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Profile, Quizzical

Domestic surveillance: angry political post

First, in understanding this monstrosity, it must be stressed that the Democratic Party is a national party with a fairly large liberal wing, and a fairly small conservative wing. This is a very bad law, and conduct of Harry Reid, the Senate majority leader has been poor, but in fact it's a minority of Democrats who have broken rank. It is not a reason to give up on the Democratic Party, however much many of us would like to do so. House leader Pelosi apparently would like to revisit this vote; I hope she does so.

Unlimited surveillance, which the Congress has just licensed with this law, is one half of the police power of a totalitarian state. The other is unlimited detention and execution. A this point, the Bush administration claims that power for anyone they declare to be an "enemy combatant"; the courts have so far limited that interpretation. If the Congress passes a law granting that authority to the Executive, we will know that a majority of Congress has completely abdicated in favor of the Presidency.

Like just about everyone outside of the Congress I can only wonder why a majority supported this. I don't believe the congressmen who voted for this are deluded or deceived, especially not the Senators. They're pols, they know what power is--many are lawyers as well. And they know that that power can be used against them and theirs. As well, any reasonable construction makes it clear that they've broken their congressional oath to defend the constitution--the former military officers have broken their military oaths as well. Where is their honor? Are these not, exactly, the conservative virtues: honor and integrity? How can they have forgotten, after preaching them, over and over? I do not believe they all started as pious hypocrites, so I suppose they have been corrupted.

One of the most frightening things about truly corrupt rulers is their ability to corrupt those around them. Bush and Cheney, it seems, possess this ability in full measure. How is honor to be restored, once lost? I suppose renunciation of the dishonorable acts--repentance--, followed, as much as possible, by setting matters right. I do not expect such a change in heart on the part of a Congressional majority; if matters are to be made right it will have to be by the public and it will take a long time. And all the while, the global problems get worse and worse--it will go ill for the USA if we spend a generation getting our own house in order, while the rest of the world moves on. Congress acts like this is a private game, but it is not, not since 1945. Neither the planetary environment nor geopolitics are going to wait for us to set our house in order.

Save us, Al!

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i am 58 years old and "WAS" a lifelong republican but have become so sickened by the way they did for 6 years and am now with democrats.after this vote tho i have serious doubts that they understand their duty to the constitution and to "We The People".i really wonder where the people my age are because the fear of a nuke button never created this kind of fear level,we went on with life.time for more ammo i guess before they round up our weapons next?

Seems neither Democratic nor Republican Congressional leadership remembers that oath, does it? Some of the Democratic members do, at least. I can only hope that we can eventually bring the party along; Pelosi, at least, is going to get some serious flak from her constituents, and I think that a lot of House Democrats in scrappy urban districts are likely to see primary challenges.

Fear...nuclear war was a distant threat and the continental USA hasn't seriously been threatened by a foreign power since 1814 or so, and the last major attack on one of our possessions was in 1941. But attacks have been on the Continental USA have been possible since World War I and 9/11 brought that home. The "Cold" War entrained the world, and the US public--and even most of the DoD--forgot there were other threats; had we had even the level of passenger aircraft security used in Western Europe, 9/11 would not have happened. As if that is not enough, W. Bush appears to be a physical coward, and it appears that his fear, like his corruption, is influencing us.

Weapons...I suspect, that, worst coming, that rather than coming for our weapons, this lot is more likely to try to co-opt some of the weapon-owners. It's a scary thought; civil war in the heavily-armed modern USA would be terribly bloody, even without the intervention of the national military.

nuclear war was so close and people didnt realize it?
we were at roosevelt roads naval base.it was like over night invasion when all the equipment and soldiers were brought in.this 11 year old child "noticed" that all green had disappeared which was a hallmark of military bases,even officers golf course had tents.i called my dad to ask if we had been invaded.the only unfiltered news was on ham radio.so what this tells me is that the failure by government is even worse than i think.because they should be reassuring people instead of spreading more fear.
fascism is here.

But most of us don't live on bases, after all. And for non-military people born after about 1955, nuclear war was something our parents worried about; for us it was like...part of the scenery; one knew it was there, but one didn't think about it too much. What we are fighting, I think, is worse than fascism; fascism was nationalist and, by its nature, limited to a particular nation-state. This is corporate internationalism, and therefore global.

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