NSA

Senate Rejects USA Freedom Act, But Also Rejects Extending NSA Collection Authority

Future of Section 215 of PATRIOT Act completely up in the air.

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C-Span

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) was right. The Senate did not have enough votes to pass the USA Freedom Act, the compromise law that would have restrained, but not eliminated, mass data collection by the National Security Agency (NSA). The vote was 57-42 late this evening (technically early this morning), just three votes shy.

But Sen. McConnell didn't get his way, either. There were even fewer votes in favor of extending Section 215, which has been used to justify the controversial bulk metadata collection of records of Americans, for another two months.  That one failed 45-54. McConnell voted against his own proposal once he realized he was losing. That maneuver will allow him to bring it back up for reconsideration.

Section 215 is currently set to expire June 1. McConnell then attempted a compromise to get Section 215 extended for a week. Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) objected. McConnell then attempted to get Paul (and other senators who also objected) to agree to fewer and fewer days until he was finally asking for an extension of just two days. But he failed.

For his part, Paul said what he wants is for the USA Freedom Act to be debated in the Senate and amendments permitted to make it stronger. He had said he wanted up to six amendments but was willing to compromise with two.

McConnell has responded by calling the Senate back into session on May 31 to see if they can get something passed.

So, as it stands, Paul is winning this fight. But we'll have to see what happens in a week.  

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    1. Possibly the first nationally recognized republican in my lifetime to do something useful.

      1. It certainly didn’t hurt his presidential chances, either, imho.

    2. That’s what the terrorists are saying!

      1. Leave James Clapper out of this.

  1. Ha, all the east coast kooks have already gone to bed.

    WEST COAST PARTY UP IN THIS THREAD.

      1. If you’re from NorCal, there’s the door.

        1. 1, 2, or 3?

          1. Whichever one leads to a pit of great white sharks…WITH LASER BEAMS.

          2. Uh, 4

    1. Way to be behind the times, west coast. LITERALLY.

      1. Way to be behind the European times, east coast. LITERALLY.

        1. That doesn’t make any sense.

          1. The earth rotates in the same direction all over, bub.

            1. Listen to your own words, dummy. Europe is behind the west coast. And Asia. Jesus, they’re even behind Kansas.

              1. What’s the Matter With Asia?

              2. If the west coast is behind the (presumably east) cost, the east coast is behind Europe.

                Those were YOUR dumb words, so grab a mirror, bub.

                1. Europe is wherever Jesus tells Fist it is.

      2. Way to come back and kick a dead thread, weirdo.

        1. Let me know when you catch up to me.

  2. Opinions on some memes/image macros I made?

    https://imgflip.com/i/k4o1a

    https://imgflip.com/i/htwdf

    1. I like the Wednesday one best.

    2. The Wednesday one is solid gold

    1. I don’t get the second one. Did I miss a news event that it relates to?

      1. ISIS decided musical instruments were haram and burned a bunch, and it reminded me of a gruesome drummer joke, which now sounds like something they would do.

  3. I hope Nick has to apologize. I really want that. Nick does too. GO RAND!

    1. Rand is impressing me more over time , he’s the only person I’ll vote for next year.

      He’s not perfect, but he actually asks pertinent questions and the scum that populate both sides is fucking revolting.

      1. I do not believe the scum has the numbers to pur up a successful revolt.

        Rand is the Master Troll. He snarks Like a Boss. (It’s funny ’cause it’s true.) That’s what millennials will respond to because they’re ignoring the old establishment.

        1. Speaking of trolls…

          You don’t seem to be a very good one.

          Even insulting Rand didn’t get any bites for you.

          1. It wasn’t an insult. It was a compliment. I adore the guy.

          2. But I also understand I haven’t been here very long and people don’t “know” my voice.

  4. “meta deta” bought and sold on a large scale. Libertarians of all people should know better – the use of the panopticon is most efficiently developed by the private sector. No, you can’t afford your own information. Obviously the state has no interest in sharing their aggregation. We’re placing our trust in the proposition that those who are entrusted with our data, at very low cost, don’t give a damn about us.

    1. That is one of the most disjointed and least well written paragraphs I’ve ever read. Terrible. Terrible. Terrible. Fucking lame.

      1. His tin-foil hat has the shiny side down.

      2. If Agile Cyborg and Bill Maher had a baby, this is what it’s writing style would be like.

    2. “meta deta” bought and sold on a large scale. Libertarians of all people should know better – the use of the panopticon is most efficiently developed by the private sector. No, you can’t afford your own information. Obviously the state has no interest in sharing their aggregation. We’re placing our trust in the proposition that those who are entrusted with our data, at very low cost, don’t give a damn about us.

      Payola. The state has its hands in everything, and you’re letting it happen. If you want in on the shell game, that’s your business. Bread and circuses, my man. There’s a paradigm shift afoot, and if you’re not the pigeon, you’re the statue. Let’s not kid ourselves – Eisenhower was right.

  5. I LOVE IT!! I wonder how all of those ass sniffing MSM journo’s are going to frame this after days of calling Pauls mini-buster a political stunt for his presidential race. I have sooo many I told you so emails to write to Team Blue members today.

    1. specifically Dan Froomkin and Lee Fing

  6. So far the silence from the national media has been deafening. With significant support for Paul in the Senate Democrat caucus they are having trouble deciding exactly why Paul’s stance is nutty and dangerous. Of course, they know that it is nutty and dangerous because of the (R) after his name, they just seem to be having trouble getting a coherent message together on the topic.

    I expect that the DNC will have their talking points in order in time for the Sunday morning political talk shows. Then all will be well with the world as we learn that none of this matters, and Paul is dangerous and nutty and nobody cares what he has to say anyway because he doesn’t have any real support…….

    1. I guess their angle is that they’re going to question his motives.

      1. He’s only doing this so he can be elected President.

  7. Immediately after reading this I went over to CNN to see what they were writing about it. Not a word could I find. They seem primarily concerned about whether or not bikers will gather peacefully.

    1. “biker privilege”

  8. At news.google.com, the third story down is about Hillary teaching a voter how to take a selfie!

    1. It’s crickets over at DU. Not a single post about it. But they’re going bonkers over Duggar.

      1. It’s nice to know the American people care about what really matters…

    2. In Google’s defense, I don’t think those stories are hand-picked.

      1. I figured. How does google rank their stories? Is it a “trending” thing? If so, Hillary and her selfie being that high up the list tells me all I need to know about the clicking public.

        1. The clicking public is pretty depressing

  9. Thanks for the birthday present, Senator Paul. Imagining John McCain’s head exploding is an imagine I will treasure.

    1. NO ONE CARES IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY. Well, probably your mother. Maybe your wife.

      1. Today is also my oldest daughter’s birthday.

        1. Where in Texas are you living Sloopy?

          You’ve changed handles several times just since I’ve been here.

          1. Fort Worth.

            1. Hop on the privately owned luxury bus service down to Houston one day ($69) and I’ll take you fishing out in the bay.

              We can talk about people behind their backs.

              You can pick up that Catafish dude on the way, he’s seems cool.

              1. Didn’t know catatafish was that direction. Plus we can get Brett L involved.

                I’ll be there in a couple weeks on business. Email me and we’ll put a meetup together.

                1. Ugh, but ya gotta go to Houston. No thanks.

                  1. Why are you letting us know you aren’t coming since you weren’t invited ?

                    Did you amuse yourself by thinking that anyone cared if you liked Houston and wanted to go fishing on Galveston bay ?

        2. HBD, sloopdaut

      2. You mean my husband. And, dammit – he’d BETTER CARE. 🙂

        1. I can accept a gay commenter here (there are a few) but don’t tell me you’re – GASP – female.

          1. Bodica is the first clue.

            1. Why can’t you just wish her a happy birthday, you heartless bastard?

              1. Happy birthday, Bodica.

                I have been adequately Fisted chastened.

            2. DING DING DING!!!!

  10. …to agree to fewer and fewer days until he was finally asking for an extension of just two days. But he failed.

    I must find video of this.

    1. Agreed
      ‘Hey, can I get 15 MINUTES!?’

    2. I saw the video posted on the Campaign for Liberty facebook page.

    3. Just a gif loop of the moment when heart breaks and the crushing reality closes in on him that he has failed…

  11. thank you Rand Paul

  12. Rand Mother Fuckin’ Paul!

    1. He’s only doing it for free,election coverage. He’ll vote for it when it comes,up.

      -huffpo two days ago

      1. Does huffpo take crow well-done?

        1. No. They just stop posting articles on it and focus in on Josh Duggar and minimum wage earners.

  13. OT but important.

    Dems are clutching pearls because they have just discovered that millions of Americans are “under insured” with Obamacare.

    They had no idea that 10s upon 10s of millions of Americans couldn’t suddenly find the extra money to pay 5K to 10K a year in premiums and then pay 4K to 8K deductible. No mention that people would still be on the hook for 20% to 30% of their health care costs if they get sick, much less if they are too sick to keep working.

    Dems discover that health insurance is not the same exact thing as Health Care.

    NEWS FLASH: Center for American Progress (therwise known as ObamaPac) blames it on businesses. Employeers are meanies.

    Insurance Companies say the focus on deductibles and cost sharing are misplaced. Blame high health care costs the reason for high deductibles.

    http://goo.gl/7Y4xpR

    I sure hope Tony shows up so he can explain how this could possibly have happened ?

    Many of us refer to the Repubs as the Stupid Party and in many ways they are. However they were smart enough that none of them sold their vote for this. If even one had voted for the ACA it would now be referred to as a BI-Partisan Billl by the MSM. Don’t doubt it.

    1. The article closes by saying that Dems need something to run on this election cycle.

      Hillary’s #1 platform plank…drumroll…..

      “Elect us so we can meddle around with the shit we crammed down your throats that you didn’t want in the first place so that we can find some way to blame Repbus for it.

      Please ? “

      1. Hiillary has no chance of winning a general election. Not after Obama. What little viability she has comes from her claim to having a vagina. I’ve never seen it – wouldn’t want to – but she’s such a liar even that should need to be verified and cross checked with multiple sources who have seen it. Huma, presumably Bill…police line-ups like Michael Jackson’s penis are called for here.

        As for the Obamacare thing, Slate.com decided to cover the raising premiums and surprisingly went with the headline that Obamacare is forcing insurers to jack them up. But then article was more of an apologetic on how Obamacare is really going well, and once the sick people who joined get healthy because of their Obamacare, costs will come down.

        I don’t know which is the stupider party, but the bases of both definitely are stupid.

        1. “Hiillary has no chance of winning a general election.”

          I would like to agree with you but I can’t.

          Obama is only a turnoff for those who didn’t vote for Obama in either of the two Presidential elections he won.

          Hillary has a huge political machine at work and millions of supporters who could not care less that she committed high Treason and bribery. ( IMHO) They have never cared that she took a $100,000 bribe (IMHO) from cattle trading futures when she was the first lady of Arkansas and they don’t care now.

          1. “[…]she took a $100,000 bribe (IMHO) from cattle trading futures when she was the first lady of Arkansas[…]”

            That was just practice for later work as Sec of State.

      2. Wait, how can this be? Sargent wrote an op-ed in the WaPo the other day telling Republicans that they should just shut up and accept that everyone in America loves that unmitigated success that is the ACA! The debate is over! The science is settled!

        1. The Silence is settled.

    2. “I sure hope Tony shows up so he can explain how this could possibly have happened ?”

      Free market! Business! De-regulation! Rethug obstructionism! Racism!
      And then we’ll get turd:
      Stock market at all time high! O-care hasn’t ruined everything! Boooooosh!
      See? Fact-free talking points. Easy.

      1. This is what the leftists are arguing.

        You’ll see a number of them claim the prices are the result of insurance companies more worried about profits. They could and should accept less.

        It’s never, ever going to be the government’s fault. It’s never going to Obama’s fault. Or the regulations. The most they’ll say is that the problem is they didn’t go far enough.

        I actually saw someone refer to pre-Obamacare days as the Wild West.

        1. Yeah, I remember a friend of mine who’s an idiot pre-ACA talking about how dangerously unregulated the health insurance industry was, and how it was just as bad as the credit card industry. I was too busy trying to figure out what the fuck he was talking about re: credit cards to be suitably bemused at this referring to possibly the single most regulated industry in America as “unregulated”.

    3. “NEWS FLASH: Center for American Progress (therwise known as ObamaPac) blames it on businesses. Employeers are meanies.”

      That’s exactly their thing. They come up with a massive government-controlled program, but just leave the tiniest shred of “free market” in there. This allows them to tout it as a “market-based solution”, but the main reason is that if when things go wrong with that program, they can just blame it on businesses because they had some minuscule level of involvement in that thing.

      It’s the same shit with the minimum wage. Replacing all federal welfare programs with a negative income tax or a guaranteed minimum income would do much better to help the poor, but that would require slashing existing programs to pay for it. They don’t want to do that, so they just find a way to pass off the cost onto businesses. And when there are fewer jobs available, you can bet they’ll be shouting about how these evil, greedy businesses are firing people to preserve their profits. It will probably be an excuse to push for government regulations on when and why an employee may be fired.

  14. In the news: After about 14 years, congress decides they might just follow some of the constitution.

    So, it took 14 years of violating our rights before they decided they just might not violate them anymore with these unconstitutional laws and “acts”? This is yet another example of how incapable gov’t is at protecting the rights of individuals.

    Would anyone seriously hire a security company that promised to get to them in about 14 years but will take their money from the start?

    “Oh, but we need gov’t” – snip. So things like the patriot act, confiscation and seizure of property, imprisonment, and “law” created by politicians, and all the other blatant coercion and violence that takes place “might” have a chance to be scaled back or repealed by voting every so often?

    How would someone like being told they must wait four years in order to vote to stop someone from robbing their savings and checking account? A majority of the community feels the robber represents them, and that this theft is justified as some of it goes to the community. They tell you, “you will have your chance to vote them out four years, but if your vote fails, we won, so deal with it.

    To hell with that. Folks want their liberty now, not a chance to have it in four or eight years and be subjected to the slavery and violence imposed upon them all for the wants and desires of others.

    1. I agree with a lot of what you say, and think that many others do, too. But to the extent that the existing system, including voting, can be used for good, how to get people to turn their desire for “liberty now” into a commitment NOT to vote for the Rs and Ds, no matter how scary the “other guy” has been painted in the (bought and sold) media? How to get them to have the courage to vote FOR someone they support, who sincerely wants to deliver “liberty now”? I have seen people be this fed up several times in the past thirty years. Yet, on Election Day, they still cave in to the manufactured fear, voting for the lesser of evils because the one they hate worse is the devil incarnate and the doom of The Republic (or Our Democracy). The 1M+ votes garnered by Libertarian Gary Johnson in 2012 gave me hope. Rand Paul’s willingness to stand up to his leadership on the Senate floor and buy Liberty a little more time, at least, and the people’s reaction to this gesture, also give me hope. But will the people be energized to make Paul the GOP nominee? If not, will the people have the guts to vote third-party or independent — instead of for a GOP sock-puppet that is positioned as the only “electable” hope for avoiding a Hillary Clinton administration?

  15. Glad to see Rand successful in his efforts to stop that atrocity from passing.

  16. Even that AP article doesn’t give Rand credit. It refers to him by name once and then says, “opponents.” WTF.

  17. I have always complained that Rand Paul was not as ideological pure as his beloved dad but lately I am starting to think that maybe he actually learned from his father’s failure to gain political traction. I hope he becomes the Republican candidate and I hope he trounces Hillary.

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  19. Congratulations to Senator Paul (and all of us!) for this impressive ray of hope. But the May 31st reconvening of the Senate stinks to high heaven. So many times in the past, “victories” like this have made fans of smaller, more well-behaved government practically giddy, but then just a few days or weeks later, what had been thought killed was revived and passed, sometimes in the dead of night, sometimes in a hollowed-out bill introduced for a completely different purpose, and sometimes by the tiniest margins of victory. “Hard fought,” our opponents said: “A squeaker, for sure.” And still, Liberty lost.

    I am tired of this political theater. Next time (and, with luck, many times thereafter), LIBERTY MUST WIN! How to make this happen? Write our senators? Start and sign petitions vowing to vote against re-election of ANY Senator who votes to extend or amend PATRIOT in any way except strictly to whittle it down until it can be repealed completely? Rally on the steps of the Capitol?

    1. Allegedly from a Capitol Hill “insider” who routinely sees the sausage made: http://ronpaulinstitute.org/ar…..l-theatre/

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