Rand Paul on Spying and the Dangers to the American People

 

sen-rand-paulI’m thankful that I am an independent voter.  Because I am, I even find myself agreeing with Rand Paul, occasionally.  It may be just a campaign speech, but I agree that the most serious scandal in our country is government spying, and the danger it creates for the American people.

On FOX News Sunday, Paul vented his outrage at the government program called ‘PRISM,’ and the confiscating of Verizon phone records.

“I’m going to be seeing if I can challenge this at the Supreme Court level,” Paul said.

“I’m going to be asking all the internet providers and all of the phone companies: ask your customers to join me in a class action lawsuit,” Paul told host Chris Wallace. “If we get ten million Americans saying we don’t want our phone records looked at, then maybe someone will wake up and something will change in Washington.”

If the Patriot Act had been allowed to expire, removing these un-Constitutional programs would be automatic.

Paul pointed out the need for surveillance when national security agencies suspect domestic or international terrorist activities, but invading the privacy of every individual who uses a cell phone or the internet, is unnecessary and illegal.

“They are looking at a billion phone calls a day,” Paul said. “That doesn’t sound to me like a modest invasion of primary, it sounds like an extraordinary invasion of privacy.”

“I have no problem if you have probable cause, you target people who are terrorists, and you go after them,” Paul continued. “But we’re talking about trolling through billions of phone records…That is unconstitutional.”

He talked about our founding fathers and the writing of the Constitution to guarantee individual freedoms.

“This is what we objected to, and what our Founding Fathers partly fought the Revolution over,” Paul said. The founders, he said, didn’t want generalized warrants where soldiers could go house-to-house looking for things. Today, that is being done computer-to-computer, phone-to-phone without specifying who is being targeted, he said.

Paul plans to introduce the Fourth Amendment Restoration Act.  Asked if he believed it could pass, he said our young people who use the internet constantly will support him.  (As will older people like myself who are on the internet.)

“So much of our life now is digitalized that we have to protect it from a snooping government.”

Information gleaned from our private information could be used for purposes other than national security.  The very outcome of elections could be decided by using information gathered from our Facebook or Twitter page.  Records of our purchases, and website searches could be used to influence the way we spend money.

Paul remembered that the public outrage against SOPA and PIPA legislation last year were somewhat successful in pushing back the laws, and predicted that if people reacted with similar severity to the current surveillance measures, they would be successful in repealing them.

The heads of the nation’s intelligence services, the President, Lindsay Graham, and other members of Congress claim it is both legal and necessary.  They’re wrong on both counts, and I’m certain the majority of the people of our country believe they are just plain lying.  Spying is a danger to the American people in multiple ways, Rand Paul is speaking for us all.

James Turnage

The Guardian Express

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5 Responses to "Rand Paul on Spying and the Dangers to the American People"

  1. Jim   June 9, 2013 at 12:05 pm

    So does disingenuous grandstanding politicians who don’t care at all that their party is deregulating Wall Street again.

    Reply
  2. James Lebuff   June 9, 2013 at 11:27 am

    I don’t get some people in the democratic party. I (hate to admit) that I voted for Obama twice and was fooled! Sometimes it is okay to admit your mistakes if it prevents you from following further down the wrong path. I applaud Paul for speaking up against this, although I may disagree with some of his other policies.

    And for the love of god, the Patriot Act is not the same thing as this PRISM program started by the NSA. Obama has failed to act on anything that I voted for, in fact, it is now even worse than I could have imagined. He actually INCREASED the power of his secret GESTAPO. At least we knew what Bush was doing, and how it affected us. At least under Bush there were (minimal) checks and balances. Obama is an all out autocracy!!

    Reply
  3. Phillip Sucalouski   June 9, 2013 at 11:16 am

    I would think the only people who are worried about someone looking over their phone record are the people hiding something. When there is another 9/11 type of terror attack and it comes out that it could have been prevented if we had better surveillance everyone will complain about that. I have nothing to hide. Listen all you want. You’ll just be put to sleep.

    Reply
    • jawbrkr   June 9, 2013 at 12:08 pm

      I hate it when people say exactly what u just said. people who aren’t hiding anything have nothing to worry about. It is still a violation of privacy. It is exactly how the government wants you to think…that you got nothing to worry about if you’re not doing anything wrong. That gives them the leverage they need to go in and do whatever they want. it gives them access to everything about you. They could go in and frame countless people for anything. You don’t agree with a particular agenda they want to promote…BAM they go in and shut off your bank accounts or falsify information about you because they can. And yes, the US government does lie to its citizens. What makes you think they are any different than the other governments out there? As far as I am concerned they are far worse.

      Reply
  4. Wilf Tarquin   June 9, 2013 at 10:45 am

    Yeah, that’s something his party will support whole-heartedly when Obama is no longer in the White House. I mean, it was they who created the program to begin with. A cynical person might even think Paul and the GOP were simply trying to score cheap political points against Obama here.

    I also note the emphasis on “american”, though I suppose it’s good that the rest of the world FINALLY wakes up to the fact that all phone calls outside the US are monitored by the US (and that’s not something Paul wants to change).

    Reply

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