Skip to comments.What is the proper balance between privacy and security?
Posted on 06/23/2013 9:53:57 AM PDT by Jim RobinsonEdited on 06/23/2013 9:55:17 AM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]
The answer is in the constitution. The original intent of the constitution is to severely restrict the powers of government while guaranteeing our God-given, unalienable individual rights.
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Warrants shall be issued ONLY upon probable cause and MUST describe the place to be searched and things to be seized. General warrants are verboten!
But we are at war.
Against whom? Which country? Where is the declaration of war per the U.S. Constitution?
The Islamic maniacs are at war with us, but they always have been, always will be. They cannot live in peace with the rest of the world. They must kill all who don't follow Allah. Perhaps we should declare war against Islam and get it over with but we won't.
Meanwhile, we cannot and should not suspend our constitution or allow government to stomp on our unalienable rights. Obama wants to set himself up as a dictator and that's exactly what will happen if we allow him to suspend the constitution. It's already happening right before our eyes and unless we get a handle on this thing immediately, America as a free country is over.
Our founders were pretty serious about these things:
IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.
Along with the guaranteed right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, the founders also gave us these additional guarantees (among others):
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
The government is in direct violation of the constitution when it suppresses the free press or deprives the people of their constitutionally guaranteed right to free speech. The government violates the constitution by spying on the press or the people. They cannot snoop on our phone calls or email messages or demand that companies turn over "billing records," "metadata," content, IP addresses, email addresses, ID's, or any other communications by or among individuals whether private or business. And obviously they're in direct violation of the constitution when they attempt to infringe upon our rights to keep and bear arms.
The second amendment is intended for our personal defense and security. Our country cannot declare war against Islam and they refuse to stop allowing people who are at war with us to take up residency within the U.S. so our only real security is to remain armed and vigilant. If the Islamists wish to conduct war against our people on OUR soil, then they had best bring their lunch and a lantern, because it's going to be a long day for them. Americans are armed to the teeth and we aim to defend ourselves, our families, our property and our nation. The government sure as hell isn't.
So, the proper balance between privacy and security is for the government to keep its snooping eyes and ears the hell out out of our mail, out of our phone calls, out of our email and online activities and to keep their fascist hands off our property and off our guns per the constitution!
Always has been. Always will be.
We are supposedly at war with Muslims, but they admitted that mosques are off-limits.....so what “enemy” are they really fighting?
About 5000 rounds?
All was predicted presciently . No turning back now without some major upheaval simply because The Beast System is now too large to dismantle piece by piece. The protectors and overlords would never allow their Beast to be cut to pieces? :
...the species of oppression by which democratic nations are menaced is unlike anything that ever before existed in the world; our contemporaries will find no prototype of it in their memories. I seek in vain for an expression that will accurately convey the whole of the idea I have formed of it; the old words despotism and tyranny are inappropriate: the thing itself is new, and since I cannot name, I must attempt to define it.
Above this race of men stands an immense and tutelary power, which takes upon itself alone to secure their gratifications and to watch over their fate. That power is absolute, minute, regular, provident, and mild. It would be like the authority of a parent if, like that authority, its object was to prepare men for manhood; but it seeks, on the contrary, to keep them in perpetual childhood: it is well content that the people should rejoice, provided they think of nothing but rejoicing. For their happiness such a government willingly labors, but it chooses to be the sole agent and the only arbiter of that happiness; it provides for their security, foresees and supplies their necessities, facilitates their pleasures, manages their principal concerns, directs their industry, regulates the descent of property, and subdivides their inheritances: what remains, but to spare them all the care of thinking and all the trouble of living?
Thus it every day renders the exercise of the free agency of man less useful and less frequent; it circumscribes the will within a narrower range and gradually robs a man of all the uses of himself. The principle of equality has prepared men for these things;it has predisposed men to endure them and often to look on them as benefits.
After having thus successively taken each member of the community in its powerful grasp and fashioned him at will, the supreme power then extends its arm over the whole community. It covers the surface of society with a network of small complicated rules, minute and uniform, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate, to rise above the crowd. The will of man is not shattered, but softened, bent, and guided; men are seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly restrained from acting. Such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.
Our contemporaries are constantly excited by two conflicting passions: they want to be led, and they wish to remain free. As they cannot destroy either the one or the other of these contrary propensities, they strive to satisfy them both at once. They devise a sole, tutelary, and all-powerful form of government, but elected by the people. They combine the principle of centralization and that of popular sovereignty; this gives them a respite: they console themselves for being in tutelage by the reflection that they have chosen their own guardians.
WHAT SORT OF DESPOTISM DEMOCRATIC NATIONS HAVE TO FEAR
Alexis de Tocqueville
Excellent reasoning. I’m sure your post will occupy a proud and prominent position in your NSA file.
In answer to the balance question, ...truth. We as a nation, (our government) have/has chosen to lie about the nature of our security problem, and we are losing everything because of that lie.
The information gathering is for naught because our State Department and White House are infested with pro-Communist, pro-Islamist politicos.
There is not the will to act on foreknowledge against activity by fellow travelers.
And it is questionable if the information that has been gathered this way could be used in court to make the case after the crime has occurred. It is one of the reasons that the “case” against William Ayers fell apart (I happen to believe that he still could’ve been charged with felony flight, taking up arms against this nation in a time of war, plotting riots, ATF charges for the bombs, treasonous support of the North Korean military in a time of war, etc.). Jimmy Carter didn’t care to follow through on actions against the Viet Nam War violators (traitors or draft dodgers).
Mr. Obama has already declared the War on Terror to be over.
So what IS this information gathering for? And does the DNC maintain their own “backup copy” of the networking data?
We’re not supposed to be a democratic nation, it’s a constitutional Republic.
When I went to school I was taught that democracy was the worst posible form of government, but that was 60 years ago.
Great post! I recommend this post to all Freepers.
The answer is in the constitution.
Too obviousand gooda solution for the vast majority of self-described "public servants" in Washington, D.C.
I believe the feral government has declared its independence of us, the people.
“We are supposedly at war with Muslims, but they admitted that mosques are off-limits.....so what enemy are they really fighting?”
But we really aren’t at war with “Muslims”. To the extent that we are at war, it is with Muslim Terrorists, their organizations and their allies (and their extremist ideology that fuel their hatred for anything non-Muslim).
They’re not collecting all this info to fight terrorists. They’re collecting it to use against US!
Polls show that most Americans are reluctantly in favor of their government spying on them. Its inevitable.
But what really ticks us off is that they spy on honest conservative Americans and they use the tyrannical powers of the IRS to do their dirty work; yet ignore the real foreign AND domestic enemies here in the US. Namely muslims.
The Boston bombings is proof positive.
I don’t think politicians should be allowed to make these decisions.
Given that Mao was right about political power coming from the muzzle of a gun, I believe the proper balance is best enunciated in the 2nd, not the 4th, Amendment.
Only after years (generations) of government brainwashing. Some people will have to be shocked back to reality. But realty is inevitable.
Obviously not. The constitution does not allow it.
They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Even though he never met the half of our 2013 population who see it the other way around he had their kind pegged two and a half centuries ago.
Sadly this means nothing to the criminal residing in the WH and his lapdog running the Department of Injustice.
I’m just now rereading some of Iain Banks stuff, given that he just croaked. He and China Mieville are collectivists, and even if their space opera stuff is amusing as heck it all comes down to genocide for the good of the collective. Always.
If we can’t get the leftist turds - (and that includes the proto-socialists, the muslims) - under control, none of us are going to survive.
So keep up the outstanding work, Jim. And bless you.
The proper balance might be achieved if terrorist wannabees were kicked out of and kept out of the US. Why should I lose my rights because Chechnyan radicals have been granted residency, even citizenship here and students overstaying their visas could blow up airplanes and buildings? (etc)
Our Forefathers would be shooting by now...
My basic position on this issue....and “rights” in general is...only US citizens should be afforded all the rights enumerated (or suggested) by the Constitution.If you’re not a citizen you’ll still be treated by the US government in a civil,reasonable,fashion (unless you’ve shown yourself to be our enemy).Two tiered justice I say...the upper tier being noticeably broader and deeper and being reserved for citizens.
We know that politicians from either tribe will always want more power and control, nor do they act in our best interest.
Yet the majority of US choose to be with one of those pathetic tribes. Nor do we hold anyone accountable.
We let one group do something because they are the 'right' party, but we would have never allowed it if it was a Dem.
Amnesty, bailouts, warrant less wiretapping, not securing the border, etc.
In fact they did. They didn’t much care for King George’s general warrants or heavy-handedness.
“If the Islamists wish to conduct war against our people on OUR soil, then they had best bring their lunch and a lantern, because it’s going to be a long day for them. Americans are armed to the teeth and we aim to defend ourselves, our families, our property and our nation. “
Exactly!! The little weasels eager to surrender their freedom because they piss in their pants in fear of the muslim savages make me sick. In times of greater moral clarity they would be the ones shot first.
Government bureaucrats won’t protect them. Government is only interested in protecting itself. The borders are wide open and muslims have no restrictions at all if they want to come here.
By Benjamin Wittes
Friday, July 15, 2011 at 6:53 AM
Heres an interesting historical fact I have dug up in some research for an essay I am writing about the relationship between liberty and security: That famous quote by Benjamin Franklin that Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety does not mean what it seems to say. Not at all.
I started looking into this quotation because I am writing a frontal attack on the idea that liberty and security exist in some kind of balance with one anotherand the quotation is kind of iconic to the balance thesis. Indeed, Franklins are perhaps the most famous words ever written about the relationship. A version of them is engraved on the Statue of Liberty. They are quoted endlessly by those who assert that these two values coexist with one another in a precarious, ever-shifting state of balance that security concerns threaten ever to upset. Every student of American history knows them. And every lover of liberty has heard them and known that they speak to that great truth about the constitution of civilized governmentthat we empower governments to protect us in a devils bargain from which we will lose in the long run.
Very few people who quote these words, however, have any idea where they come from or what Franklin was really saying when he wrote them. Thats not altogether surprising, since they are far more often quoted than explained, and the context in which they arose was a political battle of limited resonance to modern readers. Many of Franklins biographers dont quote them at all, and no text I have found attempts seriously to explain them in context. The result is to get to the bottom of what they meant to Franklin, one has to dig into sources from the 1750s, with the secondary biographical literature giving only a framework guide to the dispute. Im still nailing down the details, but I can say with certainty at this stage that Franklin was not saying anything like what we quote his words to suggest.
The words appear originally in a 1755 letter that Franklin is presumed to have written on behalf of the Pennsylvania Assembly to the colonial governor during the French and Indian War. The letter was a salvo in a power struggle between the governor and the Assembly over funding for security on the frontier, one in which the Assembly wished to tax the lands of the Penn family, which ruled Pennsylvania from afar, to raise money for defense against French and Indian attacks. The governor kept vetoing the Assemblys efforts at the behest of the family, which had appointed him. So to start matters, Franklin was writing not as a subject being asked to cede his liberty to government, but in his capacity as a legislator being asked to renounce his power to tax lands notionally under his jurisdiction. In other words, the essential liberty to which Franklin referred was thus not what we would think of today as civil liberties but, rather, the right of self-governance of a legislature in the interests of collective security.
Whats more the purchase [of] a little temporary safety of which Franklin complains was not the ceding of power to a government Leviathan in exchange for some promise of protection from external threat; for in Franklins letter, the word purchase does not appear to have been a metaphor. The governor was accusing the Assembly of stalling on appropriating money for frontier defense by insisting on including the Penn lands in its taxesand thus triggering his intervention. And the Penn family later offered cash to fund defense of the frontieras long as the Assembly would acknowledge that it lacked the power to tax the familys lands. Franklin was thus complaining of the choice facing the legislature between being able to make funds available for frontier defense and maintaining its right of self-governanceand he was criticizing the governor for suggesting it should be willing to give up the latter to ensure the former.
In short, Franklin was not describing some tension between government power and individual liberty. He was describing, rather, effective self-government in the service of security as the very liberty it would be contemptible to trade. Notwithstanding the way the quotation has come down to us, Franklin saw the liberty and security interests of Pennsylvanians as aligned.
“The answer is in the constitution.”
Yes, but the nanny statists won’t read it because that would make too much sense-and so many people are too lazy to provide for their own protection, trusting an inept big brother-if it all goes to hell, I doubt they can survive...
I believe personal access to firearms is a good way to balance those two things out in a cost-effective fashion.
“Government bureaucrats wont protect them. Government is only interested in protecting itself.”
Well said! I’ve often remarked that when the SHTF those same bureaucrats and their families will not be able to safely stop for a loaf of bread or to fill their cars up with gas.
The violence of those oppressed at their hand will be upon them with a quickness.
The answer is incredibility simple. WE are treated as potential enemy because there is no control of the borders or immigration. When anyone with any intent can get into the country and assimilate into society without the core values the make up the values for good standing citizenship (membership in a society) at any time then the society, any society, has becomes hopelessly contaminated and must treat every member as a potential threat.
Every major terrorist act has an outside component. 9/11, Oklahoma City, Foot Hood, Pan Am bombing, first WTC bombing, Boston, and on and on.
We allow people with very questionable backgrounds to legally immigrate. We allow overstayed visas. We fail to deport hardly anyone. And then we say we need to be safe.
Our country is our society and visits should be limited and strickly and even harshly controlled. Immigration should be streamlined but it should be controlled with very strict and even harsh review. Visas should be closely monitored. Overstays should be addressed rapidly - and harshly.
With the current situation we are all treated as potential terrorist by our own government and we are treated as the enemy by our own naturalized citizen neighbors. Which is the chicken and which is the egg. We have ignored the meaning of citizenship and the need for controlling both visitation and immigration into OUR society. We are now paying a price for that.
(PS - if this sounds anti-immigration and anti-naturalization it is not meant to. It is clear our standards for entry into our country and our society as permanent new members or visitors are very lax and very low.)
We have an entire generation of Americans who rely upon the government to sustain them. It is no wonder that they likewise trust the government to protect them. How do we fight such a mentality? The Founding Fathers are as foreign to them as aliens from outer space.
Excellent post AA, thanks for that one.
In truth, law enforcement is simply that - law enforcement. It is not a protector that can be in every home or on every street. The only direct deterrent offered by police presence is where police are present. Absent the direct police presence, it’s the possibility of being found out and arrested that makes criminals think twice. Thus the judges and laws play arguably an even greater role in deterrence of crime, since the stiffer the sentence and the more certain the conviction in court, makes even a low probability of arrest perhaps not worth the risk. On the contrary, if arrest is certain, but the punishment will be little to nothing, the criminal will not fear arrest at all.
Statism harbors a desire for a wicked and demented use of technology to provide eyes and ears for the police state that watch over every citizen constantly; this is obviously about exerting complete control, not preventing crime or keeping people safe.
For thousands of years, prior to only a few decades ago, people would have scoffed or laughed at the idea that law enforcement, i.e., police, sheriff, etc., would be at the scene of every crime and thus able to prevent them all.
Law enforcement has always been primarily about simply finding perpetrators of crime and arresting them so they are forced to stand trial for the crimes they stand accused of.
Personal protection is, has been, and always will be the domain of the individual - it’s called self defense.
There is another view of defense - the national level. The protection of a nation from foreign attack or invasion. This is not dealing with crime, but war. And of course by no means is national defense successfully fulfilled by instituting a police state.
“The answer is in the constitution.”
Unfortunately the constitution isn’t much considered by our government officials when weighing the interests between security and privacy, and they think they have the unilateral right to recalibrate the balance which was enshrined in the constitution by our founding fathers. Politicians and officials simply don’t care about the constitution, and simply do what they want.
Perhaps Mr. Wittes presumes too much.
How does he (or you) know this to be true?
Many people, among them Freepers and other conservatives, are serious students of the founding of the nation and of the Founding Fathers themselves.
What security?? The muslims still attack us, but we call it workplace violence, lone wolf attacks, and instant jihad syndrome. We’re afraid to profile the people who attack us, and that political correctness even prevents the government from using the ill-gotten information they’ve stolen from us to fight those who would attack us.
In short, when they’re ready to get serious about security, then they can ask us how much privacy we’re willing to sacrifice for it.
Good comments Jim. Exactly right...
Sadly, I think you’re right here.
So gubmit won’t protect us or our Borders,
Gubmit demands we bow to Their edicts
and Pay for the “bread and circuses” They choose.
Gubmit Will move against The Resistance.
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