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View Diary: NYT Lead: House Dems “Increasingly Unified” As “Momentum Builds Against N.S.A. Surveillance” (295 comments)

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  •  I understand your reference (1+ / 0-)
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    artmartin

    But if you're claiming that any "terrorists" who didn't know this was happening were incredibly stupid, then how does that comport with all of the shock and surprise expressed here about the "shocking revelations" about these systems?  I mean, if everyone already knew about these capabilities, even "stupid" terrorists, then again, why the sudden hysteria about it over the last couple months?

    As for your question, all we can do is enact as many safeguards as reasonably possibly, and put in place mechanisms to deal with those who violate them.  That's a tradeoff and a level of trust we put in EVERY level of government at some point.  I mean, virtually any government power, including every form of police power, could be abused if someone really wants to and is willing to risk the consequences.  So, we try to limit the potential for abuse and punish the abusers.  I mean, at some level, if you believe in government, there is a trade-off and balancing act that must occur, no?

    •  I appreciate your response (1+ / 0-)
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      LaEscapee

      but I don't agree.

      I mean, at some level, if you believe in government, there is a trade-off and balancing act that must occur, no?
      Here is James Madison in Federalist Papers (51):
      If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary. In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself. A dependence on the people is, no doubt, the primary control on the government; but experience has taught mankind the necessity of auxiliary precautions.
      And that is why we have the 4th amendment.  THAT is the "safeguard that was enacted".  Of course any power we give to governments can be taken to a tyrannical level.  The founders of the Constitution were tremendously flawed (slave owners, rich, white elites), but they weren't as bad as the English Monarchist and were enlightened enough to come up with the Bill of Rights.

      That is why I asked the question regarding if we are comfortable with the next Republican asshole to have these tools.  Even if the current Administration is thoroughly self-policing what goes on at the NSA, the next Republican president will not, and further they will use the collection of this data for purely political ends, and that is extremely dangerous.

      Here is John Adams on why we shouldn't trust ANY politician, even ones we like:

      There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty.

      To the NSA douchebag who is reading this: "Those who give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

      by Indiana Bob on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 03:38:08 PM PDT

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    •  One more thing (1+ / 0-)
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      LaEscapee

      You said that if everyone already knew about these capabilities then why the sudden histeria.

      I am completely fine with spying on suspected terrorist.  What I am not fine with is collecting ALL communications because that WILL be abused.  Maybe not by the current administration (although there is not way of knowing because of the secrecy), but certainly by a future one.

      To the NSA douchebag who is reading this: "Those who give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

      by Indiana Bob on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 03:43:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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