no longer secure? Terrorism is being used as a pretext to strip away the very same rights that this administration claims the terrorists are trying to take away. The irony is amazing.


America nowadays is composed of many nations, North, South and Central America.

Is it? Isn't there a reason that the U.S. is referred to as the United States of America? The United States is the corporal entity of the government, America refers to the land and entity of the original republic.



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 10:31 PM
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Originally posted by ceci2006
Well, since you know, tell us what a real dictatorship is like, Muaddib.
Please, he knows all about it. He lived in one.

Muaddib, remember the "committees" set up all over Cuba in order to keep a watch on people and report people who do not agree with the government???

Here you go:www.abovetopsecret.com...' How do you like it? Orwellian or what? I'd say yes.
What do you mean what liberties??? Does this post ^ sit well with you? Maybe you think we should have centers where we can call and rat out our neighbors?
Good idea, huh? Of course, it must be good. Its something that the Bush administration is breeding and giving life to. And dont tell me he has nothing to do with this. He is setting the tone for all this BS.



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 10:35 PM
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When the founding fathers mandated the right to bear arms their intent was clear, a well armed civilian militia to tear down a corrupt government. I paraphrase but that's the idea they had in mind...

Why would the FF's spell it out so clearly? Why would IKE spell out the REALITY of a growing military/industrial complex threatening our liberty through fear/war mongering so clearly in his departing speech?

Why is it painfully obvious the "two" parties act in unison with nothing but semantics separating them?

The time is right to ask your questions, the mere fact the answers are not 100% affirmative is NOT THE POINT, no matter how many times Rush, Shawn and the rest of the talk radio gang tell you it is.

The POINT is why are we even ASKING THE QUESTION. The day the answers become 100% affirmative WE ARE LOST aren't we? When your questions are answered by thousands or millions of Americans with "yes I was arrested, yes my phone was tapped and my bank account seized" we are BEAT.

Many are asking the question because the government is ENCROACHING on our INALIENABLE RIGHTS with these new laws they are selling us based on FEAR of property loss or loss of life. Life with out liberty is not worth living. To wait until they have taken our liberties is akin to waiting for the infection to kill you before declaring it fatal and treating it.

Can you not see this?

To sit idly by while the constitution is being ignored over some threat of a few ragged gorilla warriors is INSANITY and UN AMERICAN. We certainly did NOT need to pass permanent laws that usurped the constitution during a genuine world war, we made mistakes then but NOTHING like what i see happening now.

We should be writing our law makers, we should be voicing our outage at their arrogance, we should be taking personal responsibility for the RULE OF LAW and NEVER cave into the rule of fear. Fear MANUFACTURED in part or in whole as has been admitted by way of the fake intelligence that convinced the American People (myself included) to invade Iraq. EXACTLY as Ike predicted it would occur. Our lawmakers must know we will FIRE THEM if they fail us now.

The military/industrial complex or "Old Money" is taking our country inch by inch, just the way Stalin had dreamed of doing but failed to do. You who sit in the comfort of not knowing anyone who has lost their freedoms yet must rather ask WHY DO SO MANY FEAR WE MAY?

Springer...

[edit on 5-16-2006 by Springer]



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 10:50 PM
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Superlatively well written SO--bravo! The thoughts and memories your OP-ED brought forth in my mind took me back to when I was still a boy standing spellbound on the side of the road as a parade marking VE day passed by. Old men, children and adults alike stood proud and straight as the P51 Mustangs roared overhead and Old Glory passed in front of us. Every hat was off and most everyone had their hand over their heart and glistening tears in their eyes. I was so impressed, so awestruck all I could do was cry. Yes indeed, how wonderful it would be to see people like that again and to feel such pride.

Thank you for bringing that memory back to life for me. One incredible thing I forgot to add was the spontaneous singing of "God Bless America" by what must have been just about everyone in town. When the Army band started playing that song and everyone just started singing along with them--not half-heartedly, but loudly and proudly--I thought I was going to literally burst with pride.

[edit on 16-5-2006 by Astronomer70]



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 10:51 PM
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Originally quoted by Muaddib
What Constitutional right has been tampered? The Constitution does not say "let's allow terrorists use our Constitution to destroy the United States, which is what Islamic extremists and other groups are trying to do.


I agree with you that something needs to be done about national security. However, I think that this government is using 9/11 and "national security" as a convenient excuse for their other projects. Did you ever ask yourself why and when the NSA wiretapping and datamining program was started? Probably not. Because it hasn't crossed your mind that the government--as much as we are to respect them as citizens--is not entirely altruistic.

Case in point. A VA nurse, writing a simple letter about her feelings regarding Hurricane Katrina. Before she knew it, her computer was being seized by the feds:


A Nurse's Courage

Laura Berg, a Veterans Affairs nurse in Albuquerque, New Mexico, was investigated for sedition after she wrote a letter to a local newspaper criticizing the Bush administration's handling of Hurricane Katrina and the Iraq war. In her first broadcast interview, Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman spoke with Laura Berg, as well as Larry Kronen, an attorney with the New Mexico chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union.

Here in Albuquerque, a local Veterans Affairs nurse has felt the crack down on civil liberties firsthand. In September, shortly after Hurricane Katrina struck, Laura Berg wrote a letter to the Alibi, a local newspaper, criticizing the Bush administration's handling of Hurricane Katrina and the Iraq war. Berg wrote, "as a VA nurse working with returning... vets, I know the public has no sense of the additional devastating human and financial costs of post-traumatic stress disorder." She urged readers to, "act forcefully to remove a government administration playing games of smoke and mirrors and vicious deceit."

The response to Berg's letter was harsh. Her office computer was seized. And the government announced it was investigating her for sedition -- that's right, sedition. V.A. human resources chief Mel Hooker wrote in a letter to Berg, "The Agency is bound by law to investigate and pursue any act which potentially represents sedition."

To date the VA has yet to issue a public apology to Berg.


Would you argue that this nurse's rights have been tampered with?



The definition on the pursuit of "life, liberty and property" means different things for different people. For some people, criminals/murderers, the pursuit of happines is in stalking their victims and making them suffer before their death.... So you see, it is more complicated than trying to proclaim, "everyone is looking for the same thing when people want life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness".


Fair enough. It is complicated. But in that pursuit of "life, liberty and happiness", one has to recognize that sometimes the government and its federal laws inhibit that freedom--not entirely for the pursuit of criminality. A government is literally trusted with the governance of the nation. And it depends on who is running the entire show. And right now, the people at the top could care less about whose lives they hurt--as long as they earn money from the enterprise. After all, they themselves do not respect the Constitution. The Patriot Act I and II is proof of that.



First of all, your are twisting the question so it fits with your opinion. Just like there are people who keep saying the war in Iraq is illegal, when it is not.


I am? How do you know? Have you asked me? Or are you assuming?



What do you do when you know there are groups of those people in the United States and you don't know exactly who they are?


My, aren't we feeling a bit paranoid. All I can say is that the CIA and the FBI has human intelligence for that. Have they run out of money to pay their agents? After all, we are in a deficit. But then again, maybe it's a more cost-efficient way to wiretap and get the records of people at random without anybody thinking twice. And to this, I say, to do that without "probable cause" or without having a hearing in a court of law is illegal. And unjust.

I wonder how you'd feel if you were the one "detained" in Gitmo without legal representation. Would you still feel as patriotic as you are now?



I am pretty sure the government, and all intelligence agencies in the U.S. are not interested in the gossip you talk to with your best friend. They have been looking for those people who want to use our very freedoms against us, to destroy the U.S.


Read Amy Goodman's interview with the VA nurse and ask that question again.













[edit on 16-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 11:04 PM
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Springer the reason the question is being asked is because so many people are declaring something that just is not true. Look the United States of America has probably the most armed civilian population in the world. If they felt that their lives and liberties were being lost and attacked, I do not see any reason they would not be attacking.

Tell you what, you seem like an honest and reasonable guy, so you probably are not a convicted felon. You have a right to bear arms, and you have the right to go fight a corrupt government. You have to understand using force to bring down corruption has never been a right granted by a government, it is simply action taken by an armed populace. We have the right to bear arms to protect ourselves, and if enough armed people honestly feel their daily lives are being threatened by the government as a result of tyranny and lost liberties, than by all meas they will do what they wish.

As of late people are tasking an alternative to violence, and are handling these issues as they come with education and diplomacy. Fact of the matter is your daily life today in reference to freedom and liberty is probably no different than it was in the Clinton days, or Bush Sr, or Reagan. Your careers and hobbies may have changed, but you still enjoy the same liberties and freedom you did in years passed.

So yea if you wish to change things that you believe have made life in this country so despotic, you and many others have the freedom to purchase firearms. Of course what you do with them will be something you have to decide yourself, and may end up infriging others pursuit of life liberty and happiness.



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 11:08 PM
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Originally posted by DYepes
So yea if you wish to change things that you believe have made life in this country so despotic, you and many others have the freedom to purchase firearms. Of course what you do with them will be something you have to decide yourself, and may end up infriging others pursuit of life liberty and happiness.


You missed my point completely.


Springer...



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 11:18 PM
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She urged readers to, "act forcefully to remove a government administration playing games of smoke and mirrors and vicious deceit."


She openly called for a revolt and acts of violence to overthrow the government. There has never been a government in the world, democratic or not, that simpy let that kind of talk to slide. Especially in a time of war. If you want to overthrown the government, just start doing it like a ghost. Do not go public and demand others to do it for you, which is what many people here wish would happen. You want a revolution but you want someone else to start it. I personally do not want to feel the consequences of such actions.

My family came here from Colombia, a country which is still suffering civil strife for the past four decades. to have bombs go off daily, innocent people dying in mass numbers, the reality of being stopped by armed rebels trying to pass from one city to another and being robbed and killed. These are the things and much worse you will see in a revolution. not to mention the sheer amount of depraved criminals who could care less for politics and will be running amock in the absence of the local law enforcement. The stability and freedom of this nation is why so many people in the world fidn their way here.

There are many things wrong with this country, just there are a great many things wrong with any nation, none of them are perfect, but as far as I can see libery and freedoms lost are not an issue at the moment.

Well what was your point Springer? I thought I addressed most of what you stated in your reply, so what did I miss exactly?

[edit on 5/16/2006 by DYepes]



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 11:34 PM
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DYepes I never once insinuated, intimated or otherwise suggested I think volence in any form is the answer. Read my post and the answer I DO think is correct is very clearly stated.

Springer...



posted on May, 16 2006 @ 11:49 PM
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Originally posted by Springer
The time is right to ask your questions, the mere fact the answers are not 100% affirmative is NOT THE POINT, no matter how many times Rush, Shawn and the rest of the talk radio gang tell you it is.

The POINT is why are we even ASKING THE QUESTION. The day the answers become 100% affirmative WE ARE LOST aren't we? When your questions are answered by thousands or millions of Americans with "yes I was arrested, yes my phone was tapped and my bank account seized" we are BEAT.

Many are asking the question because the government is ENCROACHING on our INALIENABLE RIGHTS with these new laws they are selling us based on FEAR of property loss or loss of life. Life with out liberty is not worth living. To wait until they have taken our liberties is akin to waiting for the infection to kill you before declaring it fatal and treating it.

[edit on 5-16-2006 by Springer]


I believe THIS is Springer, and SO's point.

And I couldn't agree more. Did you even read beyond the first paragraph?



posted on May, 17 2006 @ 12:48 AM
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I know that I have not lost any freedoms. I can still go to work, go to school, and live my life the same way that others have years before me. I want to thank Muaddib for offering an alternative viewpoint, and feel that those who occuse disrespect of this person, are simply wrong.



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