Check Out Sen. Rand Paul Railing Against the War on Terror's Excesses and the Potential Detainment of American Citizens

When it comes to libertopia, Rand Paul is not the perfect, but the Republican Sen. from Kentucky sure is the good. He can almost always be counted on to fight for Americans' constitutional protections from his relatively powerful position as a senator (albeit a fairly new one). Paul speechified powerfully last spring when it came time to re-up the PATRIOT Act, noting at one point "if you don't protect the entire bill of rights, you're not going to have any of it."

Today he tried again, in support of Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo) and his attempt at removing the worst bits of the proposed detainee provision amendment to the 2012 Defense Authorization Act bill. Paul noted that we already have laws and protections against terrorism, and that 9/11 was not a failure of American law, nor was it due to any omnipotence on Al-Qaeda's part.

Paul also noted that not only is the provision unnecessary, the potential for military detainment of American citizens within it is both unconstitutional and a very, very bad idea.

According to The Hill, part of the exchange between Paul and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz) went like this:

“Should we err today and remove some of the most important checks on state power in the name of fighting terrorism, well then the terrorists have won," Paul argued, "[D]etaining American citizens without a court trial is not American."

McCain, however, who has spent hours of floor time in the last weeks promoting his amendment, hurried to the floor to defend it against Paul's onslaught.

"Facts are stubborn things," McCain repeated from the floor several times. "If the senator from Kentucky wants to have a situation prevail where people who are released go back in to the fight to kill Americans, he is entitled to his opinion.”

The amendment, offered by McCain, who is the ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, would technically allow the executive branch discretion on whether a terrorism suspect ought to be tried in civilian courts or the military tribunal system.

Much like last spring's fight against the PATRIOT Act, Paul fought the good fight, and he was again on the losing side. Udall's bid to rid the bill of the detainment provision was voted down 61-37. Here's hoping President Obama actually vetoes the thing.

Watch Paul:

And make sure your tinfoil hat is securely fastened and your radio dial is tuned to whoever broadcasts Alex Jones or George Noory; here is McCain puking up a rainbow of pro-America, pro-democracy, anti-terrorist drivel in response to Paul's very direct question on the issue people seem disturbingly fuzzy about—namely, could these detainment powers really be used on American citizens?

Further Reason on Rand Paul who was dubbed "The Most Interesting Man in the Senate" for the June cover. And Reason on the war on terror. Not to mention Reason on John McCain, who is so awful that he was worthy of a whole book by fearless Reason Magazine Editor in Chief Matt Welch.

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  • ||

    I just heard about this. Sounded like Rubio was on the wrong side.

  • ||

    Here's hoping President Obama actually vetoes the thing

    Based on his track record, don't be surprised or dismayed when he doesn't.

  • The Other Kevin||

    He doesn't want to look weak on terrorism. The election is coming up, after all.

  • Brendan Perez||

    Yep. Thank goodness we have those Democrats in office to keep the Republicans from running amok*.

    *Except when the Democrats think the Republicans will call them names for backing certain proposals, many of which were campaign promises...

  • Lucy Steigerwald||

    I'll be dismayed. I definitely won't be surprised.

  • ||

    "Dismayed"?

    They probably wont let you out until Disdecember.

  • ||

    What's past dismay? Demasted?

  • ||

    Jersey.

  • ||

    Dismasted.

  • ||

    I suggest being exasperated instead.

  • Lucy Steigerwald||

    I'm going to stick with bemused. Or nonplussed.

  • ||

    As long as you don't go discombobulated, you should be OK.

  • Lucy Steigerwald||

    I'm feeling a little perturbed over all this government tyranny, guys. And more than a little befuddled.

  • ||

    Don't get too choleric, Lucy. It's not good for your digestion.

  • ||

    That's it! I'm all verklempt now.

  • Apatheist||

  • Warty||

    If you can still feel feelings, how are you a libertarian?

  • ||

    We're like the Vulcans of politics.

  • Warty||

    I think of myself more as a golem.

  • Gojira||

    Warty, defender of the Jewish People.

  • ||

    There is a difference between golem and goyim.

  • ||

    You green-blooded, inhuman, pointy-eared...

  • ||

    . . .libertarian. With the Libertarian Neck Pinch and Death Grip.

    Mating only every seven years, the Libertarian is a logical, though strangely volatile, creature.

  • yonemoto||

    vulcans still have emotions, they just bottle them up until they go batshit insane and blow up all over the place.

  • Sybok||

    Like I did in Star Trek V: Shatner Can't Direct for Shit.

  • Meaty Ballls||

    Feelings? Hell, I've been told I don't even have empathy...by a Nihilist.

  • Gojira||

    You heart it here first, folks: Episiarch values the rights of terrorists over the lives of your children.

    Now you lose the election. See how that works? Nifty, ain't it?

  • ||

    Soft on crime. Weak on terror. The wrong man for the wrong time.

  • ||

    Oh noes, now I look weak! I had better come down hard on chronic pain sufferers to get my cred back! Maybe raw milk drinkers too!

  • ||

    "Episiarch trained Muslim terrorists in his basement for 10 years and now has voted against the only remaining barrier between innocent American children and the bloodthirsty, children molesting cannibals of Al-Queda.

    Voting for Episiarch is like molesting and eating your own children."

  • ||

    I can't deny any of this.

  • Gojira||

    Who would want to? You've essentially got the cannibal-rapist vote wrapped up, and that's a huge demographic that I'm fairly certain no one else has grabbed or even bothered to court.

  • STEVE SMITH||

    STEVE SMITH NOT READY TO VOTE EPISCARCH. STEVE SMITH MAY HAVE TO FLIP SKULL OF HITCHHIKER TO DECIDE.

  • STEVE SMITH||

    STEVE SMITH WANT KNOW EPISARCH STANCE ON ISRAEL, AND ALSO WHAT KIND BARBECUE SAUCE TO USE ON HITCHHIKERS.

  • chris||

    My kid is a little terrorist so it looks like he cares about my little tike after all!!

  • ||

    There are very, very few people in Washington who would oppose something that gives them more power. It's not just Obama, though he's the most visible example certainly.

  • ||

    Unfortunately, without a line-item veto Obama has to throw out the entire defense appropriation bill with a full veto, which politically won't look very good. Still...

  • ||

    This is why I find it hard to swallow when Team Red partisans think that McCain would have been any better than Obama.

    The only difference between them is that Obama looks better in a suit.

  • GOP||

    To be fair, at least McCain isn't black with a Kenyan colonial worldview.

  • ||

    Yeah. He's white with an America Uber Alles worldview.

    Bomb, bomb, bomb
    Bomb bomb Iran

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    I will always "fondly" remember John "We're going to be in Iraq for 100 Years" McCain. Fuck that guy.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I had this very thought when I read about McCain sponsoring this bill.

  • ||

    He might not have signed Obamacare.

  • ||

    IIRC, he had his own Medicare plan, softpedalled during the election, but it probably wouldn't have been much different.

  • ||

    Well, then, I'm stumped.

  • ||

    So if we assume McCain would have been as bad as Obama, then McCain would have been as bad as Obama. QED.

  • ||

    If we assume that McCain would have been better than Obama, then McCain would have been better than Obama.

    However, there is no evidence for an assumption that he would have been better and plenty of evidence - such as this POS legislation - that he would have been at least as bad.

  • AdamJ||

    McCain has gone batshit. Obama won the election because he wasn't Bush, so what does McCain do? Goes full Bush on the US. Obama sucks, but somehow I'm still glad he won the election.

  • ||

    There is plenty of evidence for the assumption that McCain would have been better, starting with the stimulus package, and plenty of evidence where McCain would have been just as bad.

    There is virtually no evidence of places where McCain would have been worse, considering how terrible Obama has been on war and civil liberties, with the exception of gays in the military.

  • ||

    McCain is also tremendously better on trade and unions.

    There are plenty of issues where McCain is better.

    This sort of shit is an issue where Obama might have been expected to be better, but isn't.

  • ||

    His bill was a plan to replace the deduction for employer insurance with a refundable tax credit for everyone to buy insurance that would be larger in value than the deduction at the low end, though worth less than a deduction for people in the top tax brackets who had very expensive insurance. (Of course, people confuse deductions and credits.)

    It wasn't softpedaled at all, it was quite detailed. What it was was massively attacked by Obama for "taxing employer insurance for the first time ever."

  • ||

    Obama is going to sign this into law assuming it passes the House, so he and McCain are equally bad on this issue.

    On economics, McCain isn't very good either, but he's not nearly as bad as BO. I don't dispute that I would be ripping McCain too, but he couldn't be as bad as BO.

  • ||

    If we had President McCain, not only would we be in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Pakistan and Uganda. We'd also likely be launching full scale assaults on Iran, North Korea and Syria. Obamacare and Dodd-Frank can be dismantled, but wars can not be backed out of. Either way, I say it's a draw.

  • chris||

    With that agenda, our forces would be so scattered on McCain's NeoCon Everquest that a small brigade of Iranian special forces could have invaded the White House and forced a surrender.

  • ||

  • CatoTheElder||

    That, plus conscription.

  • ||

    And we'd all be beaten by midgets with sticks every morning! And pigs would start walking on two legs and stealing all our peanut butter!

    See what magic you can make when you assume things?

  • chris||

    You have to wake up pretty superficial in the morning to mistake Obama for a guy who looks good in anything. He looks like sheep; he is sheep. Nothing distinguished about him.

  • WTF||

    McCain really is a shit bag.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    McCain is an idiot.

    That is all.

  • ||

    Giving the military domestic law enforcement powers without any habeas corpus limitations.

    What could possibly go wrong?

  • ||

    Let me take this time to not recommend Hughes Net to anyone considering it. It is crap - at least as bad as dial and worse in some ways. Do not believe the commercials. Almost impossible to watch videos like those above.

  • ||

    He might not have signed Obamacare.

    BWAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! (wipes eyes)

    You had me going there, right that, Pro'L Dib! Best guffaw I've had in a moon or two.

  • Gojira||

    Yep, it would have just been "McCain-Feingold [or insert any random democrat name] Medical Insurance Reform", with nary a difference in the bill.

  • There is no "we"||

    Thanks, Rand. Too bad you don't have a shred of credibility after (i) tying yourself in knots trying to distance yourself from you father and win the votes of the Neo-Confederate mouth-breathers in Kentucky, then (ii) arguing that universal medical insurance would entail forcing doctors to perform treatment at gunpoint, and (iii) sundry other stunts, gaffes and bonehead moves to numerous to list.

  • Colin||

    Yes, you would've much preferred the theocon he was running against.

    'Cause at least he was a socialist.

  • There is no "we"||

    I would prefer an ally on this issue who has not made a discredited ass of himself repeatedly in full public view.

  • chris||

    Ha! Ha! Ha! You suck.

  • There is no "we"||

    ...your mom's ta-ta's!

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Yawn.

  • Chatroom Crank||

    Fuck you, fuck you very much.

  • Britt||

    Do you remember when Tony (pretty sure, might have been MNG) was trying to argue that Grayson was the conservative compared to Paul in that race?

    It was an excellent example of insane troll logic.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: There is no brain,

    Too bad you don't have a shred of credibility after (i) tying yourself in knots trying to distance yourself from you father and win the votes of the Neo-Confederate mouth-breathers in Kentucky[...]


    ... as there are so many of those, right?

    Get a brain. It will allow you to see the world in a totally different light.

  • There is no "we"||

    Oh, right.

    Kentucky is just like Tarzana with banjos.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Why can't you just stay gone, "we"?

    Seriously... take your sour, dour, foul-tempered ass over to DU or somewhere else where you would be amongst your own kind.

  • There is no "we"||

    I will throw paper flowers on your grave.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Why not slit your wrists, instead?

  • ||

    What's past dismay? Demasted?

    Disjune. Duh! In the big red truck!

  • OH NOES!||

    Obama's Job Approval Drops Below Carter's

    President Obama's slow ride down Gallup's daily presidential job approval index has finally passed below Jimmy Carter, earning Obama the worst job approval rating of any president at this stage of his term in modern political history.

    Since March, Obama's job approval rating has hovered above Carter's, considered among the 20th century's worst presidents, but today Obama's punctured Carter's dismal job approval line. On their comparison chart, Gallup put Obama's job approval rating at 43 percent compared to Carter's 51 percent.

    http://www.usnews.com/news/blo.....ow-carters

  • ||

    And the Iranians are attacking an embassy! Interesting.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    But...Jimmy Carter was HISTORY'S GREATEST MONSTER!

  • Colin||

    but . . . but rand isn't a socialist, so he must be an evil fascist and hence destroyed. rachael maddow told me so. /libtard

  • romulus augustus||

    What's the perfect squelch to McCain's
    charge that if we let'em free they'll go back into battle and kill our soldiers?

  • Gojira||

    The response is, "It'll be mighty hard for them to infiltrate a secure military base, when our troops are living there as they should be instead of globetrotting for fun and profit."

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    It would be hard for them to shoot up a military base if the soldiers there were *allowed to carry f*****g guns!

  • ||

    Actually, McCain is correct that if we're going to be fighting wars all around the world, forever, it makes no sense to let any of the enemy soldiers we capture go free alive.

  • robc||

    McCain's flaw is in his premise.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    McCain's flaw is in his poorly aged, war-addled, shell-shocked, and damaged brain.

  • Raston Bot||

    Not perfect but for starters...

    How is due process equivalent to "letting them go free"?

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Why are we chasing a bunch of people firmly ensconsed in the 13th century through the mountains of Afghanistan with little to no appreciable gain?

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    Because some of them might have had something to do with the cousin's roommate's ex-wife's restaurant manager's bookie's of one of the 9/11 highjackers. That and we are bunch of pussies who piss our pants when brown people shoot guns into the air. Oh...and public education has made us too fucking stupid to see the folly (i.e. do a cost benefit analysis). And I'm assuming some people are bent in shape over the religious bullshit. Fuck it all, I say.

  • ||

    arguing that universal medical insurance would entail forcing doctors to perform treatment at gunpoint

    That point is accurate. You can have all the insurance in the world, but the health care provider still has to agree to accept that insurance provider's policy. If the HC provider doesn't accept it (including cash, some practices are now starting to accept third party insurance only D/T liability concerns), then you don't get treated, barring emergency situations as per EMTALA.

  • ||

    Is there any way that we can give McCain back to the Viet Cong?

  • ||

    What!? We already got rid of him once! Why you think we give him back to you?

  • chris||

    To complete his sentence!

  • BakedPenguin||

    He was bombing them, wasn't he? Without a declaration of war? Kind of like a... terrorist would?

  • Lucy Steigerwald||

    Shhhhh, it doesn't count when a state does it. Everyone knows that.

  • AdamJ||

    Exactly! That's why social security isn't a Ponzi scheme...Ponzi schemes are illegal, but SS is a government program!

    Fuck....

  • ||

    And the Iranians are attacking an embassy! Interesting.

    With hostages, apparently. And he does have a relative that apparently is on the sauce often, though doesn't have a boutique brew named after him. It is uncanny, the similarity.

  • ||

    Call it what you may, but we are in a military conflict [what is normally called a war] with religio-political sects in foreign lands and at times here at home. There are Americans who support or join our enemies in this conflict. If U.S. military justice is good enough for our military personnel, it is good enough for Americans against whom there is evidence enough to charge them with treasonous crimes.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Yeah! We can just forget about the 4th amendment and all that jazz.

  • ||

    Hey, bub, we didn't spend all that DHS money militarizing our police departments for nothing, ya know.

  • Raston Bot||

    Good luck when your nephew is indefinitely detained for playing with fireworks near a federal building and the tuffgai-on-crime prosecutor shows no discretion.

  • ||

    Yeah!

    Also, we're in a war on drugs. A WAR! We need to start throwing pot users into indefinite military detention! It's good enough for our troops, right?

  • ||

    I say kill 'em.

  • ||

    This is WAY too easy.

    Illegal drug users = funders and affiliates of al Qaeda affiliated Mexican drug cartel terrorists and Afghani terrorist/opium farmers. Therefore, non-violent drug crimes = material support for terrorism.

    Habeas corpus? LOL, you must be stoned, terrorist.

  • ||

    "You're either with us or you're against us" is not a valid criminal charge.

  • chris||

    I do my best to be snide about any suggestions that conspiracy organizations like the Illuminati actually exist, but when Joe Lieberman speaks, you gotta wonder where the fuck is that shit is coming from. Whose interest could he possibly be representing if not an eon old conspiracy?

  • ||

    Hanlon's Razor. He's a complete idiot.

  • chris||

    Dr. K supplies him with the epoxy glue for his fixes. Unaware of the existence of hobby supply shops he feels he has no choice but to do what Dr. K says. So it's a little of both.

  • ||

    Not at all. He's a joke. I mean, literally, he's a comedian playing a giant goof on America. Come on, doesn't the whole Elmer Fudd voice give it away?

  • chris||

    I long ago considered that his Elmer Fudd voice was the result of a glue addiction. Now, I just assume it to be true.

  • Bill C||

    You won't hear about Rand Paul's stand for the basic liberty of having a fair trial by one's peers on Rachel Maddow. Just like you didn't hear a peep when Rand Paul stood against the Patriot Act.

    Why is this? The so called "liberal media" are just despicable propagandists for the "not Republicans".

  • Gojira||

    He once implied that the Civil Rights Act wasn't the single greatest law ever in history.

    Therefore everything else he ever says or does is evil. If he says something you think is good, it's either for an evil ulterior purpose, or the evil of his view of the CRA easily overwhelmes it, thus not requiring it to be reported.

  • chris||

    Rand doesn't fit the narrative they have had in place since the days of Goldwater (and he didn't fit the narrative either). McCain fits the narrative, so that makes him credible though the guy has the temper of homicidal nut. Ted Kennedy fit the narrative so he was credible, though he was a serial rapist and lady killer. Rand Paul doesn't fit the narrative so he isn't credible and his viewpoint on a fifty odd year old law that has solidified a system of caste like credentialism as well as being detrimental to the employment opportunities of the lower middle class of the wrong ethnic persuasion is the reason so many liberals who have prospered off of that system despise him more than the other two.

  • Bill C||

    I was too kind. Maddow & Co are unflinchingly propagandists for Democrats regardless of their opposition: http://bigjournalism.com/pjsal.....d-friends/

    Also I now recall that Obama literally led off one of his speeches with a video of Maddow shilling for his administration:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=so-Uuooz-Zo

    Pathetic.

  • chris||

    She is the poster child of what is wrong with credentialed elitism. She has a graduate degree in a subject that most commentators here are more knowledgeable in that she is, even though our degrees had nothing to do with political science, the social sciences, or journalism.

  • ||

    You seem to have an unhealthy fixation with Maddow. No one listens to her.

  • AdamJ||

    I watch Morning Joe in the morning so Maddow is often the first thing I see when I turn the tv on after work. Between these 2 programs, I've seen two minutes on Solyndra in the last 2 months. Isnt't cronyism bad no matter who is doing it? Isn't that why the kids are occupying stuff? Goddamn I wish the Solyndra affair occurred under Bush so the Libs would have to choose between railing against Bush and protecting Green jobs. Would have been amazing.

  • ||

    Good thought, however, it wouldn't have mattered. If it happened under GDub, i think the thought would be: "obviously, the right people (tm?) weren't in charge, and if we had a (liberal/statist/authoritarian/socialist) in office it wouldn't have happened..."

  • ChrisO||

    Why do you keep doing that to yourself?

  • Oui We WII||

    all the way home.

  • ||

    wee-wee

  • ||

    Who would want to? You've essentially got the cannibal-rapist vote wrapped up, and that's a huge demographic that I'm fairly certain no one else has grabbed or even bothered to court.

    You have seen the documentary based on a ...sordid...episode in young Epi's life, no? It's truly a compelling, transformative tale of woe.

  • ||

    I almost didn't make it back from that one. That taught me the valuable lesson not to rape the natives without more backup.

  • Gojira||

    I actually have that movie. Didn't know a fellow Reasoner was in it. Now I'm going to go back through and try to find him. He was cannibal tribesman #4, right?

  • ||

    I used to be Francesca Ciardi, Jim.

  • Gojira||

    Hot hot hot!

  • ||

    a fun fact is that the italian prosecutors tried people involved with that movie with murder, so they had to present the actress seen impaled in the movie as a defense

    the "she's alive, it was a fucking movie you morons" defense...

    i'm still waiting for italian authoritahs to charge james cameron with killing 7' tall blue aliens in violation of interstellar rights.

    their idiocy did not start with amanda knox

  • ||

    I'm feeling a little perturbed over all this government tyranny, guys. And more than a little befuddled.

    Just go all to pot and be done with it, Lucy. Just don't go Full Metal Girl, Interrupted.

  • ||

    There is a difference between golem and goyim.

    Yes, the amount of clay involved.

  • Asking for reals||

    Could the President, just to make a point, "suspect" members of Congress and ship them off to Guantanamo?

  • ||

    Rand Paul seems to have figured out the big game: keep "Team America: World Police" embroiled in conflict forever, so that rights of due process are nothing but a dim gleam in James Madison's ghostly eye.

  • cw||

    According to The Hill, part of the exchange between the Paul [sic] and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz) went like this:

    C'mon, Lucy. I like Rand Paul, too, but adorning his name with "the" is just a little too much. ;)

  • ||

    Overkill as usual. McCain needs to go. Colorado! Replace him!

  • MacGhil||

    My fellow Arizonans elected him. I hate them.

    BSC! McCain has had this indefinite detention bill in the works for years. It's one of the reasons why David Nolan ran against him in '10.

    The wrong man won, and the wrong man died.

    Nolan: “One of the reasons I got into this race is that right now, at this very moment Sen. McCain is a sponsor – I think the lead sponsor of Senate Bill 3081 […] a bill which would authorize the arrest and indefinite detention of American citizens without trial and without recourse. This is one of the most dangerous, evil, un-American bills that’s ever been proposed in congress and nobody who would sponsor such a bill should be sitting in a seat in the United States Senate.”

  • ||

    Those boys seem to be having a grand ole time lol.

    www.web-security.at.tc

  • ||

    Q: "could these detainment powers really be used on American citizens as well?"

    A: "Fuck off"

  • ||

    A: And don't record this or you're going to prison.

  • ||

    Hey McCain, why don't you just get an old copy of Germany's 1933 Enabling Act and try to make that American law? Or maybe you did!

  • Lord Humungus||

    I would like to thank Senator Rand Paul for having a backbone and fighting the good fight.

  • The Ingenious Hidalgo||

    Did McCain just say "Only 73% of them were innocent, so they all should have been kept locked up indefinitely"? Because that's what I heard.

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