It's silly to make a big deal about what could happen under a given law without examining what could happen under existing law. It's like insisting that a new car is unsafe because if you fall asleep at the wheel you could crash and die. What happens if you fall asleep at the wheel of your current car? Same thing, right? All police powers carry with them the potential for abuse (or just really bad choices/mistakes). That by itself isn't sufficient argument against allowing them.
It's also silly to give authority figures more easily abused powers under the banner of "They could already abuse the ones they have, so hey, whatever..."
Yea, I'm confused by gbaji here. Your statement would typically be his, seeing as he wants as small a government as possible and as little regulation as possible. This just seems so opposite of his typical stance. I haven't been following this, so did a Republican propose this?
I've honestly lost track. IIRC, the original issue was about immigration checkpoints somehow equating the the Constitution just not applying anymore or something. I called that silly (correctly I think). There was some talk about how this really doesn't violate the 4th amendment. Then someone stormed in ranting about the patriot act, FISA, NDAA, NSLs, etc and how this meant that our government could just arrest and detail any random person they wanted, without trial, and without that person having any legal recourse. I called BS on this as well. The example given in response was a gag order, not on someone arrested and detained without cause or charge, but someone told not to publicly reveal information the government had requested from him related to an investigation. Kinda not in the same ballpark. I then pointed out that the laws being ranted about didn't grant the government the power to do what was being claimed. I said that such things *could* happen, but were rare, normally accidents, and could happen under existing law anyway.
Then someone else (BD I think) tossed out his "here's a guy who was lost in a jail for 2 years" example. Which basically confirmed my point.
I'm not saying we blindly grant power to our government which could be abused. I'm saying that we should assess those laws/powers based on what they actually do, and not wild claims by people who apparently have no clue what they're talking about and can't back up their claims at all. Am I somewhat concerned about the government being able to search an ISPs data and compel said ISP to not tell anyone what the government was looking for? Sure. Is it on the scale of secret police snatching people up in the middle of the night, tossing them into their black helicopters and disappearing them? Nope. Not even close. I just don't think that issues like this are helped by wild exaggeration of the facts. Give me a calm rational argument about problematic components to the patriot act, and I'll agree. Light your hair on fire and insist that the patriot act gives the government infinite power and effectively cancels out the whole constitution, and I'll call you a nutter.
I do get how people who take positions based on being "for or against" something might see that as inconsistent though. For me, it's a matter of degrees.