P-A:2, This Time It's Personal

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So many questions about Attorney General Ashcroft's planned sequel to the USA Patriot Act: Will the Congressional audience turn out for this next adventure? Will Jodie Foster reprise her role as Agent Starling? Will Rocky and Apollo Creed team up against Clubber Lang? Jesse asks the important questions we all want to know.

NEXT: Click Thru to Baghdad

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  1. The bill looks like an ideal candidate for the award in the category of “Most Likely to Have Unintended Consequences”. I mean really….Quakers as an extremist group? Please! what’s next? Libertarians. Oh…shouldn’t have said that so loud.

  2. I’d like to apologize right now for writing this sentence:

    “The White House claims that it hadn’t seen the draft before the leak, though that is belied by the document’s control sheet, which clearly shows that Vice President Dick Cheney received a copy in mid-January, along with House Speaker Dennis Hastert.”

    Just to clarify: This means that Cheney and Hastert both received copies of the draft. It does not mean that Rep. Hastert and the draft were stuffed into an envelope and routed to VP Cheney, though I must admit I enjoy that image.

  3. There’s a lot of merit to the “slippery slope” arguments. Just look at how application of the RICO statutes has been expanded. And the police state apparatus is run by people who have a very strong inclination to hunt pretexts and loopholes in existing legislation. The relatively narrow understanding of “espionage” in the WWI Espionage Act was used as a pretext for mass arrest of Wobblies. Political imprisonment in times of “national emergency” has a venerable history in America.

    By the way, John Timoney, the former Philadelphia police commissioner, is high in the councils of Tom Ridge. Timoney organized the large-scale repression and police riot against protesters at the 2000 GOP convention. His action included large-scale preemptive arrests to shut down “subversive” organizations, in the days before the convention, on manufactured pretexts. Timoney called for full-scale war by federal law encorcement, including use of RICO, against the post-Seattle movement (or as he called it, the “international anarchist conspiracy.”

    The more I think about it, the more I question whether the jackbooted consequences of this bill are “unintended.”

  4. Do you guys really need to link to your own articles?

  5. Enclosure(s): Dennis Hastert
    Secret Fascist Plans

  6. erf: It’s a way to get people discussing Reason articles rather than just Hit & Run blog entries, and I applaud it!!

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