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Author Topic: The NSA's warrantless wiretapping is a crime, not a state secret
Mynnion
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The continuation and expansion of NSA (and others)public spying is one of my biggest disappointments with the current administration. While I am doubtful that we would not have seen the same or worse with a GOP run White House the Obama administration has failed to reign in our "security" community. Unfortunately I don't really see much hope of improvement unless the public gets so fed up they make it a key election issue. Since the majority of people seem to have bought the idea that security is more important than freedom I doubt that it will happen.
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Seneca
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The difference between Bush and Obama is that Bush openly believed what he was doing was good, and I opposed him.

Obama campaigned on PROMISING TO END THIS AND STOP IT FOR GOOD. AND HE COULD HAVE SINGLE-HANDEDLY DONE SO BY VETOING THE RENEWAL OF THE PATRIOT ACT, as well as simply ordering his agencies to stop these behaviors on his first day in office.

Obama campaigned on being a reformer and promising to restore freedom. There are countless videos of him promising to end this spying, end the use of drones, end the use of rendition, etc.

In reality he lied and did the opposite of all those things.

True, Bush started many of these programs, but Bush actually publicly came out in favor of those things so we knew where he stood and we could honestly oppose him from the beginning. Obama on the other hand lied opportunistically about opposing these just to get elected, then immediately changed his tune.

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D.W.
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As much as my personal lens gives me a much different picture of current and past events than Seneca, I couldn't agree more with the above assessment.

Reality has a tendency to shatter idealism but this isn’t a case of pragmatism moderating someone’s decisions once they are given responsibility. He promised to change things for the better and the most generous interpretations are he maintained the existing situation.

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Seneca
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Of all the problems facing this country, this is our greatest threat. If we allow the government to "break out" of its 'Constitutional Containment Box' and let it stay broken out for long enough to become all powerful in the future, then eventually our experiment in representative democracy is over. It may not happen in 10 years, 20 years or 30 years, but if this trend is not checked then within the next century you can bet it will happen if we do not rein in the government's abuse of this concept of "security over freedom."

In that struggle, Obama is one of the worst kinds of opponents. Why? Not because he overtly supported these measures, but because he opposed them in order to gain power then immediately betrayed us. My guess is many other politicians watched what he did and due to his success will mirror his campaign strategies, which bodes ill for us.

[ December 11, 2013, 01:28 PM: Message edited by: Seneca ]

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Mynnion
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Seneca & D.W. I don't disagree that this issue is of major concern. I do question whether it would have been any better with McCain or Romney. I can actually see it being worse at least with McCain.

I think Obama really screwed up leaving things as they were. Then again he may have decided he had other battles to fight.

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AI Wessex
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"The difference between Bush and Obama is that Bush openly believed what he was doing was good, and I opposed him."

You are saying that Obama does not believe what he is doing is good? You are making that clear of a distinction?

Really?

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TomDavidson
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I think the key word there is "openly." Seneca's correct, in that Obama previously condemned precisely the sort of programs he's expanded while in office.
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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by AI Wessex:
"The difference between Bush and Obama is that Bush openly believed what he was doing was good, and I opposed him."

You are saying that Obama does not believe what he is doing is good? You are making that clear of a distinction?

Really?

Depends which Obama you are talking about.

Campaign Obama or President Obama. Apparently they are different people.

Don't forget Term 1 Obama vs Term 2 Obama. We may be dealing with a clone army here...

These weren't some minor policy nuances that he reneged on, these were some of the fundamental issues he campaigned on as a candidate. It should have been a deal breaker for everyone who voted for him the first time.

[ December 11, 2013, 02:33 PM: Message edited by: Seneca ]

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TomDavidson
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quote:
It should have been a deal breaker for everyone who voted for him the first time.
It would have been for me, but Romney picked that douchebag Paul Ryan for his running mate.
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Seneca
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There were many choices besides Romney and Obama. The sad thing is, is that as long as people tell themselves that they have to vote for one of the two parties in order to have their vote "count" it remains a largely self-fulfilled prophecy that only two parties will ever be viable.
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TomDavidson
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quote:
There were many choices besides Romney and Obama.
Not by the time the election rolled around in Wisconsin, I'm afraid. That was close enough that making sure Paul Ryan wasn't a heartbeat away from the presidency became a bit of a priority.
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AI Wessex
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quote:
Depends which Obama you are talking about.

Campaign Obama or President Obama. Apparently they are different people.

Don't forget Term 1 Obama vs Term 2 Obama. We may be dealing with a clone army here...

Also campaign Bush (No Nation Building) vs. President Bush (invasions of two countries, extended occupations, rewriting Iraq's Constitution).

I submit that all candidates would openly admit that they changed important policy ideas based on changes in circumstances. Also, don't forget Mario Cuomo's famous dictum that candidates campaign in poetry but govern in prose.

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Seriati
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quote:
Originally posted by AI Wessex:
Also campaign Bush (No Nation Building) vs. President Bush (invasions of two countries, extended occupations, rewriting Iraq's Constitution).

More accurately, you have pre-9/11 Bush and post 9/11 Bush.

What is it that you see about the current administration that should have resulted in a flip on privacy and openness?

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AI Wessex
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quote:
More accurately, you have pre-9/11 Bush and post 9/11 Bush.

What is it that you see about the current administration that should have resulted in a flip on privacy and openness?

My point is that Bush was unable to anticipate events when he was a candidate, and when faced with that particular crisis he completely changed his earlier position to effect the opposite policy.

What caused Obama to change his mind? If you mean specifically, I don't know. We may or may not ever know, but that doesn't mean he wasn't just as sincere as some here seem to be crediting Bush as having been.

As a mental exercise, do you think your current attitudes on the myriad things a President has to deal with would all be exactly the same after you were in office for a year or so?

While you're thinking about that, why don't you consider giving Obama credit for all the things he did that he said he would do, if you think consistency is the mark of a true leader.

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Seneca
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As a governor Bush was a Washington DC outsider with no clearance or briefing privileges.

As a Senator Barack Obama knew everything or most of the things that were going on with the government, and he certainly felt he knew enough about our security situation to come out passionately and vehemently against wiretaps, drones, Guantanamo, etc. .

See the difference?

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NobleHunter
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What basis do you have to claim that Obama knew "everything or most of the things"? I would expect much would have been kept from the Senate for secrecy's sake.

Also, Obama's reversal on this subject is exactly what I would expect if he had encountered new information upon becoming President.

I also expect the agencies responsible for such activities ensure that the new information justifies their existence.

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AI Wessex
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"As a governor Bush was a Washington DC outsider with no clearance or briefing privileges."

In other words, Bush didn't know what he was talking about? I may be misremembering, but if I recall rightly he had stocked his campaign advisors with a long list of such "insiders". Not to mention that Presidential candidates do get special briefings on international issues from the Executive. But you think he didn't absorb or understand all that and that's why he flip-flopped?

Obama served on the Foreign Relations Committee in the Senate, but he didn't necessarily "know more" than Bush.

"As a Senator Barack Obama knew everything or most of the things that were going on with the government, and he certainly felt he knew enough about our security situation to come out passionately and vehemently against wiretaps, drones, Guantanamo, etc. ."

You have a remarkably selective (and anti-Obama, Bush-neutral) memory [Smile] . Bush made this bold statement during the 2000 campaign:
quote:
"If we don't stop extending our troops all around the world in nation-building missions, then we're going to have a serious problem coming down the road. And I'm going to prevent that."
and yet there is plenty of evidence that he started planning an invasion of Iraq almost a year before 9/11. What made him change his mind? Or did he plan to invade Iraq all along and was looking for an excuse?
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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by NobleHunter:
What basis do you have to claim that Obama knew "everything or most of the things"? I would expect much would have been kept from the Senate for secrecy's sake.

Also, Obama's reversal on this subject is exactly what I would expect if he had encountered new information upon becoming President.

I also expect the agencies responsible for such activities ensure that the new information justifies their existence.

Because the government SAID that the briefed the full congress in closed-door sessions on all the major and significant parts of the programs. True, some senators and reps didn't have ALL the details but according to the government they all knew the SCOPE of the programs.
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AI Wessex
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You're flailing again. Obama: bad, Bush: meh.
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D.W.
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I can't say you are wrong NobleHunter but wouldn't you expect at least some effort to be put forward to explain or justify such a reversal to the public?

I realize most of the sheep don't care, but for those who do, this was a very significant betrayal. Instead the security concerns are treated as a foce of nature no man could control, and largely this is accepted by both sides.

Even something as vague as, "If you knew what I knew, you would understand I had no choice but to maintain and expand these policies." would be enough for the more trusting. Instead by those who believe the lack of privacy is warented they get to satisfyingly go "I told you so." and those who rail against them feel manipulated by a liar and/or fool.

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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by AI Wessex:
You're flailing again. Obama: bad, Bush: meh.

Is that all this is for you, some partisan game? There is more at stake here than scoring points and playing a comparison game with people who are no longer in office. I thought Bush was an awful President. But he was a known monster that I opposed from the beginning for his associations with PNAC.

Obama promised to end Bush's evils and corruptions. He was in a unique position to know more about them as a Senator than citizens were, and yet, he betrayed us the moment he took office.

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AI Wessex
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""If you knew what I knew, you would understand I had no choice but to maintain and expand these policies." would be enough for the more trusting."

Isn't that implied? And wouldn't it look a bit foolish if he came out and said, "I, uh, have received new -- secret! -- information, so I am going to revise my policy toward the <X> faction in <country> and allow them to have <$N> of US weapons if they sign a certain document in the next, say, 12 hours. Otherwise, we will continue to denounce and bomb them."

People who are suspicious, or even intensely interested for perfectly innocuous reasons, will always want more information than they have. It is only the truly mistrustful who insist that if they don't know everything there is a nefarious purpose behind the lack of disclosure. But that won't really work, as we have amply seen, since no matter what information is disclosed some people will insist it is either false or incomplete, or hints at further hidden purposes.

You can't win, so why play the game? As one of the Ford's (or was it Disraeli?) said, "Never complain, never explain."

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D.W.
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quote:
And wouldn't it look a bit foolish if he came out and said, "I, uh, have received new -- secret! -- information, so I am going to revise my policy toward the <X> faction in <country> and allow them to have <$N> of US weapons if they sign a certain document in the next, say, 12 hours. Otherwise, we will continue to denounce and bomb them."
It would only be foolish in that it may compromise our ability to get a deal with the faction or have the effort to support them thwarted due to tipping our hand to the faction opposing them. Otherwise… No, that would be the ideal address to the American population any time a questionable foreign policy decision was being made. That however is not possible in a strategic sense.

The problem is that’s not what we are talking about. There are rules set up to protect us from abuse. These rules do make life difficult for our policy makers and those charged with keeping us safe. Any decision to alter those rules to make us more safe should NEVER be in the hands of those capable of abusing us with those alterations. It doesn’t even matter if they are likely to do so. The possibility shouldn’t even be there. If we give up any of these safeguards against abuse to gain security against hostile forces then it should be an informed decision and it should be granted by those who are currently protected from abuse, not actions taken by those capable of the abuse.

[ December 12, 2013, 04:07 PM: Message edited by: D.W. ]

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Seneca
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God forbid that Obama's pride takes a hit to preserve silly things like Constitutional rights and civil liberties...
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AI Wessex
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DW, I was responding to the assertion that Bush was honest to begin with and changed his policy for honest reasons, and that the same could not be said for Obama. In this case Seneca insists that Obama is lying, secretive and never intended to do what he said.

Which I find interesting, because so much of what he condemns Obama for are policies and situations Bush created and left for him to clean up. Yet, for someone who hates both parties equally, he has nothing bad to say about anything the Republicans or their President did. For instance, the attack on "silly things like Constitutional rights and civil liberties" with the Patriot Act, FISA extensions and NSA spying was all instigated by Bush.

You'll find that liberals have been consistent that all of those things are problematic or downright and truly "anti-freedom". Obama has not moved aggressively to reverse those steps, and has allowed some of them to expand, which is especially jarring because they appear to be exactly the kinds of things his career in community and public life suggest he opposes.

I want to know why, as well, but I don't expect him to say openly what his reasons are in many cases. All Presidents in my lifetime have conducted much of their "business" in private, especially when it comes to things that fall into the realm of "national security". That's a fact, not an explanation or excuse.

Another more prosaic but more fundamental reason why these things continue is because that's what happens when you put major pieces of machinery in place in government. It's even harder to stop when what you're doing is connected to national security concerns.

The last reason not to expect it is simply the fact that technology follows a course of continual development, power and capacity. If you find the NSA collection of data for national security purposes evil, I think you should be even more outraged that stores take your picture continuously, track your purchases, habits and even your very movements all for the sake of manipulating you into buying their goods.

So complain all you want that the government knows (like Verizon, Google and K-Mart) who you talked to on the phone. But take a moment to look around your house and see how shallow corporations are continually finding ways to control your life every single day.

If you think I'm wrong about that, tell my why you just had to buy that {doll, toy, coffee maker, shirt, vacation in Cancun...}. If your answer is "because you wanted it", then clearly their mind-control program has been as effective as they hoped. The government's mind-control (aka propaganda machine) has obviously not been nearly as successful, since people keep whining about almost everything it does.

[ December 13, 2013, 08:03 AM: Message edited by: AI Wessex ]

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NobleHunter
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quote:
he has nothing bad to say about anything the Republicans or their President did.
To be fair, Seneca wasn't on Ornery when Bush was in power. There isn't much point in complaining about Bush after he left office. And the core of these programs are based in the executive, so bitching out the congressional Republicans wouldn't be too useful either.

Until and unless the Republicans retake the White House, Seneca isn't going to have much opportunity to demonstrate his bi-partisan disdain for Republican statists on this subject. He could do more to sound less rabidly partisan but that's a question of tactics rather than belief.

quote:
God forbid that Obama's pride takes a hit to preserve silly things like Constitutional rights and civil liberties...
I think it's more a belief that public attention and criticism would degrade the effectiveness of these programs. We're supposed to believe that the wiretaps had to be secret in order to maintain their effectiveness. Having the president publically justify his new support for them would have been detrimental to secrecy.
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AI Wessex
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"To be fair, Seneca wasn't on Ornery when Bush was in power."

When we talk about Viet Nam or taxes, we complain about (or praise) the basis for why they are the way they are. Nobody was on Ornery in the 60's. Obama didn't create any of the programs that he is being attacked for, with the notable exception of the ACA, which closely resembles Romney's plan in Massachusetts and in many respects resembles the Heritage Foundation plan from the late 80's. Let's give credit or blame fairly.

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Seriati
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So after reading that chain of response since my last post, I'm just going to quote myself:
quote:
So again, NSA massively overreaches, violates all our rights, the Administration that is in power and could stop does little, may even be making it worse, and the ONLY thing that apparently matters is that we find a way to blame the minority party and the last administration?

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D.W.
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quote:
I want to know why, as well, but I don't expect him to say openly what his reasons are in many cases. All Presidents in my lifetime have conducted much of their "business" in private, especially when it comes to things that fall into the realm of "national security". That's a fact, not an explanation or excuse.
I freely admit I paid far less attention even a dozen years ago to presidential campaigns. Have All past presidents made it a campaign issue to reign in overzealous privacy intrusions and questionable legal decisions in the name of national security? Maybe Obama is honest and just stupid enough to have made a big deal out of these topics at the time?

I’m not so much shocked about what is being attempted. I’m just disappointed that we were promised an alternative and didn’t get it. I get that it annoys you that Seneca doesn’t put the blame at Bush’s feet. You however are, as, if not more stubborn, in your total rejection that it is Obama’s mess to clean up, regardless of who made it. He after all told us if we elected him, he would clean it up. In fact, hewanted to clean it up for us!

If the well maintained illusion of choice or convenient scapegoats lets you sleep better at night then keep fighting the good fight. You seem to be in agreement with Seneca that these things should change or at least be moderated yet defending Obama and smearing Bush appears to take precedence. Giving credit or blame fairly? The only reason to do so is to reward good behavior and to point out to others what bad behavior we must be on guard for in the future. You don’t think failure to take any effective steps towards such (in my opinion) an important campaign promise is something which should be pointed out to his supporters?

I believe Obama was the best candidate we had to pick from. I even believe I’d still pick him over the other options knowing full well he was full of crap regarding his strong position on privacy concerns and ending quasi legal excesses. It still pisses me off something fierce however.

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NobleHunter
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quote:
When we talk about Viet Nam or taxes, we complain about (or praise) the basis for why they are the way they are. Nobody was on Ornery in the 60's. Obama didn't create any of the programs that he is being attacked for, with the notable exception of the ACA, which closely resembles Romney's plan in Massachusetts and in many respects resembles the Heritage Foundation plan from the late 80's. Let's give credit or blame fairly.
But we aren't talking about NSA spying before 2008, we're talking about them spying now. Obama isn't being attacked for creating the programs, he's being attacked for maintaining them, in clear contrast to his position prior to being elected. In doing so, he reflect a consensus in Washington, but severely damages the public's ability to hold those parts of government to account.

The US could really benefit from a third party that could hold and promote heretical views to highlight and disrupt the consensus between the two main parties. The NDP and successors serve this role in Canada. If any of their positions become popular, the Liberals or the Tories (historically the Liberals) would steal it and shore up their own support.

As it is, the only live choice is the (socially) right wing and the (socially) left wing of the security ueber alles party.

[ December 13, 2013, 10:34 AM: Message edited by: NobleHunter ]

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AI Wessex
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DW: "I freely admit I paid far less attention even a dozen years ago to presidential campaigns. Have All past presidents made it a campaign issue to reign in overzealous privacy intrusions and questionable legal decisions in the name of national security? Maybe Obama is honest and just stupid enough to have made a big deal out of these topics at the time?"

Each Administration and generation has its own concerns. I was of draftable age during the Vietnam War era and can tell you how horrified millions of us were with the deceptions foisted on us by Johnson and later by Nixon. Read up on the whole Tonkin Bay debacle and you'll find a worthy predecessor to Bush's strategy to take us to war in Iraq. The Pentagon Papers were a revelation about the degree to which our government manipulated and lied to us for reasons that are still being analyzed 50 years later.

You don't know what you don't know, but insisting that such practices didn't exist and the world was all goodness until you discovered it is worse than naive, it perpetuates the cycle of replacing one set of possibly bad actors with your own, who for your own reasons you trust over those who came before. Seriously, other than Ford or Carter, name a President in recent memory who we haven't discovered to have deceived us in a way that "violated" our trust.

Seriati: "So after reading that chain of response since my last post, I'm just going to quote myself:..."

You are against clarifying what the underlying issue is and how it became the problem that has to be solved today? My frequent objections to Seneca's or occasionally some other poster's complaints is that the pattern more than suggests that the person is more concerned with venting their anger or hatred toward Obama than it is toward understanding those underlying concerns. You'll note that I *have* expressed my own unhappiness with what has happened in some of those areas, but I'm unwilling to engage in a serious discussion if it's framed around how Obama has deceived us. That's not the issue.

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Seriati
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quote:
Originally posted by AI Wessex:
You are against clarifying what the underlying issue is and how it became the problem that has to be solved today? My frequent objections to Seneca's or occasionally some other poster's complaints is that the pattern more than suggests that the person is more concerned with venting their anger or hatred toward Obama than it is toward understanding those underlying concerns. You'll note that I *have* expressed my own unhappiness with what has happened in some of those areas, but I'm unwilling to engage in a serious discussion if it's framed around how Obama has deceived us. That's not the issue.

Honestly Al, you couldn't be more wrong. That is exacly the issue. There's really only two ways to look at this. First, what I believe, the President was acting cynically when he made the claims he made. He knew it would be a big bonus in getting him elected, it was yet one more easy target against the Bush administration that let him present as a clear different choice and he was hostile or even just indifferent to actually implementing it (essentially the same quality of truthiniess as his initial claims that he was against gay marriage).

If that's the case, and many of us predicted it was real time, then his actions make sense to date, but he lied to you and to his other supporters and you should be mad at him.

On the other hand though, what if he was sincere (as I think you believe)? It would be far far worse. If someone who sincerely believed in abuse of rights to the point that they openly advocated that they would have the most open administration on record and end the Bush-era violations, gets into office and continues with these policies, it pretty much should make it clear that our rights are lost. If whatever "secret info" you premise your trust in his change of position on, is really so persuasive then we no one we can ever elect would in good faith make a different decsion.

Think about it, if he had an honestly held belief and not only did not stop it, but may have increased it, never mind any constitutional limitations, do we have any hope?

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AI Wessex
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"First, what I believe, the President was acting cynically when he made the claims he made."

Belief, yes, but what evidence?

"If that's the case, and many of us predicted it was real time..."

Rest assured many predicted a great many things, but only predictions based on evidence mean anything. Otherwise, by a plurality Obama would be a Muslim.

"Think about it, if he had an honestly held belief and not only did not stop it, but may have increased it, never mind any constitutional limitations, do we have any hope?"

Hope, yes. The expression of hope in a democracy is the ballot box. But, let's be realistic how much change can be made and in what time frame.

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D.W.
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No the third way to look at it is Obama is a helpless victim being prevented from doing what he knows is right by the unassailable mechanisms his evil genius predecessor put in place. All we can do at this point is wail at the unfairness of it all and shake our fist at the sky. Then we can commiserate with poor Obama who tried his best but wasn’t up to the task. [Roll Eyes]
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Seriati
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quote:
Originally posted by AI Wessex:
[QB] "First, what I believe, the President was acting cynically when he made the claims he made."

Belief, yes, but what evidence?

The evidence is that once he had the reighns of power he did not puruse the goals. Ever here of the idea of actions speaking loader than words?

It's never been possible for people to be sure about what someone actually believes or why they do something, all we can practically do is observe and infer. Is there a reason you don't believe that we should infer from observation?
quote:
"If that's the case, and many of us predicted it was real time..."

Rest assured many predicted a great many things, but only predictions based on evidence mean anything. Otherwise, by a plurality Obama would be a Muslim.

Is Obama's faith a prediction? Honestly, it wasn't like the President didn't telegraph his personality and what he intended before he was elected. I'm still amazed at the amount of people who fainted at his election speeches the first time around. Who honestly believed that we were getting a new kind of politician, one would be building bridges, when everything in his history pointed the other way.
quote:
"Think about it, if he had an honestly held belief and not only did not stop it, but may have increased it, never mind any constitutional limitations, do we have any hope?"

Hope, yes. The expression of hope in a democracy is the ballot box. But, let's be realistic how much change can be made and in what time frame.

Did you even read what I wrote? How does the ballot box fix the loss of our rights, if even someone committed to protecting them gets into office and - as you seem to believe - in good faith continues to violate them? There can be no electoral solution if even reformers will change tune after taking office.
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AI Wessex
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"No the third way to look at it is Obama is a helpless victim being prevented from doing what he knows is right by the unassailable mechanisms his evil genius predecessor put in place. All we can do at this point is wail at the unfairness of it all and shake our fist at the sky. Then we can commiserate with poor Obama who tried his best but wasn’t up to the task. [Roll Eyes]"

He is as much as all Presidents' plans are held hostage by their predecessors. Bush did break the bonds of his father's plan to live with sanctions on Iraq. Go, Jr!

OTOH, Obama has been blessed with the most obstructionist Congress in history. Go, GOP! For instance, the Senate GOP is mounting a herculean effort right now to block his appointments because they, uh, because, ...

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AI Wessex
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"The evidence is that once he had the reighns of power he did not puruse the goals."

You know this how?

"Is there a reason you don't believe that we should infer from observation?"

We should infer when we have evidence, otherwise it is more speculation than inference.

"Is Obama's faith a prediction? Honestly, it wasn't like the President didn't telegraph his personality and what he intended before he was elected. I'm still amazed at the amount of people who fainted at his election speeches the first time around. Who honestly believed that we were getting a new kind of politician, one would be building bridges, when everything in his history pointed the other way."

In a sense, speculation on his faith is not much different from a prediction in that it is based entirely on a lack of information coupled with strong bias. I confess that I found his rhetoric exciting, but as I mentioned the other day, candidates campaign in poetry but govern in prose. Obama has more poetic skills than McCain or Romney, fer sher, but that doesn't make him less honest. We can go point-by-point with both of those candidates, if you like, and compare their doggerel against what they wanted to do.

"How does the ballot box fix the loss of our rights..."

What other recourse do you have? Is it time for the right wing revolution that has been threatened ever since his election (and before his inauguration)?

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Mynnion
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DW
quote:
No the third way to look at it is Obama is a helpless victim being prevented from doing what he knows is right by the unassailable mechanisms his evil genius predecessor put in place. All we can do at this point is wail at the unfairness of it all and shake our fist at the sky. Then we can commiserate with poor Obama who tried his best but wasn’t up to the task. [Roll Eyes]
It is possible that there is a fragment of truth in the third option. Not the evil predecessor but that there may be self protection mechanisms that are in place in the intelligence community that Obama was not able to tackle with two wars and an economic crisis in play. I generally scoff at conspiracy theorists but given the nature of this particular beast it is not out of the realm of possibility.

That being said I still think he should curtail NSA/FBI/CIAs activities that breach our constitutional rights.

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Seneca
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quote:
he has nothing bad to say about anything the Republicans or their President did
Easily disproved on the same thread and even the same webpage...


quote:
... Bush's evils and corruptions
quote:
I thought Bush was an awful President. But he was a known monster that I opposed from the beginning for his associations with PNAC.
I could go on but I hope that's enough to disprove your absurd claim.
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D.W.
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Of course there is a fragment there Mynnion. That's why it makes for a 3rd option. [Smile]

But it must be exaggerated in such a way to explain the fixation AI is demonstrating with his insistence that denouncing Bush is somehow more important, to the point of forgiving Obama and stamping out any criticism directed at him for failure to correct the "problem".

If he really is powerless to act then just tell the people that. Or is a president powerless to reign in such a beast just that terrifying to the population that speaking out would be a security risk in itself? Maybe his silence is for the good of the country?

"Well, ya it sucks, but the alternatives sure would be worse! I better sit on this and let them think I'm a liar and/or stupid..."

If he IS a skilled political animal, then he should be able to use that inability to leverage his party into greater power moving forward.

"The presidency isn't enough my friends. To truly achieve everything I promised we need to control the house and senate as well!"

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