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Viet Dinh Defends The Patriot Act

timothy posted more than 10 years ago | from the mind-the-source dept.

United States 817

Grrr writes "Wired News has posted an interview with Viet Dinh, who worked on the PATRIOT Act for the Justice Department. In the past he said, "Security without liberty - it's not an America I would want to live in." And also, in this interview, "I think right now at this time and this place the greatest threat to American liberty comes from al-Qaida and their sympathizers rather than from the men and women of law enforcement and national security who seek to defend America and her people against that threat." Several of his replies are (predictably / necessarily / discouragingly) less than direct."

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Odd (-1, Offtopic)

qazew82 (591602) | more than 10 years ago | (#8380949)

crazy

This is an OUTRAGE (0, Insightful)

Amsterdam Vallon (639622) | more than 10 years ago | (#8380952)

The Patriot Act is the worst thing I've seen in 40+ years of living in the USA.

It DESTROYS our privacy rights.

I doubt it (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8380973)

How would something that you claim is so horrible get voted into law then?

I highly doubt the DESTROY part where you say we lose our rights. This thing had to be voted for by hundreds of senate/congress men.

It was part of the whole post-9/11 deal (3, Insightful)

Amsterdam Vallon (639622) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381034)

Everyone was uber-patriotic and wanting to kill any Middle Eastern man who looked at them wrong.

There was actually not much debate in Congress. The Patriot Act passed through very easily. The only problem was that it takes away our checks and balances system of government, which is part of what makes American such a great country.

Don't trust me, though. Read what one website said: "The FBI can now access your most private medical records, your library records, and your student records... and can prevent anyone from telling you it was done.

The Department of Justice is expected to introduce a sequel, dubbed PATRIOT II, that would further erode key freedoms and liberties of every America.

UBER-TROLL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381105)

Professional software developer since 1984 | Linux consultant on the side

Didn't you say you were a CS professor at "Slaughter University"?

Re:I doubt it (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381047)

How would something that you claim is so horrible get voted into law then?

Same way hitler managed to convince his people that 'jews' were the enemy.

Its called scare tatics.

I highly doubt the DESTROY part where you say we lose our rights. This thing had to be voted for by hundreds of senate/congress men.

Well, you can doubt all you want. Doesn't change the fact that america has made a mistake by following those who have already failed in history. And no, millions, like yourself, were duped into this law by sensless fear.

Untill america gets a clue, things wont improve.

Re:I doubt it (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381132)

Please stop comparing relatively minor problems to the Holocaust. It only desensitizes people to the Holocaust. If you really think what you're going through is anything like Nazi Germany, then you need a SERIOUS reality check, pronto.

Hey, dumbass (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381181)

The Holocaust was nothing if not a near-infinite series of "relatively minor problems."

Fuck Godwin. I reserve the right to learn from history, even if you don't. If you're not scared half out of your mind, you're not paying attention.

Re:I doubt it (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381182)

It's pointless to compare the US with Nazi Germany because everyone knows that Nazi Germany had kickass uniforms (they were like totally boss) and the US ones are just plain ugly.

Re:I doubt it (5, Insightful)

mangu (126918) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381221)

Please stop comparing relatively minor problems to the Holocaust.


But that's how it starts. As a relatively minor problem. Holocaust magnitude tragedies are only the consequence. I quote from my own website "quotes" page:


Hermann Goering

"Why of course the people don't want war. Why should some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? Naturally the common people don't want war neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."


(at Nurnberg trials)

You walk around with blinders on, then (3, Insightful)

Winkhorst (743546) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381103)

You really don't have a clue, do you? You think the fact that a bunch of little piggies feeding at the corporate trough represent anyone but their own greedy little power hungry selves? You think because after being subjected to a bunch of hot-button advertisements, people actually vote for them, that they somehow represent the best interests of the population?

MOD PARENT DOWN -- KNOWN TROLL (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8380993)

MOD THIS DOWN, AC == KNOWN TROLL (3, Funny)

bobobobo (539853) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381055)

Just look at any discussion. Anonymous Coward is a known troll and agitator! It's true. It's true!

You fail it! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381009)

Haha, Amsterdamn. Beware of the patriots when trolling!

Re:This is an OUTRAGE (2, Insightful)

tealover (187148) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381014)

How so?

I usually see posts like yours. Rarely do I see reasoned posts which elaborate.

In the interest of fair debate and converstation, list your reasons and if possible, point to the particular pieces of legislation.

Re:This is an OUTRAGE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381037)

Read his posting history. He always comments early and puts out a line that will attract mod points. Notice he is a subscriber, the new kind of First Post.

Just ignore the troll. Really. He's not going to list jack shit for you he just wants to soak up mod points.

Re:This is an OUTRAGE (2, Interesting)

Winkhorst (743546) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381258)

Considering the moderating history of characters like you, I doubt very much if this guy is just trolling for karma points. He is, as distinguished from folks like you, actually expressing a political opinion about a specific piece of legislation, the so-called Patriot Act, which you obviously haven't read or you wouldn't be calling for specifics. That you're not bright enough to see the writing on the wall just puts you in the category of a lot of Germans before World War II. It doesn't make you objective and it doesn't make you enlightened. It just makes you look stupid, which isn't surprising because you obviously are. Some folks take freedom seriously. Others have the Constitution printed on toilet paper and think it's funny to wipe their butts on it. Guess which category you fall into? You want to give away your rights, go right ahead. You try to give away MY rights and you will answer for it. You think the Republicans will be in power forever? Don't take any long odds on little George staying out of jail for subversion of the electoral process. Stealing elections is a federal crime.

Re:This is an OUTRAGE (-1, Troll)

Uber Banker (655221) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381031)

FUCK OFF

Re:This is an OUTRAGE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381038)

Vallon, you aren't 40. You're in your early twenties at best.

Now stop trolling.

MOD PARENT +1 INFORMATIVE (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381061)

I too live in the USA for 40+ years and it does destroy our right to privates.

Stop trolling, you sick fuck. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381082)

I too live in the USA for 40+ years and it does destroy our right to privates.

That's because you are the same person as the parent poster. The anonymous coward who says "mod up" EVERY SINGLE TIME VALLON POSTS SOMETHING [slashdot.org] .

Re:MOD PARENT +1 INFORMATIVE (-1, Offtopic)

Uber Banker (655221) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381131)

I too live in the USA for 40+ years

You probably think you have, but you have not. Your body posesses only a small faction of what made it up over the past 40 years. You are nothing more than absorbed animals, plants, dirt, air which has rearranged itself in image of 'your' previous appearance.

I said it before... (2, Insightful)

NeoTheOne (673445) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381097)

and I'll say it again. Gun laws dont keep guns out of the criminals hands. [slashdot.org]

Re:This is an OUTRAGE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381151)

AMEN...it tramples the Constitution in so many ways it is laughable

Re:This is an OUTRAGE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381211)

Don't forget to Vote Nader [slashdot.org] in 2004!!!!!!

RTFA (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8380966)

Digitalpanic.net

Shhhh! (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8380974)

Quit agitating about the PA or the DMCA or anything - just smile and nod! Take a lesson from our Communist Brothers, you only get a quick trip to the Gulag (American Homeland Version) or a nice IRS audit.

you are unpatriotic (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8380975)

if you do not support the patriot act.

AC

Re:you are unpatriotic (1, Funny)

ssbljk (450611) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381007)

yeah, stop protecting me!

Viet Dinh? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8380979)

communist?

... Cat got your tongue? (something important seem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8380983)

Viet... Kerry... Bush?

Cat got your tongue? (something important seems to be missing from your comment ... like the body or the subject!)

Not the crap grammar in the 'bullshit slashcode'.

His name is Viet Dinh (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8380986)

but everyone around the office calls him Charlie.

Re:His name is Viet Dinh (1)

Anonymous Coed (8203) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381249)

Charles owns the night.

Re:His name is Viet Dinh (0, Offtopic)

bckrispi (725257) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381263)

Thanks. The Sprite I was drinking shot out my nose when I read that :)

THE PATRIOT ACT IS A GOOD LAW (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8380994)

Anyone who disagrees is a traitor! We need now more than ever to defend ourselves from the terrorists in our midst and this law is doing that job. If you traitorous america hating liberals have a problem with this you should move to France and eat cheese!

Re:THE PATRIOT ACT IS A GOOD LAW (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381083)

Lookie, a nazi troll fudding the water for left vs right and liberals an crap. Maby we will all get lucky and alquida will shove a granade up your ass.

Re:THE PATRIOT ACT IS A GOOD LAW (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381157)

Anne Coulter is my inspiration

Read the Patriot Act (1, Insightful)

ObviousGuy (578567) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381002)

The 'experts' who cry that the sky is falling every time the wind blows a leaf to the ground have done a great disservice to the American society and security by magnifying privacy issues beyond reason. The Patriot Act is not perfect, indeed, but the privacy concerns that are always brought up by privacy watchdog groups are usually already handled effectively in the code itself.

If your watchdog barks at every breeze that rustles the trees, you aren't getting any good information from it. Maybe it's time to start looking for a new watchdog or to take security into your own hands.

Re:Read the Patriot Act (5, Interesting)

7Ghent (115876) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381115)

Secret arrests, supposed "terrorists" being held indefinitely without trial, widespead wiretap priviledges.. the list goes on. Is this what you call a "breeze rustling the trees?"

The Patriot Act is already being abused to prosecute all manner of crimes that have nothing to do with its original intent. If there were any checks and balances in the act itself, this wouldn't be happening.

Pull your head out of your ass and smell the Totalitarianism!

Proving the parent's point (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381149)

Lots of conjecture and hand waving in your post.

Long on wind, short on facts.

Re:Read the Patriot Act (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381201)

The Patriot Act is already being abused to prosecute all manner of crimes that have nothing to do with its original intent.

Even that is old hat...The same thing has been done with RICO for years.

BULLSHIT! (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381143)

The Patriot Act is now being used for non terrorist cases [reviewjournal.com] .

Re:Read the Patriot Act (5, Insightful)

MonkeyGone2Heaven (720397) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381204)

If your watchdog barks at every breeze that rustles the trees, you aren't getting any good information from it. Maybe it's time to start looking for a new watchdog or to take security into your own hands.

Your statement encapsulates precisely many people's arguments against the Patriot Act. Namely, I'd rather retain my liberty/privacy and take my security into my own hands than allow Big Brother Ashcroft, et al, do whatever he likes, Constitution be damned, in the name of ferreting out communists, oops, I mean terrorists in our midst.

Re:Read the Patriot Act (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381205)

NO, McCarthy, the blacklists. etc. etc. The track record (aka HISTORY) is that this bullshit leads to more bullshit. And people are going to nip it in the bud this time, all these complaints have made sure that it hasn't gone any further. Just think if all these voices hadn't complained what types of laws they would be trying to pass right now.

You are basically saying "You made us take all these vitamins, but we never got ill"....

Re:Read the Patriot Act (1)

RLiegh (247921) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381238)

And people are going to nip it in the bud this time, all these complaints have made sure that it hasn't gone any further.

you're basing that on what, exactly?

Re:Read the Patriot Act (2, Interesting)

Bendebecker (633126) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381228)

"If your watchdog barks at every breeze that rustles the trees, you aren't getting any good information from it."

Then again the one time they did ignore the boy who cried wolf was the one real time that the wolf actually came. The price of peace and freedom is eternal vigilance.

Re:Read the Patriot Act (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381243)

They should have gotten rid of the boy and replaced him with a better, more trustworthy, less reactive alert system.

FBI is DROWNING in information (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381003)

Even before September 11th, the national intelligence agencies had a backlog of information (so for example, certain messages about 9/11 were only translated after the fact.) It's even worse now [drudgereport.com] . They simply have too much data, and not enough people/computer power to interpret it.

Solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381200)

How about a perl script to randomly select some cases and delete the rest? This will make for a more manageable case load and of course create a job to code and maintain that script.

already lost (5, Insightful)

maliabu (665176) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381008)

isn't the objective of terrorism to terrorize people? the more "ACTs" we have the more obvious we're really really scared of terrorists.

now not only people are terrorized by terrorists for physical dangers, they're also terrorized by their own government for privacy invasion.

The greatest threat to my liberty... (5, Insightful)

Mr. Mikey (17567) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381016)

isn't coming from Middle-Eastern terrorist groups. No, the greatest threat to my liberty comes from a government willing to take the freedom and liberty guaranteed me by the Constitution, and replace it with the illusion of security.


Planes aren't being hijacked because we stop the dreaded nail clipper from coming on board.

Re:The greatest threat to my liberty... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381144)

> Planes aren't being hijacked because we stop the dreaded nail clipper from coming on board.

Then again, why are planes being hijacked? There must be a reason why they're doing it, if they could achieve the same goal by handing out pamphlets I'm sure they'd rather do that than fly into yet another skyscraper.

Re:The greatest threat to my liberty... (5, Insightful)

tealover (187148) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381155)

The government isn't taking your liberty from you. Your fellow citizens are. They are responsible for voting your government into power.

Republicans have control of the Executive, Legislative and if we examine the 2000 elections, the Judicial branches of the government.

The Red states far outnumber the Blue states, so popular vote becomes a moot point in future elections as the electoral advantage is seded to the Republicans.

You have to ask yourself. Is it really the government in the wrong here or is this an expression of the People's Will ?

You might be scared to learn the answer.

Re:The greatest threat to my liberty... (1)

Ben Jackson (30284) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381193)

Dammit, here I am with mod points and that post is already at 5. We need '+1, goes to 11'

Re:The greatest threat to my liberty... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381255)

I agree,

The bottom line is, even if the terrorists get WMD and deploy them --- lets say 3 nukes and a couple of industrial sabotages a nuclear power plant meltdown and an airborne killer virus --- even that would not be the end of America. America will survive, simple as that. However, America will NOT survive if it becomes a facist state.

China, with 25 million men without potential wives, is MUCH more of a risk than some desert nomad religious fanatics raging against modernity.

Listen to your elders... (4, Insightful)

Jon Abbott (723) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381018)

"Those who would give up essential liberty, to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." -- Ben Franklin

Ha! (1, Insightful)

Pig Hogger (10379) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381033)

It took someone from a communist country to change the US into a totalitarian State.

Re:Ha! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381242)

I, for one, do not welcome these overlords.

Re:Ha! (2, Insightful)

Pave Low (566880) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381260)

It took someone from a communist country to change the US into a totalitarian State.

Can you name me any totalitarian country where your remark would have been tolerated?

i don't fear al-qaeda (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381039)

al-qaeda has killed a bunch of people overseas and with the WTC attacks, but that hasn't affected me personally, so why should i be so concerned?

i'm more worried about the next big m$ worm.

Overlord's syndrome (1)

presearch (214913) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381041)

Some people never can be satisfied 'less they push somebody else around.

Hypocrisy (3, Insightful)

eraser.cpp (711313) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381049)

"I do, however, recognize that the act has been mischaracterized and misunderstood and has engendered a lot of well-meaning and genuine fear, even if that fear is unfounded."
Woah he is taking a stand against unfounded fear, isn't that what he is in the business of selling?

Frightening person, this Dinh. (4, Insightful)

dominion (3153) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381059)

He once said that he was drawn to study the government because he "had seen government that did not work," and he was drawn to the Republican Party because of his hatred for communism.

Anybody who would be drawn to a political ideology purely based on what they oppose is, in my opinion, a dangerous person. Especially when mixed with the power, money and support that an organization like the Republican party has.

Re:Frightening person, this Dinh. (4, Insightful)

GuyMannDude (574364) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381231)

Anybody who would be drawn to a political ideology purely based on what they oppose is, in my opinion, a dangerous person.

Well, I've got news for you: most people vote for whoever they hate the least. Think about it: how many politicans really generate genuine excitement? Very few. The main reason most people go to the polls and vote is because they are afraid of what might happen if "the other guy" gets elected. Hell, why do you think so many political ads are negative? Because they work! They instill fear in the public of the rival candidate.

You and I may wish for a world where people vote for the candidate they like or join a political party based on affinity with their ideals. But if you factor out the people who put bumper stickers on their car and wave those stupid banners around at political rallies, I think you'll find that most people are drawn to a political party because it's the lesser of two evils.

GMD

OK whats more dangerous Communism or Republicans? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381233)

I'm drawn to libertarianism because it opposes government so I'm a dangerous person?
Well watch out motherfucker and that goes for whoever modded your bullshit comment "insightful".
Seriously mod parent troll.

Re:Frightening person, this Dinh. (3, Interesting)

Bendebecker (633126) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381256)

"Fear leads to hate, hate leads to suffering."
-Yoda

The Author (2, Insightful)

PrionPryon (733902) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381063)

Do we really expect one of the authors to be impartial and objective?

Disinterested third parties are the analysts we should be interviewing.

Name one civil liberty that has been violated (-1, Flamebait)

Pave Low (566880) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381067)

under the Patriot Act.

You can't, and the critics can't either.

The PATRIOT Act is defendable, and would surely pass any constitutional challenges. If you want to whine about certain provisions of the Act, that's fine. But to go and cry about your freedoms being deprives, and the loss of civil liberties is wrongheaded, and misplaced.

Re:Name one civil liberty that has been violated (2, Insightful)

PrionPryon (733902) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381135)

This question is a bit slippery because it is difficult to name civil liberites at all. Even the ones that aren't being taken away. It might be a better measure to ask people how they feel about their freedom. Do people think twice about doing certain things that they might not have done before. Do they feel their privacy is being encroached upon. Are they more worried now about what the government can do to them.

Civil liberty is a gut feeling, not a simple enumeration.

Being locked up for no listed crime, with no represnetative, for being of a certain faith and descent, is what i would term a violated civil liberty.

"Flamebait" (0, Troll)

Pave Low (566880) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381191)

I love how on slashdot any differing opinions from the majority is usually targetted as "flamebait".

Looks like the same people complaining about abuse of government power have no problem abusing moderation power to shut down viewpoint that don't match their own.

Nice job.

Re:Name one civil liberty that has been violated (1)

presearch (214913) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381199)

Yeah, tell me that when we bump into each other in the concentration camp city 10 years from now.
Then again, with that mindset, you'll probably be one of the guards.

Wonderful---more P.R. bullcrap from the Government (5, Informative)

PM4RK5 (265536) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381070)

NO, they are wrong. There is a distinct difference between liberties and safety! I don't see how people can be duped into believing that terrorist groups affect liberties!

The only reason they affect liberties is because Congress passes things like the Patriot Act. Otherwise, all they affect is safety.

Terrorists affect SAFETY, Congress affects LIBERTY. Get it straight, and we can all stop falling for this crap coming from Washington. If they said these terrorist groups were the greatest threat to our safety, then I'd buy it. But they are, however, NOT a threat to our liberty.

The Patriot Act is the threat to our liberty, effectively nullifying the Bill of Rights when it comes to searches and siezures, and the right to a FAIR and SPEEDY trial.

Government disheartens me. So do the people who buy crap like this from them and cannot draw the distinction for themselves. Just my (flaming) two cents.

This isn't supposed to be flamebait, but mod it as such if you think it is.

The Right Tools (0)

Sparky77 (633674) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381077)

I firmly believe that liberty should not be traded off for some sense of security. I think the harder task is to determine our best tools we can have in order to protect our security, while at the same time ascertain the safeguards that will be necessary in order to protect against abuse of that tool and misuse of it at the expense of privacy or liberty.


List of Tools To Get To Be Secure:
1. A board with a nail in it
2. SELinux

seldom does a government give up power (0, Redundant)

genevaroth (685479) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381079)

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

Benjamin Franklin

I've listened to Viet Dinh interviewed about the (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381081)

PATRIOT act in a variety of venues and he always comes off
as Ashcroft's gook love slave, "Oh Mistah John, me love you long time, fo dollah"! He never directly answers any question and is completely evasive. What we need to do is put
this little fucker in a helicopter with a couple of other Justice
Department fucks, fly them over the jungle and then toss one or two of them out. Then we might get some direct answers.

Back To Vietnam Commie Liberal! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381086)

USA: Love it or leave it, gook.

Re:Back To Vietnam Commie Liberal! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381147)

fuck you also Nazi! America is for the free not for you Nazi bush lovin freedom killers

The problems with the Patriot Act.... (5, Insightful)

Prien715 (251944) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381095)

While the US has previously imprisoned people without access to council, these were in dire times, World War II, US Civil War, etc. While some could argue that these are equally troubling times, I find the argument problematic.

In both of the above examples, the very existence of the country was at stake, in one of the two, half the US had broken off. The other, millions of people decided to declare war on the US (Germany, Italy, Japan, etc). Despite the tragedy that was 9-11, the entire attack was planned by dozens of people and executed by about 20.

My second problem is the open-endedness. The suspensions of due process in the above cases were understood as temperary and were lifted as soon as the war was over. These days, presidents don't seem to declare war on things that can possibly be ended by a peace treat (drugs, poverty, terror, etc). Tell me, Mr Bush, is the war on terror going to be over before or after the war on drugs?

The suspension of due process indefinitely is an abomination to liberty, which I could've sworn was what we were fighting for in the first place.

Re:The problems with the Patriot Act.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381174)

"Despite the tragedy that was 9-11, the entire attack was planned by dozens of people and executed by about 20."

Whether or not THAT is true, we do know there are many more than "dozens" of terrorists.

And are you calling for a premature end to the war on terror? Whether you like it or not, this IS a serious problem.

Novel idea here... (1, Insightful)

GoMMiX (748510) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381100)

How about we get all the illegal aliens out of the country and lock down the borders.

Then, make some less restrictive immigration requirements so people can come over here LEGALLY. (I know of many who wish to, but can't... a problem I attribute to all the illegal immigrants)

Then, and only then, should we be worrying about allowing unconstitutional wire taps, searches, seizures, imprisonment, etc... Those things should only be thought of as a last resort.

And it's not the last resort. It's just what the government wants - not what's best for the people.

Well, in my opinion anyway.

As for the threat of Al-Queida... Well, one simply wonders why Osama Bin-Laden was 'allowed' to escape anyway. US Occupation of Afghanistan should have swallowed the middle-east until we captured him. Instead, we went to Iraq for an easier - more exposed target.

If Osama was cought/dead - we wouldn't even be hearing about this wonderfull work of constitution-warping legislation.

Re:Novel idea here... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381192)

Well, one simply wonders why Osama Bin-Laden was 'allowed' to escape anyway. US Occupation of Afghanistan should have swallowed the middle-east until we captured him. Instead, we went to Iraq for an easier - more exposed target.

How do you know this? Prove it.

Re:Novel idea here... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381246)

Papers, please.... What? ID left at home? A likely story. Please turn around and put your hands against the wall...

Re:Novel idea here... (0, Flamebait)

El (94934) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381265)

How about if we send all those damn Europeans back to Europe where they came from, and return this country to it's rightful owners, who ran things just fine until those damn foreigners started showing up about 500 years ago? And while we're on the subject... if you lazy white people could just learn to pick you're own lettuce, there wouldn't be half as many illegal immigrants, would there?

biZ=natch (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381107)

to get involved in FreeBSD project, progrees. In 1992,

Hammer and Nail (5, Insightful)

maliabu (665176) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381123)

the old saying "if the only tool you have is a hammer, you will tend to see every problem as a nail". maybe that's why everybody's treated as terrorists now.

Before we get into a flame war... (0)

Piethon (748147) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381130)

I would just like to have ONE discussion here where there is no political flaming! Is it too much to ask that we stop fighting and have a nice, nonviolent conversation? But then again, I'm new here.

Good Intentions Today (4, Insightful)

rossz (67331) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381139)

Good intentions today means nothing tomorrow. Any powers given to the government will eventually be abused. So I really don't care that the good men and women in law enforcement are trying to protect me from terrorists. I want my Constitution back, damn it!

Just look at the history of law enforcement. They begged for the ability to seize the property of drug dealers, and were granted that power by short sighted politicians. Now that power is used to steal cars from people never even charged with a crime - in complete violation of the Constitution, but what's the shredding of that moldy old paper when stopping evil drug dealers?

Well.. (4, Insightful)

Loki_1929 (550940) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381140)

Come on, folks, of course he's going to defend the PATRIOT ACT - he wrote the damn thing. Of course he's going to defend its enforcement - he helped enforce the damn thing. And of course he's going to be vague about the illegal/unconstitutional parts of the act, or of its enforcement - you think he wants to go to prison?

I support Viet Dinh's use of his 5th Amendment rights in this article.

What I don't support is the many parts of this act, and its enforcement, that are illegal, unconstitutional, immoral, and so far beyond the scope of Federal powers as to shock the imagination. I'm about ready to start looking into how we can find a strong libertarian presidential candidate who has a good chance of being elected. Along with a willing Congress, I'd like nothing more than to see the Federal government stripped down better than an unattended Corvette in south-central LA on a Friday night.

I want to see the Federal government up on cinder blocks, with the states standing around checking out their new goodies. Things are getting out of hand. We're spending more than $400 Billion a year on our military, just so we can stretch it to the breaking point by playing parent to the world. We're spending... well, we don't know how much we're spending on the very intelligence agencies that watch our every move. Why don't we know how much we're spending? Sorry, that's classified. Well, what are you doing with my money? Sorry, that's classified. Why is it classified?! It's my money! Sorry, that's classified. Well what am I getting in return for my unknown investment? Safety. Could you be more specific? Sorry, that's classified.

It's about time for a change. I wonder how much longer it will be before Americans can get together enough courage to dismantle the bulk of the Federal government. Are we ready for 10 - 20 years of readjustment, the end result of which is far more freedom and a return to the Constitutional Republic we once had? Or shall we sit on our collective asses for a bit longer while Uncle Sam's goons start doing random cavity searchs to see what we might be hiding?

Re:Well.. (1)

psykocrime (61037) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381232)

I'm about ready to start looking into how we can find a strong libertarian presidential candidate who has a good chance of being elected.


Gary Nolan [garynolan.com] is running, has some name recognition, and seems like a viable candidate to me.

Michael Badnarik [badnarik.org] is another candidate with some potential.


Along with a willing Congress, I'd like nothing more than to see the Federal government stripped down better than an unattended Corvette in south-central LA on a Friday night.


Likewise.

Using 9/11 as an excuse (5, Interesting)

BlueEar (550461) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381156)

I guess I would trust Bush'es administration a tad more if they were not using the excuse of 9/11 to prosecute organizations such as Green Peace. A more or less complete story can be found in The Miami Herald [miami.com] . If they are capable of using such antiquated law as ''sailor-mongering,'' (intended to deal with people would board a ship and use liquor and prostitutes to lure away the crew) to prosecute organization that is trying to stop illegal logging, how can you trust them they won't use Patriot act in some insidious way?

Patriot Hysteria (1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381161)

The war on terror has finally, as some critics always warned it would, whipped up a dangerous hysteria. It just so happens that the hysteria has taken hold among critics of the war on terror. They argue that the USA Patriot Act is a combination of the Alien and Sedition Acts and Kristallnacht, in a smear campaign that threatens to roll back policies that have made Americans safer after Sept. 11.

The campaign includes over-the-top editorial writers (the Cleveland Plain Dealer calls the act "the seed stock of a police state"), raving civil libertarians (American Civil Liberties Union: "a disturbing power") and chest-beating presidential candidates (Howard Dean: erodes "the rights of average Americans"). According to Wisconsin's Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold, you should sell your stock in Amazon.com -- the Patriot Act has made Americans "afraid to read books."

The challenge to critics should be this: Name one civil liberty that has been violated under the Patriot Act. They can't, which is why they instead rely on hyperbole in an increasingly successful effort to make the Patriot Act a dirty phrase.

Many of the new powers under the act -- such as "the roving wiretap," which allows the government to continue monitoring a target who switches phones -- aren't really new. They give counterterrorism investigators the same powers investigators already have in mob cases. Opponents of the act must explain why Mohammad Atta should have greater freedom from surveillance than Tony Soprano.

The fact is that federal authorities cannot do any of the nasty things under the Patriot Act that critics complain about -- electronic surveillance, record searches, etc. -- without a court order and a showing of probable cause. A federal judge has to sign off on any alleged "violation of civil liberties."

Two particular provisions of the act rile critics. The Republican-controlled House -- demonstrating that uninformed hysteria is bipartisan -- recently voted to ban funding for Section 213 of the law. Under Section 213, law enforcement can delay notifying a target that his property has been searched. These delayed-notification searches require a court order, and they can be used only when immediate notification would jeopardize an investigation.

Such searches already existed prior to the passage of the Patriot Act, and the Supreme Court has upheld their constitutionality. Federal counterterrorism investigators have asked for delayed searches roughly 50 times during the past two years, and the average delay in notification has been about a week -- hardly totalitarianism.

Another target of critics is Section 215. It allows investigators to seize documents -- including, theoretically, library records -- from a third party if they bear on a terrorism investigation. The ACLU says that this means the FBI has the power to "spy on a person because they don't like the book she reads." But this is another power that already existed. Grand juries have always been able to subpoena records if they are relevant to a criminal investigation. The Patriot Act extends this power to counterterrorism investigators and requires a court order for it to be used.

Critics want to eviscerate these sections of the act, and more. They should bundle their proposals together and call them "The Zacarias Moussaoui Protection Act," after "the 20th hijacker," whose computer wasn't searched prior to Sept. 11 due to civil-liberties concerns. We have already forgotten the importance of aggressive, pre-emptive law enforcement. The locus of forgetfulness is the Democratic presidential field, as Rep. Dick Gephardt, Sen. John Edwards and Sen. John Kerry all voted for the Patriot Act and now attack Attorney General John Ashcroft for having the temerity to use it.

Out on the Democratic hustings, it's as if Sept. 11 never happened. Of course, no organization contributed so much to the lax law enforcement that made possible the murder of 3,000 Americans that day than the ACLU. Mohammed Atta and Co. should have remembered it in their prayers as they screamed toward their targets. If the ACLU gets its way on the Patriot Act, some future successful terrorists will want to remember it in their prayers as well.

The greatest threat (5, Insightful)

Molina the Bofh (99621) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381163)

I bet it'll be modded as flamebait, but it's my oppinion anyway, so I'll post it.

I think right now at this time and this place the greatest threat to American liberty comes from Bush and their sympathizers rather than from Al-Qaida.

This works this way: An unjustifiable attack to other countries (like Iraq) leads to more anger from its citizens and even other countries. Now we have not just one group of loons who hate the US (Al Qaida), but many.

Re:The greatest threat (4, Insightful)

psykocrime (61037) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381184)

No, you're 100% correct. Less intervention in the affairs of foreign (sovereign) nations would do more to cut down on terrorism than creating patriot acts, and departments of homeland security / the new gestapo, etc.

Re:The greatest threat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8381245)

"All we are saying is give peace a chance..."

Look, we TRIED appeasement with the terrorists. Billy C. tried it. It didn't work. Shut up.

Right...Al-Qaida...Suuuuuuuuuure.... (2, Funny)

metrazol (142037) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381164)

Yeah, because, you know, Al Qaida has hundreds of representatives in every town and city in America. Al Qaida knows where I live. Al Qaida expects a check from me every April. Al Qaida builds my roads, and runs my schools, and comes to my house every day. Al Qaida can get primetime speechs broadcast at any time. Al Qaida has tanks. Al Qaida has a million men and women ready to storm any place on Earth with overwhelming firepower within hours of being given the order. Al Qaida has nuclear submarines. Al Qaida has over a thousand silos in middle America, brimming with thermonuclear might.

In a head to head battle between the US and Al Qaida, I'm betting on Al Qaida.

I'm also looking to buy a bridge, and maybe a beach front condo in Arizona.

Worth a look (1)

mfchater (681560) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381206)

www.infowars.com This website is full of fact concerning the Patriot Act.

Well, if you ask me... (5, Insightful)

Moofie (22272) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381213)

There is no question that the last 28 months of peace in America, where not another life has been lost on American soil to terrorism, would have been much more difficult without the USA Patriot Act.

I think that somebody who doesn't understand the distinction between correlation and causation has no business whatsoever rewriting the Constitution.

Typical media script (4, Insightful)

Daniel Quinlan (153105) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381230)

The Slashdot story is perhaps interesting rhetoric and umm... advocacy, but when I read the story, the thing that jumped out at me is that the questions are generally vague and there are very few specific questions about the substance of the Act. It falls prey to the typical media script of "Some critics say [insult character of interview subject]" or "It has been written that [insert oversweeping charge]". Honestly, it seems like Viet Dinh's replies are very matter of fact and he answers most of the questions as best and as openly as can be expected given the questions. If he does not come out seeming like a fascist, it is either because the interviewer did a poor job, because he's not a fascist, or both. I'm sure that won't stop people from making their own conclusions based on little or no evidence, though. (Oh my god, he gave detailed answers!)

I'd be very interested in someone asking Viet Dinh substantive questions about specific concerns raised in the Patriot Act, but I'm unable to draw much of any conclusion from reading this article, especially not the same alarmist conclusion that the story submitter has drawn.

Another interpretation I could make, especially based on the story submitter's comments, is that the critics of the Patriot Act are equally incapable of discussing the ramifications of the Act as are its supporters. Unfortunately, it's the job of the critics to do a good job criticizing and they get far too hung up in rhetoric and name-calling to take most of them very seriously and given that the law is now on the books, I think they're going to need to change their tactics if they want to have any substantive effect.

Oh crap, I seem to be falling prey to the standard media script of analyzing process rather than issues.

everybody's al Qaeda (1)

segment (695309) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381247)


Hasnt anyone noticed that anything bad that happens get s/^/al Qaeda/g attached to it. Sure they're some shitty losers, but heck I'm starting to think our own gov is just as much of a loser for a) using al Qaeda for every damn excuse to justify some shoddy law b) claiming al Qaeda any time something happens. Now there silly little slashdotters if you don't follow our terrorists color coded M&M system, go against RFID tags that watch you while you shit, create disharmony because your VoIP, PPP, DHCP, connections are monitored, hell your whole life is monitored... you just might be a terrorist.

Get real. "There is no distinctly American criminal class except Congress." -- Mark Twain

Todays Quote... (2, Insightful)

kiwioddBall (646813) | more than 10 years ago | (#8381262)

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety" - Benjamin Franklin
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