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Rand Paul Filibusters Brennan Nomination

Politics 2013 Rand Paul Filibuster Drone Policy Senate

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#21 Cait

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 12:44 PM

View PostQueenTiye, on 07 March 2013 - 12:30 PM, said:


But more often - what happens is exactly what IS happening.  People notice and talk about it.  And, an engaged citizenry is an important part of a functioning democracy.  Getting people to think and talk about an issue of importance is not a wasted effort.

QT

Are we sharing the same brain today?  LOL

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#22 QueenTiye

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 12:48 PM

View PostNonny, on 07 March 2013 - 12:29 PM, said:

View PostQueenTiye, on 07 March 2013 - 09:50 AM, said:

Well, you know, Nonny, even a broke clock is right, twice a day.  Rand Paul is RIGHT this time and he may never be right again.  I already don't like him, since he's the clown who asserted that he would have fired Hilary for Bengazi.  But for all that, he's both RIGHT on this issue, and RIGHT to actually  filibuster.  Truth is truth -

If, of course, it actually is truth.  I'd like to see a fact check, and not from a fact checker with an agenda.


Fair enough.  http://thedailybante...-to-washington/


Quote

He may not be Mr. Smith but Senator Rand Paul did exactly what I like to see Senators do, he executed an old school filibuster.  Sorry, Bob Cesca but I read the Eric Holder letter and to be honest, I think Paul has a point.  Here’s the actual letter.  The language that started all of this fuss was:


“The question you have posed is therefore entirely hypothetical, unlikely to occur, and onewe hope no President will ever have to confront. It is possible, I suppose, to imagine anextraordinary circumstance in which it would be necessary and appropriate under the Constitution and applicable laws of the United States for the President to authorize the military to use lethal force within the territory of the United States. For example, the President could conceivably have no choice but to authorize the military to use such force if necessary to protect the homeland in the circumstances of a catastrophic attack like the ones suffered on December 7, 1941, and September 11, 2001.”

The emphasis inserted is mine but while I think the administration is not planning any attacks on Americans who are in America, the answer he was looking for was “No.”

Embedded in there are links to other sources.

The point is - agree or disagree, this is a big deal, the adminstration's response is less than what I'd like it to be, and at some point someone ought to speak up and not just accept it on its face.  Some of those someones ought to be our congress.

Here's someone who I pretty much HATE quoting - but I will, for the sake of this conversation:

http://www.alternet....erican-citizens

Quote



Obama Officials Refuse to Say If They Believe They Can Assassinate American Citizens on US Soil




The administration's extreme secrecy is beginning to lead Senators to impede John Brennan's nomination to lead the CIA.
February 22, 2013

The Justice Department  "white paper" purporting to authorize Obama's power to extrajudicially execute US citizens was leaked three weeks ago. Since then, the administration - including the president himself and his nominee to lead the CIA,  John Brennan - has been repeatedly asked whether this authority extends to US soil, i.e., whether the president has the right to execute US citizens on US soil without charges. In each instance, they have refused to answer.

...the Committee raised the question with Brennan in the most straightforward way possible:
Obviously, that the US has not and does not intend to engage in such acts is entirely non-responsive to the question that was asked: whether they believe they have the authority to do so. To the extent any answer was provided, it came in Brennan's next answer. He was asked:


"Could you describe the geographical limits on the Administration's conduct drone strikes?"

Brennan's answer was that, in essence, there are no geographic limits to this power... (see Brennan's full answer  here).

QT

Een Draght Mackt Maght


#23 QueenTiye

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 12:50 PM

View PostCait, on 07 March 2013 - 12:44 PM, said:

View PostQueenTiye, on 07 March 2013 - 12:30 PM, said:


But more often - what happens is exactly what IS happening.  People notice and talk about it.  And, an engaged citizenry is an important part of a functioning democracy.  Getting people to think and talk about an issue of importance is not a wasted effort.

QT

Are we sharing the same brain today?  LOL

Quite possibly... LOL!

QT

Een Draght Mackt Maght


#24 Nonny

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 12:56 PM

As horrible as drones are, they are just another Pandora's Box item, like nuclear weapons, like napalm, like dynamite.  And frankly, I'm more worried about what Corporate America is planning to do with drones.  Certain types of weapons are way too profitable for the NRA to want to give them up, no matter how many little kids get shot up in their schools.  Same problem on the horizon with drones; they will be profitable.

Frankly, I'd rather see the use of drones limited to a military in the hands of a responsible C-i-C, but the previous one's misuse of the military still scares me.
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The once and future Nonny

"Give a man a gun and he can rob a bank, give a man a bank and he can rob the world." Can anyone tell me who I am quoting?  I found this with no attribution.

Fatal miscarriages are forever.

Stupid is stupid, this I believe. And ignorance is the worst kind of stupid, since ignorance is a choice.  Suzanne Brockmann

All things must be examined, debated, investigated without exception and without regard for anyone's feelings. Diderot

#25 Nonny

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 12:59 PM

Oh for crying out loud!  This is exactly the tempest in a teapot I thought it might be.  Rantin' Rand Paul is blowing smoke, so I'm crying foul.   :mad:

View PostQueenTiye, on 07 March 2013 - 12:48 PM, said:

View PostNonny, on 07 March 2013 - 12:29 PM, said:

View PostQueenTiye, on 07 March 2013 - 09:50 AM, said:

Well, you know, Nonny, even a broke clock is right, twice a day.  Rand Paul is RIGHT this time and he may never be right again.  I already don't like him, since he's the clown who asserted that he would have fired Hilary for Bengazi.  But for all that, he's both RIGHT on this issue, and RIGHT to actually  filibuster.  Truth is truth -

If, of course, it actually is truth.  I'd like to see a fact check, and not from a fact checker with an agenda.


Fair enough.  http://thedailybante...-to-washington/


Quote

He may not be Mr. Smith but Senator Rand Paul did exactly what I like to see Senators do, he executed an old school filibuster.  Sorry, Bob Cesca but I read the Eric Holder letter and to be honest, I think Paul has a point.  Here’s the actual letter.  The language that started all of this fuss was:


“The question you have posed is therefore entirely hypothetical, unlikely to occur, and onewe hope no President will ever have to confront. It is possible, I suppose, to imagine anextraordinary circumstance in which it would be necessary and appropriate under the Constitution and applicable laws of the United States for the President to authorize the military to use lethal force within the territory of the United States. For example, the President could conceivably have no choice but to authorize the military to use such force if necessary to protect the homeland in the circumstances of a catastrophic attack like the ones suffered on December 7, 1941, and September 11, 2001.”

The emphasis inserted is mine but while I think the administration is not planning any attacks on Americans who are in America, the answer he was looking for was “No.”

Embedded in there are links to other sources.

The point is - agree or disagree, this is a big deal, the adminstration's response is less than what I'd like it to be, and at some point someone ought to speak up and not just accept it on its face.  Some of those someones ought to be our congress.

Here's someone who I pretty much HATE quoting - but I will, for the sake of this conversation:

http://www.alternet....erican-citizens

Quote



Obama Officials Refuse to Say If They Believe They Can Assassinate American Citizens on US Soil




The administration's extreme secrecy is beginning to lead Senators to impede John Brennan's nomination to lead the CIA.
February 22, 2013

The Justice Department  "white paper" purporting to authorize Obama's power to extrajudicially execute US citizens was leaked three weeks ago. Since then, the administration - including the president himself and his nominee to lead the CIA,  John Brennan - has been repeatedly asked whether this authority extends to US soil, i.e., whether the president has the right to execute US citizens on US soil without charges. In each instance, they have refused to answer.

...the Committee raised the question with Brennan in the most straightforward way possible:
Obviously, that the US has not and does not intend to engage in such acts is entirely non-responsive to the question that was asked: whether they believe they have the authority to do so. To the extent any answer was provided, it came in Brennan's next answer. He was asked:


"Could you describe the geographical limits on the Administration's conduct drone strikes?"

Brennan's answer was that, in essence, there are no geographic limits to this power... (see Brennan's full answer  here).

QT

Posted Image


The once and future Nonny

"Give a man a gun and he can rob a bank, give a man a bank and he can rob the world." Can anyone tell me who I am quoting?  I found this with no attribution.

Fatal miscarriages are forever.

Stupid is stupid, this I believe. And ignorance is the worst kind of stupid, since ignorance is a choice.  Suzanne Brockmann

All things must be examined, debated, investigated without exception and without regard for anyone's feelings. Diderot

#26 Cait

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 01:20 PM

View PostNonny, on 07 March 2013 - 12:59 PM, said:

Oh for crying out loud!  This is exactly the tempest in a teapot I thought it might be.  Rantin' Rand Paul is blowing smoke, so I'm crying foul.   :mad:


That's too bad.  As I've said, I remember when we all discussed the Patriot Act and the Military Commissions Act, and so many here were up in arms about that President.  And, IMO, rightfully so, because that kind of power does not belong in the hands of our government.  Was it a tempest in a teapot then?  Were we worried over nothing back then?  

Now this President is saying he has the right to pretty much do anything on American soil he feels is necessary, and any collateral damage  is well, Oops.  

No.  It is wrong to keep US citizens in jail with no trial, no writ of habeas corpus, taken to black ops sites never to be heard from again.  If it were happening in a South American Country we'd be issuing sanctions for human rights violations.  It is wrong to disappear American citizens on only suspicions.  It is wrong to think you can use a drone to attack and kill an American on American soil [or any soil for that matter.]  We can debate all day whether or not our rights really are basic human rights, but certainly is is legally and constitutionally clear that Americans have these rights.

The right to an Attorney.
The right to a fair trial.
The right to confront witnesses.
The right to a writ of habeas corpus.
The right to be secure in one's home.
The right to DUE PROCESS.

As I've said before, I don't care who is President, or who started it.  Maybe Bush Jr. is evil and scary and got us all into a mess, but Obama is pretty much taking all the power W left behind and adding to it.  What will the next President do to our rights in the name of national security?  Rights that are supposed to reside with the people, not with the government.  They are NOT rights the government lets us enjoy until the world gets too scary.  They are rights we are born with and rights the government cannot take away from us.  

Unless we let them.

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#27 QueenTiye

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 01:21 PM

View PostNonny, on 07 March 2013 - 12:56 PM, said:

Frankly, I'd rather see the use of drones limited to a military in the hands of a responsible C-i-C, but the previous one's misuse of the military still scares me.

AND... here's the entire crux of the problem.  I am fairly trusting of President Obama, and of his instincts.  BUT - he leaves office in 2016.  Who's next?  Do we trust him or her?  Should we have to?

Another article:

http://www.theatlant...-for-it/273790/


Quote

But that Paul is a demagogue doesn't diminish the administration's ham-fistedness in the drone-war debate. There's a growing suspicion that its flawed responses represent not simply inept spin but a troubling ambivalence about the rule of law.

Throughout the past five years, the administration has been tight-lipped and grudging in its discussion of the law and the Constitution as it applies to our new war-fighting technology. The "Paulibuster" may represent a last chance to broaden the discussion and confront the very real dangers drone warfare represents.

Right now the domestic dialogue focuses entirely on one narrow though important question: When can the U.S. target an American citizen abroad for a lethal drone strike? This focus is unhelpful. From what we know today, the U.S. has done this only once since it began arming drones a decade ago. The real danger is not spillover from the drone war onto an occasional American; it is the lawless context within which the entire drone war seems to operate.

QT

Een Draght Mackt Maght


#28 offworlder

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 01:35 PM

just heard Rand Paul on the Rush radio-
and he crystalized his view on this issue that he did the filibuster:
Paul was saying, we just Cannot target an American citizen in the United States who is not actively engaged in a violent act, without due process of law, that is just not right; and the protection must be for the future not just for now, that even if we did trust our administration today what about a time when the democratic process makes a mistake and some less than responsible person is elected in?
and he brought up the point, Who gets to decide if some American is bad beyond the due process? should be hit without due process? so it's the president, and he said that is not right; he mainly protests that the US president should not get to decide this, with some kill list or other means. He mainly wanted to bring up this point to the US people.

so then Paul with Rush, then they got talking bout al Awlaki, he was killed by drone, then
a fortnight later his son was killed by a strike where it was on some convoy, not specific target, just We think there are some bad guys in there; so they brought up the Question, Paul had asked while talking to a senator who supports this new drone act stuff, Is it right we kill some sixteen year old son, and the reply he got back was Well he should have chosen a more responsible parent! what?!
So he made the point, but we can't have it that if you'r related to a bad guy and you just carry on your normal day and you can be targeted?
"(Do you read what they say online?) I check out all these scandalous rumours about me and Elijah Wood having beautiful sex with each other ... (are they true?) About Elijah and me being boyfriend and boyfriend? Absolutely true. We've been together for about nine years. I wooed him. No I just like a lot of stuff - I like that someone says one thing and it becomes fact. It's kind of fun." --Dominic Monaghan in a phone interview with Newsweek while buying DVDs at the store. :D

#29 Nonny

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 03:08 PM

I can't provide a link for this, because I don't know how to link stuff I find on Facebook, but it is from a page called Being Liberal:

Quote

TO SET THE RECORD STRAIGHT:
1. We do not support ANY killings by the US Federal and States Governments. That includes legal executions and non-judiciary killings by any means - INCLUDING drones. As liberals, we are pro-life.
2. No US Citizen was ever killed by a drone on US soil. Attorney General Eric Holder has said: “..the US government has not carried out drone strikes in the United States and has no intention of doing so. As a policy matter moreover, we reject the use of military force where well-established law enforcement authorities in this country provide the best means for incapacitating a terrorist threat...”
3. Yes , there is merit to the topic of drone usage. It is worth open discussion. Let's not forget that drones are the bastard children of the Patriot Act - brought to you by the Bush Administration and the GOP warmongers in the post 9/11 hysteria. We as a society are almost all guilty of silently approving this.
4. We, as liberals are MORE concerned by the real death and suffering of the countless civilians that the US military categorizes as “collateral damage”, than by one more paranoidal fear about the hypothetical killing of US Citizens by drones. The same people who used to talk about “black hawk helicopters" now talk about drones. We question motives, form and timing of Rand Paul’s political theater performance.

It pains me to read posts that seem to suggest that Rand Paul's hypotheticals are established fact.  They are not.
Posted Image


The once and future Nonny

"Give a man a gun and he can rob a bank, give a man a bank and he can rob the world." Can anyone tell me who I am quoting?  I found this with no attribution.

Fatal miscarriages are forever.

Stupid is stupid, this I believe. And ignorance is the worst kind of stupid, since ignorance is a choice.  Suzanne Brockmann

All things must be examined, debated, investigated without exception and without regard for anyone's feelings. Diderot

#30 Cait

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 03:43 PM

View PostNonny, on 07 March 2013 - 03:08 PM, said:

I can't provide a link for this, because I don't know how to link stuff I find on Facebook, but it is from a page called Being Liberal:

Quote

TO SET THE RECORD STRAIGHT:
1. We do not support ANY killings by the US Federal and States Governments. That includes legal executions and non-judiciary killings by any means - INCLUDING drones. As liberals, we are pro-life.
2. No US Citizen was ever killed by a drone on US soil. Attorney General Eric Holder has said: “..the US government has not carried out drone strikes in the United States and has no intention of doing so. As a policy matter moreover, we reject the use of military force where well-established law enforcement authorities in this country provide the best means for incapacitating a terrorist threat...”
3. Yes , there is merit to the topic of drone usage. It is worth open discussion. Let's not forget that drones are the bastard children of the Patriot Act - brought to you by the Bush Administration and the GOP warmongers in the post 9/11 hysteria. We as a society are almost all guilty of silently approving this.
4. We, as liberals are MORE concerned by the real death and suffering of the countless civilians that the US military categorizes as “collateral damage”, than by one more paranoidal fear about the hypothetical killing of US Citizens by drones. The same people who used to talk about “black hawk helicopters" now talk about drones. We question motives, form and timing of Rand Paul’s political theater performance.

As I suspected, this is a topic we can find a lot of agreement on.  

Quote

It pains me to read posts that seem to suggest that Rand Paul's hypotheticals are established fact.  They are not.

Except no one is saying it has happened.  We are talking about the statement from Holder that said, under certain circumstances, the President would have the right to do it.  Except the circumstances weren't clarified.

Now, I can agree that what Holder wasn't so suspect as far as any "intention" or "probability" of this administration.  I can cede that point.

But, I do think that Americans need to look at the topic as a whole.  You are right, this is the bastard child of the Patriot Act.  We were right to complain about that abomination of legislation.  But, now someone is adding another layer to the Patriot Act.

What will the next President do?

We, as citizens, need to draw a clear line for our leaders, so that regardless of political bent, they know what we will tolerate and what we won't tolerate.  So, like I said before, I don't care who is President, this has to stop.  We do not have to have dead bodies from a drone attack  in the streets of Los Angeles before we raise our voices.  It doesn't have to have happened already.  It is enough for the President to assert his right to do it.

No one said much when the drone killed the American overseas.  No one said, where was his trial?  Where was his attorney?  Where were the witnesses against him?  No, label him a terrorist and he was dead.  Well even Tim McVeigh  got a trial.  

We are a nation of laws and the citizens of this country have the right of Due Process.  no where in the Constitution does it say that a terrorist [or a traitor] has no rights.  In fact, it's quite explicit in naming the rights of a traitor in the Constitution.

And this has been done.  It's not just a "what if?".  It happened.  As a nation we need to have this conversation.  How far are we willing to let our leaders go in our name?  And, how much are we willing to give up to do it?  These are moral questions, not political ones [imo].

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#31 Balderdash

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 03:46 PM

View PostNonny, on 07 March 2013 - 03:08 PM, said:

I can't provide a link for this, because I don't know how to link stuff I find on Facebook, but it is from a page called Being Liberal:

Quote

TO SET THE RECORD STRAIGHT:
1. We do not support ANY killings by the US Federal and States Governments. That includes legal executions and non-judiciary killings by any means - INCLUDING drones. As liberals, we are pro-life.
2. No US Citizen was ever killed by a drone on US soil. Attorney General Eric Holder has said: “..the US government has not carried out drone strikes in the United States and has no intention of doing so. As a policy matter moreover, we reject the use of military force where well-established law enforcement authorities in this country provide the best means for incapacitating a terrorist threat...”
3. Yes , there is merit to the topic of drone usage. It is worth open discussion. Let's not forget that drones are the bastard children of the Patriot Act - brought to you by the Bush Administration and the GOP warmongers in the post 9/11 hysteria. We as a society are almost all guilty of silently approving this.
4. We, as liberals are MORE concerned by the real death and suffering of the countless civilians that the US military categorizes as “collateral damage”, than by one more paranoidal fear about the hypothetical killing of US Citizens by drones. The same people who used to talk about “black hawk helicopters" now talk about drones. We question motives, form and timing of Rand Paul’s political theater performance.

It pains me to read posts that seem to suggest that Rand Paul's hypotheticals are established fact.  They are not.

Thanks Nonny.  I'd rather not hear talk of impeachment of our President when all Rand is doing is muddying the waters, just like he did with
Benghazi by the way,   It looks good to the rank and file, looks like he's doing something useful...

Another Democrat leaning Independent that has to search for truth because it can't be found on Fox News OR MSNBC.



"Being gay is not a Western invention, it is a human reality"  by HRC


#32 Cait

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 04:11 PM

I can certainly understand the reluctance to give Rand Paul any credit for anything good here.  But, that doesn't alter the fact that this is a topic/issue Americans should be discussing.  

We can't just talk about it in partisan terms.  When it is the President of the opposite party it is all evil, but when it is the President of our own personal party it is all a non-issue.  

We should discuss the issue, not the messenger.  Just sayin'.

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#33 Cait

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 04:15 PM

View PostBalderdash, on 07 March 2013 - 03:46 PM, said:


Thanks Nonny.  I'd rather not hear talk of impeachment of our President when all Rand is doing is muddying the waters, just like he did with
Benghazi by the way,   It looks good to the rank and file, looks like he's doing something useful...

Rand Paul isn't saying the President should be impeached. I said it.  I said Bush should be impeached as well.  Any President who thinks s/he can suspend Due Process indefinitely for Americans should be impeached.  And yes, just "thinking it" is the problem.  End.Of.Story.

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#34 Balderdash

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 04:25 PM

View PostCait, on 07 March 2013 - 04:15 PM, said:

View PostBalderdash, on 07 March 2013 - 03:46 PM, said:

Thanks Nonny.  I'd rather not hear talk of impeachment of our President when all Rand is doing is muddying the waters, just like he did with
Benghazi by the way,   It looks good to the rank and file, looks like he's doing something useful...

Rand Paul isn't saying the President should be impeached. I said it.  I said Bush should be impeached as well.  Any President who thinks s/he can suspend Due Process indefinitely for Americans should be impeached.  And yes, just "thinking it" is the problem.  End.Of.Story.

Well, no, it's not the end of the story.  I believe that this is an issue that needs to be talked about but not in the way that Rand wants to talk about it.
I bet that if we find what the President actually thinks about this issue we wouldn't be ready to tar and feather him quit so fast.  Paul Rand is a
political sh*t stirrer for his side, not a hero.  Bring it up in a way that it can be discussed in a non-partisan way, I'm all for that.

Another Democrat leaning Independent that has to search for truth because it can't be found on Fox News OR MSNBC.



"Being gay is not a Western invention, it is a human reality"  by HRC


#35 Omega

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 04:43 PM

View PostQuiGon John, on 07 March 2013 - 10:54 AM, said:

3. I do believe that targeting Americans on American soil is a(n even) more serious issue than targeting others. Free speech is great, but the Constitution of the United States does not guarantee free speech to the people of England, Japan, or Ghana. It guarantees freedom of speech to American citizens, on American soil.

I'm going to nitpick your example, but I agree with your overall point.

The First Amendment says "Congress shall make no law abridging..." No law means no law. That particular amendment isn't stated as "The people have this right." It's stated as "Congress can never, ever do X." The fact that the Constitution doesn't guarantee freedom of speech to people outside the US is not a function of the text of the Constitution, it's a function of it's jurisdiction. If the US suddenly claims jurisdiction over the entire world, the limitations of the Constitution on the actions Congress takes still apply.

Now, the Fourth Amendment is worded differently, referring to a right of the people, not to a limitation on Congress. So the right of the people to be secure in our persons is limited to the people of the United States. The Fifth Amendment is somewhere in between, saying that "no person shall... be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law." Whether that's "person" in the sense of "an element of the people of the United States" or "a human being" is difficult to pin down just from the text.

So yes, one is potentially legal, while the other is clearly not. Either way, I'm all for impeachment.

Edited by Omega, 07 March 2013 - 04:45 PM.


#36 QuiGon John

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 04:59 PM

Note: The following is mostly a reply to Cait. Omega posted while I was writing it.

During the campaign, Scott Adams, the creator of the "Dilbert" comic strip, wrote a blog entry saying-- basically, IIRC-- that he was voting for Romney because current US drug laws were keeping people in prison unfairly, and any president who did that should be kicked out of office. The obvious problem with this was that Mitt Romney was no less a drug warrior than Obama, and probably would have been considerably more of one. Adams came up with a couple of reasons why Romney "might" do better, but there was no reason to believe he actually would, and indeed he never said he would. If asked, he probably would have said the opposite.

That's the problem with saying "Any President who would do ------- should be impeached." Impeachment is specifically for "high crimes and misdemeanors," and I don't really see how it's fair to include in that definition debatable legal points on which the president believes themselves to be-- and can argue convincingly that they are-- operating within the law, no matter how ridiculous I believe their take on the law to be. Besides, you have to look at what others would be doing in the same position-- not just members of the other party, but fellow-travelers in the President's own party.

In this case, I see no reason to believe anyone who could plausibly be elected president would actually dismantle the drone program, including Rand Paul. Ron Paul probably would-- but he was never a plausible president. His son seems much more willing to play ball with the pros; I have no confidence that he or anyone else in the upper levels of either party actually opposes the drones in a serious way. If Obama were to switch tomorrow and issue an executive order scrapping the whole thing, Republicans would happily switch over and start slamming him as weak on national security. Rand Paul might not be with them on that. But if the nomination for president or VP depended on it, I tend to think he'd find a way to get on board. (If I'm mistaken, I owe him an apology.) Right now, they're simply using the whole thing as a bludgeon against the president, not as a principled statement on the rules of war, and I object to that.

And I know-- I'm supposed to be discussing the policy, not the person. But what I am trying to get at is that this is a much bigger and more difficult question to grapple with than any one president's impeachment or any one senator's grandstanding. You'd have to basically change the whole culture of this country to something less confrontational and more pacifistic. A tremendously worthy goal-- but good luck with it.

Anyway, a couple more interesting links about this filibuster, even though the second one, at least, seems to argue against my own position at times:

Sarah Binder (via Bernstein) and Joshua Faust (via Matt Yglesias)

Edited by QuiGon John, 07 March 2013 - 05:01 PM.


#37 SparkyCola

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 05:15 PM

Anyone drawing attention to this critical issue has my support.

"What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy?" ~ Mahatma Gandhi

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#38 SparkyCola

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 05:27 PM

By the way, the critical issue I'm talking about is targeted drone killings. I don't care much about whether the people involved are American or not. To quote

Quote

The United States has reportedly killed 4,700 people in "war on terror" operations outside of declared war zones. On Wednesday, the European Parliament heard a special briefing on the US kill programs from the ACLU's Hina Shamsi and the UN's special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Ben Emmerson. Following the briefing, the parliamentarians issued a statement calling into question the legality (and morality) of US strikes. The United States cannot hide its legal justification for these operations from the world any longer, they wrote:


"We are deeply concerned about the legal basis, as well as the moral, ethical and human rights implications of the United States' targeted killing programme that authorises the CIA and the military to hunt and kill individuals who have suspected links to terrorism anywhere in the world.
"Despite having abandoned the 'war on terror' rhetoric, the US sticks to the notion that it is in the realm of a war, and not organised criminality, when fighting terrorism. It has a destabilising effect on the international legal framework …
"There are a growing number of reports demonstrating that hundreds of civilians are being killed in the framework of the targeted killing program. This is being done without any transparency in justification of a 'wartime' policy. We urge our American allies to address the pressing questions over the legal criteria at the basis of a policy that, in targeting so-called militants, destroys both innocent human beings and our common legal heritage." [My emphasis]


Sparky

Edited by SparkyCola, 07 March 2013 - 05:27 PM.

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#39 offworlder

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 06:49 PM

> .. the US sticks to the notion that it is in the realm of a war, and not organised criminality, when fighting terrorism. It has a destabilising effect on the international legal framework  '

this will be a diff topic than the Paul thing, but let me just say this about that: the only legal framework in war is the agreements any beligerants signed, such as the things that get judged at The Hague in s'Gravenhage. so maybe the EU parlement will recommend over to that; I do think that the US has a track record of not worrying too much bout that when deciding what they will or will not do in war incl the War on Terror ;) Now if there is any new topic on that international drone things then this can get copy/pasted over to that
"(Do you read what they say online?) I check out all these scandalous rumours about me and Elijah Wood having beautiful sex with each other ... (are they true?) About Elijah and me being boyfriend and boyfriend? Absolutely true. We've been together for about nine years. I wooed him. No I just like a lot of stuff - I like that someone says one thing and it becomes fact. It's kind of fun." --Dominic Monaghan in a phone interview with Newsweek while buying DVDs at the store. :D

#40 Bobby

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 07:15 PM

View PostCait, on 07 March 2013 - 01:20 PM, said:

View PostNonny, on 07 March 2013 - 12:59 PM, said:

Oh for crying out loud!  This is exactly the tempest in a teapot I thought it might be.  Rantin' Rand Paul is blowing smoke, so I'm crying foul.   :mad:


That's too bad.  As I've said, I remember when we all discussed the Patriot Act and the Military Commissions Act, and so many here were up in arms about that President.  And, IMO, rightfully so, because that kind of power does not belong in the hands of our government.  Was it a tempest in a teapot then?  Were we worried over nothing back then?  

Now this President is saying he has the right to pretty much do anything on American soil he feels is necessary, and any collateral damage  is well, Oops.  

No.  It is wrong to keep US citizens in jail with no trial, no writ of habeas corpus, taken to black ops sites never to be heard from again.  If it were happening in a South American Country we'd be issuing sanctions for human rights violations.  It is wrong to disappear American citizens on only suspicions.  It is wrong to think you can use a drone to attack and kill an American on American soil [or any soil for that matter.]  We can debate all day whether or not our rights really are basic human rights, but certainly is is legally and constitutionally clear that Americans have these rights.

The right to an Attorney.
The right to a fair trial.
The right to confront witnesses.
The right to a writ of habeas corpus.
The right to be secure in one's home.
The right to DUE PROCESS.

As I've said before, I don't care who is President, or who started it.  Maybe Bush Jr. is evil and scary and got us all into a mess, but Obama is pretty much taking all the power W left behind and adding to it.  What will the next President do to our rights in the name of national security?  Rights that are supposed to reside with the people, not with the government.  They are NOT rights the government lets us enjoy until the world gets too scary.  They are rights we are born with and rights the government cannot take away from us.  

Unless we let them.

Cait, I can remember reading discussions about this with you back around 2006, so you aren't being fickle about it, you've always been interested in this policy and been against it.  I don't care for drones period.  I don't like them being used to spy on Americans.  It starts out as "it's cheaper to use drones to fly around and see if people are growing pot crops rather than pay people in a helicopter to do it".  I didn't like it last month when they used them to search for that nutjob Dorner in California.   How easy would it be to say someone like that is a terrorist and take them out.  I'm sure plenty of people would support it, after all, it would save cops lives not to have a direct firefight with someone.  That's part of the reasoning for using them on targets overseas, they can take out hard targets with little loss of U.S. soldiers lives.  Never mind the horrible collateral damage to innocent people in the area.

I think it's worse when someone like Obama embraces the things he decried before he was in office.  Really, though, every leader discovers how great the threats really are once they get in office.  Then they have to find the hard place in their heart to allow them to do what's necessary to protect the people.  The problem with that is that it's a Game of Thrones mentality of paranoia, everyone is a threat in some way.

I don't think Obama will go nuts with power and start taking people out.  Slowly but surely though, as Nonny pointed out about the NRA with guns, drones are being multipurposed already.  They'll be profitable and an everyday familiarity soon enough. People will see the logic in letting the police arm them for use on U.S. citizens.

No, I'm not paranoid Ruby Ridge type, although the government did get them because of their actions. But when the President, who was a law professor, won't say the government can't kill it's own citizens without due process and had previously stated his opposition to such tactics before he took office, it is something to note.  Because if he, in all his supposed "liberal elitist" wisdom can see the wisdom in leaving the option to use them on citizens open in special circumstances, just imagine someone either farther right or farther left deciding to use them.

Edited by Bobby, 07 March 2013 - 07:17 PM.




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