NSA

Republican Senator Admits to Flip-Flopping on NSA Because He Trusted Bush More Than Obama

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Sen. Jim Inhofe's Office

Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) used to like the Patriot Act and the powers it granted to agencies like the NSA. Now, like a lot of his fellow Republicans, he's concerned about the size and scope of the NSA's operations. He recently explained his change of heart to CQ Roll Call:

"I'm concerned you can go too far with something like this," says Inhofe, the ranking Republican on the Armed Services panel. "I actually supported it originally. I felt a little more comfortable supporting it with Bush as president than the current president," Inhofe says, referring to the surveillance programs that began under President George W. Bush and were continued by the administration of President Barack Obama. "Is that shocking?"

Sen. Inhofe's Team Red tribalism is no more shocking than Team Blue tribalism. And if Americans elect a Republican in 2016, it won't be a shock to see Inhofe resume defending the excesses of the surveillance state, and Democrats resume caring about civil liberties. 

Speaking of flip-flopping, this is probably the best supercut of a prominent talking head doing a solid 180 on the NSA:

 

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73 responses to “Republican Senator Admits to Flip-Flopping on NSA Because He Trusted Bush More Than Obama

  1. Like it was different functionaries at the NSA when Bush was in charge.

    1. But Bush loved America and stuff and wasn’t a Muslim.

  2. Hannity is a cock.

    1. All the flip-flopping on this is the ultimate denunciation of Democracy as the primary means of organizing society, as some want so bad for it to be. And since both sides are so blatantly guilty, neither can legitimately argue against that point.

    2. Preach it!

      1. You’re an expert on human perversions, Jesse. What perversions do you think Hannity hides under that artfully concealed toupee?

        1. I assume, at a minimum, that all Republicans are watersport subs.

          1. I’m pretty sure the older boys at prep school used to force him to dress as a girl before they sodomized him. He now tries to recreate the intoxicating mixture of arousal and shame by paying a dominatrix to dress him in latex diapers and make him suck hobos’ cocks, but it’s just not the same.

            1. Emetophilic bukkake. He has dozens of guys vomit semen all over his face. Also known as a “Superstorm Sandy.”

    3. Even in my conservative republican days I thought Hannity was a bit of a dick.

      1. He was/is the worst when it comes to callers who disagree with him.

      2. you’re a great american, MWG

  3. Swivel head Hannity. Yep.

  4. “IT’S OKAY WHEN OUR GUY DOES IT!!”

    1. That’s pretty much exactly what he said.

  5. I doubt either party would be against rounding up the other team and putting them in camps because the other side is destroying America. If you look at it through that lense, it really isn’t flip-flopping.

    1. Clearly, this is a failure of free markets.

  6. And if Americans elect a Republican in 2016, it won’t be a shock to see Inhofe resume defending the excesses of the surveillance state, and Democrats resume caring pretending to care about civil liberties.

    FTFY.

  7. So Inhofe admits he doesn’t favor the rule of law and is too stupid to understand the primary argument in favor of the rule of law. Is it shocking to know that he is going to work to pass legislation to restrict the executive branch only to fight it in 2017 if the GOP retakes the White House? Not a bit shocking to know that shitweasels gonna shitweasel.

    As for Hannity ‘flip-flopping’ – it’s only a flip-flop if you assume he actually believes a single word that comes out of his mouth. Hannity, just like the rest of them, is a paid entertainer, a clown. You should treat anything he says with the same respect you would accord Paris Hilton or Gary Busey or Miley Cyrus.

    1. The above is a fine example of why Democrats govern while Libertarians only write comments on Reason H&R.

      Inhofe and Hannity are, however belatedly, informing the public about the liberty wrecking conduct of the Federal Government. This exposure raises public pressure against such conduct and the hope that the excesses can be curbed.

      Democrats are happy for assistance from public figures in pursuing their goals irrespective of the past sins of said figures.

      Libertarians first check for doctrinal purity before letting anyone give them a hand. Doctrinal impurity detected? Shut ’em up with trash talk.

      Libertarians who bemoan their lack of influence on events might consider the implications of this.

      1. This exposure raises public pressure against such conduct and the hope that the excesses can be curbed.

        Yeah, that really worked when it was the Democrats doing the complaining, didn’t it?

        The reality is that there’s only one party in power in Washington DC, especially when it comes to foreign policy and the security state. The battle is purely for show.

      2. The party out of power opposes the actions of the party in power, news at 11.

        You can elect Republicans because they are (belatedly) speaking out about civil liberties. However, the moment you elect them they will go back to boosting government authority.

        And the democrats will switch too.

        The democrats are actually better at it than the republicans are. If you welcome opportunistic support while you can get it, you’ll have more of it when Republicans are in charge, because democrats are far more shameless about it. So at least when the ‘other guy’ is in power, democrats are more anti-this-shit for purely opportunistic partisan reasons. Republicans half support this shit even when their guy isn’t in.

        But even if you welcome opportunistic support while you can get it, you can’t actually do anything with it unless you have a genuine libertarian in power during it. Otherwise you can just help flip control of government from someone who supports this shit, to someone who also supports this shit.

        1. If Libertarians really want to push their ideas, it would be worthwhile to reflect on how Progressives / Democrats have successfully gotten virtually all their principles enshrined in custom and law for the past hundred years or so.

          There may be lessons to be learned.

          1. —“it would be worthwhile to reflect on how Progressives / Democrats have successfully gotten virtually all their principles enshrined”—

            Free shit, how does it work?

            Libertarians don’t believe in paying off supporters with somebody elses money.

  8. Funny. A few days ago a friend asked me what I thought of Inhofe. I told him that I thought he was a completely unprincipled politician who coincidentally agreed with a few of my positions on occasion out of expediency. This certainly confirms that opinion.

    When my father went to school with Inhofe all the other kids apparently called him “Jack”.

  9. The good thing about having a Republican President is that, when government behavior gets as bad as indicated by the current revelations, the mass media gin up enough public outrage to get something done to moderate it for a while. (See the results of the Church Commission in 1975 which responded to the much smaller scale offenses of the Nixon years).

    With a Democrat in office, the mass media does its best to cover up the scandals and minimize public perception of the harm being done, thereby allowing the outrages to continue unabated.

    That’s why I prefer Republicans in office to Democrats.

    1. With a Democrat in office, the mass media does its best to cover up the scandals and minimize public perception of the harm being done, thereby allowing the outrages to continue unabated

      See, Kennedy-Johnson years.

    2. Unless the Democrat gets a blowjob.

      I’ve wondered if there might be some truth to this sentiment–at least under Bush the protests were about real things. The problem, though, with having a Republican in office is that they fuck everything up as much as one possibly can fuck things up in 8 years. I’m not willing to tell 4000 vainly dead American soldiers’ families that their sacrifice was worth it because Code Pink was more on the ball.

      1. SO when Obama does exactly the same things Bush did, it magically doesn’t fuck up the country?!?

        Tonykins, stop, it’s too early for me to be chuckling like this… everyone will think I am drinking on the job!

        1. But he’s not, that’s just the pox-on-both-houses fallacious bullshit you tell yourself so you can feel like you’re smarter than you actually are.

          1. ROFL! 😀

            Your delusions are so cute!

          2. You’re right, he’s only doing MOST of the things Bush did. For the rest, he’s simply ESCALATED the behavior to the next step in the authoritarian process. SO much better, you shill.

          3. Citation needed, Tony. Reason is littered with articles documenting Obama’s continuation or escalation of Bush’s anti-liberty/anti-transparency policies. Obama’s policy on the war that you reference was to stay the course. His policy on the ware you didn’t reference was to… stay the course. Citation needed.

            1. Actually, Obama’s position on the war Tony didn’t mention was to ramp it up.

            2. I would like a detailed, practical explanation of how you would have handled the wars differently. For the record, I would have done Afghanistan differently, but I also don’t know everything.

              The major abuses of the Bush administration were either ended, set up with more oversight, or being propped up by idiot Republicans in Congress. The mere fact that you want me to equate Obama to Bush can suggest only two things: you don’t know what you’re talking about, and for some reason you want to give Bush a pass.

              1. The major abuses of the Bush administration were either ended, set up with more oversight, or being propped up by idiot Republicans in Congress.

                Again, the Reason archives beg to differ, so citation needed.

                The mere fact that you want me to equate Obama to Bush can suggest only two things: you don’t know what you’re talking about, and for some reason you want to give Bush a pass.

                How does this mean I want to give Bush a pass? Saying that Obama is just as bad as a terrible president is not the same as giving that terrible president a pass. Oh also, citation needed.

      2. Unless a Democrat commits sexual harassment while on the job and lies about it under oath. (Remember back before Monica, when every Democrat proclaimed sexual harassment to be one of the Worst Things Ever?)

        1. And there are a few really good reasons everyone considers the 90s a time of innocence.

          1. Said no one, ever.

      3. Unless the Democrat gets a blowjobcommits perjury.

        FIFY, Tony w/o spaces. And I’m not even going to charge you for it.

        1. Pretty sure he was acquitted.

          1. Pretty sure that was a circus and not a trial.

            1. Can’t disagree there.

          2. He had his law license revoked over it.

    3. ^^ this
      The only check on any power at the federal govt is the press’s check on republican administrations.

    4. Homple makes a good point. Also, there is one reason I can think of that makes the situations not mirror images. Given the massive politicization of the IRS (as well as some at the EPA, FBI, ATF, and OSHA) under Obama, and the lack of anything equivalent under Bush, the NSA scandals do seem worse under Obama, because I trust him less to not use it for partisan political purposes.

  10. So this guy is the Shrike of the GOP. Good to know.

  11. Hannity’s been a Team Red whore for years, just like Chrissy Matthews is a Team Blue whore, etc, etc.

    Political parties suck.

  12. While I’ll certainly stipulate that Inhofe is being a team-cheerleading douche, I do think that some of the generalizations in the article and comments omit the possibility of learning. If you supported bad laws in the past, must you always continue to support them? People do sometimes, when faced with consequences of their positions, change course.

    1. I’d like to believe that’s what is going on with the Establishment GOP types suddenly being concerned about the surveillance state. But I don’t buy it.

      1. I think the “genuine change in opinion” rate is probably higher than 0%, but probably not much higher.

      2. By and large no, particularly amongst the Republican political class (i.e. Establishment GOP types). That said, I suspect that a lot of conservatives probably only started looking at the policies beyond “circle the wagons mode” when they no longer had a stake in protecting “their guy”.

        I’ll add that, honestly, the quality of the criticism of the Patriot Act took a quantum leap forward with emergence of libertarian critics of policy. And they largely emerged as the major critics after 2008.

        1. I would argue that in 2006 many of my rank and file cons started to say things like wow Bush really does suck.

    2. He fears a program more now that it has more oversight and checks. Nope, just partisan hackery. But it’s Inhofe, we should know this about him by now.

      1. “oversight and checks.”

        Snort.

        1. Hey, the president is keeping an eye on it! TANCEPARANSY!

          1. Yeah. From everything Obama’s read about it in the papers, he’s confident it’s not that big a deal. Case closed.

      2. As I was trying to say above, it’s not entirely hypocritical to fear a program more now, when the president has an administration proven to use the power of government for partisan political purposes.

      3. I too heard it has more oversight and checks because it has more oversight and checks. The president sed.

      4. Are you referring to the “oversight and checks” instigated by Snowden or to some ethereal “oversight and checks” that you imagine Obama instigated when he entered office?

      5. “Oversight and checks” like having the tax authority target political dissidents? When it comes to political hackery, Tony, you’re the tweedle-dumber to Inhofe’s tweedle-dumb.

  13. Where is yesterday’s new troll? Here is a GOP flip flopper he could go after.

    1. That wasn’t a troll, he was a prog idiot. We scared him off because he was shocked that we were mean to him when he tried to claim that all of the Obama administration scandals were orchestrated by Karl Rove.

      1. I missed that one. Which thread?

          1. Lyle was equally as idiotically entertaining as idic5, and didn’t have to ruin a Star Trek reference to do it.

            1. It is impossible to ruin a star trek reference since it is impossible to ruin crap.

  14. There’s no point in even mentioning Sean Hannity on reason.com. I’m pretty certain that he and his followers are unreachable. He’s like Rachel Maddow and Bill O’Reilly and all the rest of the shills. When you add them all up (along with their fans), they cancel each other out and all you have left is government power.

    Instead of Republicans and Democrats the two parties should be those in government and those not in government. We could call one, Them and the other, Us.

    1. The question I always have for Libertarians is, what are you doing to curb Them and keep Us free?

      1. Why don’t you ask Republicans that? You can bitch and whine about libertarians not being effective in combating the growth of government, but Republicans have been complicit in it for decades. They (with a few exceptions) are Them, not Us

      2. I vote against the incumbent. It’s commonly referred to as the “throw the bastards out” strategy. As it turns out, however, the bastards have a lot of supporters.

      3. The question I always have for Libertarians is, what are you doing to curb Them and keep Us free?

        Who’s this “Us” you’re referring to? Be responsible for your own freedom, you lazy bum.

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