Archive for Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Stumbling block

February 28, 2006

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To the editor:

Sen. Pat Roberts continues to insist that hearings are not needed to determine whether the Bush administration's domestic surveillance activities have broken the law. I have written to him directly several times about my concerns. In those letters, I reminded him that he has a responsibility as chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee to use his position not to cover for the administration but to ensure that it follows the law. He appears to be choosing party loyalty instead.

Sen. Roberts trusts President Bush not to abuse his powers. However, a proper investigation will assure us all that presidential powers are being kept in check, as the founders intended. Supporters of domestic surveillance keep insisting that people who have nothing to hide should have nothing to fear. Congress needs to take this advice and not shy away from bipartisan hearings, which will reassure Americans across the political spectrum if they find that proper oversight was in place, and will help hasten reforms if they find that it was not.

This is a very difficult subject for a lot of Americans, because we all want our country to be safer. But if we trade off our constitutional rights against the illusion of safety, in the end we all lose. The American people must regain trust in the way our system works; hearings are the only way to make that happen. Kansas' senior senator needs to stop being a stumbling block to progress and help ensure that the president is acting within the law.

Andrea Zuercher,

Lawrence

Comments

b_asinbeer 9 years, 2 months ago

So, what does the Bush administration have to lose by making sure powers are not being abused? Why are they so against it? If they don't want to be subject to an investigation it means that he knows he screwed up (again!) and broke the law. But if he didn't do anything wrong, he's got nothing to worry about. So, conduct the investigation already!

I hope Mr. Bush gets rid of the "I'm the president, so I'm always right" attitude (Anyone remember Nixon?).

I'm wondering how the Bush-supporters would argue against a simple checks-and-balances procedure. After all, nobody is above the law...so they shouldn't have a problem, right? That's not what Mr. Bush thinks apparently.

Bradley Kemp 9 years, 2 months ago

"Well, I voted for Bush twice, supported the war, but as a Republican, I'm saying: GET OUT AND LET THOSE MURDERING SONS-A-B*TCHES KILL EACH OTHER OFF. THEY'RE THIRD WORLD ARABS AND THAT'S ALL THEY'VE EVER KNOWN."

Terrifying.

mefirst 9 years, 2 months ago

rightthinker--our job in Iraq is done? So, what have we accomplished?

We didn't find the WMDs; we sure haven't spread democracy; I don't feel any safer now than I did before the Iraq war; and yes, Saddam's gone, but standby, there will be some radical leader to step in and take his place...just as soon as all the dust from this impending war settles.

This whole fiasco is another example of the neo-cons' short-sightedness, lack of perspective, contempt for the reality of the situation, all fueled by incredible greed masked by a phony agenda.

Gee, I thought God was on our side in this battle. Hmmm.

rtwngr 9 years, 2 months ago

Yeah, mefirst, greed. That "take over Iraq for the oil" scheme really worked. We're swimming in oil now. WMD? You think because we didn't discover a stockpile of them that they didn't exist? You can prove they didn't exist? What makes you so sure that a new dictator will move into the vacuum left by Saddam's departure? The last time I checked there was an elected government in Iraq. It's not a perfect government but it is an elected government just the same. One last point: Have you talked to any of the troops returning from Iraq? I have and they cannot believe the type of coverage that we hear. Most of them find it unconscienable that our media portrays Iraq in the light that it does. To a person they all state the progress and good that is being done in that country, every day, that is never told. Some that I have spoken to volunteer to return for another tour in Iraq. The story that gets lost here is that someone, sometimes, has to go and intercede for those that cannot defend themselves. God bless them all including GWB.

mefirst 9 years, 2 months ago

Your "bomb then to smitherines" idea has NEVER worked. It's the basis of all this anti-AMericanism that you complain about. Why can't people understand that our arrogance...if they don't do what we want them to do, we'll bomb the $hit out of them, gets us NOWHERE. In fact, it breeds defiance.

We do not have the resources to take on the whole world. Our military has proven vulnerable. We may be a super power, but we're not Superman. The reality of the situation is that we need to examine our foreign policy. We need to recognize that pre-emption, dominance, making demands, deceit, and bombing people Aren't working.

What's the solution? You don't want to hear my thoughts on that because it doesn't involve beefing up the military and bombing "the animals" in the world's poorest nations.

My solution involves turning our attention to what people need, not what corporate America needs, not what GWB needs, but what do the poorest people on this planet need?

Maybe they need us to get the hell out of their countries. Completely out.

Maybe they need us to stop supplying weapons and military aid.

Maybe they need us to set an example for what real diplomacy and democracy look like. Diplomancy and democracy do not equate to bombing the $hit out of people.

Perhpas they need us to start investing in our educational system, so we can educate our population in a way that leads to solutions to the world's most pressing problems i.e. dwindling resources, poverty, environmental concerns, hunger, health.

mefirst 9 years, 2 months ago

With every bomb that drops, we create more animosity and hatred directed at ourselves. Why, not because we're killing the bad guys, but because we''re killing family members, friends, neighbors, many of them innocent with no real stake in the outcome of our war on terror.

I agree, the U.S. does give a great deal in "good" aid. We also give a great deal of aid in the form of weapons and dollars for military spending. We have a lot to gain from their corrupt governments. We benefit from these Third World nations who keep their own people down--often it's the most corrupt world leaders who serve the U.S. interests at the expense of their own people.

I don't have all the answers and I'm not naive enough to believe we can "kill 'em all with kindness..." I'm not proposing that we abolish the military, but I think it's way past time we look honestly at ourselves and our policies.

I believe there once was a time when the U.S. and Americans in general were viewed very positively by the rest of the world. What happened to those days? What got in the way of that?

mefirst 9 years, 2 months ago

We weren't the only ones who kicked ass. Remember, we entered the game late. MILLIONS died in Europe. They fought their asses off too and they lost a lot.

I don't think the Civil Rights movement, the Women's movement etc., and our own cultural changes can be blamed for the mistakes of our foreign policy. Perhaps our need to open up new markets in Communist countries led to the world turning their back on us.

Though I agree, that domestically, our culture is in trouble. Our values are totally skewed and our children are taught that they're the center of the universe. No respect for their parents, authority, life. I could go on FOREVER!

yourworstnightmare 9 years, 2 months ago

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yourworstnightmare 9 years, 2 months ago

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yourworstnightmare 9 years, 2 months ago

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