Paul weighs Supreme Court challenge to NSA surveillance programs

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posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 08:47 AM
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I have a feeling this could grow legs and go a few laps if it reaches the US Supreme Court. Folks forget the court is as powerful and in some ways, more powerful than the President could hope to be. As the final word on everything in our system, I'd argue they carry more power than any mere President, whose policies are subject to review and removal every 4 years.

The catch our Founding Fathers wrote in to insure that level of power wasn't the source of endless abuse was to remove the power of initiative from the Courts. They can act...but only when asked and brought into the situation by outside filing of a case. They cannot intervene of their own choosing. So this move, if carried through, may hold real meaning.

The Senate going against the President/Executive by way of the Court is a 'Clash of the Titans' which may come only once every few generations for the importance and outcome of such a thing. History in the making. That is what we've come to be an audience to. Either way it turns out, it's history being made here.


Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on Sunday said he would examine ways to block the National Security Agency’s surveillance programs before the Supreme Court.

“I'm going to be seeing if I can challenge this at the Supreme Court level,” vowed Paul on “Fox News Sunday.”

“I’m going to be asking all the internet providers and all of the phone companies: Ask your customers to join me in a class action lawsuit. If we get 10 million Americans saying we don’t want our phone records looked at then maybe someone will wake up and something will change in Washington,” he said.Hil
Source

He can add my name, to be sure. If he pushes forward, I'll see about how to get that done. I'd hope others would consider it as well.




posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 09:14 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


Not trying to derail, just trying to firm up the discussion.

The equipment to make a cell phone call belongs to private entities. It's private property. Yes the contents of a phone call are the callers but it does not work without all the mechanics. I understand the airways through which the signals travel are public.

Here are my questions:

1. Does a party of a contract have a reasonable expectation to privacy when they make a call? Disclaimer: I own a cell phone but have never made it through all the mumbo-jumbo of the contract I signed. My bad but I am not lawyer.

2. "Apparently" all that is being collected is the meta data of a call I make. I find that hard to believe. Why have this hugely expensive system and then not know what it was I discussed but merely when/where/who I called?

3. If this is indeed illegal according to SCOTUS, where is the DOJ today? If I commit a questionable crime today, no law enforcement agency is going to let me continue doing it until it gets before the 9 sometime down the road. Is this not telling enough?

4. Sen Paul with good intentions I believe, stands little chance with such a public heads up of his intentions. Granted it sounds good for someone with Presidential aspirations but how effective is telegraphing that intent so the opposition has even more time to obfuscate and backroom deal.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 09:32 AM
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reply to post by ABNARTY
 


The fundamental question here is whether the State/Government can, within the guides of the Constitution and 4th amendment as a specific area of focus, collect that data as a routine matter of course to simply hold as a fishing hole to go exploring at will.

The 4th Amendment:


The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Source

It's short, simple and really direct while coming right to the point. The level of data is immaterial. Simple call records or full voice and data records don't matter for extent and make absolutely no legal difference outside those trying to justify it. The legal issues are the same, either way. Can mass collection of data by the State occur without probable cause to believe a crime has been committed? According to the Secret FISA Court? Yes..Apparently.

In past times, that has been a totally moot point. It's been directed outward from the US and toward international targets not believed to have the Constitutional protections afforded U.S. Citizens. At least, that's been the operating theory. Bush came under fire early in his term for a very small effort like this in monitoring overseas calls that simply had one SIDE inside the US but the other, clearly outside. That was questioned in serious ways, as well it should have been.

This? This has blown over all those smaller issues by targeting domestic data against U.S. citizens in a wholesale way. The legal issues are very clear, actually and should be rather straight forward. The U.S. Supreme Court is also not terribly political. They aren't subject to the whims of public opinion as they are appointed for life and totally beyond the control of those who appointed them. It makes their intervention a very serious one to consider. Obama has not done well with his issues before this court in the past.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 09:36 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


The problem is that the highest courts including the Supreme court will side with the govenrment under the anit Patriot act, is not the surveillance the ones that has to be challenged but the unconstiutionality of the Patrot Act.


The leaked court order reveals the illegitimacy of jurisprudence that sticks its head in the sand rather than confronting vital social issues.

The constitutional standing doctrine articulated by the Supreme Court in Clapper vs. Amnesty International eviscerates judicial review, and enshrined the principle that the executive branch can commit any abuse under the sun, yet evade judicial review, as long as it does so in secret. The decision creates perverse incentives and could serve as a cornerstone in the further entrenchment of executive power going forward.

Similarly, the sheer breadth of the leaked order authorizing FBI surveillance confirms the inadequacy of secret courts. Courts exist to enforce our rights in the face of government abuses. That’s one of the central geniuses of the founding fathers and the system of checks and balances they constructed.


www.constitutioncampaign.org...

So it is very important how this issue will be addressed to win any acceptance.

Then again its been already congress hearings and prof of how unconstiutional the issue of surveillance is, again hidding behind the Patriot act by congress give them the rigth to do as they wish

March 15, 2007

Government Violations and Abuses of the PATRIOT Act Call for Sweeping Changes



Department of Justice Inspector General's report revealed that the FBI violated Americans' privacy by abusing its power to issue its own warrants for personal records - National Security Letters (NSLs). Specifically, between 2003 and 2005, the FBI violated Americans Fourth Amendment rights and minimal oversight requirements by: ◦undercounting the NSLs issued in its reports to Congress;
◦failing to obtain follow-up subpoenas when promised,
◦issuing NSLs under claims of emergency circumstances, when no emergency existed,
◦failing to purge records obtained that had no ties to terrorism or foreign spying.

• The Department of Justice failed to meet its March 9 deadline for reporting to Congress on datamining as required by the PATRIOT Act, and
•The Bush Administration slipped a provision into the PATRIOT Act reauthorization allowing the attorney general to skirt the Senate confirmation process for U.S. Attorneys, by making indefinite interim appointments. This resulted in the firings of eight U.S. attorneys - seemingly for political reasons.

Our Congressional representatives repeatedly asked us over the years to prove government abuses of the PATRIOT Act. We can now give them the proof they asked for, and use these abuses to demand change!


www.bordc.org...

The result of this in congress is as you can guess nothing was done, again like I said Congress hid behind that it was not enough evidence.

I sure hope this time Paul have more because obviously for congress and the Supreme court is not enough.

That tells that the courts and congress and complicit on the corruption that is going on



edit on 9-6-2013 by marg6043 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 09:42 AM
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Even if Paul tries and fails, at least someone is doing something to stem the tide of tyranny.

We just need one of the Paul family to move to the UK and help us grow a pair.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 10:17 AM
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reply to post by marg6043
 


I think that is precisely where the statements coming out from the literal authors of the Patriot Act about their intent in writing it come into play. It's all getting into legalese and technical stuff that takes more to explain than to talk about in general, but I have a feeling you understand the concepts as well as I do.

If the intent of the Patriot Act is called into direct question (as was not lost on Rand Paul before saying this, I'm SURE), then everything to spring from it...AND the act itself...come into question. Intent is everything and some major legislation of the past has seen bad outcomes in the court based largely on intent of Congress vs. execution by others.

We may....I carefully say MAY....be seeing the first steps of a serious push back. Some people are happy to suggest the "Government" is one giant blob of bad and there are no serious divisions or separations within that blob. That's pure ignorance of how the system actually functions in the United States. The 3 branches are very separate and in direct conflict, by design, with their own self interest and pursuit of power. Hence...Checks and Balances.

The problem for going on 20 years now is that Congress has had 'Head up butt' syndrome for watching what was happening outside their very narrow self interest toward individual re-election and the perks of power. Obama has directly threatened their very existence as a meaningful branch and power within the Government and I've been wondering for over a year if they'd realize that and respond before they became irrelevant.

FINALLY....They seem to realize if they don't act and act soon? They'll be as much a 'subject' to the executive branch as the public has become. They've been played like cards in a crappy deck and ...with luck...realized that in time to change it.
edit on 9-6-2013 by Wrabbit2000 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 10:24 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


I'm not a single issue voter. But I'm going to lump Paul in with all the rest if there isn't a clear line drawn and drawn soon.

Patriot Act, Drones, all that have to go.

No waffling. No "conditional" approach to these issues.

If we don't see a candidate that is willing to get rid of these measures, then it's game over.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 10:37 AM
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reply to post by beezzer
 


Agreed. This has all gone too far to step back in half measures.....

...and headlines today say NSA Whistle blowers warn us, this is all just the tip of the iceberg. Umm... Really??? If world wide spying through the top net providers, email providers and phone services is just the tip? Oh God... We're in deeper than even ATS speculation has proposed.

Absolutely on the stepping FULLY back. If we need to go back to some places for security measures later, I'd rather do that than leave anything from the current abusive system in place.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 10:38 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


Well then, that brings us back to my third point: where is the DOJ today? This has been going on for SEVEN years.

Every member of Congress has been briefed on it and not just since the story broke. If any member of Congress was honestly intent on protecting our 4th Amendment rights, they would have started a long time ago. All the bluster of the last week or so is just that: hot air. They have no intent of seriously fixing the injustice.

For those who say something has to be done or it's all over, well, it's all over. Historical momentum is in place. We just got confirmed what the tin foil hats have been saying for some time.

If anything, the courts have had their opportunity to intervene on our behalf and they have not. They won't. Apparently they believe all this BS is Constitutional.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 10:46 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


Oh, I am sure that Paul have plenty of lawyers, insiders and adviser telling him how proceede with this issue to make it relevant is not doubt in my mind.

Specially like you said the mentor and executor of the Patriot act came forward after 12 years to exposed and give an opinion how the act is been abused.

Now as for the Patriot act is not the law of the land, thank the morons in congress for that have they made it the law of the land I can only imagine how far the corruption using it will have gone, but that may be their downfall, after the patriot act does weaken the bill of rigth at least in 6 areas of the provisions

Because is an act that is only valid as long as the discretion of congress and the President, that have to sign it every 4 years.

But then again I am wondering if the Patriot act will become a political tool for the 2016 elections sadly the morons and crocks in congress already know that they got what they want and the act can become a bargaining tool for winning elections.

So far the act was to be revised and many bills were to be reviewed to amend some of the provisions but so far none has been approved the anti Patriot act stands mostly as it was in his originality

Because it seems that the Obama administration found it to be as useful to get away with corruption as Bush did, but now is a new element, how much its base on private interest.

As usual such execcive power requireds the help of private interest agencies enforcers, is a tangle of deceive gets bigger and bigger, not wonder the crocks are going after the usual whistle blowers, because defenetily is going to get uglier.

The sad part of it is, that while the patriot act was passed to help with the war on terrorism, that is not what is been used right now



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 10:52 AM
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reply to post by ABNARTY
 


I'm going to take a wild guess that you haven't seen, personally, MAJOR scandal unfold in this nation before? It has been a long time...but it's a very real thing we're watching here.

If one would suggest a good % of Congress didn't know or suspect Iran/Contra was happening at the time, I'd call them ill informed or simply ignorant of the whole story there. Congress was surely aware, among SOME of them, what was happening here. However....There are some very big buts in there.

First, All of Congress is never told everything on sensitive issues. Not even a majority are. That's always been the case but really solidified in the first year of the 'War on Terror' under Bush when Congress came to be seen as one step from being an enemy itself, literally speaking, by their inability to keep anything quiet on even the most basic level. So any assumption that "Congress knew" meaning all 500+ members of it? Would be very far from how it works on The Hill.

Second...What they know is secondary to what they know. By that I mean, they know a level of information out of the public eye and in a real sense ....then they 'know' a whole different and lower level for the public consumption. When the two cross by means of major blowout like this, Congress has two choices in those who did actually know about it. They can be weasels (to our benefit, as it happens) and take down those they basically approved to do it ...or they can go down WITH THEM in the next election.

Historically, Congress doesn't fall on it's sword for much of anyone. Given Obama's open and outright hostility toward them for years? He's the last one in our nation's history they will do it for. The more this blows open, the more Congress's actions against the Executive become ones of personal survival and 'every politician for himself'.

What we're seeing is very real, IMO. Whether it holds momentum and carries through is another matter. If we get a Special Prosecutor? We'll know it's going the distance. ....BTW..DOJ *IS* part of the White House command. They are PART of the problem and have never been apart from it to be a fair broker to call anyone on it.
edit on 9-6-2013 by Wrabbit2000 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 04:07 PM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


I see your point on calling this a scandal and many would agree. IMO, if we call this a scandal we can call a dude robbing a liquor store a scandal. Semantics, I know.

The bluster I speak of is nothing more than Congress trying to get clear of the flying excrement rather than trying to restore anything. I do believe Congress knew what was going on and did not care:

www.washingtonpost.com...< br />

Although this lends to confusion in my mind:

www.breitbart.com...

Is that hearing just theater then? Is lying just 'doing business'? During Holders testimony, the panel members seemed more concerned if their phone records were being recorded.

townhall.com...

The heck with the peons, what about us? You know, the important people.

Sorry. I do not see this as scandal. Clinton doing an intern is scandal. This makes Watergate and The Plumbers look like little league. I would agree this is akin to Iran-Contra but on a much larger scale. Sorry if I seem jaded and do not trust the repair spin, word for word.
edit on 9-6-2013 by ABNARTY because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 04:25 PM
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Originally posted by Wrabbit2000
reply to post by ABNARTY
 


I'm going to take a wild guess that you haven't seen, personally, MAJOR scandal unfold in this nation before? It has been a long time...but it's a very real thing we're watching here.

If one would suggest a good % of Congress didn't know or suspect Iran/Contra was happening at the time, I'd call them ill informed or simply ignorant of the whole story there. Congress was surely aware, among SOME of them, what was happening here. However....There are some very big buts in there.

First, All of Congress is never told everything on sensitive issues. Not even a majority are. That's always been the case but really solidified in the first year of the 'War on Terror' under Bush when Congress came to be seen as one step from being an enemy itself, literally speaking, by their inability to keep anything quiet on even the most basic level. So any assumption that "Congress knew" meaning all 500+ members of it? Would be very far from how it works on The Hill.

Second...What they know is secondary to what they know. By that I mean, they know a level of information out of the public eye and in a real sense ....then they 'know' a whole different and lower level for the public consumption. When the two cross by means of major blowout like this, Congress has two choices in those who did actually know about it. They can be weasels (to our benefit, as it happens) and take down those they basically approved to do it ...or they can go down WITH THEM in the next election.

Historically, Congress doesn't fall on it's sword for much of anyone. Given Obama's open and outright hostility toward them for years? He's the last one in our nation's history they will do it for. The more this blows open, the more Congress's actions against the Executive become ones of personal survival and 'every politician for himself'.

What we're seeing is very real, IMO. Whether it holds momentum and carries through is another matter. If we get a Special Prosecutor? We'll know it's going the distance. ....BTW..DOJ *IS* part of the White House command. They are PART of the problem and have never been apart from it to be a fair broker to call anyone on it.
edit on 9-6-2013 by Wrabbit2000 because: (no reason given)


A scandal? I agree with you on that but this isn't just this party did this and that party did that scandal. This is what our entire Government has been working on and doing since 9/11 with a small handful of exceptions that protested it from day one. So now who is going to hire the special prosecutor to investigate all of Congress the current administration and the previous administration? The Supreme Court? They are the same idiots that will need to be investigated.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 04:50 PM
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reply to post by KeliOnyx
 


All we need to hope to see happen here is one side or the other with Congress to believe they either lack much choice or see political benefit in a Special Prosecutor. The same way it came under Clinton. That was cheesy and petty, but the motivations are the focus and not the matter that sparked it.

Once one is in place, if one comes to be a part of this, it won't matter anymore why or who started it. They have a way of taking on a life all their own and they have the power to do it once they get rolling. We just have to hope they get that start to roll.

This sure isn't a partisan thing at this point. 100% and absolutely not. I'm glad we agree on that. This has already blown to big to keep JUST inside Obama's administration ....IF the ball gets rolling. One thing must lead to another on just the top issues we can see right now. Origins must be established. We all know where that leads. As long as it's not to one while giving the other a pass? EITHER of them ...in this case? I'm good with that. Let the chips fall where they may ...and Bush's retirement may not be as quiet and lasting as he'd hoped it would be.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 04:54 PM
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Originally posted by beezzer
reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


I'm not a single issue voter. But I'm going to lump Paul in with all the rest if there isn't a clear line drawn and drawn soon.

Patriot Act, Drones, all that have to go.

No waffling. No "conditional" approach to these issues.

If we don't see a candidate that is willing to get rid of these measures, then it's game over.



I'm with you 100% here.

Now that the government is being exposed, we'll see who is who the true public servants are, and who is just trying to line their pockets.

I don't care about party affiliations. Any rep or senator that says ENOUGH and works towards ending this madness has my support.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 05:02 PM
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reply to post by supremecommander
 



Originally posted by supremecommander
...we'll see who is who the true public servants are...


Well, here is a handy list: U.S. Senate Roll Call Votes 112th Congress - 2nd Session: A bill to extend the FISA Amendments Act of 2008 for five years.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 05:07 PM
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Originally posted by loam
reply to post by supremecommander
 



Originally posted by supremecommander
...we'll see who is who the true public servants are...


Well, here is a handy list: U.S. Senate Roll Call Votes 112th Congress - 2nd Session: A bill to extend the FISA Amendments Act of 2008 for five years.


Alexander (R-TN)
Ayotte (R-NH)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Bennet (D-CO)
Blumenthal (D-CT)
Blunt (R-MO)
Boozman (R-AR)
Brown (R-MA)
Burr (R-NC)
Cardin (D-MD)
Carper (D-DE)
Casey (D-PA)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coats (R-IN)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Collins (R-ME)
Conrad (D-ND)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Crapo (R-ID)
Enzi (R-WY)
Feinstein (D-CA)
Gillibrand (D-NY)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Hagan (D-NC)
Hatch (R-UT)
Heller (R-NV)
Hoeven (R-ND)
Hutchison (R-TX)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johanns (R-NE)
Johnson (D-SD)
Johnson (R-WI)
Kerry (D-MA)
Klobuchar (D-MN)
Kohl (D-WI)
Kyl (R-AZ)
Landrieu (D-LA)
Levin (D-MI)
Lieberman (ID-CT)
Lugar (R-IN)
Manchin (D-WV)
McCain (R-AZ)
McCaskill (D-MO)
McConnell (R-KY)
Mikulski (D-MD)
Moran (R-KS)
Nelson (D-FL)
Nelson (D-NE)
Portman (R-OH)
Pryor (D-AR)
Reed (D-RI)
Reid (D-NV)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Rockefeller (D-WV)
Rubio (R-FL)
Schumer (D-NY)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shaheen (D-NH)
Shelby (R-AL)
Snowe (R-ME)
Stabenow (D-MI)
Thune (R-SD)
Toomey (R-PA)
Vitter (R-LA)
Warner (D-VA)
Webb (D-VA)
Whitehouse (D-RI)
Wicker (R-MS)

Quite the list of treasonous bastards we have there.



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 05:20 PM
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reply to post by supremecommander
 



Originally posted by supremecommander
Quite the list of treasonous bastards we have there.


Whether treasonous, incompetent or simply misguided, Americans who oppose this level of government authority likely have an impossible hill to climb. Apart from the executive branch's activities and a Congress that offers it cover, we have a judiciary that will not likely offer any real relief either.

Paul's efforts probably wont succeed on a whole host of legal grounds used in the past by the courts to avoid such issues.

But even more important than all of that is simply the acceptance, resignation, ignorance or apathy of the American public. I see no real solutions there, quite frankly. We have simply reached critical mass...


I am terrified of where we will be as a nation within my lifetime.

Looks like a zero sum game to me.

edit on 9-6-2013 by loam because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 9 2013 @ 11:41 PM
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Originally posted by ABNARTY
Here are my questions:

1. Does a party of a contract have a reasonable expectation to privacy when they make a call? Disclaimer: I own a cell phone but have never made it through all the mumbo-jumbo of the contract I signed. My bad but I am not lawyer.

Yes you have an expectation of privacy. If the governmens argument is based on the contrat caveat then it could apply to cars and homes, both of which people sign contracts in order toi purchase. The government is illegally collecting information in the name of national security, an idiotic catch all that has been abused so many times its not even funny. They are putting the cart before the horse in terms of how probable cause works in order to obtain a warrant for a criminal investigation.



Originally posted by ABNARTY
2. "Apparently" all that is being collected is the meta data of a call I make. I find that hard to believe. Why have this hugely expensive system and then not know what it was I discussed but merely when/where/who I called?
Because its being used for something more than what they are saying, imo. They are trying to downplay the extent of what they have been doing.



Originally posted by ABNARTY
3. If this is indeed illegal according to SCOTUS, where is the DOJ today? If I commit a questionable crime today, no law enforcement agency is going to let me continue doing it until it gets before the 9 sometime down the road. Is this not telling enough?

The cruxt of the problem and the epicenter of how this administration views the Constitution and what their place is within it. Obama warned the American people he would like to skip the process in order to get what he wants done... Apparently the only promis he made that he did not break.



Originally posted by ABNARTY
4. Sen Paul with good intentions I believe, stands little chance with such a public heads up of his intentions. Granted it sounds good for someone with Presidential aspirations but how effective is telegraphing that intent so the opposition has even more time to obfuscate and backroom deal.

Transparency and the ability to hold the government accountible. We need more sunshine in these dark nooks and crannies to better hold the government accountible for its actions.

Contact your reps and be heard on this and the other topics.



posted on Jun, 10 2013 @ 06:52 PM
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reply to post by Xcathdra
 


With regards to the contract, that is with a private carrier and their equipment. Sure it is my information but their lines. How does that work with multiple parties? I am not a lawyer but it sounds shady. Is FISA a free ticket to everything?

I liken it to traveling down the road (public property, paid for with tax dollars, let's assume it belongs to the public) in my car. Following this logic, every car can be stopped and searched or at least its "metadata" recorded for posterity.

Does that sound lazy and incompetent or is it just me? Can't do honest to goodness law enforcement so we will just put everyone in the guilty corral until they finally do something wrong and we can hook 'em up. Fish in a barrel so to speak.

We have never had more laws on the books than we do today. So many in fact, we need multiple enforcement agencies to cover down on all of them. There is no way an average American can go though their lives without breaking a law somewhere even though they may have the best of intentions of being a good citizen. This just seems to open the door to nailing people for....what?

I do not buy the safety bit one iota. The US has made it through world wars, civil wars, invasions, epidemics, depressions, you name it without all these 'security mechanisms'. I think we will survive without them.





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