Patriot Act II

mj_1903

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 3, 2003
563
0
Sydney, Australia
News.com Article

First we had elections that were obviously rather weird (Bush's election to office for his first term) and should have been investigated.

Then we had imprisonment of Americans and foreign nations without a trial (Guantanamo bay) and breaches of the Geneva Conventions (torture and treatment of prisoners).

Later we had the broad and damning Patriot Act which removes first amendment rights (freedom of speech) and allows the government to breach your privacy at will (court orders without a court).

Now the government can access company information without a court order and if the company says anything executives can be arrested. I can no longer trust US companies to keep my information safe, in fact I cannot trust Arn and macrumors to keep my information safe.

Of course none of this includes the US hunting and invading countries with WMD's when they have no evidence and while your stock pile of WMD's is larger than the rest of the world combined.

Why are US citizens silent? What ever happened to democracy?
 

joetronic

macrumors 6502
Dec 9, 2004
419
0
New Oxford, PA
mj_1903 said:
What ever happened to democracy?
I'm a US citizen and I wonder the same thing every day, but more along the lines of what happened to freedom and liberty. See my sig for the real definition of liberty.
 

mactastic

macrumors 68040
Apr 24, 2003
3,647
661
Colly-fornia
Your definition of liberty is a little too broad. Put a clause at the end stating that you are free to do and be all those things up to the point that it begins to infringe on another's liberty and I'll agree with your definition.

Essentially your right to swing your fist ends at my nose. Well actually a couple inches before that, but you get the point.
 

mischief

macrumors 68030
Aug 1, 2001
2,920
0
Santa Cruz Ca
mj_1903 said:
News.com Article
Now the government can access company information without a court order and if the company says anything executives can be arrested. I can no longer trust US companies to keep my information safe, in fact I cannot trust Arn and macrumors to keep my information safe.
That's correct. Canada, on the other hand has a very explicit Constitutional guarantee of Data sanctity via due process of law. However the # of servers physically in Canada are quite small.

Anyone want to go into business with me? We can set up a server farm in BC and make BANK storing info people want secure from the DoHS. I've even figured out how the EULA and business model can make Due Process in the case of actual organized crime fairly simple and safeguarded against client erasure.
 

Symtex

macrumors 6502a
Jan 27, 2005
515
2
I'm a canadian and feel concern about this patriot act II. The Bush administration is now forcing Canadian to have a passport to cross the border. The Patriot Act is totatly unethical to the constitution and gives too much power to law enforcement agency. They can collect data without even the consent of a judge. Can you only imagine what type of inform they will gather on you ? Can you anyone say Big Brother ?

*EDIT*
I'm even more concern about american not even caring and paying attention to this Patriot Act II. The USA is going back 50 years in civil rights. Talk about Freedom and Democracy.
 

Thanatoast

macrumors 65816
Dec 3, 2002
1,005
134
Denver
Symtex said:
I'm even more concern about american not even caring and paying attention to this Patriot Act II. The USA is going back 50 years in civil rights. Talk about Freedom and Democracy.
oh, we're concerned all right. concerned that it gets passed. we can't trust foreigners in our country anymore, 9-11 taught us that. wasn't there a canadian terrorist who got 'rendered' and then released recently? we can't just let people like him waltz into ny with dirty bombs, now can we? once the world realizes that we're in a new era and switches to our new, more secure rfid passports, and we finally close all the borders except for a few specific access points, we'll all be a lot safer. security is paramount post 9-11, let freedom reign!
 

mischief

macrumors 68030
Aug 1, 2001
2,920
0
Santa Cruz Ca
Thanatoast said:
oh, we're concerned all right. concerned that it gets passed. we can't trust foreigners in our country anymore, 9-11 taught us that. wasn't there a canadian terrorist who got 'rendered' and then released recently? we can't just let people like him waltz into ny with dirty bombs, now can we? once the world realizes that we're in a new era and switches to our new, more secure rfid passports, and we finally close all the borders except for a few specific access points, we'll all be a lot safer. security is paramount post 9-11, let freedom reign!
If that isn't sarcasm I'm more than a little worried for you citizen.
 

scem0

macrumors 604
Jul 16, 2002
7,028
1
back in NYC!
I echo every statement made so far sans that of Thanatoast.

We are quickly headed to fascism and Americans do nothing but sit there in ignorance.

scem0
 

Dont Hurt Me

macrumors 603
Dec 21, 2002
6,056
6
Yahooville S.C.
George's Patriot act removes our liberties. Imagine coming home to hear the neighbor tell you they just searched your home without even telling you. Is this America or Nazi Germany? Bush and the gang are very happy to destroy our American liberties and freedom in his false war. So lets see we can ignore Millions of mexicans/terrorist walking into the country but the police state can treat every american as a criminal and barge into their home with no warrant or nothing. People who voted Bush are clueless to his tearing down of what has made our country great. Republicans are a discrace to this country.
 

Pittsax

macrumors 6502
Dec 8, 2004
445
0
Toronto, Ontario
Symtex said:
I'm even more concern about american not even caring and paying attention to this Patriot Act II. The USA is going back 50 years in civil rights. Talk about Freedom and Democracy.
I think I can speak for a lot of Americans when I say that I am TERRIBLY concerned about everything that this administration is doing, including the Patriot Act. The sad part is that I can't do a damn thing about it. The election was won by people who are

a)easily duped

b)would rather use an antiquated form of "values" instead of their brains to make decisions

c)are poorly educated and thus more succeptable to a) and b)

d) all of the above

Combine with someone like Karl Rove who saw the above qualities and concocted a nefarious and admittedly brilliant strategy of fear and smear tactics to win over said people, and you have a recipie for disaster.

Unfortunately, there are way too many people in this country who would rather let Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Bush and Co., and a stilted interpretation of the Bible to tell them what to do than make an informed decision.
 

Sayhey

macrumors 68000
May 22, 2003
1,690
2
San Francisco
Here is a very good article discussing what this new version means.

In addition to reauthorizing these controversial provisions, the bill, if enacted into law, would also expand the government's power to secretly - and without getting a court's approval - demand people's private records, even though they aren't suspected of terrorist acts.

Overall, the result of PAREA's becoming law would be to further enlarge the government's surveillance powers -- without any requirement that it link individuals to particular suspected crimes before using these powers. Yet the government has not made a compelling case that such extraordinarily broad powers are necessary - as it ought to, when precious civil liberties are involved.

The proposal - which is likely to be considered in a closed-door meeting of the Senate Intelligence Committee - should be rejected or, at the very least, dramatically modified to require independent judicial review prior to subpoena issuance.

The Bid to Reauthorize Section 215: The Librarian's Nightmare With Tiny Changes

One of the controversial PATRIOT Act provisions PAREA would make permanent is Section 215. As I discussed in a previous column, this Section currently allows intelligence investigators to demand all kinds of records about citizens, even though they are not suspected of spying or terrorism.

It allows the FBI to gain records or other "tangible items" from any person or organization, if the FBI claims a link to an ongoing terrorist or foreign intelligence investigation. Secrecy is the key here: Section 215 gags those who receive an order to produce such records

Prior to the PATRIOT Act, the FBI had access to only a few types of records that were of particular use in investigating terrorists and spies: those belonging to hotels, motels, car and truck rental agencies, and storage rental facilities. But Section 215 now allows the FBI to seek any tangible item -- "including books, records, papers, documents, and other items" -- regardless of who holds it. This could include sensitive medical records or membership lists from clubs or religious organizations.

Also, prior to the PATRIOT Act, in order to get even the limited categories of records that were eligible, the FBI had to present to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court "specific and particularly facts giving reason to believe that the person to whom the records pertain[ed]" was an agent of a foreign power (i.e. some sort of spy). But now the FBI need not show a link between the people whose records it is accessing, and any crime -- let alone a crime of terrorism.

Granted, Section 211 of PAREA would now require that the items that the government seeks are "relevant" to that investigation. But with reasonable minds disagreeing about what is "relevant," the addition of this word means little.

Surely, lists of people who worship at a particular mosque may be relevant to an investigation of possible terrorist connections of one among the worshippers. But is each member's identity relevant? The whole point of the law is that totally innocent non-suspects can be subjected to searches; that the search must, at least, be "relevant" to the investigation, provides little, if any, comfort.

A much more palatable amendment than Section 211, is the one provided in the bipartisan Security and Freedom Enhancement Act (SAFE Act). The SAFE Act is meant to curtail some of the more intrusive portions of the PATRIOT Act while recognizing the importance of the government's need for strong investigative tools. It would modify Section 215 to require the FBI to establish "specific and particularly facts giving reason to believe that the person to whom the records pertain is a foreign power or an agent of a foreign power."

In layman's terms, the SAFE Act would require that the government would have to establish that individual suspects were in fact connected to spying or terrorism. It is fairer for the government to have to show that someone is individually connected with terrorist acts, before gaining access to all sorts of records about him.

And granted, PAREA would also require semi-annual reporting for orders that relate to booksellers, firearm purchases, medical records and tax information - presumably because such records are especially sensitive or personal.

That's a good idea - but what about the sensitive, personal information relating to membership in religious, political or social organizations? Why is this information left out of the reporting requirement? Certainly, what gun one buys is less private than where one chooses to worship!


Section 218 and the Continued Erosion of the Fourth Amendment

PAREA would also make permanent another controversial PATRIOT Act provision: Section 218. Section 218 allows the government to obtain search warrants using the FISA court, without having to respect Fourth Amendment standards -- even when the evidence may be later used in a criminal prosecution that has nothing to do with foreign intelligence.

As I have noted previously, prior to the PATRIOT Act, the U.S. government kept our justice system in a state of equilibrium by creating a wall. This sacred division separated, on the one hand, criminal law enforcement (where individual suspicion of criminal activity was required to investigate) and, on the other, foreign intelligence (where data was sought broadly, to help prevent terrorism that might occur in the future.).

But under the USA PATRIOT Act, the wall has been broken down.

From 1978 until the PATRIOT Act was passed, the FISA Court's power to issue secret warrants was limited solely intelligence-gathering, with a view toward preventing espionage and terrorism. Thus, to procure such a warrant, the government had to convince the FISA court there was "probable cause" that the surveillance target was a foreign power or an agent of a foreign power. Meanwhile, in other federal courts, and in and state courts, under the Fourth Amendment, a warrant to intercept a communication, or a search warrant, had to be based on "probable cause" to believe that a crime has been or is being committed.

Now, as a result of Section 218 of the PATRIOT Act, intelligence gathering need only be "a significant purpose" of FISA-authorized surveillance. And, as I pointed out in an earlier column, the result is to open the door to an end run around Americans' Fourth Amendment rights - for another purpose of the surveillance, could well be domestic law enforcement.

And it has been: Not just CIA agents, but FBI agents as well -- or even state law enforcement, cooperating with the CIA and FBI - now have, and have used, the ability to utilize FISA's secrecy and its lower legal standards for warrants and wiretaps.

This "significant purpose" standard should be removed, or clearly limited by the requirement of a nexus to terrorism on the domestic side. But that is not what PAREA does.

Indeed, Section 203 of PAREA not only will make Section 218 permanent, it will also broaden the section. It states that that "foreign intelligence information" includes a need to gather information for criminal law enforcement related to terrorism

What counts as "law enforcement related to terrorism"? "International terrorism" need not be involved, according to PAREA's sponsors' memorandum summarizing the bill. It is enough if the law enforcement involves "sabotage, clandestine actives and other " 'grave hostile acts.'"

The drafters of PAREA suggest this revision merely makes the law consistent with the first-ever opinion of the FISA Review Court -- which ratified the Justice Department's approach in 2003, as I discussed in a column about this historic decision. But the FISA Review Court was careful to limit the application of its decision, and PAREA flouts those limits.

In particular, the FISA Court stated that the government could only break down barriers between the FBI and local criminal authorities with respect to crimes that are related to foreign intelligence -- not ordinary crimes. As the Court of Review noted, "the FISA process cannot be used as a device to investigate wholly unrelated ordinary crimes." (Emphasis added)

And PAREA, as noted above, does not reflect this limitation. Rather, it makes explicit that the FBI can use the FISA process to investigate terrorist-related crimes. PAREA does not, however, state that the FISA process may only be used for terrorist related crimes....
Prof. Anita Ramasatry at Findlaw.com
 

mj_1903

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 3, 2003
563
0
Sydney, Australia
Sayhey, thanks for the in depth article on it.

You know, the state of the world these days makes me so upset. I can do absolutely nothing about it. I guess I should just stop thinking about it.
 

solvs

macrumors 603
Jun 25, 2002
5,693
1
LaLaLand, CA
mactastic said:
Your definition of liberty is a little too broad.
No, that's pretty apt. The ultimate in freedom is chaos, where the only actions are held by consequences, not law. Humanity is not quite there yet though, so that's why we have laws. You have the freedom to do what you wish, but you must live by the consequences, and society decides what those consequences are through laws and elections of those who make laws.

The Patriot Act (and it's sequel) go a bit too far though. It gives power to the government that it is specifically not supposed to have per it's Constitution and related governing documents. I'm sure we'd all like to do something, but unfortunetly there's not much to do until the power changes hands that we aren't already doing. Unless it gets to WWII era Germany level, but I doubt people will let it get that far. Look at how far down this administration's approval rating has fallen after just a few mentions of social security and euthanasia. Not to mention Iraq.

That whole "with us or against us" thing only goes so far you know.

LethalWolfe said:
Stereotype much?
I believe DHM is speaking as a former Republican. But yes, neocons parading as Republicans (and dragging the rest of the real Repubs down with them) are a bit of a disgrace right now. As are the Liberals. If they had fought harder, maybe this wouldn't be happening. That's why it was so hard to vote for Kerry. He voted for the PA as well.

I wonder if someone like McCain would do much better if he no longer had to suck up to the far-right base.
 

solvs

macrumors 603
Jun 25, 2002
5,693
1
LaLaLand, CA
mj_1903 said:
You know, the state of the world these days makes me so upset. I can do absolutely nothing about it. I guess I should just stop thinking about it.
Evil thrives where good men do nothing.
 

Dont Hurt Me

macrumors 603
Dec 21, 2002
6,056
6
Yahooville S.C.
LethalWolfe said:
Stereotype much?


Lethal
Iam referring to the party and not the People, what the party stands for and where its going. Its not making this the land of freedom and liberty its making this the land of the Police State. Sorry but examine Bush & the Gang on everything from the enviroment,healthcare,fiscal policy,war etc. Its clear they are moving this country into something else.
I said it before it was many decades ago that the Country figured out we cant have Republicans running everything because of the mess. History will repeat itself. mark my words.
We dont need a Police state communist style. America is slow to react but react it will.
Im ashamed i "was" republican.
 

mj_1903

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 3, 2003
563
0
Sydney, Australia
solvs said:
Evil thrives where good men do nothing.
Sadly I made a promise to a dying friend which will take the rest of my life to accomplish. Making the Australian Government do the correct thing wasn't part of that promise.
 

LethalWolfe

macrumors G3
Jan 11, 2002
9,366
119
Los Angeles
Dont Hurt Me said:
Iam referring to the party and not the People, what the party stands for and where its going. Its not making this the land of freedom and liberty its making this the land of the Police State. Sorry but examine Bush & the Gang on everything from the enviroment,healthcare,fiscal policy,war etc. Its clear they are moving this country into something else.
I said it before it was many decades ago that the Country figured out we cant have Republicans running everything because of the mess. History will repeat itself. mark my words.
We dont need a Police state communist style. America is slow to react but react it will.
Im ashamed i "was" republican.
Bush & Co might be @sshole Republicans but that doesn't mean all Republicans are @ssholes.

I agree w/what you are saying save for the, IMO flame bait, blanket statement. I'm not ashamed to be a Republican, but that doesn't mean I like what certain people are doing in the name of my party.


Lethal
 

Chip NoVaMac

macrumors G3
Dec 25, 2003
8,889
25
Northern Virginia
Dont Hurt Me said:
George's Patriot act removes our liberties. Imagine coming home to hear the neighbor tell you they just searched your home without even telling you. Is this America or Nazi Germany? Bush and the gang are very happy to destroy our American liberties and freedom in his false war. So lets see we can ignore Millions of mexicans/terrorist walking into the country but the police state can treat every american as a criminal and barge into their home with no warrant or nothing. People who voted Bush are clueless to his tearing down of what has made our country great. Republicans are a discrace to this country.
Looks like we are more concerned about some than the whole (from the Washington Post today):

New Tack Against Illegal Immigrants: Trespassing Charges
By Michael Powell
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, June 10, 2005; Page A01


NEW IPSWICH, N.H. -- The police chief of this tiny whitewashed New England town has crafted his own border-control policy -- he has charged illegal immigrants from Mexico with trespassing in New Hampshire.

The novel legal strategy has made a minor celebrity of W. Garrett Chamberlain. The 36-year-old police chief hops to his feet and deposits a pile of letters on his desk, from Alaskans and Californians, Border Patrol agents and soldiers in Iraq, all applauding his initiative. Fox News commentators have called, too, seeking his views on national immigration policy.

Chamberlain, who has served as chief for three years, describes his actions as born of frustration with the federal government. His officers had discovered illegal immigrants several times, but immigration agents declined to detain them.

"I'm just saying: 'Wait a minute. We're on heightened alert and it's post-9/11, and I'm going to let an illegal immigrant who I don't know from Adam just walk away?' " Chamberlain said. "That's ridiculous. If I find you are in my country illegally, I'm not going to worry about political correctness. I will detain you."

So another shot is fired in the often-testy debate over U.S. immigration policies and border security, a battle fraught with political and ethnic anxieties. Already, another police chief, Richard E. Gendron in nearby Hudson, N.H., has followed suit. A few days ago, Gendron brought trespassing charges against two illegal immigrants from Mexico after his officers stopped a van with a broken headlight. Several police chiefs in New Hampshire have suggested that they might pursue such tactics in the future.

For now, however, their eyes are trained on New Ipswich, a town of 4,200 people set in green hills just north of the Massachusetts border. The Mexican immigrant, Jose Mora Ramirez, faces trial on the trespassing charge in July. The two Mexicans arrested in Hudson will be tried later that month.

The Mexican consulate has hired an attorney for Ramirez, fearing that a court may uphold the trespassing charges and so set a national precedent.

"The Mexican government was understandably worried that this could become the charge du jour across the country," said Claire Ebel, executive director of the New Hampshire American Civil Liberties Union, which helped find the lawyer for Ramirez. "They worry about vigilante police chiefs who will round up people based on the color of their skin."

New Hampshire is 96 percent white but has seen a swell of immigration from south of the border in recent years. The Latino population, in particular, has grown in Manchester and Nashua. These two cities have at least 20,000 Latinos, of Uruguayan, Puerto Rican, Dominican, Mexican and Central American descent, and there are now two Latino members of the 424-member state House of Representatives.

"The $64,000 question is why these police chiefs are doing this," said state Rep. Hector M. Velez (D), who was born in Pennsylvania and served in Operation Desert Storm before moving to Manchester, about 20 miles northeast of New Ipswich. "They talk terrorism, but none of these guys were looking for anything except hard work. You ask me, some people are afraid of the unknown."

The two police chiefs insist that racial and ethnic considerations played no role in their calculations. (The populations of New Ipswich and Hudson are 98.6 and 96.3 percent white, respectively.) They note that their officers made the arrests during routine traffic stops at night.

"Look, if you came here legally, fine," Chamberlain said. "I greet you with open arms."

He and Gendron reserve much of their annoyance for the federal government, which they say spends billions of dollars on homeland security even as the southern and northern borders remain sieves. (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, estimates that 8 million illegal immigrants live in the United States; about 465,000 are fleeing deportation orders.) "I just find it hard to believe that we spend billions of dollars on high-tech security stuff and then we let 8 million people come across our border illegally and say nothing," Gendron said. "My son is with the Army in Iraq, and he says the biggest challenge is to tighten the border. Why is it any different here?"

Chamberlain was nudged into action in the summer of 2004, when he stopped a van for speeding along New Ipswich's short main drag. He found 10 Ecuadoran men inside, all of whom readily admitted they lacked legal papers. Chamberlain placed a phone call to ICE.

"The feds were, like, 'Whatever. Just give them a ticket and let them go,' " Chamberlain said. "I was shocked."

After that, the chief sat down with a local prosecutor and tried to find a legal foothold. They settled on New Hampshire's trespassing law, which states: "A person is guilty of criminal trespass if, knowing he is not licensed or privileged to do so, he enters or remains in any place." They planned to demand that illegal immigrants report to an immigration office within 72 hours of pleading guilty.

New Ipswich officials checked with the state attorney general, who gave a modified thumbs up. "It's a novel interpretation," Assistant Attorney General Robert Carey said. But he added: "We weren't aware of any New Hampshire case that would preclude that prosecution."

The New Hampshire ACLU takes a dimmer view.

"This is a preposterous interpretation of a state law intended to apply to private property," said Ebel of the state ACLU. "You have to turn your mental clock back 100 years to believe that a police chief has the right to set federal policy."

Manny Van Pelt, a spokesman for the federal immigration service, declined to comment on the legal strategy. He noted that most police departments choose to tap into the federal government's criminal database and consult with ICE agents on arrests. "The reality is that the immigration system was never set up to arrest every single illegal immigrant," Van Pelt said. "You'd have to build prisons from the West Coast to the East Coast to do that."

New Hampshire has come late to wrestling with immigration. While French Canadians once poured in to work in lumber and textile mills, the state's modern growth has been fed predominantly by white residents moving north from Massachusetts. They have often settled in towns where historically much stock was placed on fitting in.

"One has to recognize that a lot of people coming from Massachusetts are to some extent trying to leave behind the issues of immigration and ethnicity," said Prof. David H. Watters, director of the Center for New England Culture at the University of New Hampshire. "There is also an old tradition in New Hampshire of 'warning' people who were not born there out of towns. That sensibility still survives."

Interviews with a dozen residents of the two towns found nothing but support for the chief. "The poor chief is just doing his job," Diane Slyman said as she sipped coffee in a New Ipswich bagel shop. "We want to live in a small town where we feel safe."

Gendron has heard much the same at his end. "I've got pretty close to 80 e-mails, and only one was negative," he said. "And that person was concerned that if illegal immigration slowed down, the price of lettuce might go up."

Staff writer Michelle Garcia in New York contributed to this report.
Thought our laws were to be used equally....

Silly me, we should let the RNC decide what is right for us. I am just waiting for DeLay to show up at a book burning on Pennsylvania Avenue at Freedom Square next week.
 

zimv20

macrumors 601
Jul 18, 2002
4,388
7
toronto
link

Few Terror Convictions in Cases Since 9/11

Less Than Half of the People Charged Had Demonstrated Connections to Terror Groups

On Thursday, President Bush stepped to a lectern at the Ohio State Highway Patrol Academy in Columbus to urge renewal of the USA Patriot Act and to boast of the government's success in prosecuting terrorists.

Flanked by Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales, Bush said that "federal terrorism investigations have resulted in charges against more than 400 suspects, and more than half of those charged have been convicted."

Those statistics have been used repeatedly by Bush and other administration officials, including Gonzales and his predecessor, John D. Ashcroft, to characterize the government's efforts against terrorism.

But the numbers are misleading at best.

An analysis of the Justice Department's list of terrorism prosecutions by The Washington Post shows that 39 people -- not 200 -- have been convicted of crimes related to terrorism or national security.

Most of the others were convicted of relatively minor crimes such as making false statements and violating immigration law -- and had nothing to do with terrorism, the analysis shows. Overall, the median sentence was just 11 months.

Taken as a whole, the data indicate that identifying terrorists in the United States has been less successful than the government has often suggested. The statistics provide little support for the suggestion that authorities have discovered and prosecuted hundreds of terrorists. Except for a small number of well-known cases -- such as truck driver Iyman Faris, who sought to take down the Brooklyn Bridge -- few appear to have been involved in active plots against the United States.

In fact, among all the people charged as a result of terrorism investigations in the three years after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, The Post found no demonstrated connection to terrorism or terrorist groups for 180 of them.

(more)
 

Dont Hurt Me

macrumors 603
Dec 21, 2002
6,056
6
Yahooville S.C.
Looks like the administration is spinning numbers (again). not 200 but 39. People have to start taking notice of the constant lies and the agenda for a All Powerful police state. George i wish you and your "gang" would leave the whitehouse before you destroy our great countrys freedoms libertys and reputation. Or is it to late.
 

zimv20

macrumors 601
Jul 18, 2002
4,388
7
toronto
House Votes to Limit Patriot Act Rules

link

House Votes to Limit Patriot Act Rules

WASHINGTON - In a slap at President Bush, lawmakers voted Wednesday to block the Justice Department and the FBI from using the Patriot Act to peek at library records and bookstore sales slips.

The House voted 238-187 despite a veto threat from Bush to block the part of the anti-terrorism law that allows the government to investigate the reading habits of terror suspects.

The vote reversed a narrow loss last year by lawmakers concerned about the potential invasion of privacy of innocent library users. They narrowed the proposal this year to permit the government to continue to seek out records of Internet use at libraries.

The vote came as the House debated a $57.5 billion bill covering the departments of Commerce, Justice and State. The Senate has yet to act on the measure, and GOP leaders often drop provisions offensive to Bush during final negotiations.

(more)
 

solvs

macrumors 603
Jun 25, 2002
5,693
1
LaLaLand, CA
So I guess the system doesn't always let us down. Not completely at least. Um... yay?

Now we're only a little fascist. :p