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Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Ummm, I'm not sure how I feel about that!

A couple of posts ago I wrote about the irritating (at least to me) actions of members of Congress who can hate any idea that is brought up by the other party. It can be an idea that their own party championed earlier, but is now being offered up by the "bad guys" so it is automatically evil and something to be railed against. That phenomenon made me think of a similar thing that is happening with the voters. I am not claiming it to be a recent affliction, but it has grown in intensity for sure (as has all vitriol surrounding politics of late).

It would be humorous if it was not such a serious matter, but I am amazed at the intellectual dishonesty by the critics of George Bush and his "Big Brother" tactics against terrorism when compared to their comments (or lack thereof) on the current administrations policies and actions. Bush was protested against, publicly vilified, and otherwise deemed to be Moloch incarnate for having the NSA/CIA/intelligence community track phone calls to and from foreign nationals in the years after 9-11. Now, I am not going to state that was all that the Bush administration was doing, but it was all that was being reported, and therefore all that was being protested. The comparisons of those "spying" activities to what has been documented to have been put in place since Bush left office is like comparing pee-wee football to the NFL! Again, the only claims were that the administration and its departments were tracking calls to and from foreign nationals out of the U.S. The cry of "warrantless wiretapping" and illegal spying was shouted from the rooftops - at least by those opposed to Bush and the Republicans.

I am for any reasonable measure that offers real protections against another terrorist attack like those of 9-11, irregardless of what party institutes them, supports them, and/or carries them out. I am not supportive of "feel good" measures like the idiotic TSA checkpoints that are there to create more union members and to sedate the masses that think my shoes being off while being screened and keeping my liquid volume transported to under a pre-set number is keeping them safer on a flight. (but that is another blog post, I digress) I think that the Bush administration, and the standing Congress of the time (which was primarily Democrat for most of the years), took advantage of a horrible situation (9-11) and used it to institute one of biggest grabs of personal freedoms ever taken by our government. I also feel that the Obama administration and today's Congress has taken it to another level.

For anyone that cares about personal freedom to support some of the information gathering that is being conducted under the guise of national security is a shock to me. I have had the privilege of sitting in a Congressional hearing twice in my life. I was a speaker at both. One was in the very early 80s and concerned the use of Social Security numbers as I.D. We were concerned that the government would share the information collected by the SS administration (and other government branches) with businesses and policing organizations. HA! We were so naive. Would it be that this was our only issue! Did you know that when the Social Security system was being set up one of the main oppositions to it was that it would give the government a unique ID number that would enable tracking of an individual. That was ridiculed by those that supported the program. If you are over the age of 45 or so and have an old SS card, right on it was a notice "NOT TO BE USED FOR IDENTIFICATION". This was removed from the cards in the early 70 (or thereabout). Ben Franklin said "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." But I am getting slightly off subject.

My point was mainly that people are intellectually dishonest. They support what their "man" or party does even if it is the same thing that the other party did that they opposed. This applies to our press, our elected officials, and the general populace.

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