Dafremen I saw this on the news today. Please, I realize that I'm long winded...CONSTANTLY. No matter how much this is NOT what you feel like reading, give it a read. Not so much for me, as for you, those you care about...and for us all. I thank you in advance from the bottom of my heart for your indulgence.

Federal Attorney Ashcroft urged quick passage of new police powers sought by the Bush administration, including:

1. The authority to detain aliens suspected of ties to terrorists indefinitely and without the right to appeal.
(Define terrorist. Now expand your definition. See how easy that was?)

2. The administration also wants wiretap evidence obtained in other countries in violation of the Fourth Amendment to be admissible in court.
(Sure, no problem. So wiretapping Americans without a court order is ok, as long as they are in other countries. Like Puerto Rico, Canada or the Bahamas. Think about it.)

3. In addition, the administration is asking for secret court authorization for wiretaps.
(Interesting, so once the judicial and executive branches have the approval of the legislative branch on this thing, we're pretty much at their discretion. I heard Ashcroft talking about this "secret court authorization". What it means is that they will be able to go from jurisdiction to jurisdiction with the SAME court order. A "cover all" wiretap order. It will allow them to wiretap the phones of anyone that is even ASSOCIATED or comes in CONTACT with a wire tapped suspect...WITHOUT getting any additional warrants or court orders. If you have a suspected "terrorist" come to your door selling newspaper subscriptions, you COULD be wiretapped. Your call, want that?)

4. Longer jail terms for terrorists.
(REPEAT from #1:Define terrorist. Now expand your definition. See how easy that was?
I'm not against longer jail terms for VERY specific criminal activities related to terrorism. Going to pilot's school had better not be one of them.)

5. Access to usersInternet information without a court order
(So now the script kiddies and the government will have something in common, they'll both be reading our correspondence without our knowledge OR the court's permission.)

6. Authority to review telephone voice-mail messages with only a search warrant.
(A search warrant is constitutionally required to be specific. It has to be specific about WHAT they think they will find and what areas they think that they might find them in. This is a CRUCIAL constitutional protection, that protects citizens in a country that believes in "innocent until proven guilty." Unfortunately, law enforcement needs to suspect EVERYONE in order to perform IT'S job effectively. So they think EVERYONE'S guilty, but the LAW says NOONE'S guilty without proof of guilt. Requiring specifics in search warrants, keeps overzealous law enforcement in check, to some extent. Allowing authorities to review personal telephone messages (without allowing the benefit of legal representation) could ALSO be a violation of a citizen's 5th Amendment rights. Remember, these are LAWS. They will apply to us ALL if they are passed. Not just "terrorists". That means yer grandkids too.)

Even MORE telling was this commentary about the scene of the hearings at the House of Representatives:

"But while Ashcroft’s testimony was open to television cameras, the committee’s Republican staff ordered camera crews to leave, including those of C-SPAN, the public interest network available on cable television systems nationwide, NBC NewsMike Viqueira reported.

Print reporters and members of the general public were allowed to remain, meaning the speakers’ comments could be reported, but none of them would be available for Americans to see or hear for themselves."

This is in direct violation of House of Representative rules:

"Whenever a hearing or meeting conducted by a committee or subcommittee is open to the public, those proceedings shall be open to coverage by audio and visual means.."

THIS is what I have been expecting to happen. DON'T LET THEM DO THESE THINGS.

The time for sitting on our hands, letting OTHERS decide which freedoms we need and which we do not, is over. Do NOT allow this to happen. It is just another step in our ongoing journey away from self-reliance and independence. Another phase in our continuing metamorphasis into a culture of dependence.

Millions have died because they believed in this way of life. More folx are going to die for the same cause..will we NOW let all of those deaths be in vain? They will be, if the ideals for which those people died are allowed to be legislated out of existence.

These new rules amount to BROAD discretion for law enforcement in their pursuit of criminals and the evidence required to prosecute them. They amount to Big Brother Phase I, people. I wish I WERE paranoid, but whether intentionally or not, they ARE out to get us. In a way, THEY are a bigger threat to American citizens, over time, than Osama Bin Laden could ever be. Yes, let's get Osama, but let's watch our backs too. If government is a watchdog, and terrorists are the fox..then we are the chickens in the coop. Last I heard, dogs eat chickens too. The easiest way to keep it from coming to that, is to peck 'em on the nose, so that Uncle Sam knows, the freedoms of American citizens will NOT be an easy meal to digest and crap away.)

I have always asked folx to believe in what America stands for. I have NEVER asked folx to believe in the individuals that RUN America's government. Watch them...watch them closely...even if they DO seem honest enough. Never stop watching, that is the price we pay for what freedoms we still have. If we don't pay that price now, we will pay it later...with less freedoms to show for the effort.

If you value peace and you hate war, then stay alert, be vigilant and the American people will never have CAUSE to rise up in revolt as we once did 225 years ago. Rather than WAIT for it to get to that point, we should stop the slow but steady erosion of American liberties NOW...for surely we will lose the MEANS to stop it within the next generation's lifetime..

We have a common cause as Americans now, let's not start the fight against terrorism by equipping our OWN government to terrorize it's citizens. Keep yer eyes on our fellow wolves in Washington, lest they mistake us all for sheep.

These freedoms aren't just yours either. They belong to the many Americans who have yet to be born, as well. Don't let them down; they cannot speak for themselves, so we must speak for them. When we give up one freedom, no matter how noble the cause, we give it up for all Americans, even if the problem we hope to "solve" for OUR generation has disappeared by the time THEIR generation comes around. Meanwhile, the sacrificed liberty is still gone, they didn't want to give it up, we did. They pay the consequences, we pay the consequences, the bad guys? They rarely do.

I am begging you, if you've never given a crap about a thing in your life, care about this.
It WILL directly affect your life in one way or another, long after the terrorists have figured out ways around it. I guarantee that it will. Write, call...or spread the word...just passing the warning on to others is enough.

"We the people" are the 4th branch of government. We are the ultimate Check and Balance in this country, whether we want the job or not. We are charged with watching our government and telling it exactly what we will and will NOT tolerate of it, what we do and don't expect of it. When we stop doing that job, this country loses some of what made it worth dying for in the first place.

I'm an American. I believe in the ideals upon which this country was founded, and even if I do not approve of what we have given up since the beginning, I would gladly die to preserve what is left. It's not patriotic sacrifice to give up liberties, it's slow, deliberate, national suicide. I do NOT believe in America: the hunk of land. I believe in America: of the people, by the people, for the people. I believe in America: the ideals.

The vacation's over America...wake up already, dammit, danger is all around us. Over there OR over here, protect yourselves, depend upon yourselves, be alert, give up NOTHING...freedom is not a handout, it's a paycheck for our vigilance...let's start earning it again....by not accepting anymore "pay cuts."
flippo yea now thats some food for thought. too bad americans arent usually too hungry 010927
Dafremen Follow up note:

During a speech to the Employees of the Airline Industry, televised nationally, President Bush makes the following Freudian slip while improvising a monologue on the tarmac at Chicago's O'Hare airport.

"...to win this fight against freedom...er to win this fight against global terrorism..."

I think he means both. I'm with him on the second one....who's with him on the first?
Alexander Beetle The problem is, this country is severly overflowing with followers, with a dangerous dearth of leaders, or at least of leaders who don't already work for THEM. We can all see it happening, but we can't do anything about it because we lack the conviction to make a banner. Perhaps it's better this way, perhaps we actually deserve to have this done to us. Fuck. And I was in such a good mood, too. 011028
Alexander Beetle I cannot believe I just said that. I am an ignorant bastard, and I cry all your pardons. 011028
Dafremen No...you were right. We deserve what we're letting them serve us. You deserve a pat on hte back for having the balls to say so. 020623
Dafremen It continues.

Dafremen An email reply from some lady who read this thing(I've removed her name for reasons that should become obvious as you read on):

This country is in such danger, that I think the law should apply to Arabs
only. If there is a way to exempt Americans (other than Arab-Americans or
Arabs what-ever), then I would vote for these laws.

This is a time when we must use this "profiling" -

I was alive when the Japanese people were rounded up and put in "safe"
places - away from the Americans.

I truly believe that it is time to begin "rounding" up the Arabs in this

I now begin to think like a "hawk" ......

My life, my children's lives, my grandchildren's lives and all of the rest
of our lives are in grave danger - thanks to middle-eastern people who are
more than willing to destroy us.

If you do not agree and want to wait quietly for these terrible things to
happen to us, please don't bother me with your ideas...
Dafremen YEESH! Ok, so that's an interesting perspective from a very disturbed senior citizen. Here's how I replied:


I think that you will find my concern for the safety of my family to be secondary only to my concern for the safety of my great grandchildren and of
the American way of life.

I am concerned for how future generations will live long after this whole Middle Eastern mess has been all but forgotten in say 50 years.

How could the freedoms that we steal from our descendents today have eased
their burdens as Americans? As humans?Greatly I imagine. If the establishment of our entire system of government eased the burdens of the world, imagine what just ONE of those freedoms means to a single human? An American human who had no voice to say "No, don't take that freedom away from me...I'm going to need it 25 years after you die because..."

No voice but OUR voice, and we were busy covering our heads and hiding under
our desks when we should have been speaking out against legislating those
freedoms away. I will NOT be called unAmerican for refusing to believe that
America is about just living and being safe. It's about freedom first and
foremost. What good is life without freedom? What good is safety without
liberty? In this country...freedom and liberty are ALL we yak about on and

Now it's time to put up or shut up and we're putting up our rights, our
freedoms, our house our car...ANYTHING so that SOMEONE will protect us.

I believe in America, I believe in this war on terrorism. I do NOT believe
in rounding up all of the Arabs Americans, and I do not believe that bombing the living crap out of Afghanistan is the way to go(I'm behind the U.S.A. 100% if we DO bomb the living daylights out of them though)

The only way for us to be truly safe and secure, always would be to make
America a closed society, subject to constant surveillance by governmental

That would NOT be America, that would NOT be the country that I or most of
my shipmates fought for when we went (fully prepared to die) to the Gulf
during Desert Storm. Yea..I fought for my country...so did my Grandfather.
He was in the Army Air Corps WWII and he's my hero. Don't call me unAmerican..please...you have no idea how American I am...to the
bone...heck...to the marrow.

I WILL die for this country, but I'm not eager to die.

I will use my bare hands or whatever means at my disposal to fight for my
countrymen and their right to live in a free and open society, but I would
rather not have to.

I would rather that we didn't give up our freedoms. The very thing that so
many have fought for and many, many have died for is something that I
cherish too deeply to give up just so that I can save my own skin and feel
safe. No sireebob.

You and I have something in common, we're Americans.
You want to round up the Arab-Americans, I don't.
You'd like to give the government more authority, I would rather not.
You would like to be safe, I would too.
You would like to be happy, the feeling is mutual.
You would like everything to go back to some time, any time before September
11th...I think we all feel that way.

This is no time for Americans to go running from their liberties because the
boogeyman jumped out and hurt us.

We ARE Americans after all...in the land of the FREE...the home of the
Not the land of the PROTECTED, home of the AFRAID.

We will take care of this problem, we will resume the American way of life,
be it your American way of living, my American way of living...or yes..even
the Arab-Americans' American way of living...they are, after all Americans
too and entitled to life, liberty and the freedom to pursue happiness.

In my blather titled "Of eagles..and wolves" I simply called on American
citizens to watch both the enemy without...and our sometimes over protective government here within.

I'm sorry if my call to be watchful has upset you, you can consider this our
final correspondence unless you indicate otherwise.

I ask only that you remember this one thing...FREEDOM is the theme of this
country. We can't nickel and dime them away forever before they are gone.
They aren't ours to nickel and dime away, for one...they belong to all of
us...including our great great grandkids.

For another...we only have so many of them to piddle away.

A poem for the victims of September 11 in parting..with hopes that it
brings us closer to understanding, not how we differ as Americans, but what
we SHARE as Americans. Good luck to you Ms. ________.

See also: LEAVES
dafremen No one listened until recently. Much too late to stop it.

Perhaps someone will listen to...a_final_piece_of_bad_advice
probably not though. Everyone knows so much better than a fool like me. After all, it's a competition..not a community.
daf see also: a_final_piece_of_bad_advice 080822
dafremen Mind giving this a read?


Remember, you read it here first..BEFORE the Patriot Act was passed.
Doar i listen dude.

dafremen see also: lost_rights_don't_make_it_right 130704
epitome of incomprehensibility On a somewhat related note, I don't see why Edward Snowden should be treated as a criminal. Fired from his job? Sure - he broke the terms of confidentiality, because he believed Americans should have the right to know about the surveillance - but he should be able to get another job in his home country, not have to go into exile. The whole thing is ridiculous, treating whistleblowers like terrorists.

Anyway, happy Independence Day.
dafremen Quick prediction: All of this bullshit in Yemen, coincides with this NSA scandal. They are trying to "Wag the Dog" (ie. distract the public) again. I predict that the NSA and other federal law enforcement types will:

A. Foil some plot or another..which will be highly publicized. (It's a staged "terrorist plot", or one they let slip through the cracks on purpose in case they needed an "instant threat"..so don't be too impressed.)

B. Will claim that the plot would never have been detected without their program of collecting everyone's internet, voice and text data. They will claim that here is proof positive that they need to be able to spy on everyone.

C. Media coverage of the Snowden, NSA incident will trickle down to nothing, and in fact..we will start to see positive media coverage of the NSA's Big Brother policies. That's if they are mentioned at all. They are hoping the public will just forget and or choose to remain oblivious if given the choice.

Those are my predictions. For those of you just tuning in, I predicted that the Patriot Act would be used as authorization for blanket wiretapping when the legislation was first introduced back in October of 2001 here:


I also predicted that we would start seeing gun related incidents on the news when gun control legislation was first introduced into the House back in the 90s. A rash of school shootings suddenly became a hot, talk show topic, even though they'd normally been treated as "in other tragic news" stories.

It's not a psychic gift, btw. It's simple to predict what greedy, power hungry dirtbags with no conscience will do in a given situation. They will always do that which makes them richer, more powerful and less likely to be removed from power. And they will always make it look as if they have their victims' best interest in mind. That's what con men, liars, sociopaths and sh--bags do.

Pass it on. We might stop falling for it..you never know.
dafremen Funny how every life is precious while those in power legislate away our freedoms in the name of security or try to get poorly tested pharmaceuticals onto the market..not so much when they're enforcing the new laws or fighting drug side-effect lawsuits. That's when lives are expendable and human dignity becomes prohibitively expensive. 140506
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