Re: News Release

"Volker Birk" <bumens@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in message
Cliff <> wrote:
Are you quoting news reports or facts when you make the statement "Bush
corroding democracy and liberty in the US"?


In a democracy the people has to control what the state does. Who and
how is controlling one, which has all information and the rest has none?

In a democracy which is a form of representational government we elect
people to speak for us and act on our behalf. If we do not like or think the
people we have elected is doing a good job we elect someone else. Not
everything is voted on by the people.


Or are all reports about New Orleans wrong and this public authority
just used their power to do a good job?

Many of the news accounts of Katrina were just flat out wrong. In a disaster
the size of Katrina there are bound to be missteps and mistakes.

Or are there other reasons for
such a concentration of power?

I may have missed your point....The reason that the agencies were combined
(they have no real power, they just follow the laws) was that in Pre 9-11 we
had a seperation of intelligence agencies, the CIA could not talk to the FBI
etc. this was called "the wall". The wall was formed to protect US citizens
from being spied on by the CIA, the CIA is strickly a foriegn intelligence
agency. Now the CIA and the FBI can work together on domestic issues.

n visiting friends, doing business and taking
part in conferences in the US because I don't want to be treated like a
criminal - when I want to visit the US (for example, I was invited to
Hawaii this turn of the year), then they want to take my fingerprints
like with a thief or bandit they cought.

There is really no difference than getting a VISA which also requires
fingerprints. If you are afraid of having your fingerprints taken I would
imagine this would exclude you from any country that requires a VISA.

And what's with this electing machine thing? Sorry, I'm doing computer
science. What I'm reading only from the manufacturers makes my hair
stood on end.

Well if you understand how election results are counted now maybe you would
appreciate the automated process. Remember Florida and the 2001 US
presidential election? In that case it was all in how the ballots were
counted and who did the counting. I live in Washington State and our recent
governors election was decide by 119 votes out of 3 million and the
accusations and irregularities during the vote counting process were great
due to the human involvement, dimpled chads so to speak. It tkk six months
to finalize the election due to all of the challenges. With machine tallying
and counting this would not be an issue.

And, sorry, what's there in Guantanamo Bay, has nothing to do with legal
acting of a constitutional state. Here in Germany, fortunately many
people learned their lesson (from the US, BTW), and the German word
"Konzentrationslager" should not be required any more, at least not in
conjunction with a democracy.
Here in Germany we now have learned, that in every situation you have
rights. If you're getting arrested, you have the right to be supported by
a lawyer. You have the right to be informed about the accusations. And
you cannot be arrested for a longer time without facing a court hearing
and having the possibility to answer back the accusations.

And that is pretty much the way it works in the US.

The US government itself say, that they're refusing to give these basic
rights to the prisoners there. I really cannot understand this.

The prisoners have no basic US rights as they are not US citizens. Most of
them (not all) were caught during a war, on the fiels of battle not wearing
a uniform. These people are called unlawful combatants. These are not US
laws, these terms and conditions arise from the Geneva conventions and are
hels in accordance with international law not US laws.

Not to mention Abu Garaib. Are officers responsible for their men or
not? Why are the officers not penalized and all fired, and why is
Mr. Rumsfeld not resigning and the US citizens are accepting this?

Most of the people that were involved with abuses at Abu Gharaib are now
sitting in a federal penitentiary in Leavenworth Kansas as I type. They have
been tried and convicted of their crimes. As for Rumsfeld resigning why
should he? Do you have evidence that he was involved in the torture? Here in
the US we do not convict people without evidence.

I live in the US and my liberty
has not been "corroded" one whit

So you can fly from Chicago to New York without being treated like a
criminal? It's just like before?

It is pretty much exactly like before, the only difference is they search
your baggage and x-ray you before you board the plane. A minor
inconvenience at most.

And you can visit Arabic states without
getting into trouble?

and I know of no one else who has had their
liberty or democracy "corroded.

You have blind trust into the authority? Why a democracy then after all,
why not a monarchy or aristocrathy? ;-)

I never said I have blind trust in anything. I just stated that I have not
or I know no one that has been affected by the patriot act.

I think, the reason for a constitutional state and democracy is to
control what's going on. The _people_ have to be in control above
authorities, not vice versa.

We are not in control of the authorities except through the ballot box. The
rules and laws still do not change.

BTW: we have big problems with such things here in Europe, too, and
especially here in Germany. I'm so disappointed about the US, because I
had the hope that they would be the example for democracy again, but
unfortunately this did not happen.

May I suggest that you do not believe everything the news reports as true.
The US is still about as free as you can get. I can travel anywhere in the
US with no restrictions. I still carry a .45 colt auto everywhere I go. I
even take it on the airlines. (packed in my luggage). I can quit my job
tomorrow and find a new one. I can support any political candidate without
fear. I can vote or not vote.

the amount of rhetoric and false claims of "lost liberty" has increased

So you're claiming all people are lying who had problems because they
look Arabic or were target of lawful interception or even got arrested
in spite of doing nothing for giving a good reason for such provisions?

Oh I am not saying that there are not issues. The US has what 280 million
people? The problems are few and far between. I am sure there were a few
people that were arrested that shouldn't be but overall the percentage of
people that have had problems is miniscule. You will always read the
exceptions to the rule in the news but put that into perspective.

and ruining the
reputation of the USA in the world?
And just what reputation was that?

The reputiaton of the USA was very high - as a matter of fact, many
people in other countries saw them as an example for a great country.

We do not run our country based on the
acceptance of foreign nations...never have....never will.

Unfortunately, you're obviously right here. But this planet is bigger
than 50 states, much bigger. And most of the people are not US citizens.

Fortunately we are a free country. Still a magnet for the weary and down
troddens souls from all over the world.

I personally think, many of the problems the US and other countries are
facing are a direct result of this attitude BTW. Did you ever think
about the fact, that most of the people in Arabic countries, in Iran and
in many other places see Osama bin Laden as a hero and the US as evil?

I think about it often.

We all know that this special bin Laden is a criminal and murderer, and
that the US are not evil. Why do so many people think so in these
countries, that so many of them have hate enough to even attack the US?

I will give you two words.....rhetoric and propaganda. The war we fight is
not just a physical war it is also a war for hearts and minds. Here are
those two words again....rhetoric and propaganda.

This discussion better would be on, because this is
a security related topic - making your neighbours angry on this small
planet directly results in having security problems you otherwise would
not have.

Since "Homeland Security", the manipulations with elections,
Manipulations with elections? Following our laws is manipulation?

No. I'm referencing the unspeakable election machine topic.

The election machines have just come into existance. Very few elections have
been run with them.

the witch
hunt in airports,
Witch hunt? Have you ever flown on El Al?

Sorry, not yet.

Quite the experience, talk about security!

They make our security seems like
playschool. Is their something wrong with securing your air travel after
people hijacked airplanes, destroyed the WTC,damaged the Pentagon and
3000+ people?

No. But there is something strange with enforcing me to be treated like
a criminal when I want to visit friends in the US - what do I have to do
with all this?

You have nothing to do with this. It is not to embarass you or to harass you
it is just so that you can be identified nothng more.

I understand that it's neccessary to search for weapons before letting
people enter a public airplane. I understand that it's necessary to
x-ray the passengers, for example. But I personally think, too, that
this has to have borders.

I cannot see that this unleashed policy of wanting to control all people
leads into more security at all. It just leads into controlling all
harmless people. A very dangerous thing, because this is the opposite of
the ideas of democracy and freedom.

How is it control? Identifying yourself before entering a country is
control? After you identify yourself ther is no control. You can enter the
US and go anywhere, do anything with no control as long as it is legal.
There is no one watching your travels, watching what you spend or who you
visit with.

Personally, I'm feeling most secure in a free society where no
government tries to closely observe and control me.

There is no one observing or controlling me. I have a few friends that
occasionally visit from overseas and they certainly seem to have no problem.

If we're giving up our freedom, then the terrorists alread have won.
We had such problems while cold war, and I fear that we're running in
such problems again now.

I am a little unsure of what "problems" you are talking of.

and finally this disastrous war of aggression in Iraq
Let's see One war (GW1) 18+ UN resolutions and Saddams refusal to disarm
disclose as he had promised is a war of aggression? Remember Saddam
all of this by Invading Kuwait.

You don't want to compare the US with Saddam, do you? You don't want to
review US policy comparing to that what this criminal Saddam was calling
his policy?

I'm critizising US government here, not a criminal and nefarious
dictator. IBTD. From US government I'm expecting completely other things
than from such a vermin.

A government of a constitutional state has to act following law. A
government of a constitutional state has to fulfill international
contracts, right?
This is what I'm expecting the US citizens to do: enforcing, that their
government is acting following law, ond only following law, because the
USA are not a dictatorship, and cannot and must not be compared with
a state like Saddam's Iraq.

Did you miss those 18+ UN resolutions and 13 years of Saddams refusal to
disarm and disclose? We in the US also expect laws to be followed. Maybe you
should be addressing your concerns to the UN.

Because Bush is doing what needs to be done. It may be unpopular, it may
be politically correct and it may not be in the best interest of foreign
countries but someone had to do it.

I really cannot see that. A government of a constitutional state has to
act following law in any case, or we're all losing the base we're
standing on. Beside, I cannot see that the policy of Bush has decreased
the threats. The opposite is true.

Have you read the recent documents from the Saddam regime? They are pretty
Most of them are in Arabic, many of them have been translated and the
translations are stunning.

I'm not American, so I really don't understand.
If I may give you some advice, don't read what the press says. Ferret out
the facts for yourself and make your own decisions.

This is exactly what I'm trying to do, while I'm modifying this: I'm
trying to additionally read what the press says - but the press from all
sides. Then I make my decision.

Do not forget to go to the horses mouth, many of the documents and things
the press talks about can be accessed directly. Do not take the presses word
for anything.

There is so much
rhetoric and propaganda from both sides it is extremely hard to discern

Yes. And what's truth? The truth of whom? ;-)

I agree it is difficult. Ferreting out the rhetoric and propaganda from the
truth is the hardest part.

As for GW Bush, do yourself a favor, listen to what the man says, not
what others say he said.

When I'm listening to what he says, then I'm getting feared from this
man and the power he has. I really don't like people who are claiming to
have a mandate from god.

I agree. I am not religious. Religion has no place in politics. That makes
us no better than them.

I don't like it with the Islamic extremists,
and I don't like such comparisons with an elected leader of a
constitutional state at all.

He has his mandate from you, the US citizens. And this is his only
mandate he has. And when I'm listening to what he's saying in his
speeches, I don't have the feeling that he's realizing that.

I think you are mistaken. GWB is really a down to earth person. He may not
be polished, he may not be a great speaker but he does have the support of
many Americans. He made a decision and stuck with it and he is still
sticking with it even though popular opinion is not on his side. That is
what it takes to be a great leader. Make a decision and stick with it
through thick and thin, if it was the right decision 3 years ago the
principles remain the same.

Isn't humility a Christian idea?

Not being Christian I wouldn't have a clue........