Jeb Bush

Jeb Bush Wants to Compromise on Mass Surveillance—By Giving the NSA More Spying Power

The presidential candidate is reaching out to civil telling them they're wrong.


Gage Skimore / Foter

Here's the good news: Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, who is currently fighting to hold onto second place in the GOP primary contest polls, says he wants to find common ground with civil libertarians over the surveillance programs conducted by the National Security Agency (NSA). "There's a place to find common ground between personal civil liberties and NSA doing its job," he said in Atlanta yesterday, according to the Associated Press.

In theory, at least, that's a welcome move from a candidate who just a few months ago described the NSA's bulk phone records collection program, which indiscriminately sweeps up call data from millions of innocent individuals, as "the best part of the Obama administration" and said that he didn't even understand the heated debate in Congress and elsewhere.

Maybe Bush has finally realized why some people might be a bit bothered by the idea of an indiscriminate, secretive mass-surveillance program that has been ruled, by various courts as both unconstitutional and illegal according to the statute it operates under, especially one that has never been definitively shown to produce effective results?

Or maybe not.

That's where the bad news comes in: Bush apparently thinks that the way to compromise is to give the NSA even more power. "I think the balance has actually gone the wrong way," he said.

Indeed, Bush doesn't even seem to think there are real civil liberties violations involved, the AP report indicates:

Bush doubled-down Tuesday on his assertions that there is "no evidence" the data collection violated civil liberties. "I've found not one" case, he said.

Here I will link to the American Civil Liberties Union's brief on government surveillance activities under the Patriot Act, which essentially makes the case that the very existence of many of the surveillance programs operating under the law constitutes an ongoing violation of the civil liberties of millions of people.

It sounds as if Bush still does not really understand the debate over the NSA's surveillance activities.

Bush also complained about the use of encryption by tech companies, arguing that they should give government agents backdoors into their files, and—because why stop when you're on a roll?—said that American should send addition troops to Europe to hold the line against Russian military activities, warning that Russian President Putin should be aware that there's a "price to pay" for his aggression.

All in all, it was yet another reminder that Jeb Bush plans to double down on the broadly hawkish posture of his brother George W. Bush's administration. Or perhaps this is just how Bush believes he can reach out and find common ground with those who have soured on foreign adventurism, and worry that the U.S. is too quick to use military force abroad.

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  1. What a fucking idiot.

    George W. Bush, only with effeminate mannerisms.

    God help us.

    1. He looks life the four eyed dough boy version of Dubyah.

    2. Of course he could care less about civil liberties. He is a law and order nut job!!! As governor of Florida, he supported a mandatory minimum sentence of five years for possession of a small amount of pot, if it has a street value of more than five dollars. Florida has the highest incarceration rate of any state in the country. And that’s the law and order agenda, prison for everyone, except for government people. Government crooks can break the law as much as they want with no consequences. His brother supported the patriot act and a federal statute that eliminated the federal statute of limitations on all federal crimes; except, for cases involving government corruption. Those cases must still be brought in five years. Of course the federal prosecutor’s seldom go after government employees anyway. Hillary Clinton, has no respect for civil liberties either, same for Chris Christy.

      1. Christie is practically a fascist. I didn’t know Jeb was this bad but there wasn’t any chance of me voting for him anyway.

  2. So is this the Trump effect where candidates find an issue they can go Full Retard on just to get some attention?

    1. I’m waiting for Walker to jump back on the ethanol mandate train and start tooting that whistle as hard as he can.

      And it will be interesting to see where Paul’s shizo break leads him.

  3. There shouldn’t be any compromise on the part of the people who are pro-liberty because the programs in question here are blatantly unconstitutional. The government does not have the authority to infringe upon those rights. It’s not complicated or a gray area, but a century of expansion of government power has left people horribly confused.

    1. Compromise isn’t really a question because the people who are pro-liberty don’t have any influence at all over the NSA’s activities. And the government does have the authority to to infringe on those rights because nobody is going to stop them.

      1. The government surveillance is dwarfed by the information gathering capacities of telecommunication, internet service and financial services. Of course they operate in a nexus, but there is no reason that likewise scrutinizing competitors could not also build the physical infrastructure to watch the watchers.

        Drone networks could encompass the gross motions of an entire city.

    2. It is now so bad that government just makes up the rules as they go along. Government crooks are above the law!!! It’s do as they say not as they do!!

  4. Bush doubled-down Tuesday on his assertions that there is “no evidence” the data collection violated civil liberties. “I’ve found not one” case, he said.

    I’m tired of this bullshit line, as well. Hasn’t it been show that like 99% of the time when the government has used evidence gathered in court, it’s in drug cases and unrelated to terrorism? Parallel construction has happened, and it is a blatant violation of the ‘civil’ liberties of the accused.

    And no one probably bothered to ask ol’Jeb if he could find a single example of a terrorist attack even prevented.

    1. I’d think that in *every* case it violates civil liberties – by default.

      You listen into a phone conversation without a warrant – that’s a civil liberty violation. Remember, those liberties are ours by right as human beings, not granted by government.

    2. Of course Bush doesn’t think there’s a problem with this, or any other aspect of the drug war.

  5. Jeb! v Hillary! for the brass ring.

    I can hardly wait.

    Here’s where I am on surveillance:

    No surveillance of US citizens or residents without an actual warrant issued by a real court.

    No NSA surveillance data may be disclosed, in any way or form, to law enforcement. It is all top-level sigint that can’t even be disclosed to 98% of the federal government, and nobody outside the federal government. Its supposed to be for “national security”, so that’s its only possible use.

    Knowingly sending such data to law enforcement is an automatic felony. Receiving it without reporting it within 24 hours is an automatic felony.

    1. No NSA surveillance data may be disclosed, in any way or form, to law enforcement. It is all top-level sigint that can’t even be disclosed to 98% of the federal government, and nobody outside the federal government. Its supposed to be for “national security”, so that’s its only possible use.

      So you’re saying that you don’t ever want Hillary to be president?

      1. If that’s a sacrifice I have to make to get surveillance reform, its a sacrifice I’ll make.

        1. God love ya for your commitment to the country, RC. Way to take one for t..for….

          *composes self*

          …for the…team.

          *wipes eyes*

    2. “Knowingly sending such data to law enforcement is an automatic felony. Receiving it without reporting it within 24 hours is an automatic felony”

      How would you enforce this law? Would we be better off abolishing the NSA rather than trying to corral it?

      1. Good point. We’ll have to beef up our laws on prosecutors as well. Require immediate disclosure to the court and the defense of any information received that may have been sourced from surveillance. Prohibit “parallel” construction. Violations are felonies.

        I know, eventually the Cop-Industrial Complex can render any law meaningless.

        Its getting those prosecutions that counts. That’s where my restructuring of the DOJ into an agency that acts mainly as a predator on state and local governments comes in. The only way to advance in my DOJ will be to dump a stack of pubsec scalps on the AG’s office floor.

        1. Victim prosecution solves all sorts of problems.

    3. Jeb! v Hillary! for the brass ring.

      The terrorists will win if they haven’t already.

      1. The terrorists win AGAIN, amirite?

      2. Jeb! v Hillary! In that ass thing!


  6. I want a compromise on Jeb ever being president. The choices are he’s never president or he’ll never be president.

    1. He has a better chance of getting elected President of Mexico than President of the United States.

      1. Well, he couldn’t attack the USA if he’s president of Mexico, so in that case, I guess Guatemalans will be hardest hit.

  7. We get it, Jeb, you suck. What happened to you, man? You’ve changed

    1. He’s become bitter and?let’s face it?crazy over the years.

      1. No, he just knows that to get the full blown assholes who backed his brother, he’s got to go full 9/11 retard.

        1. This sort of thing seems to petmate much of the GOP political class, but much less so of the rank and file voters. He seems to trying to prove he can win the nomination with only the backing of the top of the party.

  8. It’s almost impossible to believe now that Republicans cheered when they heard this:
    “I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice! And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue!”, Barry Goldwater, Acceptance Speech as the 1964 Republican Presidential candidate

  9. “Bush doubled-down Tuesday on his assertions that there is “no evidence” the data collection violated civil liberties. “I’ve found not one” case, he said.”

    Ummmm, apparently he doesn’t read the Washington Post or Wall Street Journal.

    “The National Security Agency admitted in a statement Friday that there have been “very rare” instances of willful violations of agency protocols by agency officers. The Wall Street Journal reports that some of those willful violations involved officials turning their private eyes on love interests:”

    I know that story wasn’t about the section 215 program. But, If they are willing to violate the rules on one program. Why does this idiot think that they won’t on another. Does he really believe that just because it contains domestic communications. People won’t violate the law? The dude needs to just sit down and think about someone like Lois Lerner having access to all that information. Just think about what she could do with that.

    1. Well, this just shows that Jeb is less-informed than President Obama, who at least gets some news from the papers. Sheesh…

  10. 9/11!
    He’s going after the Christie voters. Good plan.

    1. 9/11!
      He’s going after the Christie leftovers. Not a good plan. It’s Christie.

  11. It’s easy to be comfortable with the surveillance state when you’re the one inside the flower-delivery van wearing the headphones. I’m sure Jeb! trusts himself and his brother and his father but I suspect he trusts Hillary as well, simply because she gets her paycheck signed by the government and the act of getting your paycheck signed by the government miraculously transubstantiates the vilest of sinners into the noblest of saints.

  12. Bush also complained about the use of encryption by tech companies,

    There’s a big opportunity out there for a tech company to make a lot of fans by telling Bush that he (or she! or it!) is going to use the strongest encryption they can to protect their company and their customers, and that Bush can go fuck himself if he tries to interfere, because if need be they will take the entire company overseas if Bush tells them to install backdoors.

  13. Well, at least we have the Democrat nominee as an alternative to big-state surveillance…..

  14. The Democrat’s want the big surveillance state as much as the Republican’s. They are all jerks!!

  15. Down in Florida, we couldn’t lock & bolt the door fast enough after that cocksucker Bush left office. He is nuts!

  16. Other than not wanting another Bush (or Clinton) family member to get elected, I really didn’t know much about his positions other than the stupid assertion that, in hindsight, the Iraq invasion was the right thing to do.

    Well, this tears it. He is dead to me. The surveillance state trumps all other issues for me.

  17. Remember how he was so hardcore on the drug war, except when his daughter got arrested, then suddenly her drug use was a private, family matter.
    that hypocrisy alone should be enough to eliminate him from contention.

  18. They are all two faced crooks in positions of power and authority. Prison for everyone; but, a free pass for government crooks. People like Bush and Clinton want to see the average person fined or imprisoned for even minor indiscretions. But when their family members make a mistake they just brush it off as no big deal, and they face no civil or criminal liability. What a bunch of jerks!!

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