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Homeland Security Okays Closed Proceedings 281

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the removing-accountability-is-always-fun dept.
CNet is reporting that a newly created branch within the Homeland Security Department that brings together many different federal agency employees and private sector players has been given the go-ahead to disregard a law requiring meetings to be open and proceedings public. From the article: "The 1972 law generally requires such groups to meet in open sessions, make written meeting materials publicly available, and deliver a 15-day notice of any decision to close a meeting to the public. The last is a particular point of concern for Homeland Security officials, who anticipate that private emergency meetings may need to be scheduled on short notice."
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Homeland Security Okays Closed Proceedings

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:04PM (#14995318)
    and think this is part of another conservative/Republican plot

    LOL no plot here, just more Republicans who think the law doesn't apply to them and they're too busy dancing to their sugar daddies' tunes to change the law.
  • by eno2001 (527078) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:09PM (#14995344) Homepage Journal
    I find it highly suspicious that someone who seems to know a lot about these types of meetings (I wonder why that is) is posting on Slashdot. Especially with a favorable view. Regardless of whether or not you are right in what you say, it seems to me that you have more of a political motivation for posting here. The kind of mind that takes a keen interest in government and politics and the kind of mind that has a strong interest in computers and technology typically do not mix. This is one of THE biggest problems with the net. We have people who are either "wannabe" career politicians or are virtual lobbyists astroturfing the view of their employers. You are one part of the formula that is trying to subvert people to the cause of the current criminal in charge of the Whitehouse. Unless you have some other defense for yourself (I'm not even touching why you might be posting AC) I recommend that people read what you wrote with a large degree of suspicion.
  • Everything the government does should be held to public scrutiny. How can we be reasonably informed on issues pertaining to the government when there are closed meetings between important government and private sector industries; secret courts issuing secret warrants; agencies such as the NSA performing illegal wiretapping under a veil of national security.

    Perhaps it is necessary to have an agency such as the NSA or CIA that have operations that are never publicized. But its still something I have the utmost contempt for. How can the public check the government that was meant to serve them, to protect them, if they have no idea what the government is even doing.

    Congressmen when given classified information, cannot release to the public that officals or even the President is involved in illegal activities, because their proof is covered in the interest of national security, and they can be arrested for a breach in such protocals.

    Ignorance is power... freedom is slavery...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:12PM (#14995356)
    In case there's any doubt regarding my position :

    I fear the government of the US far more than I fear any terrorist.

    Why ?

    Because the US government has wasted far more American lives than any terrorist has.
  • by Homology (639438) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:20PM (#14995391)
    The kind of mind that takes a keen interest in government and politics and the kind of mind that has a strong interest in computers and technology typically do not mix.

    That might be true of 15 year olds living with Mom, but some of us are adults that do care how a country a governed.

  • by Homology (639438) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:26PM (#14995423)
    The current administration seems to make just about everything it can closed to public scrutiny; in this case, it's even easier than usual because they can claim "it's against terrorists / fer the children!!!"

    The secrecy of this administration is unprecented, and so are their efforts to give the President unchecked powers.

  • by erroneus (253617) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:27PM (#14995428) Homepage
    I am left to wonder what significant safegaurds we have remaining. Admittedly, I knew nothing of this particular 1972 law to begin with. But now I wonder if there are any more significant laws that are in place to preserve the transparency of the US government that will likely be targetted or otherwise disregarded?

    This "war on terror" is such an incredibly dangerous witchunt. It struck my mind really hard the other day when I first heard it said that "terrorism is a method, not an identity." Nothing and no law could possibly prevent any free people from being stripped of their creativity when it comes to fighting for what they think is important. To attempt to target a "methodology" is like shooting at ghosts. Instead, they have to target people believed to be capable of using a methodology. It's just an inch or two away from "crimes of thought."

    There are other nations that have been dealing with "terrorist activity" in the past and their reaction has been nothing so drastic as what is happening in the US. They treat the activity as they would any crime. This is exactly how the US should be responding. There must be a way to fight crime without taking civil liberties and government transparency further from the public's eye.

    The next round of elections will not come soon enough for me. I still have hopes that the damage can be reversed.
  • It seems like (Score:3, Insightful)

    by irimi_00 (962766) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:37PM (#14995472)
    If this helps prevent another 911 (which, admittedly, there is a potential it may not), then maybe it isn't such a bad thing.
  • by HangingChad (677530) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:38PM (#14995482) Homepage
    For the duration of the war on terror, which will be, essentially, forever. Then we don't have to worry about those silly liberals whining about secret courts, holding people in secret prisons without charges or access to a lawyer and we can wiretap everyone without a warrant.

    There were compelling reasons for secrecy even back in the day the Constituion was originally drafted, yet the framers thought it more important for the government not to operate in secret.

    We didn't have the mis-named Patriot Act before 9-11 and the FBI and CIA had ample warning about the 9-11 hijackers. We KNEW about some of them going to flight school and didn't act on it. We had ample intelligence before 9-11 and law enforcement had enough power to pick them up if anyone had bothered to act on the FBI field report about potential terrorists in flight school. So why is it the government needs all these additional secret powers and wire tip authority now?

    The real compelling reason for Republicans to want secrecy is because they've all but thrown accountability out the window. When there's no accountability, then you damn sure don't want transparency.

    And do not give me any of that bullshit about the Democrats not being any better. All this is happening with a Republican House, Senate and White House and it's been that way since 2000 and you've had Congress since 1994. It's time to admit that if this country is in a bucket of shit it's because of the REPUBLICANS! Not the Democrats, not the liberals...the problem is YOU.

  • by daveschroeder (516195) * on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:46PM (#14995513)
    Judging from your post, it sounds like you have no concept of the fact that federal advisory council meetings have been able to be closed for nigh on 34 years, and the only thing that this would change is the generally accepted 15-day notice of the closed meeting to the Federal Register, which isn't even required by the statute. The meeting is still closed, in either instance. 15-day notice or not. How is that "surrendering rights" or "freedom"? Please, explain that to me.

    We live in a society based on rule of law and rights tempered with responsibility, including delegated responsibility that we implicitly grant to government. Bottom line? Someone trying to make a mountain out of a molehill. Even the submission makes it appear as if the "new" aspect of this is closed meetings.

    Oops. It isn't. Such meetings have been able to be closed for three and a half decades with notice, and with no notice for the prior couple centuries, since there was no requirement for any notice. The "notice" aspect was created to allow for public notification of a closed meeting of an advisory board, so that the public would still have reasonable mechanisms to obtain more information. Note that in the statute, nothing specific is required for notice, other than it be given.

    Notice can still be given, and an advisory committee on critical public infrastructure can have a closed meeting when deemed necessary, as it would have been able to since 1776 and 1976. And now, 2006. But without having to arbitrarily wait 15 days between the notice and the closed meeting.

    Please note that even with a 15 day notice, there is NO PUBLIC RECOURSE, and no process to open the meeting. It is a NOTICE ONLY. So if you want to trumpet about "rights", why don't you learn what you're talking about first.
  • Re:It seems like (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ScrewMaster (602015) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:47PM (#14995524)
    It won't stop another 9/11, not much can do that. A determined terrorist can always find a way to blow something up because it so easy to destroy. And groups like Al Quaeda are nothing if not determined.

    The problem, from a security perspective, is that America is a goldfish bowl, and has always been a goldfish bowl. That transparency and openness has always been one of our greatest strengths, and to a certain extent an exploitable weakness. I fear that these ongoing attempts to turn this nation into an armored aquarium may ultimately succeed ... but when that happens we won't be Americans anymore, and this country will be "America" in name only.
  • Re:It seems like (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wes33 (698200) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:49PM (#14995534)
    Although it may sound callous, 911 was not a major loss of life (compare traffic accidents or the number of people who die from malaria, or just the number of people murdered every year). You are throwing away your LIBERTY. The 911 criminals are just criminals - they and their ilk can be handled by the criminal justice system. You do not need Dictatorship America. One has to wonder about a hidden agenda here.
  • There IS NO LAW (Score:4, Insightful)

    by fishbowl (7759) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @07:54PM (#14995548)
    It's a fallacy to think that there is anything which the current administration cannot get away with, law or no law. The outrage is already to the threshold where people are talking in terms of "impeaching the President", which is the ultimate consequence short of a violent coup... And it is not going to happen.

    So what do people imagine the current administration cannot do? Obviously there are outrageous things they could do which might affect the loyalty of the military system that keeps them in power, or that could sever the ties to the financial supporters, but they aren't going to do anything of that nature.

    The people aren't going to act, at least not in significant numbers, and certainly not with real hostility. Congress isn't going to destroy this government, not even if the House turns over to the opposition party next January. And other countries aren't going to band together to wage war against the US, not to liberate Iraq from the US, and absolutely not in response to US *domestic* policy.

    So tell me again, what is it that stops the executive administration from operating precisely as a term-limited dictatorship?

    The real fun starts when this administration hands over all this newly asserted power to the next one -- equally likely to be a liberal democrat or a moderate republican. Either way, somebody new gets all this amazing unprecedented power that nobody ever seems to have discovered before Bush.

    If Bush has a legacy, that's it: The President of the United States, formerly believed to be under severe constraints, actually has unlimited power as long as he can protect himself from assassinations and as long as he has a strongly aligned partisan majority in both houses of congress. Even when most of the people in the country are vehemently (but not violently) opposed to his government, and even when there is a widespread belief that he should be removed from office, it has no meaning at all, and certainly is no contraint on the president's actions, either in making domestic policy, or in waging wars of aggression.
    Even if the money to fight these wars is borrowed from five generations in the future, he gets away with it. Lives another day. Isn't removed from power. Has a military that continues to follow orders from the chain of command, as opposed to turning against it. Faces no military or economic opposition from any other nation. That sort of thing. Get it?
  • by Geoffreyerffoeg (729040) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @08:05PM (#14995588)
    For the duration of the war on terror, which will be, essentially, forever.

    Oh, I would be perfectly fine with suspending the Constitution and its associated rights. In war time. In time of Congressionally-declared war. In areas declared a combat zone.

    Because if they declare formal war and declare the homeland a combat zone, it will be so obvious to everyone that they're just imposing martial law on their own citizens, so they wouldn't dare try. However corrupt our government may be, it stills want the perception of being the "beacon of democracy."
  • by LordLucless (582312) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @08:08PM (#14995597)
    Everything the government does should be held to public scrutiny.

    True. But it doesn't have to be real-time, and it shouldn't be. Publishing all a nation's defence strategies is a bad idea in a time of war. Publishing, say, the patrol roster for border patrols would not be a good idea. Informing everyone that a particular power plant is currently unguarded and unprotected is not a good idea.

    Groups such as this should be able to hold closed meetings. Otherwise the whole point of the group - to determine what critical infrastructure is vulnerable and to better defend it - is undermined. The proceedings of the meeting should be made available in, say, two years time - if a vulnerable piece of critical infrastructure is still vulnerable after two years, this group isn't doing it's job.

    I don't know the law in this case, but I would be surprised if that is not already the way it works. Even top secret information is declassified eventually.
  • by amliebsch (724858) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @08:16PM (#14995621) Journal
    The problem is not partisan - it's people.

    This includes most of the posters bitching in the thread about transparency, without even using the transparency they have to read the act. Nor, I would bet, have any of them any actual desire to challenge the meeting closures. In fact, I'm certain the majority had no knowledge that there was any such statute. This is, for them, nothing more than their two minutes of hate against America, or Bush, or the Man, or whoever they think is keeping them down. They don't know the details. They don't want to know the details. Their ignorance is rationalized by their need to rage against the machine. Shame on the editors for enabling this behavior.

  • by eosp (885380) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @08:25PM (#14995643) Homepage
    True. But it doesn't have to be real-time, and it shouldn't be. Publishing all a nation's defence strategies is a bad idea in a time of war. Publishing, say, the patrol roster for border patrols would not be a good idea. Informing everyone that a particular power plant is currently unguarded and unprotected is not a good idea.

    Usually we call this "security through obscurity".

    1. We shouldn't be fighting a war if the people don't agree with it.
    2. If a particular power plant is currently unguarded and unprotected, then FIX IT! If there's a security problem, then having it out in the open will get something done about it.

    Groups such as this should be able to hold closed meetings. Otherwise the whole point of the group - to determine what critical infrastructure is vulnerable and to better defend it - is undermined. The proceedings of the meeting should be made available in, say, two years time - if a vulnerable piece of critical infrastructure is still vulnerable after two years, this group isn't doing it's job.

    If it was better defended in the first place, we wouldn't need to hold closed meetings.

    I don't know the law in this case, but I would be surprised if that is not already the way it works. Even top secret information is declassified eventually.

    Tell that to Bush and his domestic wiretapping program.

    Apologies if this came off as trollish or standoffish.

  • by Kjella (173770) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @08:32PM (#14995669) Homepage
    Everything the government does should be held to public scrutiny.

    Everything down to military blueprints, intelligence and counter-intelligence information, detailed layout plans and reports on critical infrastructure and risk assessments, security clearances and so on? I think you can imagine for yourself that's not going to work. Most scrutiny works the way democracy works, through representation. Even the whole division of power is about the three branches of government scrutinizing each other. I'm not saying that's a perfect system but it mostly works - the troubles we've seen have rarely been a broad conspiracy, mostly it's been one agency running off on their own without *anyone's* scrutiny. I agree that sometimes it might be necessary to break the law to expose a corrupt system, but if there's political gain to be had I imagine they wouldn't hesistate to nail the President's head to the wall.
  • by NMerriam (15122) <NMerriam@artboy.org> on Saturday March 25, 2006 @08:38PM (#14995683) Homepage
    Making the meetings public would amount to "giving our nation's enemies information they could use to most effectively attack a particular infrastructure and cause cascading consequences across multiple infrastructures," another departmental advisory council warned in August.

    As I recall, in 1972, we were in the midst of fighting a Cold War that had, as a very real possible consequence, the end of life on Earth as we know it. We were fighting against a highly organized and well-funded enemy that had thousands of spies at all levels of government and industry, sleeper agents ready to be called on when necessary, and military capabilities that made us legitimately doubt whether we would prevail in any conventional armed conflict. An attack from their formidable stockpiles of intercontinental ballistic missiles would give us less than an hour to pray to the God of our choice before the sun vanished and our component molecules were suddenly and violently redistributed into the ash that would, hopefully, someday support life again.

    And yet, even with this Sword of Damocles hanging over our very survival, we had the conscience and foresight to realize that while we cannot control the behavior of those who would be our enemies, we can control ourselves, and refuse to sacrifice the ideals we believe more important than life in the vain hopes that by abdicating oversight of our government we will somehow gain immunity from outside aggressors.

    I find it the greatest irony of all that those in power right now, who present themselves so vaingloriously, act with such great cowardice. Their willingness to preemptively sacrifice the ideals we hold dear is an insult to the oaths they took, and the people who trust them with their lives.

    No bomb is capable of destroying the historical significance of the Constitution, the concept of modern representative democracy, religious freedom, free speech, or the notion that man has the right and responsibility to govern himself by reason. Yet we find ourselves in the peculiar position of surrendering these, our most valuable possessions, in the vain hope that they will purchase us safety, when we know with certainty that such safety is a chimera, that our lives will always be in danger so long as we espouse such dangerous ideas.

    It does not take courage to hide in a shelter, to stifle dissent or cut yourself off from contrary opinions. It does not take courage to meet in secret, to persecute those who are different, to deny the humanity of those who oppose you.

    What takes courage is knowing there are people in this world who hate you so much they will kill you, and to still get up in the morning and walk out the front door, refusing to change your life or your beliefs due to fear. We knew this after September 11th, we were even told this at the time by our leaders, but for some reason both they and we have lost sight of such a simple insight.
  • by rbochan (827946) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @08:41PM (#14995689) Homepage
    Everything the government does should be held to public scrutiny...

    You're not taking into account the neo-con ideology...
    Women who willingly, even enthusiastically give the president blow jobs should be part of the public record, because the people have the right to know, but security matters and powerful industrial representatives who meet with the administration in secret should have the meetings, the attendees, the topics and effects of those meetings kept secret, because that would interfer with the ability to the government to conduct the people's business without public scrutiny.

    Take that, Osama!

  • by mr_burns (13129) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @08:48PM (#14995711)
    What I'm worried about is it being so easy to close a meeting that it becomes routine.

    Right now we have one safeguard: It's a pain in the ass to wait 15 days so people would mostly rather keep meetings open than close them. Unless absolutely necessary.

    And I understand the probable necessity of having a closed meeting on short notice.

    Where I have a real issue is the way that DHS has decided to work around this conflict. You can't just up and decide that the law doesn't apply to you. You can't decide to just break the law if it doesn't suit you. If the circumstances under which the law was created have changed, maybe it's time to change the law. Go to Congress, tell them how the law hasn't kept pace with reality and ask for changes. Better yet, suggest some.

    Here's my suggestion: keep the 15 days notice the way it has been. However, in the case that the meeting has to be held much sooner than that and be closed, you have to do more than just give notice. You may have to have a counterpart in a different branch of government review an "emergency closure request" or somesuch and OK it. Maybe add a sunset provision in there where after a certain amount of time there will be a review (with a comment period) to decide wether or not the meeting stuff should remain closed. If the review isn't held, the stuff is automatically opened.

    See, it isn't that complicated. DHS gets what they need to do their job. There is a check against the power from another branch and we have a mechanism to regain transparency after the fact.

    But did DHS even ask Congress or entertain the notion? I don't have the answer to that. What I do know is that the President, DHS, the whole danged government and the general populace don't get to decide which laws do and do not apply to them. They can't selectively choose to obey this law and disobey that law. No matter what the percieved necessity may be.

    And this has been happenning at an increasing pace in our executive branch as of late. It's criminal, anAmerican and unacceptable.

    Sheesh, DHS... all you have to do is ask. We'll listen. But if you give up on the rule of law... you'll lead us down a path to anarchy or totalitarianism. And you know what... that's a bigger threat to America than Al Qaeda could ever hope to be. Don't do their work for them.
  • by jrockway (229604) * <jon-nospam@jrock.us> on Saturday March 25, 2006 @09:14PM (#14995788) Homepage Journal
    > I recommend that people read what you wrote with a large degree of suspicion.

      I recommend that people read all slashdot comments with a large degree of suspicion. In fact, I recommend that people read everything with a large degree of suspicion.
  • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @10:06PM (#14995954) Homepage Journal
    Your points are worth debating - they're debatable. But who are you? You anonymously post a long, formatted screed, in the first post, including a link to the law. Replying in the first post to an article published by ScuttleMonkey, but without the usual submitter's credit introducing the story.

    Who are you, and where do you get off assuring us that anything isn't part of another "conservative/Republican plot", when our lives are so full of them already, and they always come with the same kind of denial? Like your comment that if we're suspicious of the government, then we probably won't agree with you, whoever you are.

    This country is founded on distrusting the government, for exactly the reasons we produced the 1972 law, which made them rare exceptions, not the standard procedure.

    Removing-accountability-is-always-fun dept indeed.
  • by Brian_Ellenberger (308720) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @10:42PM (#14996075)

    Women who willingly, even enthusiastically give the president blow jobs should be part of the public record, because the people have the right to know,

    Just for the record, Repubs didn't give a crap Clinton got a BJ. They *DID* care that he lied while giving testamony during the sexual harassment trial of another woman, Paula Jones. Which the press or NOW didn't seem to care about because she was relatively poor and didn't graduate from Harvard. If you think this was somehow wrong, let me refer you to the confirmation of Clarance Thomas.

    I'm bring this up because this simplistic strawman argumentation from both sides needs to stop. We are tearing ourselves apart. Clinton had his own "Homeland Security" issues (see Ruby Ridge) and privacy issues (retrieving FBI files of Republican politicians). And some certain flag-waving Republicans bashed the feds as "jack booted thugs" during the Clinton administration and fought against Clinton's Serbian intervention with some of the same intensity as we are seeing from the anti-war left.

  • by LordLucless (582312) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @10:54PM (#14996111)
    Usually we call this "security through obscurity".

    In the real (ie: non-digital) world, security by obscurity is often the most effective sort. If you don't want your troops bombed, don't let the enemy know where they are. If you don't want your weaknesses exploited, don't let anyone know about them until they are no longer weaknesses.

    If a particular power plant is currently unguarded and unprotected, then FIX IT! If there's a security problem, then having it out in the open will get something done about it.

    You cannot fix something instantly. Lets say these meetings were open. You discuss at the meeting that a power plant is weakly defended and vulnerable. Because the meeting is open, enemies know this information almost as soon as you do. It then becomes a race to see who gets their units to the power plant first. It would be better to discuss the weakness in a closed meeting, deploy the troops to secure it, and then announce that the plant was vulnerable, and has now been secured. That way you don't announce your weaknesses to your enemy.

    If it was better defended in the first place, we wouldn't need to hold closed meetings.

    Yeah, if everything was perfect, nothing would need fixing.

    Tell that to Bush and his domestic wiretapping program.

    What does domestic wiretapping have to do with declassifying information?
  • by daigu (111684) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @11:21PM (#14996177) Journal
    Fantastic comment. Thanks for making it.
  • by David Rolfe (38) on Sunday March 26, 2006 @12:01AM (#14996310) Homepage Journal
    > In a war of "anything goes", "save my ass first" law comes before "save my constitutional right" law.

    Hey, quick question: When will the war be over so I can have my freedom back?
  • by dbIII (701233) on Sunday March 26, 2006 @01:35AM (#14996566)
    Forget the rare security implications for once and consider the surprisingly common criminal and competance issues.

    I live in a state in Australia which was governed by an incompetants engaged in criminal activity who imposed draconian laws to limit public scrutiny. Infighting in the cabinet resulted in the leader being isolated from his own party, and only then did events unfold which resulted in the jailing of the police commisionioner and several government ministers. The situation had continued for years most likely due to limited public scrutiny and various pressures applied to those who spoke out agaist blatantly obvious criminal activity in a Westminster style democracy.

    Elements of the police force were unaccountable (ie. no search warrant required and no requirement to identify themselves) under a piece of law called the "drugs misuse act" which bore some similarity to a watered down patriot act. An anonymous tip off was considered enough for a search by unidentified plain clothes police and the people subject to the search were not permitted to contact others on pain of prosecution - my neighbours house was searched in this way and she was very upset afterwards when she was permitted to leave. It didn't happen much due to incompetance by the corrupt portion of the police force and a reluctance to use these methods by the portion that was less politicised - so it would have gotten worse if it wasn't in the dying days of an imploding corrupt government. Australia differs from the current situation in the USA in that people cannot be detained without charge - but "resisting arrest" was the sole charge in many cases and was considered sufficient.

    Now with secret homeland security groups that avoid the traditional chain of command you don't even need a corrupt government for things to get bad. People get up to all kinds of mischief when there is much profit to be made and they can be sure that no-one is watching. Examples should be taken from other uncontrolled US agencies far from home before giving the home gaurd secret police a chance to play at being bad guys out of James Bond on your home soil. What's wrong with the FBI, the military and state law enforcement that you have to have huge numbers of unaccountable secret police without the training to be car park attendants running around and doing stupid things like making an airline turn a plane around to teach Cat Stevens a lesson for becomming a Moslem?

  • by v1 (525388) on Sunday March 26, 2006 @03:27AM (#14996823) Homepage Journal
    ...but it is true now more than ever.

    Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

    It's not 1984 yet, but it's looking more and more like November of 1983. Scarry stuff.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 26, 2006 @05:58AM (#14997140)
    I take serious offense at that. Why do you assume that, because I'm 15 and I live with my parents (ask most minors, they do too), that I don't care about politics? Come on, THINK before you make a blanket statement like that. I'm very concerned about this as well. Leave the fact that I'm 15 out of this. I've heard many interviews come election time of complete morons off the street who vote only where there's a handout, and I've seen some really baseless arguments. I'm not saying I'm perfect, but that doesn't mean that what I have to say means nothing. And I do find it quite ironic that you misspelled your retort. ;)
  • by badspyro (920162) <badspyro.gmail@com> on Sunday March 26, 2006 @07:40AM (#14997334)
    HAY!!!

    Some of us, even when we were 15 cared more about what the government was doing than the majority of adults, certanly here in the UK!

    I spend a lot of time trying to get people go give a f*** about what the government are doing, or to rty and do something about it, and they just don't care.

    I took my mum to and underground bookshop place yesterday, and she thought it was too "contravertial" for her, even though thease are the exact people fighting for HER rights.

      and adults say we don't understand

    ___________________________________________

    PLEASE comment out swearing, it stops some of us seeing good articals at work when our home proxy is down lol
  • by Brian_Ellenberger (308720) on Sunday March 26, 2006 @12:50PM (#14998275)

    WHich begs the question why were the republicans so facinated with where bill clinton stuck his cock into?

    This is an example of a strawman argument. If you don't know what that is look it up in the wikipedia. THE REPUBS DIDN'T CARE. Paula Jones did. She was a state employee who was escorted to Clinton's hotel room like a prostitute by a state trooper. Something that should make your stomach turn whether Clinton was a D or an R.

    During depositions Paula wanted to establish that Clinton had a history of having sexual relationships with people under him. Clinton lied and THAT is what REPUBs cared about

    Now I know darn well that the feminist organizations like NOW would have been all over Clinton if he had an R by his name instead of a D. Instead they argued completely opposite as they had during the Thomas confirmations

    So go back to Comp 101 and learn logic and argumentation before trying to type next time

  • by What me a Coward (875774) on Sunday March 26, 2006 @05:36PM (#14999383)
    No i didn't mod it but.

        No it isn't new or revealing but it is still just as insightfull and true now as when Ben Franklin spoke it thoughs long Centuries ago and yet still people in our own government seem to either not know it or just plain don't care so it still bears repeating and acknowledgment for what should be Obvious reasons to anybody.

        It's the most true and most relevent to whats happening in the post 911 world.

        Everyday our government is taking away more and more of our freedoms and liberties all under the the guise or false claim that it will make us more secure but it won't not ever not from someone who truely want's to hurt us they will one way or another and in the end we still get hit just as bad only now we have lost the freedoms that some traded for all to supposedly make us safe.

        But some people as i said just don't seem to get that, Mores the pity they are the ones in power making the choices for us and taking the freedoms from us.

        If i had mod points i would mod it up as insightfull as well because it is it was then and it is now from someone who died about 2 centuries ago that was truely a great man well ahead of his time (and i don't think most of us have caught up to him yet let alone past him).

    Nuf said.

Center meeting at 4pm in 2C-543.

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