the Patriot Act- what's so bad about it?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by B_Mister Buildington, Dec 18, 2009.

  1. B_Mister Buildington

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    I was talking to a friend of mine, and he said something to the effect of, "The constitution doesn't apply anymore- the patriot act, man!"

    I thought about it, and realized I didn't know anything ABOUT the patriot act, and when I asked him what he meant, it became clear that he didn't either.

    What's so bad about the patriot act? Do you think Obama was right to seek extension of several of its provisions? Obama seeks Patriot Act extensions - Washington Times

    I've heard about how terrible it is for years, but now that I've looked into it some, it doesn't appear to be the boogyman that people have made it out to be.

    What are your thoughts?
     
  2. D_Tintagel_Demondong

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    This topic is a bit dated, but still relevant.

    I have strongly questioned the legality of this act for years--particularly on LPSG. This act excludes constitutional rights, such as habeas corpus and probable cause from wire-tapping, arrests and detainment. This act, along with the Department of Homeland Security, is simply not legal.

    This "Freedom Act" has taken away more fundamental rights from Americans than any other act in history. I'm glad to see that something is being done to rectify the damage done by reactionary policies and mores that stemmed from the terrorism paranoia of an unfortunate decade.
     
    #2 D_Tintagel_Demondong, Dec 18, 2009
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2009
  3. avg_joe

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    Hypocrisy is all time high in the Washington D.C these days. That's all I want to say !!!
     
  4. houtx48

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    of course obama wants to extend the act.........give the president more power to run wild over the constitution without having to answer to anyone. would not make any difference who was president they would want to extend the patriot act
     
  5. B_Mister Buildington

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    What aspects of the patriot act do you object to specifically, houtx48?
     
  6. midlifebear

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    Goose-stepping wearing Nazi drag . . . what's so wrong with it?

    Sigh, some people's children. Tsk, tsk.
     
  7. B_Enough_for_Me

    B_Enough_for_Me New Member

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    The bill is fairly short (especially the sections you think you are referring to) so you should have no trouble presenting the section in which these atrocities take place.

    You can find the bill on Thomas.loc or else where, it is known as public law 107-56.

    I look forward to your response.
     
  8. B_Enough_for_Me

    B_Enough_for_Me New Member

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    My guess is that we get no answers. It is much easier for one to rant than it is for them to back up what they say.
     
  9. D_Davy_Downspout

    D_Davy_Downspout Account Disabled

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    The PATRIOT act(it IS an acronym, actually) is basically a massive land grab by the federal government under the guise of rah-rah patriotism and was rammed through in the panic after 9/11. The US has a long and sordid history of ramming through especially heinous legislation after major disasters, such as the oil company handouts after Katrina.

    Opponents at the time, of which there were few actually able to vote on it, pointed out that the incredibly expanded privacy breeches it allowed could and would be used by the government to do things other than protect us from terrorists.

    Shockingly, this turned out to be right. One of the privacy breeches the Act allowed was so-called "sneak-and-peak" warrants, which allowed law enforcement officials to search a suspects house without informing him/her. This is in contrast to any other search warrant in the history of the US, which requires the property owner to be notified prior-to/during the search. The idea is that you do not want terrorists to be tipped off to the fact that they're being looked at.

    In 2008, 763 such requests were granted. Care to guess how many were related to terrorism? Three.
     
  10. B_Enough_for_Me

    B_Enough_for_Me New Member

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    Again, cite your source. Reference to the relevant section of The Pat act is sufficient.
     
  11. dj30905

    dj30905 New Member

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    Public law 107 56 or HR 3162. Also might want to have 50 USC and 22 USC handy.
     
    #11 dj30905, Jan 2, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2010
  12. joyboytoy79

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    Fairly short? No. there are 1016 sections. It is 132 pages long and includes 58,011 words. The act itself amends and alters the following laws:

    8 USC §1105, 8 USC §1182g, 8 USC §1189, 8 USC §1202, 12 USC §248, 12 USC §1828, 12 USC §3414, 15 USC §1681a, 15 USC §6102, 15 USC §6106, 18 USC §7, 18 USC §81, 18 USC §175, 18 USC §470, 18 USC §471, 18 USC §472, 18 USC §473, 18 USC §474, 18 USC §476, 18 USC §477, 18 USC §478, 18 USC §479, 18 USC §480, 18 USC §481, 18 USC §484, 18 USC §493, 18 USC §917, 18 USC §930, 18 USC §981, 18 USC §1029, 18 USC §1030, 18 USC §1362, 18 USC §1363, 18 USC §1366, 18 USC §1956, 18 USC §1960, 18 USC §1961, 18 USC §1992, 18 USC §2155, 18 USC §2325, 18 USC §2331, 18 USC §2332e, 18 USC §2339A, 18 USC §2339B, 18 USC §2340A, 18 USC §2510, 18 USC §2511, 18 USC §2516, 18 USC §2517, 18 USC §2520, 18 USC §2702, 18 USC §2703, 18 USC §2707, 18 USC §2709, 18 USC §2711, 18 USC §3056, 18 USC §3077, 18 USC §3103, 18 USC §3121, 18 USC §3123, 18 USC §3124, 18 USC §3127, 18 USC §3286, 18 USC §3583, 20 USC §1232g, 20 USC §9007, 31 USC §310 (redesignated), 31 USC §5311, 31 USC §5312, 31 USC §5317, 31 USC §5318, 31 USC §5319, 31 USC §5321, 31 USC §5322, 31 USC §5324, 31 USC §5330, 31 USC §5331, 31 USC §5332, 31 USC §5341, 42 USC §2284, 42 USC §2284, 42 USC §3796, 42 USC §3796h, 42 USC §10601, 42 USC §10602, 42 USC §10603, 42 USC §10603b, 42 USC §14601, 42 USC §14135A, 47 USC §551, 49 USC §31305, 49 USC §46504, 49 USC §46505, 49 USC §60123, 50 USC §403-3c, 50 USC §401a, 50 USC §1702, 50 USC §1801, 50 USC §1803, 50 USC §1804, 50 USC §1805, 50 USC §1806, 50 USC §1823, 50 USC §1824, 50 USC §1842, 50 USC §1861, 50 USC §1862, 50 USC §1863

    That's 108 laws amended by the USA PATRIOT act. To fully understand how the act alters each of those laws, one must look each of them up and find the clauses deleted, reworded, restructured, or added. Sounds like light reading to me :rolleyes:.

    Anyway, one place where habeas corpus IS suspended is in section 236B:
    "Except as provided in the preceding sentence, no court shall have jurisdiction to review, by habeas corpus petition or otherwise, any such action or decision."

    Of course, habeas corpus is mentioned in other sections as well, and is dealt with in many of the other laws amended and/or altered by the USA PATRIOT act.

    Sections 201 and 202 deal directly with wiretaps, allowing for "roving wire taps." Section 1003 redefines "Electronic Surveillance." Section 225 provides immunity for agencies and individuals who comply with the roving wire taps and would otherwise be held accountable in a court of law.

    And please, EfM, the next time you assign homework, don't make it sound so trivial. This is quite the extensive legislation, with far reaching implications that even scholars of the law have a hard time grasping on occasion (hence all the debate). It takes a very long time to read through all of it, even if you're ignoring all of the additional legislation it pertains to.

    Oh, and since i don't like making people search, i'll provide a direct link to the bill: The USA PATRIOT Act
     
    #12 joyboytoy79, Jan 2, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2010
  13. B_Enough_for_Me

    B_Enough_for_Me New Member

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    Thanks for stating the obvious.
     
  14. dj30905

    dj30905 New Member

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    Some don't know it as both...Or they have no idea what is even being altered. I was only adding to what was said already. As mentioned above, it is a rather extensive read. I must say the joyboytoy79 did a good job at putting that up there. I was actually going to state more obvious and say its not as bad as some make it out to be, but also not be a dick.
     
    #14 dj30905, Jan 3, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010
  15. dj30905

    dj30905 New Member

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    #15 dj30905, Jan 3, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010
  16. B_Enough_for_Me

    B_Enough_for_Me New Member

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    Thank you for a great response. If more people were willing to do the leg work of understanding what they rant about we would have much less ranting.

    Having said that, I read the entire bill years ago while I was still in undergrad. It isn't hard, it just takes a desire to know what is actually going on. This is the opposite of just listening to Jon Stewart. The sections contested are very short. They can be read within a few minutes. Yet nobody will look it up, much easier to rant.

    JBT, I have no idea where your dog is in this fight. It seems that you just wanted to save these other idiots from having to do their own homework. Which, btw, I didn't assign, the homework was assigned when they started ranting about the bill. They can go find the information for themselves and bring their debate. They won't.

    First, there is not Section 236b in the PATRIOT Act.

    Second, you only quoted a very short and completely misleading part of the law. See, Section 412 of the P-Act amends the Immigration and Nationality Act. The relevant section reads: "

    ‘‘
    (b) HABEAS CORPUS AND JUDICIAL REVIEW.—

    ‘‘


    (1) IN GENERAL.—Judicial review of any action or decision

    relating to this section (including judicial review of the merits

    of a determination made under subsection (a)(3) or (a)(6)) is
    available exclusively in habeas corpus proceedings consistent





    with this subsection. Except as provided in the preceding sentence,

    no court shall have jurisdiction to review, by habeas

    corpus petition or otherwise, any such action or decision."


    Then: "APPLICATION.—


    ‘‘



    (A) IN GENERAL.—Notwithstanding any other provision

    of law, including section 2241(a) of title 28, United

    States Code, habeas corpus proceedings described in paragraph
    (1) may be initiated only by an application filed
    with





    (i) the Supreme Court;

    ‘(ii) any justice of the Supreme Court;

    iii) any circuit judge of the United States Court

    of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit; or


    (iv) any district court otherwise having jurisdiction


    to entertain it."

    So, this "suspension" of habeas corpus is really a limitation on jurisdiction. The jurisdiction for habeas was not established in the Constitution, rather Congress was given the power to establish courts as they see fit (Art III Sec. 1). If that wasn't enough, habeas corpus isn't an absolute right. In fact, Art I Sec 9 specifically says that habeas can be suspended when public safety requires it. As if the argument that the P-Act suspends habeas isn't weak enough, Section 236b only applies to aliens; which aren't afforded many rights anyway.


    So, where did we end up? If you are an alien, and you are detained because of terrorism, then you can only apply for habeas corpus in high level federal courts as specified.
     
  17. B_Enough_for_Me

    B_Enough_for_Me New Member

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    Sorry, my experience with people on this board is that they are pathetically trying to be jerks; so I assumed you were in the same catagory. My mistake.
     
  18. B_Enough_for_Me

    B_Enough_for_Me New Member

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    I would like to add some current events to this topic: The P-Act reauthorization in 2005 set several provisions (including the ones that several people here think they are complaining about) to sunset on Dec 31, 2009. Obviously, that day has come and gone and we still have the P-Act. How can this possibly be? Didn't we elect democrats to get rid of this horrible legislation ("Change")? Oh yeah, they extended it. When the Republicans passed/extended the P-Act that was enough to say that they didn't care about civil liberties, they were invading our privacy, and that they didn't care about the Constitution. I noticed very little condemnation of the democrats for doing exactly what the Republicans did.

    I often wonder what happened to peoples integrity, or if it never existed in the first place.
     
  19. dj30905

    dj30905 New Member

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    Not a problem, really. I understand that there are many people on here who really do try to be jerks. Anyways, while I was in the Army, I started questioning everything put before me. So naturally, I went out and saved HR3162 to my computer, as well as several DOD Directives, and all 50 US codes. Now, the HR3162 I have is actually 342 pages long, whic is why I say it is a rather extensive read. Yes, there is no section 236b. The section in question really is Section 412 ("Mandatory detention of suspected terrorists; habeas corpus; judicial review.") as taken from Title IV, Subtitle B. Section 412, as you mentioned does only apply to aliens. Yes, Habeas Corpus can be suspended when public safety calls for it. I do know that Habeas Corpus was suspended, but not sure where that stands right now. I'd imagine it still is.

    For those who are not sure about Habeas Corpus, it is "a writ requiring a person to be brought before a judge or court, esp. for investigation of a restraint of the person's liberty, used as a protection against illegal imprisonment." Basically, it requires that the accused be physically brought before a judge with a statement showing sufficient cause for arrest. The suspension of Habeas Corpus is highly controversial because it allows for the indefinite imprisonment without sufficient cause, especially in a time of mass hysteria that terrorists are just around every corner. It can be quite dangerous for innocent people who are just victims of circumstances. There have already been cases of imprisonment under the suspension of Habeas Corpus where the accused actually has later been found to be innocent.

    As far as I'm concerned, Americans are a funny bunch. So many of them lose their heads and during times of mass hysteria, they don't stop to think for themselves but allow for laws to be shoved through so fast it'll make your head spin. I feel the same way about the Swine Flu shots. The public was in such an uproar, that the shots were shoved through and became mandatory for health care workers and military without ample time to research. I myself have been exposed to people who were diagnosed with Swine Flu, but I have not got it yet (even without the shot). People just need to slow down and start thinking about what goes on around them.
     
    #19 dj30905, Jan 3, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010
  20. dj30905

    dj30905 New Member

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    The PATRIOT ACT refers more to gathering of foreign intelligence and aliens. Yeah, we got a real problem in this country. I don't know, but this is just my honest opinion. We have somehow became a two-party system. Unfortunately, most people I've talked to only know of Democrats and Republicans. Try this: ask random people on the street how many parties we have and name them. Several will leave out many of the "other guys", such as: Libertarian, Green, Constitution, or Independent. Honestly, both sides (Dems and Repubs) are guilty of hindering things due to partisan bickering, with several not even fully understandin the issue at hand. They just vote "nay" because it will piss off the other side.

    I worked with a guy (18 yo) who said he was a Repub. Ok...The conversation went something like this:
    Me: What do Republicans stand for that you agree with?
    Him: Uh..I'm against gay marriage and abortion.
    Me: Ok...That's all?
    Him: Yeah
    Me: What if the Republican candidate said things you didn't agree with, but the Democrat said everything you agree with?
    Him: Then I won't vote at all.

    See. This is the same mentality that so many others share. It's leaning more towards who has what label or name. Thus, unnecessary partisan bitching.

    In other news. I also feel compelled to say my feelings on the recent bomb on plane incident. Suddenly, the govt steps up more security measures for our own protection. My view: something is amiss here. Why? Well, I feel we are no more or no less safer now than before 9/11 and all the security increases. Just people flipping out with the rest of the world laughing at us. Second, his father warned the embassy that he was a danger. He was still let on that flight though his name was on the list. Either A) Someone was really incompetent or B)he was deliberately let on that flight. Very few people who are on those lists even make it to the plane. I suggest a very thorough investigation into the whole thing and not just simply losing our damn minds and upping security measures.
     
    #20 dj30905, Jan 3, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010
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