Edward Snowden Elaborates on NSA, Spying

74

Comments

+ Add a Comment
avatar

tristone

if you heard it on tv it must be true -- Garfield

I wonder if that's the way some Americans think when they said Edward Snowden is a traitor. But there are also TVs telling different stories.

I saw an NHK program named something like 10 years after 9/11, how it changed the world. Unfortunately it's not on Youtube and it was in Japanese. But the story was kind of awakening. They interviewed quite a few average Americans and the conclusion was freedom is under attack in the U.S., not from the terrorists, but from the government. In the cities, the CCTV cameras have doubled, tripled, or quadrupled. And the Patriot Act now allows the government to invade everyone's life much more easily. Not just that Arabian Americans are being arrested, interrogated for no reason. But also the white Americans are being watched and harassed, if they are in the government's way. In particular, when some house wife is planning a demonstration against a natural gas company for it's not-that-environment-friendly exploration plan, her emails were intercepted by FBI without any warrant and she was threatened by FBI not to proceed.

In fact you don't even have to speak Japanese to know the same story. There are plenty of them in English on Youtube, if you want to watch.

When governments grow powerful it's almost inevitable for them to abuse the power. And they will never hesitate to use the power to eliminate anyone physically. Or when it's not so convenient to do so, employ their propaganda machine to paint those as traitors.

It was no surprise to me as I know that's so common in the Chinese history, or Russian history, or Nazi German history, or any history that involves dictatorship. But it is indeed a bit curious as who will be the next.

avatar

IrubberUglue

He should be shot. Twice if necessary.

avatar

Mungo

If he cared about my privacy rights he wouldn't be selling my info to the Russian goverment of all people.

avatar

jbitzer

Really getting tired of people throwing around the traitor, treason etc moniker.

If you don't understand what treason is, you shouldn't comment. That you don't like what he did doesn't make him a traitor.

He did not give aid and comfort to the enemy in a time of war. Despite what you may think, we are not at war, as a congressional declaration has still not happened 10 years after the first military action, curious that, I'd say the US government is the criminal here.

Here's a definition so you people getting all angry can at least have an inkling what you're talking about.

I doubt he even qualifies as committing espionage, unless the American people are now considered enemies of the USA government.

Worst case scenario IMO is that he broke his contract he signed to the NSA about his 3 lifetime obligations. Contract laws rarely end in a hanging offense.

Under Article III, Section 3, of the Constitution, any person who levies war against the United States or adheres to its enemies by giving them Aid and Comfort has committed treason within the meaning of the Constitution. The term aid and comfort refers to any act that manifests a betrayal of allegiance to the United States, such as furnishing enemies with arms, troops, transportation, shelter, or classified information. If a subversive act has any tendency to weaken the power of the United States to attack or resist its enemies, aid and comfort has been given.

The Treason Clause applies only to disloyal acts committed during times of war. Acts of dis-loyalty during peacetime are not considered treasonous under the Constitution. Nor do acts of Espionage committed on behalf of an ally constitute treason. For example, julius and ethel rosenberg were convicted of espionage, in 1951, for helping the Soviet Union steal atomic secrets from the United States during World War II. The Rosenbergs were not tried for treason because the United States and the Soviet Union were allies during World War II.

Under Article III a person can levy war against the United States without the use of arms, weapons, or military equipment. Persons who play only a peripheral role in a conspiracy to levy war are still considered traitors under the Constitution if an armed rebellion against the United States results. After the U.S. Civil War, for example, all Confederate soldiers were vulnerable to charges of treason, regardless of their role in the secession or insurrection of the Southern states. No treason charges were filed against these soldiers, however, because President Andrew Johnson issued a universal Amnesty.

The crime of treason requires a traitorous intent. If a person unwittingly or unintentionally gives aid and comfort to an enemy of the United States during wartime, treason has not occurred. Similarly, a person who pursues a course of action that is intended to benefit the United States but mistakenly helps an enemy is not guilty of treason. Inadvertent disloyalty is never punishable as treason, no matter how much damage the United States suffers.

As in any other criminal trial in the United States, a defendant charged with treason is presumed innocent until proved guilty Beyond a Reasonable Doubt. Treason may be proved by a voluntary confession in open court or by evidence that the defendant committed an Overt Act of treason. Each overt act must be witnessed by at least two people, or a conviction for treason will not stand. By requiring this type of direct evidence, the Constitution minimizes the danger of convicting an innocent person and forestalls the possibility of partisan witch-hunts waged by a single adversary.

Unexpressed seditious thoughts do not constitute treason, even if those thoughts contemplate a bloody revolution or coup. Nor does the public expression of subversive opinions, including vehement criticism of the government and its policies, constitute treason. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees the right of all Americans to advocate the violent overthrow of their government unless such advocacy is directed toward inciting imminent lawless action and is likely to produce it (Brandenburg v. Ohio, 395 U.S. 444, 89 S. Ct. 1827, 23 L. Ed. 2d 430 [1969]). On the other hand, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the distribution of leaflets protesting the draft during World War I was not constitutionally protected speech (schenck v. united states, 249 U.S. 47, 39 S. Ct. 247, 63 L. Ed. 470 [1919]).

avatar

maverick knight

You are very naive if you think we are at war when there is a declaration of war. It would be wise to know your enemy before you go to war. This is where information becomes very valuable. I guess ingnorance is truly bliss.

NSA FTW

avatar

MaximumMike

>>You are very naive if you think we are at war when there is a declaration of war. It would be wise to know your enemy before you go to war.

What, because there is a War on Terror? Where do you guys come from? There's also a War on Poverty and a War on Drugs. Be careful you might get hung for treason if you get caught buying some pot or refusing to hand out money to homeless people.

avatar

jbitzer

His comments don't hurt me, I ran into plenty of clueless tools of the machine like him when I worked at the NSA.

Bet he thought Natalie Maines should have been hung for treason too.

avatar

limitbreaker

Doesn't Snowden look very Russian or is it just me?

avatar

hornfire3

It's been days and I haven't heard from Bullwinkle's response... LOL!

Pros/Cons of Snowden's Revelations:

Pros: now we know what the Gov't/NSA is up to, 24/7.

Cons: we are forced to suffer/endure under their wrath and constant surveillance.

when it comes to fighting terrorist, NSA is one hell of a bad@$$. but in terms of our privacy, they're just ridiculously annoying.

NSA, can't live with it, can't live without it.

avatar

maverick knight

Pros: No you dont

Cons: NSA does not monitor you at all, and how are you suffering exactly?

avatar

vrmlbasic

Which terrorist attacks has the NSA foiled? The NSA doesn't seem particularly bad@$$ when it couldn't stop "joker" and his brother in boston...

avatar

JosephColt

Do you really think they would announce they foiled a terrorist plot at all, governments don't release that kind of information; it would only send panic into the people too.

avatar

dstevens

Hes a hero. To stand up and show those of us who are still too blind to see. It's like telling someone that there is a bug on thier neck and even though you see it that person refuses to acknowledge it.

For those of you who think he's not.. reply and Answer this with one sentence:
Edward snowden is a traitor because:

avatar

maverick knight

Edward Snowden is a traitor because he violated the trust his country gave him and exposed US methods used to protect the American people and our way of life.

avatar

jbitzer

Since when is the American way of life to be treated like citizens of the USSR circa 1980?

Think at this point I'd rather be protected from the government and militarized police forces than some faceless nameless "terrorist" that has less a chance of killing me than my toddler.

avatar

whiznot

Orwell knew that blanket surveillance of citizens was the key to maintaining a totalitarian government. The home of the brave and land of the free is neither.

avatar

Rift2

This guys is earths savior I hope he lives a good life =)
People shouldn't be held accountable or sued on the net because they have a few ROFLMAO comments on the net that would prevent them from getting a job ect..

Long live Snowden!

avatar

legionera

Why Snowden is releasing new info every week instead of all of it at once?

avatar

AFDozerman

To keep peoples' interest up.

avatar

Biceps

If you don't have a problem with what the gov't is doing in terms of surveillance, you either don't have any imagination to understand really awful implications of what is going on, or you work for the government or a government contractor. The surveillance is illegal, period. It is in violation of our constitution, and was kept secret not because of security reasons, but simply because the traitors who put it in place knew Americans would flip out when we found out about it. It will be banned, and Bush Jr. and Obama will both go down in history right next to Nixon.

avatar

maverick knight

what are the awful implications? please explain. I bet you are such a law abiding citizen that would never consider going not even 1 mile above the speed limit.

avatar

Led Weappelin

Biceps, I understand your anger but lets not compare apples and oranges equally. "W" and "O" did what they did for what they thought was good for the nation's population. And on many counts I reluctantly agree and on others I don't.

BUT...Nixon did what he did just to win an election. It was all about HIM and no one else?

Comprender?

avatar

MaximumMike

>> "W" and "O" did what they did for what they thought was good for the nation's population.

There's no evidence to suggest what you are saying is true, especially in the case of Obama. In fact, most evidence suggests that both men were out to further their own agendas regardless of the Constitution and at the expense of the American people.

>>BUT...Nixon did what he did just to win an election. It was all about HIM and no one else?

What they're doing is worse. Maybe Nixon broke into a government building and sought to circumvent the electoral process, but he never put the American people directly at risk. He never blatantly ignored anyone's Constitutional rights. I'm not saying what Nixon did was ok. I think it was reprehensible. But what Bush and Obama did/are doing is much much worse.

avatar

Baer

I certainly have my opinions on this issue and on him but this is a tech site. I come here for Tech and computer information and news and opinions. Come on, how about not covering political news here. Lets not turn us Teckies against each other by getting this site into political crap.

avatar

MaximumMike

>>Come on, how about not covering political news here.

Why? I'm usually the first to condemn senseless political articles on this website. And I have a long history of doing so. But this is probably the most important thing going on with technology right now. The federal government is using technology to strip us of our rights. If MaximumPC didn't report on it they would be seriously lacking in credibility in my opinion.

>> Lets not turn us Teckies against each other by getting this site into political crap.

Seriously???!!! Technology is just a hobby. Well, it's a job as well. But I'd rather be on the same side as a Mac-loving Constitutionalist, than a die-hard Windows Communist. Just because we all love technology doesn't make us all on the same side.

avatar

Carlidan

You keep saying it's unconstitutional or illegal. But it is not. It was granted by Congress through the patriot act. And if you are going to going to base it on it being illegal because of Amendment 4. Then you really don't have a leg to stand on.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fourth_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution

"This decision in Katz was later developed into the now commonly used two-prong test, adopted in Smith v. Maryland (1979),[41] for determining whether the Fourth Amendment is applicable in a given circumstance:[42][43]
a person "has exhibited an actual (subjective) expectation of privacy"; and
society is prepared to recognize that this expectation is (objectively) reasonable.
An individual has no legitimate expectation of privacy in information provided to third parties.[44][45] In Smith, the Supreme Court held individuals have no "legitimate expectation of privacy" regarding the telephone numbers they dial because they knowingly give that "information to telephone companies when they dial a number.[46]

If the only thing the NSA is collecting is just your phone records. Don't expect it to be illegal.

And also the patriot act, which is law. Granted rights for NSA to have domestic surveillance.

Title I: Enhancing domestic security against terrorism[edit]
Main article: USA PATRIOT Act, Title I
Title I authorizes measures to enhance the ability of domestic security services to prevent terrorism. The title established a fund for counter-terrorist activities and increased funding for the Terrorist Screening Center which is administered by the FBI. The military was authorized to provide assistance in some situations that involve weapons of mass destruction when so requested by the Attorney General. The National Electronic Crime Task Force was expanded, along with the President's authority and abilities in cases of terrorism. The title also condemned the discrimination against Arab and Muslim Americans that happened soon after the September 11 terrorist attacks. The impetus for many of the provisions came from earlier bills, for instance the condemnation of discrimination was originally proposed by Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) in an amendment to the Combatting Terrorism Act of 2001, though in a different form. It originally included "the prayer of Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the Archbishop of Washington in a Mass on September 12, 2001 for our Nation and the victims in the immediate aftermath of the terrorist hijackings and attacks in New York City, Washington, D.C., and Pennsylvania reminds all Americans that 'We must seek the guilty and not strike out against the innocent or we become like them who are without moral guidance or proper direction.'"[28] Further condemnation of racial vilification and violence is also spelled out in Title X, where there was condemnation of such activities against Sikh Americans, who were mistaken for Muslims after the September 11th terrorist attack.

So how is it illegal again? I don't agree with what NSA is doing. But say it's unconstitutional or illegal. Because at this moment is law and until the supreme court says it's unconstitutional or until Congress repeals the law. It's constitutional and legal.

avatar

MaximumMike

>>You keep saying it's unconstitutional or illegal.

Actually, you would be hard put to find me saying it is "illegal" anywhere. And even if I did, it would have been in direct reference to the constitutionality of the program. My stance has always been that NSA spying in unconstitutional.

But this is the problem with you. Typically late to the show and too lazy to do the requisite reading up front. I think this is the fourth thread I have debated this topic on, and I have already covered everything you are about to bring up in great detail. So, why didn't you bother to comment on those threads the first time around, instead rehashing the same stupid crap TheMac has been saying? It wasn't true when he said and it won't be true just because you repeated it. But this is the problem with liberals. They never argue with the refutations to their arguments, they just restate their original arguments over and over again. But since you're just throwing your hat in for the first time, I'll give you a pass and I'll address your argument.

>>But it is not. It was granted by Congress through the patriot act.

Just because Congress passes a law, that doesn't make it constitutional.

>>And if you are going to going to base it on it being illegal because of Amendment 4. Then you really don't have a leg to stand on.

This is so idiotic I don't know whether to laugh or to cry. What else would I base my opinion about constitutionality on other than the Constitution?

>>http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fourth_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution

I don't know what's more pathetic, the fact that you posted a link to wikipedia as proof of anything or the fact that you failed to read what you posted. Never do this again when speaking to me. Wikipedia isn't a valid source for anything. It's a great place to get references, and "those" references can be valid. But wikipedia is not and never will be. If you're too lazy to do the actual research don't bother speaking to me.

>>"This decision in Katz was later developed ... when they dial a number.[46]

Even worse than linking to wikipedia is copying and pasting from wikipedia. I absolutely loathe people who are too lazy to articulate their own thoughts and resort to copy and paste from wikipedia.

But what's even more pathetic is that you failed to comprehend the piece you lifted from wikipedia.

On this thread I elaborated extensively on the case of "United States v. Antoine Jones"
http://www.maximumpc.com/comment/reply/25783/244502
I'm not going to reiterate it for you, you can read what I had to say for yourself. But the one thing you will find is that all sitting justices shared my opinion on what constitutes a 4th Amendment search on the basis of Katz, and some even regardless of Katz. It is clear that you do not understand the ramifications of Katz at all. But I wouldn't expect someone whose understanding of the world is limited to what he can dig up on wikipedia to anyway.

>>If the only thing the NSA is collecting is just your phone records. Don't expect it to be illegal.

Man.... you really don't pay attention do you? They've been collecting emails and all kinds of other stuff. If we were going to have a conversation about collecting phone numbers, we would have had it back when Ma Bell went to ESS1.

>>And also the patriot act, which is law. Granted rights for NSA to have domestic surveillance.

No, it did not. And I don't know why you persist with the wikipedia, but that blurb did not in any way say that the Patriot Act authorized domestic spying. And even if it had, it would have still only been the word of wikipedia. But let me clear this up for you, the Patriot Act required that at least one party of the conversation be a foreign national. It never authorized just listening in on the conversations of any American citizen, e.g., domestic spying. Even TheMac eventually backed off this stance and admitted that the NSA domestic spying and the Patriot Act were not the same.

>>So how is it illegal again?

Because it violates the constitution. Go read it for yourself as our forefathers intended.

>>I don't agree with what NSA is doing.

That's the first sensical thing you've said.

>>Because at this moment is law and until the supreme court says it's unconstitutional or until Congress repeals the law. It's constitutional and legal.

You do realize the logical fallacy there, right? I pointed it out to TheMac on another thread when he made the same stupid argument.

avatar

maverick knight

You don't know how the NSA works and quoting Snowden is just like quoting wikipedia. Snowden is a traitor in so many levels. Information is power and money. Is what is done with that information that can become illegal. NSA does not do anything without congress and judges approval. I strongly believe that Snowden did it for money but it backfired.

Look, we can go all out in our opinions on that is and is not constitutional but its only judges who decide that. So unless we are judges this is all opinions so no need to be rude.

Fact of the matter is that the enemy lives right here in our land and security is not definite. The more security we implement to protect our nation the enemy will try to break it. Sadly, no security measure is perfect. Being transparent to the american people is also being transparent to our enemies.

avatar

MaximumMike

>>You don't know how the NSA works

Well, not entirely anyway. But I know enough to know they're doing things that violate my constitutional rights.

>>and quoting Snowden is just like quoting wikipedia.

Haha. I don't know what's funnier - the statement you just made or the fact that you don't see what's wrong with it.

>>Snowden is a traitor in so many levels.

That's funny too. According to the Constitution my rights are being violated, but you say they are not. According to the Constitution, Snowden is not a traitor, but you claim he is. On what do you base your absurd opinions?

>>NSA does not do anything without congress and judges approval.

Unfortunately, the documents released by Snowden say otherwise. And the government isn't denying it.

>>I strongly believe that Snowden did it for money but it backfired.

That may very well be true. But with absolutely no evidence to go on, why hold that opinion strongly?

>>Look, we can go all out in our opinions on that is and is not constitutional but its only judges who decide that.

Wrong again. Judges do make a definitive determination on the matter. But ultimately the last say is with the people. And that's why you should know your rights and stop entrusting them entirely to a government known to be greedy, corrupt, and abusive.

>>So unless we are judges this is all opinions so no need to be rude.

You tread on my rights with your "opinions". There is no need to be civil. Your opinions and those of any who agree with you are an affront to my liberties. I will treat them with the contempt they deserve. That is my right as well.

>>Fact of the matter is that the enemy lives right here in our land and security is not definite.

That's right. So, why are you trying to trade my liberty for your security?

>>The more security we implement to protect our nation the enemy will try to break it. Sadly, no security measure is perfect.

That's why you must be brave enough to live free, instead of cowering behind the all powerful, all intrusive government.

>>Being transparent to the american people is also being transparent to our enemies.

The government is free to plan in secret the defense of the country all it likes. But that doesn't mean it gets to ignore my constitutionally protected rights in the process.

avatar

Carlidan

So you have nothing to dispute my claims? Do you want to bring up other sources if you like?

avatar

MaximumMike

>>So you have nothing to dispute my claims?

I have disputed your claims thoroughly. If you disagree with anything I've said feel free to show why it's wrong.

>>Do you want to bring up other sources if you like?

Excuse me, the opinions of sitting Supreme Court Justices in the case of United States v. Antoine Jones is not a source? But wikipedia is? Typical liberal emptyheadedness.

avatar

limitbreaker

"Typical liberal emptyheadedness"

I agree with your views on nsa and Snowden but please don't trow out slurs like this. Glen Beck is an example of what I see most of the time with right leaning people; intellectually willful ignorance but full of flame and anger.
The issue of a right to privacy isn't a left vs right problem, it's all across the board.

avatar

MaximumMike

>>I agree with your views on nsa and Snowden but please don't trow out slurs like this.

But Carlidan is a professing liberal, and likely the most emptyheaded one here. That's not to say there aren't conservatives with hollow skulls as well. There's one in particular who I've ripped to shreds on this topic. I generally make a point of insulting those who would strip away my constitutional rights. I don't intend to stop.

>>Glen Beck is an example of what I see most of the time with right leaning people; intellectually willful ignorance but full of flame and anger.

Worse could be said of Clay Matthews. But why drag either of them into the conversation?

avatar

JosephColt

A few points I'd like to thrown in here:
-
Wikipedia is a reliable source, there will be an occasional error, but as a whole almost always accurate, and it contains the source material if you want to study it yourself.

I wouldn't say use it in college or professional papers as a source though as you cannot claim 100% accuracy, but Wikipedia is a very valid source the rest of the time. Not anyone can simply edit an article too, most of the time edits are reversed immediately.

-

"Just because Congress passes a law, that doesn't make it constitutional."

If congress passes a law it is constitutional It would be more correct to say it isn't morally sound. The job of the supreme court would be to view the case and verify if it worth of being law.

-

"Because it violates the constitution. Go read it for yourself as our forefathers intended."

The constitution was supposed to be flexible for future generations so they could adjust it accordingly too, it's not a static in the slightest.

If we read it as the forefathers intended then only whites who own land can have rights, for example. :/ The way they saw the constitution is much different then how we see it.

-

I believe the NSA should have these powers, but within reason, if they are used justifiably, but what branch of government does not abuse its power.

avatar

MaximumMike

>>Wikipedia is a reliable source, there will be an occasional error, but as a whole almost always accurate, and it contains the source material if you want to study it yourself.

No scholarly person or anyone within all of academia considers wikipedia a reliable source, unless of course they're an active contributor. This of course places you firmly outside the circle of intellectual thought. But you go right ahead and try getting your research published in a scientific journal using only wikipedia as source. And btw, here's some interesting reading for you. Sorry it's not from wikipedia. So, I doubt you'll read it. http://www.findingdulcinea.com/news/education/2010/march/The-Top-10-Reasons-Students-Cannot-Cite-or-Rely-on-Wikipedia.html

>>If congress passes a law it is constitutional

No, if Congress passes a law it is law until repealed or struck down by the courts. But that doesn't make it constitutional.

>>It would be more correct to say it isn't morally sound.

What are the retards coming out of the woodwork today? The Constitution is a concrete document with specific wording I can compare to an existing law. The framers of the Constitution intended it to be a document easily understood by the common man. Most people should be able to understand if an existing law violates their constitutional rights. Now, which moral law would you refer me to in order to easily verify the moral veracity of an existing federal law. I would choose my words carefully here if I were you.

>>The job of the supreme court would be to view the case and verify if it worth of being law.

No.... that's Congress's job, and even the President's to some extent. The Supreme Court's job is to decide if the law is in violation of the Constitution - something you just claimed cannot be the case.

>>The constitution was supposed to be flexible for future generations so they could adjust it accordingly too,

Alright, well just hold right there while the current generation adjusts your right to free speech. Or would you prefer to keep that one? And if so, why are you so willing to compromise the rest of them with your incoherent thinking?

>>it's not a static in the slightest.

The words rise to the top of your brain and your fingers put them on the screen before you even consider what is that you've said, is that about right?

The Constitution organizes the government into three branches. Can you guess how many we have today? The Constitution says you must be 25 years of age to become a Representative. Can you guess how old the youngest Representative ever was? The Constitution says that there will be 2 Senators from each state. We currently have 50 states in the Union. Can you guess how many Senators we have? The Constitution says, "All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives." Care to guess where every single revenue bill in the history of this country has originated? Or are you as confused as all the Democrats who recently thought they started in the Senate? Shall I go on or do you get the point?

>>If we read it as the forefathers intended then only whites who own land can have rights, for example.

Inevitably, you liberals will make some outlandish historical remark without any shred of evidence to back it up. But here's the truth. Slavery was here before we were a country. It was an existing institution that the founding fathers were unwilling to deal with in their time, but they never intended for it to be protected by the Constitution. Most of the founding fathers knew slavery to be wrong and were torn by the hypocrisy of having that institution within the borders of a land that claimed to be free. But because of the social ramifications they were unwilling to undo it. But they all knew that as a country we would eventually have to abolish it, and they feared greatly for the generation that would undertake that difficult task. There is a great body of literature on this subject. I suggest you get off wikipedia and read some of it.

>>The way they saw the constitution is much different then how we see it.

No, the way they saw the constitution is much different than how "YOU" see it. The difference between us is that I actually understand what I read. So, I see the Constitution in much the same way as our founding fathers, though there are undoubtedly differences.

But if we are to follow your kind of reasoning, what's to stop a future generation from reasoning away the hard fought freedoms of blacks (or some other racial group) much the same way you are trying to reason away the 4th Amendment?

>>I believe the NSA should have these powers, but within reason, if they are used justifiably, but what branch of government does not abuse its power.

You do realize that in your own contorted way you just said that you do not believe that the NSA should have these powers?

avatar

JosephColt

Ugh, you are not reading what I wrote correctly.

"No scholarly person or anyone within all of academia considers wikipedia a reliable source, unless of course they're an active contributor. This of course places you firmly outside the circle of intellectual thought. But you go right ahead and try getting your research published in a scientific journal using only wikipedia as source. And btw, here's some interesting reading for you. Sorry it's not from wikipedia. So, I doubt you'll read it. http://www.findingdulcinea.com/news/education/2010/march/The-Top-10-Reasons-Students-Cannot-Cite-or-Rely-on-Wikipedia.html"

I never said it should be used for official papers to ensure 100% accuracy, but Wikipedia is very accurate 95% of the time, and it's really hard to vandalize or write incorrect information as it's scrutinized fast.

"No, if Congress passes a law it is law until repealed or struck down by the courts. But that doesn't make it constitutional."

Isn't that what I just said? If it's not a morally sound law that benefits the citizens then the supreme court will decide on the matter.

"What are the retards coming out of the woodwork today? The Constitution is a concrete document with specific wording I can compare to an existing law. The framers of the Constitution intended it to be a document easily understood by the common man. Most people should be able to understand if an existing law violates their constitutional rights. Now, which moral law would you refer me to in order to easily verify the moral veracity of an existing federal law. I would choose my words carefully here if I were you."

Idiot coming out of the woodwork?

The constitution isn't a static document, god damn, you learn that in basic history. There is a reason it's vague and meant to be interpreted because they cannot account for the future generations; it can even be amended, it's extremely foolish to be called concrete.

"Inevitably, you liberals will make some outlandish historical remark without any shred of evidence to back it up. But here's the truth. Slavery was here before we were a country. It was an existing institution that the founding fathers were unwilling to deal with in their time, but they never intended for it to be protected by the Constitution. Most of the founding fathers knew slavery to be wrong and were torn by the hypocrisy of having that institution within the borders of a land that claimed to be free. But because of the social ramifications they were unwilling to undo it. But they all knew that as a country we would eventually have to abolish it, and they feared greatly for the generation that would undertake that difficult task. There is a great body of literature on this subject. I suggest you get off wikipedia and read some of it."

I'm not a liberal, democratic, republican or anything, just a normal person; politics are sure for the dumb a lot of times, look how much controversy and hate that spews out of people when others don't share an opinion.

If they originally intended it to be for white people only, I doubt that, neither of us can truly know if they wanted freedom for slaves, but it's unlikely.

"No, the way they saw the constitution is much different than how "YOU" see it. The difference between us is that I actually understand what I read. So, I see the Constitution in much the same way as our founding fathers, though there are undoubtedly differences."

The times were so much different back then, and how they envisioned freedom is not the same as how we do now. Different times, different problems. Because I have a different opinion on a point does not mean I don't understand the Constitution, it means I have a different view on it.

"the same way you are trying to reason away the 4th Amendment?"

I'm not trying to reason away the 4th amendment. My original point was that I don't think some invasion of privacy is so bad, but there should be limits. We already give up some freedom in different areas so that we can have government benefits.

"You do realize that in your own contorted way you just said that you do not believe that the NSA should have these powers?"

No I didn't. There is only so far they should go. If they want to access the records of an individual to do a background checks if it involves national security then by all means they should have that power to quickly check into the life of someone.

In my first post I said: "I think he is a traitor, but maybe his actions may have been good so we can put certain limits in place."

For example, the NSA may access any information they want without going through courts immediately, but only are capable of arresting and prosecuting anyone who in within the bounds of being a enemy of the state(domestic or foreign terrorist, spy, forign combatants).

--------------------
We have different views here on this single point, can we both just agree on that?

I'm sure we would both agree on something like net neutrality should be law, or all races deserve fair and equality treatment.

avatar

MaximumMike

>>Ugh, you are not reading what I wrote correctly.

Perhaps you're not writing it correctly.

>>I never said it should be used for official papers to ensure 100% accuracy, but Wikipedia is very accurate 95% of the time, and it's really hard to vandalize or write incorrect information as it's scrutinized fast.

Actually, that's not true. I see articles on Wikipedia all the time that are marked up from top to bottom for inaccuracies, weasel words, original content, and other non-academic practices. If I asked you where I might look for more understanding of an issue, then wikipedia would be a perfectly acceptable point of reference. However, if I asked you for proof of the truth of some statement, then wikipedia is not allowed. And if you had bothered to read the article I posted for you, you would understand why.

>>Isn't that what I just said?

No, what you said was that the law would be constitutional as soon as it was passed, and then the Supreme Court would then decide if it was good enough to be a law or not, which is exactly backwards of what actually happens.

>>If it's not a morally sound law that benefits the citizens then the supreme court will decide on the matter.

No, the Supreme Court does not rule on issues of morality, but on legality, specifically where the Constitution is concerned. It is true that the Supreme Court should be working for the benefit of the citizens, but that is by extension of its protection of the Constitution, which protects citizens. But the Supreme Court's role is more in interpreting the Constitution, than in protecting citizens. That is why we have recently seen some bad interpretations from the court that hurt citizens, like imminent domain, much of the Patriot Act, and the Affordable Care Act. If the Supreme Court's primary consideration were protecting citizens it would not have been able to push this crap through. But because the Court's role is in interpreting the Constitution, it feels it can get away with doing things harmful to the public as long as it feels it can justify it with the Constitution. But that's not to say that all of its rulings are harmful either.

>>The constitution isn't a static document, god damn, you learn that in basic history.

No, it's a living document, intended to still be relevant today. But I'm honestly surprised to hear that you learned anything in basic history.

>>There is a reason it's vague and meant to be interpreted because they cannot account for the future generations;

Yes, as a living document it should be interpreted. But that does not mean that it comes to be understood in an entirely different way, or that the principles that governed its creation should be discarded, but rather that we should understand the spirit of the document and apply those same principle to new situations while adhering entirely to the document in matters that have not changed. But for your logic to work, we must dismiss the original meaning in favor of a new meaning that directly contradicts what was originally written.

And the justification for this is that the original writers couldn't have possibly known what life would be like in a couple hundred years. But that's a silly notion. The nature of man is still basically the same. He still has the same desires, proclivities, passions, and pursuits. He's still governed by the same forces on the inside, and thus a document which governed him well 200 years ago will still govern him well today. I think our forefathers did anticipate that.

>>it can even be amended, it's extremely foolish to be called concrete.

Yes, but Amending it and interpreting (discarding the meaning of) it are not the same thing. But you're taking me a little out of context here. When I called the document concrete, it was in reference to having a written (concrete) document, as opposed to some vague moral code that isn't defined anywhere. This was in reference to your notion that the Supreme Court makes moral determinations. But I suppose I could have been more clear. So, I hope you will consider my above discourse on how it is a living document as that clarification.

>>look how much controversy and hate that spews out of people when others don't share an opinion.

It's not just about a difference of opinion. You're talking about trampling people's rights. Americans tend to take that stuff seriously.

>>The times were so much different back then, and how they envisioned freedom is not the same as how we do now.

I thoroughly disagree with you. I think people are basically the same. Sure we have cars, the internet, and cellphones - but other than technology people are still doing basically the same stuff. Furthermore, the tenants of freedom haven't changed one iota. It still comes with a load of responsibility and requires a ton of guts. If anything, freedom requires more of us than it did 200 years ago. Maybe that's why so many people don't want to be burdened with it anymore. But I would love to see your discourse on how what it means to be free today is different from what freedom meant to men like George Washington, John Adams, John Locke, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson.

>>Because I have a different opinion on a point does not mean I don't understand the Constitution, it means I have a different view on it.

It's not your differing point of view that leads me to believe you don't understand the Constitution, but your lack of understanding of basic government principles and history does.

>>I'm not trying to reason away the 4th amendment. My original point was that I don't think some invasion of privacy is so bad, but there should be limits.

But you are reasoning it away whether you think you are or not. And who sets the limits? How do you stop the government from ever encroaching on those limits? Normally a slippery slope isn't a good argument. But when all governments in history have plunged down the same slippery slope, there's good reason to believe the next one will. Our forefathers, thought so as well. That's why a warrant is required. It's not that they can't get your documents, but they must first prove they have a good reason for wanting them. What good reason is there for them to have unmitigated access to all your documents up front?

>>We already give up some freedom in different areas so that we can have government benefits.

Those lines have already been clearly defined. So, if we start allowing the government to cross them where do you propose they stop? Furthermore, how will you get them to stop? And most importantly, what is the benefit to allowing them to cross the lines? What are you offering in exchange for my freedom?

>>No I didn't.

Well, you said that you thought the NSA spying was good as long as they didn't abuse it. Then you said the government abuses just about everything. So, it sounds like you believe the government would abuse this power, and therefore should not have it. If that's not what you meant, you have some seriously contradictory beliefs. I recommend you sit down and think them through.

>>If they want to access the records of an individual to do a background checks if it involves national security then by all means they should have that power to quickly check into the life of someone.

When did this become about background checks? Did you get this conversation confused with another one?

>>For example, the NSA may access any information they want without going through courts immediately,

Are you really so ignorant and short sighted? There are a million scenarios that could cause this to be bad. Do you implicitly trust the NSA? You think Edward Snowden was a traitor right? But he was in the NSA. So, based on your own opinion bad people get into the NSA. What if one of them discovers your idea for a new patent in your email and steals it? What if you cut one of these guys off in traffic and he uses your license plate information to find you identity and then searches your medical records until he finds your wife's prescription medication which she can only refill once a month. Then he goes to the pharmacy and picks up her medication. Do you have any idea how bad what you're suggesting could be?

>>but only are capable of arresting and prosecuting anyone who in within the bounds of being a enemy of the state(domestic or foreign terrorist, spy, forign combatants).

What if they don't prosecute you? What if they just use your info to exploit you?

>>We have different views here on this single point, can we both just agree on that?

I assure you we have different views on most things. We don't think alike.

>>I'm sure we would both agree on something like net neutrality should be law, or all races deserve fair and equality treatment.

We certainly agree on those two things. But that doesn't give you a pass for asserting that government should be able to tread on my rights.

avatar

JosephColt

I honestly didn't except an argument to turn out like this, otherwise I would have written more clearly and descriptive. This is why I usually tend to avoid anything political, it can pit brother against brother.

Also before I write further, please keep this civil, insults don't add validity to your argument, and it would be incredibly shunned in a official debate. Even I am starting to make comments that I shouldn't.

Comments like this, "But I'm honestly surprised to hear that you learned anything in basic history," is incredibly rude and disrespectful since you do not know anything about me or that I minored in history with A's on the side when I was getting my primary degree. I would appreciate some respect, and I am open and happy to hear your arguments as long as they remain civil.

"Actually, that's not true. I see articles on Wikipedia all the time that are marked up from top to bottom for inaccuracies..."

It really depends though on the types of articles(some have to be locked too), it used to be much worse, but at least it is getting better(and at least has sources you can use). Personally I love Wikipedia, and I wish they had a larger budget and staff. It would be great to have academically verified pages so students can use.

"No, what you said was that the law..."

That's just kind of how it works though, it becomes law, and we can hope the supreme court can verify if it's worth of being law. I wouldn't trust congress at all these days though.

"No, the Supreme Court does not rule on issues of morality,"

Yes, that is true, but morality and legality could go hand in hand. A lot of laws should be moral rulings by default, but often are not(sometimes they cannot be).

"Yes, as a living document it should be interpreted..."

Yes, I whole hearty agree on this which is why I said it isn't a static document.

"But that's a silly notion. The nature of man is still basically the same." and "I think our forefathers did anticipate that."

I think they did a fairly good job with the constitution, and it's held up quite well, but with the advent of technology no one could have anticipated the effects it would have on the nation. Technology, and those who control it, have the power to easily manipulate and control the masses; we've become so reliant on it too.

"But I suppose I could have been more clear." Well, to be honest, it's a bit difficult to have a debate or discussion like this, especially in text; face to face discuss is the only good way for this in my opinion.

"Those lines have already been clearly defined"

We could define the lines for the NSA now and technological monitoring. This is the perfect time to do it.

----------------------------------

You think Edward Snowden was a traitor right?

By definition mostly, like I originally said, this may have been for the best. I mostly have a problem with him causing friction with other nations, and leading the U.S. to lose it's ability investigate possible threats from other countries easily.

Are you really so ignorant and short sighted? There are a million scenarios that could cause this to be bad.

Of course, but that can be said about thing, I especially fear something like the loss of net neutrality where the flow of information is manipulated. A small site like this could just vanish.

Do you implicitly trust the NSA?

No, you can never fully trust anyone anywhere.

------------------------------------

"What if they don't prosecute you? What if they just use your info to exploit you?"

Yes, that's an issue, but once again, like I said before, while I feel like snowden isn't fully in the right, this may be good in the long run as people are aware of this now.

"What if they don't prosecute you? What if they just use your info to exploit you?

"We certainly agree on those two things. But that doesn't give you a pass for asserting that government should be able to tread on my rights."

I also have my rights, and I can give up some if I want to. I am not treading on your rights. If the majority of Americans agree that the NSA should not spy on you in private then that's how it will be.

I simply belief it could be a useful tool, but almost everything can be abused, and the people must always step up to ensure that. Big problem here is like I said before, governments will do stuff despite the law, and it's up to the people to stop it.

Keep in mind, I fully understand your point of view from post one, I really do. I just see such a method to access information on a grandeur scale an amazing tool if used justifiable; that's all I really thought of from post one.

You have every right to defend fight and protect your constitutional rights, and you should, but I also have my rights to proclaim what I believe, even if it may tread on your rights if imposed. This is why America is great, we have the ability to fight for what we believe. You can fight for your privacy as much as you want, more power to you, and I can also fight for what I believe in, although we probably only differ on a few points about rights realistically.

The government spying on you is like an over protective parent watching over your should all the time, only difference is the parent cares, and the government doesn't.

avatar

Carlidan

Don't think he knows how our governments works, Colts. But whatever. :)

avatar

MaximumMike

Don't think you know how logical thought works, but whatever.

avatar

vrmlbasic

The old "It doesn't violate the 4th amendment because we-the Courts-say it doesn't, and we know what we're talking about because we're rocking these black robes" line.

Just because the courts tell us that something completely counter to a law-to a right given to us by something greater than the court-is legit doesn't make it so. My 4th amendment has been violated.

avatar

Carlidan

damn double posted

avatar

Biceps

This is totally a tech issue. This is technology-aided surveillance that is being done secretly through the devices you use every day. And the NSA intercepts computers while in transit in shipping and installs bugs in them. And they paid RSA to provide the equivalent of a backdoor into encryption algorithms. How much more tech-related does it have to be for it to be mentioned here?

avatar

PhaQue

he's a fraud and rube for Russia. If he wants to be a hero and make real change he can release all the information into the public domain and let the cards fall where they may.

avatar

Dave in Wisconsin

What he's done was illegal, but necessary. He deserves a full pardon; few would have the courage to make the sacrifice he has.

avatar

Richardbs

Yes. He sacrificed his freedom to let the American people know of what our own government is doing to us. What confuses me is the President himself even said there's whistle blowing laws that protect them, yet here Snowden is being treated like a terrorist. I remember shortly after that came out, a military guy came out to expose stuff "correctly" and now he's in prison, and all the media focuses on is how the military guy wanted a sex change in his private life. It's ridiculous.

avatar

WarpathPS

Breaking laws to expose unconstitutional behavior, yes the guy does have balls.

avatar

JosephColt

I think he is a traitor, but maybe his actions may have been good so we can put certain limits in place.

I have zero concern if the government wants to spy on me as long as it's not releasing my information to the public. I would see it as beneficial for our government to have these powers so they can spy on other countries and become more powerful, but if there were to abuse their power on American citizens it may be an issue.

There is no right or wrong with what he has done.

avatar

Richardbs

What, exactly, is he a traitor for?

avatar

JosephColt

He exposed the NSA and American governments actions. Whether his actions are for the good or bad does not change the fact he betrayed his government, thus by definition a traitor.

It would be like if a soldier refused to carry out a mission because it was not morally compliant to his beliefs.