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Senator Robert C. Byrd blasts Homeland Security bill

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posted on Nov, 20 2002 @ 06:32 AM
"Osama bin Laden is still alive and plotting more attacks while we play bureaucratic shuffleboard," Mr. Byrd told the Senate. "With a battle plan like the Bush administration is proposing, instead of crossing the Delaware River to capture the Hessian soldiers on Christmas Day, George Washington would have stayed on his side of the river and built a bureaucracy." Mr. Byrd imagined Nathan Hale declaring, "I have but one life to lose for my bureaucracy," and Commodore Oliver Perry hoisting a flag on his ship with the rallying cry, "Don't give up the bureaucracy!"

I like this guy. This article is well worth the free account to the NY Times online (if you don't already have one, and are reluctant to register).

[Edited on 20-11-2002 by William]

posted on Nov, 20 2002 @ 08:08 AM
I also subscribe to the New York Times online, but I have to disagree with Byrd on this one.

Setting up the Homeland Security Department will niether:

A) Slow the operations of any of the 22 agencies involved, nor
B) Slow our troops.

It will take awhile to set up, but in the long run, we'll be better off with the new and more efficient system.

posted on Nov, 20 2002 @ 03:01 PM
We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
--Introductory paragraph of the Constitution of the United States of America.

As the US Government, which has long been removing our liberties with each successive administration, has been promoting security over liberty, do you actually *condone* the Homeland Security Bill, which is *more* of a sacrifice of our rightful liberties?

"They that can give up essential liberty for a little safety deserve neither liberty nor safety"
- Benjamin Franklin

posted on Nov, 20 2002 @ 03:43 PM
All the H-S bill does is incorporate 22 agencies which already exist into a more efficient body.

The drug company thing just makes sense (we can't buy vaccenes from a company driven into bankruptsy), and the smallpox innoculations will only effect military personnel.

Sounds like common sense to me.

posted on Nov, 21 2002 @ 02:26 PM
I have a question about the bill and the power wants. Does it take away the checks and balances when it comes to war?

posted on Nov, 21 2002 @ 02:26 PM
I sometimes think C-span should called B-span because it seems like he's on all the time and if any can they should watch that guy. I don't always care for his politics but he's an absolute hoot to watch.

posted on Nov, 22 2002 @ 02:59 PM
link a hastening towards a complete fascist state. There is no safety in usurping our constitutional liberties. Regardless of our previous political debates, you Bush supporters need to extract your collective heads from your arses and see what has been done.

No, it won't do ANYTHING in the short term to protect against terrorism - it'll take ages to set up.

No, we won't be safer from terrorist if the companies making millions off of OUR TAXES in gov. contracts for their screening products, technologies and services are NOT held accountable for faulty merchandise.

No, we won't be at danger for not having a vaccine because of a NEGLIGENT company, Eli Lily, has to pay for CRIPPLING OUR CHILDREN. If it's a worst case scenario, the gov. has powers to manufacturer a vaccine, overriding a patent's restriction or just to commandere inventory of the vaccine.

No, we won't be safer by having our rights to be charged with a crime & held up to 30 days, if arrested, taken away.

No, not being able to have legal counsel, won't make us safer.

This new Department of Homeland Security has the power to wiretap any American it wants, without a court order, without cause and without justification to any higher authority. Homeland Security goon squads will have the power to enter any American home, without a search warrant, without probable cause, simply because someone somewhere says hey, this guy might be a threat. No checks and balances, no due process. Nothing.
Do you people even have any idea of the legal cost to fight an unwarranted arrest? Your job can fire you. Your creditors don't care if your incarceration was without merit. No one will pay your court costs and the gov. does not have to pay damages.
This, and that other piece of lovely can-you-name-it-any-MORE-fascist piece of legislation, the USA Patriot Act, allows Attorney General John Ashcroft to sign away the normal rights and protections that Americans used to enjoy little things like probable cause, due process and the now forgotten belief that any accused is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Look closer at the powers granted under these acts and you will find things that would make Hitler proud.
Now Bush said these words, nearly verbatim, in a speech announcing these measures........look who said them first.

"An evil exists that threatens every man, woman and child of this great nation. We must take steps to ensure our domestic security and protect our homeland."

- Adoph Hitler, writing about creation of the Gestapo in Nazi Germany.

posted on Nov, 22 2002 @ 09:21 PM
M-D, seriously, considering what was done during WWII in the name of security, internment camps and what-not, do you really think that what is done during a war-footing cannot be undune when the war is complete? Am I saying that liberty as we know it is not going out the window? No, but I'm not going to say it is just because of anything done because of the war on terror. The laziness and ignorance of the citizenry is 10,000 times more dangerous than the Homeland Security idea.

B-T, be careful, or you run the risk of reading some post of your one day and realize you sounded a bit nutty.

posted on Nov, 23 2002 @ 03:01 AM
the gentleman from W. Virginia has no small entertainment value especially when he is being what he seems to think is "solemn", or is indulging in one of his many efforts at what he imagines is "oratory".
But a 24ct ne'redowell, nontheless -as anyone who recalls his behaviour at the time of Clinton's impending impeachment will no doubt recall

posted on Nov, 23 2002 @ 03:14 AM
As for the Bill itself, I'd tend to see it as less threatening rather than more threatening since, as has been pointed out, much of its content concerns reorganisation rather than innovation.
My concern however is that this may be just another part of what I take to be a concerted and deliberate campaign to convince Americans that they are actually at war. They aren't at war and it's very unlikely that -technically, legally and diplomatically- that they will be: whatever GWB, Don and the boys decide over Iraq, I'd risk a small wager that it will not be a declaration of war.
But the "atmosphere of war" is worrying: fear, uncertainty, growing poverty, economic ahrdships, a sense of political apathy, can do far more to restrict personal freedoms than any amount of legislation.
When the Japanese were rounded up after Pearl Harbor - though dreadful in retrospect - it appeared sensible and justified at the time.
But that really was a war, of course. We may be drifting towards a scenario where such actions again appear sensible and justified- except that there is no war. hence my fears that government, busines and the mainstreaam media are creating an ever-more-convincing illusion of war.
People are missing the fact that this is largely an illusion: War with Japan -intern the Japanese; War with Iraq -intern the Iraqis: that's all pretty clear and arguably justified. And you can't intern the Swiss or the Bulgaians or the Zulus -that is the corollary.
But "War against Terrorism" -who are the terrorists? How do you intern them? You would in any case. How do you declare war against anything other than a nation. Anyone of any nationality might be a terrorist: there's no limit to the extent of possible government action.
I stress "possible" - It's not clear, as yet, how this Bill will affect Americans' lives.
But it is clear that it could be another turn of the screw as freedom is eliminated.

posted on Nov, 23 2002 @ 09:32 AM
..we've just had another year of FBI and CIA arguments and buck-passing and the added complication of "official" CIA activities on US soil.
You'll have two agencies -outside the Homeland security juggernaut - and now a third giant. If two can't work together what chance is there of three co-operating?
And this talk of 3-4 years to become operative? That would mean that if it started with Pearl Harbor it would just about be operative in time for the Japanese surrender on the U.S.S. Missouri!

posted on Nov, 23 2002 @ 09:55 AM
Not only was it thought prudent to intern the Japanese, it also did play a part in the security of the U.S. as, as it turns out, there were those who were to conduct operations of sabotage and espionage. Of course, this does not make it any easier to swallow. But that is how necessities of war should be - hard to swallow.

Groups of people of people with commonalities bonding them together have declared war on the U.S. These people are supported, both logistically, financially and with training, by nations who share commonalities with them. These nations that support these groups that have declared war on the U.S. have not officially declared war on the U.S. The U.S., however, is responding to the attacks brought upon us by those who have declared a state of war against us. Our Congress has approved the acts and actions of our Commander in Chief of all Armed Forces necessary to defend this nation against those who have declared war and are acting upon that declaration.

Whatever you want to call this particular rose is fine. It gives the appearance of a nation at war. Not what we had come to call war in the past, but it is quite clear that this is not the same as our fathers' wars. The aggression waged against us can destroy us just the same.

posted on Nov, 23 2002 @ 10:05 AM
Good grief, Thomas, has it dawned upon you that this is almost an entirely intelligent topic?
Seriously, I can agree that this may be "war" in some new sense but the question surely is: is the Homeland Security Dept. an appropriate and economically justifed instrument for the prosecution of this "war"?

posted on Nov, 23 2002 @ 10:42 AM
For the prosecution of the war? No, but for the purpose of better protecting the nation from this new form of attack? Possibly. Time will tell if it is effective, if it is ineffective, or if it is some conspiritorial maneuver to further rob the citizenry of our rights.
My opinion? It will be of some use, even though history will prove that because of governmental ineptness and bureaucratic back-stabbing and ball-dropping it was not as effective as everyone had hoped. The citizenry will probably lose rights and liberties, but they will quickly adjust since they have lost so many in the past and have not gone to war against the system a few more won't matter. Just leave their failing 401(k)'s and their overpriced cable TV alone and all will be ok.

posted on Nov, 23 2002 @ 11:03 AM
I take the point, Thomas: but presumably the money and personnel involved might have been used in an alternative strategy and I think the issue of whether this is the most effective way of spending x dollars over y years to defend US citizens, on US soil, remains.
I would, of course, agree that part of the problem is that effectiveness is to a degree to be judged in the light of what DOES NOT happen and that can be disadvantageous.
And I'd remind you of your point about how, post_WWII -liberties were restored: how is one to know if it ever "post" War against Terrorism.

posted on Nov, 23 2002 @ 11:08 AM
cable has just gone up and 401-K still falling, you sound almost cynical, Thomas.
But I raise a serious point about the prosecution of the "war" -the pursuit of victory until the end.
Surely the HSD is meant to be seen as an anti-aircraft gun or a minesweeper is seen -not instruments of aggression but necessary elements in the war effort.
Will the dept. be a cost-effective contribution to the "war"?

posted on Nov, 23 2002 @ 11:12 AM
I'd say there are too many if's onthis side of history to say.
If the reorganization streamlines the agencies, causes information to be dissiminated quicker, response time to be shortened and assets be allocated more efficiently, sure, it'll be worth the cash.

Hey, a taxpayer can dream, can't he?

posted on Nov, 23 2002 @ 04:37 PM
I normally just roll my eyes and marvel that folks of your perspective actually exist and at how deep in denial, revisonism or both you'll go to to make your point seem valid. Thomas, I ascribe to you a new one: Partisan-induced Ignorance & Apathy (PIA). (I'm a techie & we love the shorthand of acronyms!)
Because of your PIA, you'll attempt great scholarship in promoting the indefensible. You'll cite war time actions as relevant to justify the police action we're involved in now. You'll turn a blind eye to the blatantly illogical notion that a 180,000 person game of musical chairs carried out over a vast amount of time has ANY relevance to this "war" you swear is at our door.

And you say I'm nutty!?!?!?!

My prayer is more people be stricken with this 'nutty' virus you ascribe to me.

And, again, I'm glad you're back & posting, this stuff is priceless!

posted on Nov, 24 2002 @ 07:25 PM

Originally posted by Thomas CrowneM-D, seriously, considering what was done during WWII in the name of security, internment camps and what-not, do you really think that what is done during a war-footing cannot be undune when the war is complete?

...And here we are in a war (Is it really & technically a "war" anyway if the "enemy" could be literally *anybody* that the government decides to pin the label of "terrorist" on, including yourself? Remember, the definition of "terrorist" does *not* include the ability to identify one by nationality or racial characteristics) that even Bush himself will admit that there may be no end to it...So when will the liberties be restored if the war continues? Also consider that the government has been known to *legislate* something into legality before a "crisis" has been solved...Witness the institutuion of Income Taxes before the Great Depression ended. IMO, there's just too many issues not being addressed when something like the "Homeland Security" is up for legislation...Too many loopholes for corruption & sedition in the government to use & reduce the American Public into a system very close to (If not exactly like) Facism.
When our Founding Fathers declared that the price for freedom is eternal vigilance, it was also meant to be vigilant to those *within* the system of government itself...That's where the biggest threat to American Freedom can originate, if we only look to weed it out as it appears. With all of the rampant corruption that's evident throughout the whole system (& we *see* it on the TV, newspapers & websites all of the time, in ever-increasing frequency), isn't it time to really examine & debate against *any* new idea that comes from the government? Indeed, isn't it time to put the entire system under a microscope & work to engeneer it back to the way it was *intended* to be?

Originally posted by Thomas Crowne If the reorganization streamlines the agencies, causes information to be dissiminated quicker, response time to be shortened and assets be allocated more efficiently, sure, it'll be worth the cash.

I would tend to agree with this...*IF* this is all that it accomplishes without being abused by the corrupted elements within the government. IMO, the corruption is too widespread within the government for this HSD *not* to be abused. After all, any President who sees fit to Pardon himself is only *admitting to the American Public that he's a crook* & he's got the resources of the Office to help cover up any other crimes he commits while still in Office! And screw Congress--The President can't "make laws" perse, but he can still issue "Executive Orders" & "Emergency Acts" that still carry the full weight of law while bypassing Congress entirely...Or buy calling a conflict by any other name than "war", he bypasses the authority of Congress to send troops overseas to kill & die. Can you really say that you can trust such a person, who's *admitted* that he's a criminal, in the Office that holds such power?

posted on Nov, 24 2002 @ 07:50 PM
MD, the dangers to which you refer are ever present, but the fact still remains that we have been attacked, innocent lives have been lost and more are threatened. It'd be totally stupid to do nothing just so conspiracy fearful folks like ourselves don't get all worked up.

B-T, as so often, all you're good for is name-calling and demonizing when simple, normal conversation is all that is needed. You are more than just a techie, but as this is not a back-street barroom I'll refrain from using such words.

I would ask you, however, to read your post and try and understand how it appears to be just a wee bit overly fearful considering the evidence, or lack of, that would suggest a governmental conspiracy.
Also, read again what I wrote and you'll realize I said that one day you may read that post and see that you sounded a bit nutty. Stop trying to twist that into saying I called you nutty. As a matter of fact, once again, stop trying to twist my words and spend that extra time that will be on your hands to understand what I say.

[Edited on 25-11-2002 by Thomas Crowne]

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