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July 11, 2006

Hypocrisy on transparency

One of the most glaring incongruities of the Bush presidency is the frequent complaint that other societies lack “openness” or “transparency.” While we clamor for others to open their societies, we close ours.

Consider the debate over border security or the controversy created by an openly gay bishop or soldier.

Secretive government agencies eavesdrop on our communications, delve into our financial records and kick in our doors without knocking.

Whenever the press exposes these secret programs, the administration calls for the leakers to be punished and the press to be squelched.

Our policies, attitudes and actions are not consistent with those of a society or an administration that values openness and transparency.

President Clinton envisioned building a bridge to the 21st century. President Bush is busy building walls. We must be vigilant to guard against any further erosion of our freedoms. The freedom and democracy that we cherish and extol the virtues of to the rest of the world is ours to lose.

David Brandt
Overland Park

Comments

JUNGLEJACK

Sophie - you failed to meet you're self-imposed three (3) "fascist" bomb drop in posts where you mention the President and members of his administration.

GCYL

"Naaaa. only you could be that obtuse and stupid GLYC."

Thank you for making my point. The epitome of accusing others of what you appear to be.

cooker_fox

Naaaa. only you could be that obtuse and stupid GLYC.

GCYL

"I find it hard to believe that they are that obtuse or stupid, but hey... I have been wrong before." - cooker_fox

But never obtuse or stupid.

cooker_fox

Me too Sophie... me too. And you can even include in your list down to the state and local level of governments (at least in this area).

I just keep hoping that something will happen to show them the harm they are causing by their views. It almost seems like they are hell bent to destroy this country from within. I find it hard to believe that they are that obtuse or stupid, but hey... I have been wrong before.

Sophie Demartine

It scares the hell out of me that people who think exactly like JUNGELJACK now hold the positions of: President of the United States of America, Vice President, Secretary of Defense, Secretary of State, Secretary of the Treasury, Attorney General, Secretary of the Interior, Secretary of Agriculture , Secretary of Commerce , Secretary of Labor , Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, Secretary of Transportation, Secretary of Energy, Secretary of Health and Human Services, Secretary of Education, Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Secretary of Homeland Security, White House Chief of Staff, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, Director of the National Drug Control Policy, U.S. Trade Representative, President of the World Bank , FCC Chairman, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations...

Old Drum

I really like reading the following for apologists of whatever the Bush Administration does.

"It's a little hard to enjoy those freedoms if you're getting blown up by a terrorist!"

Junglejack is so right on this. That must be the reason everyone was appalled when Patrick Henry declared "Give me liberty or give me death!"

And, let's not forget, you don't have to worry about taxes, with or without representation, when your dead, too.

Junglejack's argument was so compelling it must be the reason why our Founding Fathers never founded anything. We Americans have a long history of not worry about civil liberties, do we?

Those Founding Fathers were really stupid to go to war against the world's most powerful country over little things like taxation, quartering of troops, no trials by jury, etc., weren't they, Junglejack?

CRD

"Is it an exaggeration to suggest that Americans have been and will be blown up by terrorists if no measures are taken to prevent it - or is this common sense?"

Is it common sense to imply that people are arguing that no measures should be taken to prevent terrorism? I haven't seen that at all.

We should be taking measures to prevent terrorism, not to encourage it by destabilizing the Middle East.

CRD

"Just what does the debate on the closed border have to do with a lack of "transparency"?"

The writer wasn't speaking of the illegal immigration issue, but instead was referring to border security and the Dubai company that almost was given control over operations at several ports before it became public and the outcry squelched the deal.

If anything, the lack of transparency was what queered the deal.

Engineer

Just what does the debate on the closed border have to do with a lack of "transparency"? The Country has always had laws prohibiting illegal entry-that's why its called illegal-they just have not been properly enforced. As to gays in the military, they were not allowed even under the manpower shortage conditions of WWII. In the case of the controversy over the gay bishop, church dogma of all mainline Protestant Churches and of the Catholic Church ,in the past, were against this. That the controversy is taking place is a change. In any event, the Government has nothing to do with this.
As to the rest of the letter I am in complete agreement with JJ.

JUNGLEJACK

"It's a little hard to enjoy those freedoms if you're getting blown up by a terrorist!"

"[...} can't they be conveyed sans all the hyperbole?"

Speaking of hyperbole...."

Is it an exaggeration to suggest that Americans have been and will be blown up by terrorists if no measures are taken to prevent it - or is this common sense?

To assert that no American is safe from a financial record anal probe, or that innocent, ordinary citizens live in fear of having their home invaded by some type of tyrannical police force is hyperbole.

"If the letter writer had his way - our borders would remain wide open, any strategy to intercept terrorist activity would have to be out in the open, and the press should be notified of any new attempts to capture terrorists or thwart their plans."

"Again, excellent example of hyperbolic overstatement. (hmm, that was redundant)"

Well... if the perfectly legal means being used currently aren't satisfactory for the letter writer - and he offers NO alternatives - one can only assume that he wishes for NOTHING to be done. Again... not hyperbole.

CRD

"If the letter writer had his way - our borders would remain wide open, any strategy to intercept terrorist activity would have to be out in the open, and the press should be notified of any new attempts to capture terrorists or thwart their plans."

Again, excellent example of hyperbolic overstatement. (hmm, that was redundant)

CRD

"President Clinton envisioned building a bridge to the 21st century. President Bush is busy building walls."

...

"Son, we live in a world that has walls, and those walls have to be guarded by men with guns. Who's gonna do it? You? You, Lt. Weinberg? I have a greater responsibility than you can possibly fathom. You weep for Santiago and you curse the Marines. You have that luxury, You have the luxury of not knowing what I know: that Santiago's death, while tragic, probably saved lives. And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves lives. You don't want the truth. Because deep down, in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that wall, you need me on that wall. We use words like honor, code, loyalty... We use these words as the backbone to a life spent defending something. You use them as a punchline. I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide, and then questions the manner in which I provide it! I would rather you just said thank you and went on your way. Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a weapon and stand a post. Either way, I don't give a damn what you think you are entitled to!"

- Jack Nicholson as Col. Jessup in "A Few Good Men"

CRD

""The freedom and democracy that we cherish and extol the virtues of to the rest of the world is ours to lose."

It's a little hard to enjoy those freedoms if you're getting blown up by a terrorist!"

"[...} can't they be conveyed sans all the hyperbole?"

Speaking of hyperbole....

JUNGLEJACK

"The freedom and democracy that we cherish and extol the virtues of to the rest of the world is ours to lose."

It's a little hard to enjoy those freedoms if you're getting blown up by a terrorist!

"Secretive government agencies eavesdrop on our communications, delve into our financial records and kick in our doors without knocking."

It's amazing that a citizen of the greatest nation on Earth would see his situation as being so dire and himself as a victim. Could we overplay this card just a little more? If you have a problem with the government's methods of combating terror, can't they be conveyed sans all the hyperbole?

"Whenever the press exposes these secret programs, the administration calls for the leakers to be punished and the press to be squelched."

Leakers to be punished? Yes.

Press to be squelched? When was this?

If the letter writer had his way - our borders would remain wide open, any strategy to intercept terrorist activity would have to be out in the open, and the press should be notified of any new attempts to capture terrorists or thwart their plans. Apparently his desire to see Bush fail is greater than his concern for the safety of his fellow citizens.

 
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