Capitalizing on the terrorism hysteria, pumped up by politicians and the media, Congress secretly added a new PATRIOT Act to the “must-pass” Omnibus funding bill. No debate. Now it’s law.
Ron Paul: Hello everybody and thank you for tuning in to the Liberty Report. With me today is Daniel McAdams and Daniel it’s good to see you.
Daniel McAdams: Happy Monday Dr. Paul.
Ron Paul: Very nice. We want to talk a little bit more about the bill that we have visited about before and that is of course the big omnibus bill, the atrocious spending of over a trillion dollars and 2,000 pages. It should be to nobody’s surprise that things are buried in there that aren’t so nice. We want to talk about one item that we have talked about a little bit in the past too and that is CISA, the Cyber Security Information Sharing Act. Sounds very good. They wanted to tighten on security and protect us. The only problem with it is tightening the security, they are worried about security, at the same time they are destroying privacy and liberty, so they settled tradeoff that they think is necessary, which I obviously think should never occur.
I want to read a short statement that was put on the Wired page, the Internet service that they have, describing how this thing came about. Then we will talk a little bit about what this means. I thought they got it pretty good and as I read this it will probably bring memories on things we experienced in Washington, because we knew there was the on the surface how Congress was run and how they would have great debates and all of a sudden, things would slip in into a bill and should be to nobody’s surprise.
This is how they analyze this from Wired. In the late night session of Congress, the House Speaker Paul Ryan announced a new version of the omnibus bill, a massive piece of legislation that deals with much of the federal government’s funding. It now includes a version of CISA as well. Lumping CISA in with the omnibus bill further reduces any chance for debate over the surveillance friendly provisions or a White House veto. The latest version actually chips away even further at the remaining personal information protections that privacy advocates have fought for in the version that the Senate passed. Does that bring any memories of how Washington works?
Daniel McAdams: Yeah, you were talking a little bit earlier about how this works and I think maybe you could explain it because I think a lot of people don’t understand how these things get snuck in and it’s very interesting.
Ron Paul: I worked on the assumption that everything you hear about in any major debate on the House floor or Committee has no meaning. It is always a distraction and can be very robust and on each side. For instance on this, there was a lot of robust discussion and people spoke out and most of the time it was stopped or they would have passed it in the open so they had to have a mechanism. The omnibus bill is the mechanism because everybody is anxious to get it passed. They finally talked the new administration of the House that no shutdown is bad politics to shutdown the government and cut spending so we had to get it through.
Therefore they go ahead and they stick this on you. How they do this, they pass the bill, how can they take it and stick it on? They do it in a way that is very sneaky and wrong and is just a reason why people get so disgusted with Washington. This is one of the first new Acts of the new House leadership. What they have is a process called the Manager’s Amendment. The Manager’s Amendment means that if you have a bill that goes through the House and has to through Committee it goes to the Rules Committee and tells you what the specific rules are for that day for that bill.
Let’s say 80% of it is ok, 20% they don’t like and they want to put a bunch of substitutes in for. They don’t have to have a vote for it. They have one single amendment, called the Manager’s Amendment, the Chair of the Rules Committee can stick it in and aid to bring the bill even up. It’s totally changed from the original bill and the Rules Committee is always said to be a powerful committee. When you think about it, it could be one of the most powerful, because they have to deal with every piece of legislation and they bring this up and of course how do you become the Chairman of the Rules Committee? You have to be part of the establishment, you are appointed by the Speaker and the Speaker, nobody’s in leadership that doesn’t endorse generally the establishment point of view, Republicans or Democrats and that is why policies never change and that is why you see finally, even though they are at loggerhead a lot of times when push comes to shove, the Republicans and Democrats, lo and behold, spend this money and it stick on the worst thing, more money, more debt for the people, at the same time less liberty.
Daniel McAdams: I remember often in the foreign affairs committee, you would have a debate, you would have a hearing in the committee, you would have a mark up, you would have a discussion on the bill and it happened a lot with Hyde and Lantos and they would get together and make their Manager’s Amendment and change everything else that was agreed in the committee and they would go the floor with a completely changed bill. So, there was no point in the process at all.
Ron Paul: Yeah, the important point there is the ranking member and Chairman, Republican and Democrats get together because they can pretend, but ultimately they are on the same side of these issues, whether it’s monetary issues, spending issues, there was no real resistance to the spending. As a matter of fact, it was made much worse, because they got rid of sequestration and still very much impressed, amazed. They didn’t talk about security, they didn’t talk about liberty and they didn’t bring the subject of increasing the money for the military and of course we have to rebuild the military, we are only equal to most of the other countries of the world and we have to rebuild our military. It’s all these shenanigans, fortunately more Americans are waking up, and sometimes they seek resolution in the wrong places.
Daniel McAdams: I think in some ways, this CISA is more insidious even in the Patriot Act, because as distasteful as it is to have the NSA, as outrageous is to have the NSA spying on you, this is worse in my opinion because it turns private corporations and privately held businesses into intelligence agents for the government and that seems, the mixing of the public and private and turning your company and business into a spy against you, it just seems to un-American.
Ron Paul: Yeah and the 1% argument actually exists, because easy money helps the big bankers and also this is true that it supports a smaller number of people and I just think it’s unbelievably atrocious on how they do this.
Daniel McAdams: Yeah, you can’t have a private relationship with the business, because that business is spying on you.
Ron Paul: I think it is not a stretch to say this is a very significant move, as so many other moves have been made moving toward a fascist government. I call corporatism and welfare for the rich and these things, but when you keep getting closer and closer there was one of the reasons why I suspect this, I don’t know if it’s true, a lot of these companies, Facebook and others were strongly opposed to this and there was maneuvering and manipulation and then they supported this, more so behind the scenes than we realize, but one thing they always ask for and when governments and big business deal with each other, whether in medical or whatever, they release them from liability, because in a private sector in a free country if you give me your personal information I just can’t give it to everybody, it’s a liability, but here giving this information to the government all of a sudden because legal, that is their sense of morality.
Daniel McAdams: There have been a couple of articles that we have read that have compared this to the process of the Patriot Act, and I think that is a apt description, because the Patriot Act everyone knows was kicked around Washington for a number of years into until 9/11. CISA was the same having kicked around Congress after Congress, too radical to pass. They thought they had something a couple of years ago and then Snowden revelations hit and people realized and they were outraged, unfortunately that outrage was tempered after a while and you had the losing of this outrage the mellowing of the outrage and then you have these high profile terrorist attacks that the media hyped up to the 10th degree and it that exact atmosphere that mirrors 9/11 they push it through.
Ron Paul: I think there is a change in there that makes it easier to access, I mean before the threat had to be eminent, now it just has to be suggested that there could be one, so it’s easier access, but up until now which wasn’t a good idea, but Homeland Security would get the information and say no, it’s going to be easier now to take this information that the private corporations have and give it directly to law enforcement agencies, they might realize that there is a bureaucracy there and it doesn’t work, but do you have any other thought on why they might have changed that, because why would that be a necessary other than maybe the bureaucracy?
Daniel McAdams: It’s a good question. I think the Homeland Security was, from what I have read, was slightly reticent about this massive collection, because they thought it might clog the works a little bit. But think about this, say you are living in some town and you are on Facebook, there is a local law enforcement and say they are not corrupt, but they are not polite and they have done something you don’t like and you posted on Facebook that local cops are bad or something. You can really open yourself up to a lot of problems with this information.
Ron Paul: One of the other things that was said about why it goes through this way and the way we saw so many other ones go through is on the important stuff you do not want a debate.
Daniel McAdams: Yeah.
Ron Paul: I remember way back and it had to do with the Monetary Control Act back in the early 80s when they were setting the stage for this big boom cycle and it wasn’t even a Manager’s Amendment, it’s also when the bill goes to conference is another example how they do this. House passed something, Senate passed something, they go to a conference and all of a sudden that is supposed to bring things together, if you have a billion versus 500 million, you compromise and put it together, that is what the purpose of the conference is. Many times what they do is they put these two bills together and they add things on that they never voted on and this was one of the things they do with the Monetary Control Act that opened up the door for exactly what the Fed did. Recently with the bailouts they gave them more leeway and more authority to do exactly what they did, but they do this in the pretense of course taking care of the consumer, but they take care of the big guys.
Daniel McAdams: I think there was something in this version of CISA too because from what I read it worse in the Senate version that passed a few months ago.
Ron Paul: Right, they tend to do that and it is no surprise of that. I do want to thank everybody for tuning in today to the Liberty Report. This is just another example of how important it is for us to maintain vigilance over what our government is doing. Knowing what they say, but more importantly what they don’t say and what they do behind the scenes and how the major leadership of both parties collude together.
It’s a pretense that there is a big difference. Whether it’s foreign policy, or monetary policy or debt, it’s all the same. Whether it’s you privacy, they get together and no word, they do it in secret and they get away with it and when the people do know, when they know what is really going on in foreign policy they vote for peace. When they want to look at what the Fed is doing, they vote for audit and restraint on the Federal Reserve, but because the propaganda machine which involves not only the politicians, but all individuals in the media, the get together and they spew it out and the people crumble and say, I am scared, I am scared, they are going to come and get me, so therefore we have to give up our liberties for the sake of our safety and security.
A very dangerous concept, it’s gotten much worse and some day we have to wake the American people up as to what a free country would be all about, because if you truly want security and happiness and prosperity, the only society in history that has provided the maximum amount of security is the one that we call the free market and individual liberty. We had a taste of it, but unfortunately we are drifting in the wrong direction politically.
But, in absolute thought on ideas and ideologically, I still believe that we are moving in the right direction, there is a rumble out there where people are saying too much government and I just hope they would do the right thing instead of turning to more government, when they realize the government is at fault, when they realize the government is really the culprit, all we have to do is move away from that and defend the principles of individual liberty. That is the only way we can achieve peace and prosperity.
I want to thank everybody for tuning in today to the Liberty Report and please come back soon.