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While the left was working itself up into a fervor about Rush Limbaugh's latest obnoxious bloviation, the reason why he did it was ignored.

Congress passed HR 347 in the dead of night, behind closed doors and while almost everyone was looking the other way.

HR 347? - "Once signed, HR 347 will empower federal agents to arrest and bring felony criminal charges against citizens engaged in political protests anywhere in the USA."

Did you even notice? Or were you distracted by the obvious chicanery of the master of media manipulation?
Why do you think that Limbaugh did what he did, at THIS particular time? Do you think that it is just a coincidence that he distracted the entire left wing at the same exact time that Congress was assassinating our democracy?

Almost every single Democrat voted for this democracy-killing bill.
They say that bi-partisanship is dead in DC, yet here we have all the Democrats uniting with all the Republicans to pass this egregious and fascist bill that is obviously aimed at the Occupy movement.

Where is the outrage at Congress? Where is the outrage at the Democrats?
When Mr. Obama signs this bill into law, and he will, are you going to be distracted again by a blowhard who pushes your emotional button?

Protesting will be a felony - where is the outrage?

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Comment Preferences

  •  Who's that quote from? (11+ / 0-)
    HR 347? - "Once signed, HR 347 will empower federal agents to arrest and bring felony criminal charges against citizens engaged in political protests anywhere in the USA."
    You neither link nor attribute that quotation; who wrote it?

    I'll tell you where that quote isn't from: It's not from the text of the bill itself, which only applies to people under Secret Service protection, the buildings they're in, the White House and Naval Observatory, and other very narrowly-defined events.

    Moreover, the bill doesn't criminalize anything that you couldn't already be arrested and charged for; it applies only to people who are knowingly in a place the Secret Service has cordoned off, who obstruct the entry or exit of Secret Service-protected people from a building, or who intentionally obstruct official government business. Exactly none of those things were legal before this bill was passed.

    The hyperventilation over this bill is absolutely ridiculous.

    "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

    by JamesGG on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 08:50:43 AM PST

    •  knowingly, but they removed willfully (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Into The Woods

      I can't imagine too many scenarios where you would be knowingly but not willingly in an area where the criteria you mentioned were met, but I wouldn't put it past some overzealous police departments or federal agents to shove, corral, or otherwise kettle protestors in to an area where they wouldn't normally go, then arrest them.

      Still, it isn't the destruction of our civil rights that some are claiming, but it isn't something that should be ignored either.

      •  Intent is still required (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SquirrelWhisperer, Deep Texan

        "willfully" and with "intent" are redundant. Intent is still in the law, therefore a police army can't force someone into a location then claimed they were "inentionally" interfering with government.

        Willfullness isn't even required for a murder charge, but intent is.

        "No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater part of the members are poor and miserable." Adam Smith: Wealth of Nations

        by old bird on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 09:41:07 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  No. Not redundant. Disagree? Go argue with (0+ / 0-)

          SCOTUS.  

          The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

          by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 12:04:23 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Knowledge + Intent Not Same as "Willingly" (0+ / 0-)
          "willfully" and with "intent" are redundant
          Even when interpreting this very law  the appealate court found that the presence of "willingly" created a higher standard that the govt had to prove than "knowingly" and defined "willingly" as knowing the unlawful nature of the conduct (a lesser standard than "willingly" has been defined in other areas requiring knowledge of the specific law under which the conduct was unlawful.)

          http://law.justia.com/...

          Appellant Brett Bursey was convicted in early 2004 — after a bench trial conducted by a magistrate judge in the District of South Carolina — of willfully and knowingly entering and remaining in a posted, cordoned off, or otherwise restricted area where the President was temporarily visiting, in contravention of § 1752(a)(1)(ii) of Title 18 of the United States Code.
          ...
          Although "[d]ivining the meaning of `willfully' in criminal statutory mens rea terms has long bedeviled American courts," our assessment of whether, under this evidence, Bursey willfully violated the Statute does not present a close question. United States v. George, 386 F.3d 383, 389 (2d Cir.2004) (emphasis in original).8 Bursey need not have known of the Statute itself (nor, for that matter, the Regulations) in order to possess the requisite intent to violate it. See Bryan v. United States, 524 U.S. 184, 196, 118 S.Ct. 1939, 141 L.Ed.2d 197 (1998) (holding, in context of firearms statute, 18 U.S.C. § 922(a)(1)(D), that knowledge of conduct's general unlawfulness, rather than knowledge of particular criminal statute and regulations, is only requirement for willful violation).9 As the Bryan Court observed, for a defendant to have acted willfully, he must merely have "acted with knowledge that his conduct was unlawful." Id. at 193, 118 S.Ct. 1939. Thus, Bursey need not have had knowledge of the existence of the Statute — or its federal nature — in order to have willfully violated it.
          ...
          8 We focus our discussion on whether Bursey "willfully" violated the Statute, because, generally, "[m]ore is required" with respect to conduct performed willfully than conduct performed knowingly    Bryan v. United States, 524 U.S. 184, 193, 118 S.Ct. 1939, 141 L.Ed.2d 197 (1998); see also United States v. Jarvouhey, 117 F.3d 440, 442 (9th Cir.1997) (concluding willful violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(a) requires "more culpable" mens rea than knowing violation). As a general proposition, the statutory term "knowingly" requires the Government to prove only that the defendant had knowledge of the facts underlying the offense. See Bryan, 524 U.S. at 192-93, 118 S.Ct. 1939.

          ...

          In only one section does HR 347 add the "intent to..." lanuage where it did not exist in the existing law,  and even for that section, unless you can show how the courts would find an individual's  
          intent to impede or disrupt the orderly conduct of Government business or official functions

          is the legal equivalent of

          blockquote>intent to unlawfully impede or unlawfully disrupt the orderly conduct of Government business or official functions or that the courts would deem any and all acts with the

          intent to impede or disrupt the orderly conduct of Government business or official functions
          as automatically unlawful and further deem all members of the public would have knowledge of that legal status for all such acts, the deletion of "willingly" makes a difference.

          The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

          by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 01:37:35 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Nope. I can't imagine a conviction under (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SquirrelWhisperer, Deep Texan, VClib

        this statute where federal agents forced you against your will into a restricted area.  I explained in more detail below.  

    •  So the term, 'slippery slope' (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sandino, Into The Woods

      has no application here?  Sorry, but I think it does.  Everybody IS hyperventilating about Rush, while our rights are voted away by those who are supposed to know better.

      •  Exactly what "right" does this take away? (4+ / 0-)

        Newsflash:  you never had the "right" to go into areas cordoned off by Secret Security; you never had the "right" to intentionally obstruct the entry or exit of Secret-Service protected people from a building; and you never had the "right" to intentionally obstruct official government business.  

        None of those things ever came under the heading of "your rights" or even "lawful protest."  

      •  Except that the angle of the slope... (4+ / 0-)

        ...is absolutely no different now than it was before this bill was passed.

        Each and every act covered in this bill was already illegal prior to its passage.

        It was just as illegal to trespass on White House grounds, block the entry or exit of the President, be unauthorized in an area the Secret Service has restricted, or disrupt official government business being done by the President on February 1 as it is today.

        "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

        by JamesGG on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 10:34:51 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  A change in the level of mens rea changes (0+ / 0-)

          what "acts" are covered because it changes the level of the bar concerning knowledge and intent that must be proved for conviction.

          If this bill becomes law, the deletion of "willingly" will have the effect of lowering the bar.  

          The Supreme Court and Federal Appealate Courts have recognized this not only generally but with specific reference to the law being amended by this bill.  

          To say otherwise is to ignore the law (which includes both the text of the law and the existing interpretations of it by the courts.)

          The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

          by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 12:07:59 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Our great media (3+ / 0-)

    Every time another one of our constitutional rights are taken away, I ask myself, where in the hell was the media during all of this.  I guess I was just spoiled growing up in the 60's and 70's having journalists who were concerned more about what was affecting peoples lives versus what kind of shoes Mary Tyler Moore was wearing.

    I find it really disturbing as well, that all too many people are so damn willing to freely give away a lot of those rights that people died for, but yet those same people raise holy hell when they're guns are being threatened.

    •  those journalists in the 1960s and 1970s, (3+ / 0-)

      just like reporters today (granted, there's way fewer of us, and there's no doubt in my mind that's a problem) look into stuff first, you know? We read the text of bills, we talk to experts like the ACLU about civil liberties issues, and we do other research before believing allegations we read.

      There are issues with the bill, as ACLU says, one of the most interesting to me is how it might affect protests at the Presidential nominating conventions.

      http://www.aclu.org/...

      Those who cry wolf, those who repeat exaggerated stuff they read online without checking it out like this diarist, don't help at all, because they create so much noise that it drowns out  legitimate concerns.

    •  If what was taken was chopped away by an ax (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fiddlegirl

      all at once, they might notice.

      As it is, the cuts are being make surgically, in small portions which the supposedly learned few can misrepresent as inconsequential.

      In my younger days it was the Soviet Union that operated black site prisons and spied on its own citizens.  

      It was our enemies in WWII, the Korean Conflict and the Viet Nam war that tortured prisoners.

      It was not America that did these things.  We defined our Nation in part by the fact that we refused to do those things or at least refused to authorize or approve them as official public policy.  

      We defined our Nation in part by our efforts to create international agreements to forswear such conduct and by our efforts to help create international agencies to both prevent and expose such conduct.  

      But little by little, our Nation is being amended away.

      While these small steps in and of themselves may not represent the fall into the great abyss that they are sometimes described as, they are still steps in that direction.

      When what could be lost is so important and how it could finally be lost so difficult to measure or predict, without overwhelming proof of need and lack of any alternative approach our government should not be allowing, accepting or initiating such steps.  

      And when they do, we should oppose them.  

      The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

      by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 12:39:47 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Maybe because it's not true? (8+ / 0-)

    Read the comments to this diary.  That diary, too, blatantly overstated the effect of the law.  Look at the old law, and the new law, and especially see the comments by Adam, Geek, and me.  

    The legislation just tightens up loopholes in prior law and streamlines language.  Under this, JUST AS BEFORE, you can't:

    1. Knowingly breach security restricted areas (narrowly defined under the statute -- like White House grounds) and knowingly stay after being asked to leave the security restricted areas;

    2.  Conduct gatherings around security restricted areas with the knowledge and intent of disrupting the orderly functioning of government; or

    3.  Block access to security-restricted areas with the knowledge and intent of disrupting the orderly functioning of government.

    This is an amendment to prior law that makes the same kind of conduct illegal as was illegal before.  This is what is illegal:  (1) breaching security barriers; (2) intentionally trying to use a protest to stop the government from functioning.  Same kind of conduct that was illegal before.

    This in no way, shape, or form "makes protests a felony."  That's just wrong.   As long as you don't breach security areas, or try to shut down government, protest as loudly, as often, and as fervently as you like.  

    •  Actually it helps (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      second gen

      As it creates greater clarity in the law.  

      Occupy Wall Street, for instance, can specifically point to pieces in this to demonstrate their legality - where before it was open to interpretation by a judge or DA.

      The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. --George Orwell

      by jgkojak on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 09:01:05 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  It removes the word "willfully' (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Into The Woods

      And that is not a small change.  It removes one element the prosecution has to prove,

      We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. - Former Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis

      by RageKage on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 09:07:11 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  And uses the word "knowingly". (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SquirrelWhisperer, Deep Texan

        Show me where there is any significant difference.

        “Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.” ~Abraham Lincoln

        by second gen on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 09:09:21 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  See my post below of SCOTUS and Fed Crt (0+ / 0-)

          If you want to say "willingly" and "knowingly" are the same argue with them.

          And the "intent" language was already part of the segment of the law being discussed in that case, and the word willingly is what the court focused on .

          http://www.dailykos.com/...

          The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

          by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 12:11:32 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  And replaces it with "knowingly" PLUS (5+ / 0-)

        with specific intent.  "Knowing" you are doing it, plus having the specific intent to do it, is not a lesser standard than "willfully."  Knowing you are doing it PLUS having the intent to do it is pretty much the same as doing it willfully.  

        The only provision that has "knowingly" alone is the first one about breaching security perimeters.  There, you have to (1) know you are breaching security boundaries (like go over barriers); or (2) "knowingly remain" after you are told  to leave.  "Knowingly" breaching security boundaries, as opposed to "willfully" breaching security boundaries -- no real difference there.  I can't think of a practical instance when the "knowingly" standard for someone breaching a security area would result in a conviction when the "willfully" standard would not.

        •  as I said above (0+ / 0-)

          It is possible to knowingly be in a protected area, but not be there willingly.

          If police or federal agents shove, corral, or otherwise kettle protestors in to an area that is off limits, it could be argued that they are there knowingly, but not willingly.

          However, grain of salt, I have no experience in the legal field, and this is just an armchair lawyering on my part.

          •  No, because that would be an absurd (4+ / 0-)

            consequence if you interpreted it that way.  Courts do not interpret laws in ways that lead to absurd consequences.  

            Read this again:

            (1) knowingly enters or remains in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority to do so;
            If federal agents force you into an area, you haven't "knowingly entered" -- you have been forced into.  If federal agents prevent you from leaving, you haven't "knowingly remained," you have been detained.  To say federal agents can force you to commit a crime is an absurd consequence.  I can't imagine a criminal conviction under this statute if federal agents forced you into a restricted area and forced you to remain there.

            Now, if you knowingly enter into the area (that can be proven if, for example, you jump a barricade), then you've violated the statute with that act alone (the statute requires knowingly entering OR knowingly remaining, not necessarily both) and they don't have to let you leave because you've already violated the statute.  Or, if you didn't "knowingly" go into the area (like if it wasn't clearly marked, and there were not barricades) and they tell you to leave, and you don't, THEN all bets are off -- you've violated the statute. They don't have to give you a second chance.  You don't have a right to stay and argue with them.  If you don't immediately leave upon being told, you've violated the statute and they can detain you for that.  

            Not would your interpretation of this statute lead to what the law calls "absurd consequences," but the first thing any law student learns in criminal law is that, in order for ANY crime to be committed, there has to be what the law calls "mens rea"  -- a "guilty mind."  In simple terms, you can't be convicted of a crime if you literally were forced into it.  

            •  I'm not so sure about this. (0+ / 0-)
              Courts do not interpret laws in ways that lead to absurd consequences.  
              Citizens United seems pretty absurd to me, and plenty of other people.
            •  How about if a crowd does not allow you to leave (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Fiddlegirl

              In a real-life protest (not taking place in Hypothetica) a person's presence within a protest group might or might not mean they were part of the protest.

              Their exit from that location may also be hindered, delayed or prevented by the circumstances including the size and reaction of the crowd or the herding techniques being used by law enforcement.  

              And the burden of proving that an individual has met the standards of knowledge and itent being on the goverment gives protection both to individuals.

              Lowering the requisite standard for intent or knowledge exposes individuals to greater risk and gives greater power to the authorities both to prosecute and pre-emptively intimidate.  

              In a small but clear way, this bill lowers that standard for a conviction under this law.

              In black and white hypotheticals, the fine distinctions between 'willingly' and 'knowingly' may not matter.

              Which is possibly why you often use those hypotheticals.

              In the gray zones where knowledge, intent and actions are more difficult to categorize and prove, the differences between those standards (which you pretend do not exist but that the Supreme Court has repeatedly held to exist) come into play.

              And the gray zones will not be populated by those attempting to assassinate the President by jumping over a fence or barricade guarded by Secret Service agents.

              It will more likely be populated by protestors who may be close to, on or across some line or boundary where their actions, knowledge and intent will become the difference between their excercise of free speech and facing a term in prison.  

              The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

              by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 12:53:53 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  Your personal opinion not consistent with SCOTUS (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Fiddlegirl

          First:  Contrary to what your post claims, "knowingly" was already an element for all paragraphs defining prohibited conduct.  

          Second, "Intent" language was added in only one paragraph and that addition neither equates to or replaces "willingly" which the bill deletes from all such paragraphs.  (See redline version of bill linked below.)

          Third:  The Supreme Court of the United States has repeatedly acknowledged that "willingly" requires a higher standard of intent and knowledge than "knowingly" as have Federal Appealate Courts construing the very statute here being amended:

             

          8 We focus our discussion on whether Bursey "willfully" violated the Statute, because, generally, "[m]ore is required" with respect to conduct performed willfully than conduct performed knowingly    Bryan v. United States, 524 U.S. 184, 193, 118 S.Ct. 1939, 141 L.Ed.2d 197 (1998); see also United States v. Jarvouhey, 117 F.3d 440, 442 (9th Cir.1997) (concluding willful violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(a) requires "more culpable" mens rea than knowing violation). As a general proposition, the statutory term "knowingly" requires the Government to prove only that the defendant had knowledge of the facts underlying the offense. See Bryan, 524 U.S. at 192-93, 118 S.Ct. 1939.
          http://www.dailykos.com/...

          Your insistent refusal to either accept that truth or acknowledge its impact (or refute my assertions and citations to those authorities)  can be taken for what it is worth by other readers and posters.

          The diary from which these posts are taken contains a much more thorough discussion of the potential impacts of this bill (in the diary and comments).

          While some of the more extreme warnings of its impact are undoubtedly overblown, it is clear from the language of the bill that the bar for prosecution, conviction and penalty under these federal criminal statutues will be lowered by this bill.  

          Merely stating as a personal opinion that such is not the case is simply not persuasive.

          Here is my attempt to show the changes that are made to the law by this bill:
          http://www.dailykos.com/...

          The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

          by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 11:46:55 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sigh. We've been through this. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Adam B, VClib

            Knowledge PLUS intent is in parts 2 AND 3, and the only part with knowledge alone is part 1 -- knowingly breaching a Secret Service security area.  I can think of no act that would get you convicted under Section 1 of the new law that would not also have gotten you convicted under prior law -- except that the new law adds the White House and VP residence to restricted areas.

            A number of lawyers in the other diary (including Adam B, the lawyer for this site, Geekesque, and me) tried to explain why you are wrong, and I have no intention of going through it again.  

            As we all explained in that other diary and here, this revision does not make anything illegal that was not already illegal under the prior version of the act.  

            For anyone who wants to see you repeat yourself over and over, in the face of lawyer after lawyer explaining otherwise, see here.  

            As for me, I've explained myself, and I'm sure you'll understand if I do not respond further to your repetition of things that were discussed ad nauseum in that other diary.  

            Have a nice day.  

            •  Knowledge Plus Intent was present in law (0+ / 0-)

              when the federal court focussed on needing to meet the threshold of "willingly".

              If you have a citation or quotation from an actual case that proves your point, lets see it.

              Your personal opinion to the contrary means little in this context - no matter how frequently you repeat it or attempt to enhance it by reference to professional degree or license or reference to that of others (sorry, but being a lawyer for this site does not somehow give magic powers to any poster's opinion.)

              Your unwillingness or inability to back up those personal opinions with anything but more personal opinions or extreme hypotheticals show the weakness of those opinions.

              A lawyer worth their salt would do better.  

              The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

              by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 12:16:48 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

    •  What happens if we genuinely wish to protest (0+ / 0-)

      our government?  What if the only means left is to disrupt or shut down government?  It's getting harder and harder to do. What if we really NEED another revolution?

      I'm certainly not advocating that, but this to me is just another erosion of our liberty that completely slipped in under the radar.

      •  Who's stopping you from protesting? (4+ / 0-)

        Unless, of course, you feel that disrupting or shutting down the government is lawful protest.  I don't think it is, and I think most folks would agree with me.  

        Oh, and if you really NEED another revolution?  You don't have to worry about what's legal and what isn't at that point.  Once you've decided to overthrow the government, that ship has already sailed.  You will probably have to kill a lot of people, though, and the chances of success seem pretty slim to me.

        •  Remember Free Speech Zones? Woo Woo (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Fiddlegirl

          lets go protest at a national political convention.  

          Revolution, successful revolution, does not depend on violence.

          In fact it depends on strategic nonviolent action that under the law as amended by this bill becomes easier for the government to classify as a criminal act.  

          Not hugely easier.  But easier.  

          They no longer need to prove 'willingly'.  

          If the Supreme Court of the United States finds the presence of that term in a criminal statute to require a greater showing than "knowingly", to argue that they are the same is foolish, uninformed or intentionally misleading.

          The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

          by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 01:01:44 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  ummmm... (4+ / 0-)
        What if the only means left is to disrupt or shut down government?
        Did you seriously think that until this bill was passed, disrupting or shutting down government was legal?

        It's called "civil disobedience" for a reason.

        "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

        by JamesGG on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 10:37:19 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  can't you see how you give away your power? (0+ / 0-)

    attributing superhuman powers of organization and prediction to the opposition? and to the drug-addled Limbaugh, and just believing everything you read, as long as it fits with what you already believe. Just like the evangelists and teabaggers.

    And obviously, since The Powers That Be have these super-human powers, there's no point in actually, you know, working for change? The only important thing is to make sure everybody knows how hip you are, how you know it's all a sham, and you're not a sucker.

    Ms. Fluke must've been part of the non-coincidence, too, right? because without her testimony, Limbaugh's bloviations would've been just the usual shit.

    And Nancy Pelosi, who set up the hearing. It's obvious Pelosi couldn't care less about women's rights or medical needs, she was part of the conspiracy to distract.

    sigh.

  •  Whuh? (5+ / 0-)
    Congress passed HR 347 in the dead of night, behind closed doors and while almost everyone was looking the other way.
     H R 347      2/3 YEA-AND-NAY      27-Feb-2012      6:54 PM
  •  Not this shit again... (3+ / 0-)

    this place really should be called the Daily Hyperbole

    •  Then why don't you enlighten us. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Into The Woods

      WHY is this not a slippery slope?

      •  You made the claim; you prove it. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Deep Texan
      •  Several people responded to this above. n/t (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Deep Texan
      •  if the diarist had written a thoughtful (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Into The Woods, VClib

        diary about why, in his opinion, this WAS "a slippery slope," I very much doubt he'd've gotten responses like he has.

        If, for example, Gabe Rottman of the ACLU had posted his essay, "How Big a Deal if H.R. 347, That 'Criminalizing Protest' Bill?," here, I expect the discussion would've been welcome, and interesting.

        http://www.aclu.org/...

        •  No. Some of the apologists would not care (0+ / 0-)

          Unless it infringes corporate political speech, there are some posters who are willing to tolerate incremental weaking of our civil rights and further extension of of the military/police powers of the executive branch and some will both belittle any argument that a bill or executive order has such a potential impact and misrepresent the langauge of the law and changes to support that view.

          It makes their job easier when over-statements and lack of nuance paints such changes with too broad a brush, but neither excuse their 'so what' approach to the real and potential cummulative impacts of such changes to our laws.  

          I posted the following as part of the last exchange here at dk with a number of these same posters on the topic of this bill:

          Concerning freaking out over slight changes

          The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

          by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 11:55:45 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  They don't believe in the concept of slippery (0+ / 0-)

        slope or are willing to ignore changes in language that have been identifed by the federal courts as having an impact on the level of intent and knowledge required under this very statutue in order to throw a 'so-what' blanket over this kind of bill.  

        A number of posters consistently make such unfounded assertions, then back them up with nothing but extreme hypotheticals and personal opinions (while occasionally trying to give additional weight to such posts by asserting to be attorneys).

        The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

        by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 12:03:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Where laws threaten to diminish personal liberty (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fiddlegirl

    and chill free speech beyond that shown to be absolutely necessary, I will always prefer the over-reaction of those who do not have legal degrees to the complacency and under-reaction of the supposedly learned few who do.  

    Thank you for this diary.  

    The time has come to put the "Occ" in "DemOCCracy". Support (or create) the "Occupy" movement near you. Ordinary Citizens Count in this extraordinary Democcracy.

    by Into The Woods on Fri Mar 09, 2012 at 12:25:52 PM PST

  •  Sorry, It Says What It Says (0+ / 0-)

    If you go through the legislation line by line, it clearly makes a number of "Occupy" tactics into much more serious crimes. For instance, disrupting a foreclosure auction, mike-checking a presidential candidate, doing a sit-in at a congressional office, pushing into a "forbidden area" at a large protest like the G8- any of these could be considered "disrupting government activities." These things might have been illegal before, but you wouldn't get a year in jail for doing them. Now they'll have this in their list of options, and can anyone doubt they'll use it on Occupiers?

    It has nothing at all to do with Limbaugh, but the obsession with Limbaugh here in the past week has been pretty silly, considering that stuff like this was going on.

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