John Stossel vs. Judge Napolitano On How a Big a Deal NSA Spying Is

They disagree


what about a nuke in new york harbor?
Fox Business

John Stossel and Andrew Napolitano (both also Reason contributors, archives here and here) appeared on Fox Business' Varney and Company to debate the NSA's surveillance operations and how much of a risk to our rights those operations represent. John Stossel argued in a column last week that libertarians have better things to worry about than the NSA (like the war on drugs, which, he wrote this week, is worse, even though we're more acclimated to it). Judge Napolitano, on the other hand, warned last week that the NSA's spying, and complacency about it, is a betrayal of our country's history and the principles on which it was founded.

Watch them duke it out here, and duke it out yourselves in the comments below.

Bonus link: Mediaite's Andrew Kirell, a former employee of John Stossel's, also respectfully disagrees.

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  1. Page Not Found
    The page you are looking for has either moved or is no longer available, but you may be interested in the content below.

    Linky no worky

    1. or it does. shrug.

  2. Stossel ‘isn’t worried about it, it’s ok ….’

    And he can’t even hold his sign of 100’s of things up horizontally.

    “All of our privacy is blown … some pimply faced kid … Facebook, Google”

    Good thing The Judge pointed out the difference between voluntary services and The State spying on us, cause it’s a fuckin shame Stossel forgot.

    “A nuke in New York Harbour’ – host, and then he accuses The Judge of having an extreme view! You fuckin hypocrite piece of shit.

    1. “Good thing The Judge pointed out the difference between voluntary services and The State spying on us, cause it’s a fuckin shame Stossel forgot.”

      Stossel will usually play devils advocate when across from someone.

  3. Jane, you ignorant slut.

  4. Stossel vs. the Judge is about as far from a fair fight as you can get. While AN lays down the law, all Stossel can do is shrug his shoulders and speak in bland aphorisms in his usual infuriating and intrinsically paternalistic manner.

    1. …Matt Damon?

  5. I am a bit taken aback by Stossel’s lack of concern over an American Star Chamber. I understand his revulsion over the WOD, he is correct that it is obscene. Is it possible that he stuck his foot in his mouth with that column and now he cant back down? His position on this just doesnt seem consistent with the rest of his philosophy.

    Thumbs up to the Judge.

    1. It seems to me that John thinks he can trust the government to only use all that NSA spying to catch terrorists, and he is only marginally concerned about government employees reading his private mail etc. for their amusement.

      Myself, I do not trust the government with this kind of data. The data will inevitably be used for all kinds of nefarious purposes, such as for selective enforcement of the law against people who fall out of favour with the government, or to rig elections.

      1. “It seems to me that John thinks he can trust the government”

        This is what puzzles me.

    2. I think Stossel’s lack of concern has more to do with the fact that our government has been doing this since long before I was born. Technology has changed, and government spying has changed with it. In the 1960s, the FBI was infiltrating “subversive” groups and people were rightfully outraged when this came to light many years later.

      I think the important thing is to not freak out over the spying. That isn’t anything new and that isn’t going to go away or change. What is important is to get a little more transparency in the process and require that all FISA warrants are published after a given time frame.

      1. What is important is to get a little more transparency in the process and require that all FISA warrants are published after a given time frame.

        No! What is important is for them to stop.

        1. “Sure, yeah, we’ll stop spying on Americans even though a majority of them don’t give a flying fuck and there will be no repercussions if we continue.”

  6. I’m kind of with Stossel in that I had always assumed the government has been up to this for the last 20 years or so. I don’t approve of it, but at least you don’t sound like a crazy person now for saying that the government is snooping on you.

  7. OT:

    Medical costs see first decline since the 70s-

    The effects of the federal health care overhaul ? the Affordable Care Act that passed in 2010 ?and constrained government payments to doctors and hospitals seems to be trickling down to consumers, both those directly purchasing insurance plans and those buying drugs and treatments.

    “The slowing of healthcare inflation right now seems to be driven by onset of new policies,” said Alec Phillips, a Goldman Sachs GS -3.81% economist who follows health care trends. “That is probably going to be a temporary factor.”


    1. I thought you didn’t like Obamacare. Oh, that’s right. You’re a lying piece of shit scokpuppet.

      1. Even the articles that try to make it look good make it look like shit upon closer inspection. The costs are going down the same way government spending is going down due to the sequester. In other words, they aren’t.

      2. No, I said I don’t like the individual mandate, asshole.

        I like the cost cutting parts.

        1. I like the cost cutting parts.

          So you like the part that applies to patients in Fantasyland?

          1. His delusion is perfect, sloopy! Perfect, damn you!

          2. The $700 billion Romney/Ryan said they would restore to Medicare spending.

            $700 billion is not chump change, pal.

            1. Romney/Ryan? That retard train never made it to the station and those numbers will never, ever come to pass.

              Obamacare is blowing the cost of medical care. I livew in California, one of the most friendly places to Obama, and even the SF Chron and LAT are starting to say Obamacare is gonna be an expensive fucking train wreck.

              So color me skeptical, but I’m gonna have to believe the Obama water carriers that are turning on him as the real data comes in instead of the imbecile that passes off a “slowing of healthcare inflation” as a drop. Go eat a turd.

            2. Yeah, but their overall budget was like $2 trillion smaller than Obama’s.

              But I suppose that $2 trillion was chump change, eh?

    2. Palin’s Buttplug


      There’s a shock. PB interrupts a thread about his God-King’s NSA spying on Americans to bring you a piece of twisted logic about the ACA being a good thing. Too bad I actually read the article and it just says the rate of inflation in healthcare costs seems to be slowing and that it is expected to be temporary.

      So congratulations, asshole. You just managed to point out that Obamacare is actually raising insurance costs, even if it slower than the increase was previously and that they are expected to rise sharply post haste. Too bad your Team Blue asshats said it would lower costs dramatically.

      1. Deflect, deflect, deflect. That’s all that Obama’s asshole knows how to do. It’s fucking pathetic.

  8. Stossel is really downplaying the difference between voluntary disclosure and spying. He also pays lip service to how the government can use the data vs business entities, but doesn’t seem to put any weight to it. I’m also sick and tired of sll the whining about domestic terrorism. Shit, the country gets one or two hard smacks from some nutjobs and people act like the country is teetering on the edge of the abyss. What a bunch of wimps.

    1. people act like the country is teetering on the edge of the abyss

      Well, we are. But not because of terrorists.

      1. ^This

        1. How? The US is in its most stable state in history.

          What drugs do you guys take?

          1. Yeah, you’d think there were government scandals, budget issues, and a rampant military-industrial complex or something. Silly people.

          2. How? The US is in its most stable state in history.

            How the fuck do you figure? We’re involved in multiple wars, trying to enter others, we have troops in around 100 nations around the world, we are suffering through a horrific two party-caused recession, unemployment is up, our manufacturing capacity is down, the debt is the only hockey stick graph that’s accurate and the motherfucking Patriots signed Tim Tebow and are gonna lose a tight end on a murder charge.

            How the fuck do you figure that’s stable?

            What drugs do you guys take?

            Stimulants. Lots and lots of stimulants.

            1. Our illicit drug quality is probably near an all-time low – truth be told.

              I can’t believe what is passed off as cocaine these days. The shit is awful.

              1. Here’s a protip for you, PB. And one you probably need: if it’s sticky, it’s not cocaine. It’s semen.

                1. Your predilection to semen is TMI, sloop. I can handle my own QC.

                  1. I can handle my own QC.

                    I figured you’d leave it to the government to tell you what was OK to ingest and what you should leave on the mirror. You swallow everything else they feed you.

                    1. “Our illicit drug quality is probably near an all-time low – truth be told.”

                      Haha! How far off the grid are you??

                2. Hilarious.

              2. Is that why you went straight to crack?

              3. It is all hog wormer, benzocaine and Italian baby laxative now.

  9. Wow, Strossel sucks. I’m actually surprised they let Judge Napolitano on here. He doesn’t seem to reflect Gillespe’s cosmotarian views on a lot of things.

    1. Are you familiar with Gillespie’s views on practically anything?

      1. What, you’re saying that you can’t draw any conclusions from the actions of a man who hired Dave Wiegel, declared himself “a citizen of the world”, and mocked the idea of the Second Amendment and an armed populace being a hedge against tyranny?

        Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a cocktail party to attend.

      2. Oh, leave poor Slappy alone. This handle has only a few hours left anyway. He’s like a retarded mayfly.

        1. Like?

          1. Well, I assume he’s not going to spend these precious 24 hours having sex. He doesn’t get have sex because all the White women are no longer pure enough to accept his superior Anglo-Saxon seed. Because immigration or something.

            1. I thought American had only spilled his seed in Japanese women because they’re industrious, efficient, know their place, and are racially pure or some such nonsense.

              1. Oh, I’m sorry, but you’re thinking of the Chinese. Yes, he only spills his seed in Chinese women.

                1. I’m pretty sure Japan is the country he talks about as his model nation

                  1. I’m sorry. I was confusing him for Tom Friedman.

            2. I suspect that he is very careful to protect his P.O.E.

          2. Epi, I need some tennis advice.

            I can’t get from a Continental grip to a Western grip and I’m having to really work to get topspin. But if I change, I just can’t get the ball deep enough to keep anyone at the baseline.

            I don’t know what to do, man. Maybe I just need to deal with my grip and a flat forehand.

            1. Start with a semi-Western. What’s your followthrough? You should be sweeping up the ball as you’re hitting it and finishing your complete motion to impart more topspin. Watch the pros and look at how they finish their stroke. A good way to work on this is to play a game with whoever you’re hitting with that has no serves and you can’t score a point until you’ve rallied X number of times (I usually use 6). This type of game usually ends up being mostly baseline rallies and give you plenty of practice with your forehand.

              Also, shell out a few dollars and see an instructor a few times at least if you’re not already. It can really make a difference.

              1. I’ve been to see the pro a few times at our new club. He’s the one trying to get me to change my grip. I’m starting to think my muscle memory and the uncomfortable feel of anything but a continental grip just keeps getting me to cheat back to the same grip.

                My follow through is as flat as you’d expect it to be. And I do get exceptionally lazy with my forehand, which leads to me either putting the ball into the net (western) or hitting as flat shot (continental).

                Maybe I’m just too old to change. It’s not like I’m that good anyway. When I was playing, I won mist of my matches due to fitness level and my ability to irritate my opponent by playing everything a way he isn’t expecting since he never ever gets to see topspin from me but that’s all he sees in every other opponent.

                1. If you want to fix this you’re going to have to play to learn and not play to win. You’re going to lose a lot as you break your bad habits and try to get into better ones.

                  Having a closed face is very important, so you’ll need to focus on the angle of your Western grip to avoid dropping everything into the net, and you’re going to have to learn that you will need to hit it harder with the topspin grip. What would go long with a Continental at a certain power level will stay in with topspin if you do it right, and will also get it over the net. You want that ball a few feet above the net as it goes over.

                  It’s a lot of work; trust me, I know. You’ll also need to play as much as you can, because that’s where the improvement comes.

                  What do you do for your backhand? One-handed or two? Semi-Eastern grip, or Continental?

                  1. 2-handed backhand most of the time, but I do mix it up especially if I’m playing slices. Semi-Eastern grip and I almost never, ever hit a topspin backhand because I lack the control I’d need to make it effective.

                    1. Like I said, you’re going to have to play badly for a while while you transition. Next time you play, try to hit topspin. If you shank it or drive it into the net, you just deal with that and keep working it until you get the hang of it. It’s the only way to do it, because it’s not a “natural” motion. And do the same for your backhand.

                      If you can’t stand to lose and therefore won’t put yourself in a bad position while trying to improve, you…won’t improve.

                    2. Oh, and: followthrough, followthrough, followthrough. See how Federer loops through and up after each hit? You want to do that.

                      Fuck, now I want to play and it’s raining. Thanks a lot!

                    3. If you can’t stand to lose and therefore won’t put yourself in a bad position while trying to improve, you…won’t improve.

                      Well then I guess everybody on here knows I’m fucked.

                    4. I suspected that might be a stumbling block. You know that you can just go out and hit for the hell of it, right?

                      You could also work with a ball machine. Any tennis club or indoor court center will have ball machine court rentals. You can just spend an hour or so trying to topspin every ball the machine spits at you, and you’re not competing with anyone so if you blow it you don’t care. This is also exhausting if you have the machine fire them frequently, so it’s good in multiple ways.

                    5. Our country club has a machine that’s not used all that much, and I’ve taken advantage of that. Unfortunately, for me anyway, my vanity won’t let me stand there in front of the other people and hit ball after ball into the net and look like a doucher. I know I have to overcome this, but the only way I can see is to get there at 6 am when the place is empty. Unfortunately, I’m usually hitting the office about that time.

  10. So libertarians are now debating whether one is properly concerned about X if one is even more concerned about Y? What are we, a bunch of cat fanciers from Massachusetts?

    1. Ugh.

    2. Cats are about the best meat there is. Particularly stray kittens with big blue eyes.

  11. The pendulum on Stossel is really starting to swing back the other way. Was he 100 yards from the finish line at the Boston Marathon or something?

    1. His bigger fish-to-fry involve lunch trucks, taxi licenses, and the like. Once we get all those sorted out, then we should stop the federal government from spending tens of $billions annually to spy on us.

      1. I understand the logic. Lunch trucks, taxis, etc. are far more intrusive interferences because you notice them much more often.

  12. John Stossel vs. Judge Napolitano

    I hope they both win.

    1. +100 Liberty

  13. My opinion is that without the drug war and at least forty years of erosion of civil liberties in deference to the drug war, that the patriot act and generic wire tapping would have been inconceivable.

    So, I agree with Stossel’s implied point, I did not watch the video.

    Which is worse: the drug war because it enabled all of the shit that followed.

    1. Fine. So let’s speak out against the drug war. But why not also leverage this whole NSA business into trying to make some meaningful changes in how our society thinks about the role of government? They aren’t mutually exclusive.

  14. So who does the winner between Drug War and NSA Spying advance to throw down against? The winner between Child Protective Services and Eminent Domain abuses? And the loser between each to the consolation match?

    1. Occupational Licensing vs. Minimum Wage.

  15. Moe: What’ll it be? Burned at the stake or have your head chopped off?

    Curly: Burned. A hot steak is better than a cold chop!!

  16. What the hell happened to John Stossel? He just lost all credibility in my book.

    1. I wouldn’t go that far. He’s still good on pretty much everything else, he’s just always been iffy on the surveillance state. Notice how his show usually focuses on economic issues and occasionally some police state stuff.

      1. Key words: my book. This issue is a no brainer for a libertarian. I guess I’m shocked to see some of my Obama-supporting acquaintances upset about this NSA business, but a self-proclaimed libertarian like Stossel is cool with it. It doesn’t compute, which makes me think that Stossel might not be that cool.

  17. I don’t think Stossel means it. He rarely, if ever, strays from the libertarian thinking, especially on something like this.

    I think he’s trying to make some kind of point, like “government encumbers and encroaches on every aspect of your life, but the NSA all you really care about?” Perhaps by trivializing the NSA, he’s showing the hypocrisy of people who are kinda silent about economic liberties, but then go apeshit about the NSA.

    Not that it’s a good strategy, but I just think he knows better than to say shit like “the terrorists win,” which he all but said in that clip.

    1. When we give up our freedom just because the government falsely claims that this might help fight terrorists, then the terrorists win. Only, I don’t think that is what John meant.

      1. I suppose, but he didn’t really say why this would help fight terrorism. He was pretty vague.

  18. I support John Stossel.

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