Looks Like Most Americans Have No Problem With NSA/Phone Record Program

Discussion in 'Middle East - General' started by GotZoom, May 12, 2006.

  1. GotZoom
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    GotZoom Senior Member

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    A majority of Americans initially support a controversial National Security Agency program to collect information on telephone calls made in the United States in an effort to identify and investigate potential terrorist threats, according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll.

    The new survey found that 63 percent of Americans said they found the NSA program to be an acceptable way to investigate terrorism, including 44 percent who strongly endorsed the effort. Another 35 percent said the program was unacceptable, which included 24 percent who strongly objected to it.

    A slightly larger majority--66 percent--said they would not be bothered if NSA collected records of personal calls they had made, the poll found.

    Underlying those views is the belief that the need to investigate terrorism outweighs privacy concerns. According to the poll, 65 percent of those interviewed said it was more important to investigate potential terrorist threats "even if it intrudes on privacy." Three in 10--31 percent--said it was more important for the federal government not to intrude on personal privacy, even if that limits its ability to investigate possible terrorist threats.

    Half--51 percent--approved of the way President Bush was handling privacy matters.

    The survey results reflect initial public reaction to the NSA program. Those views that could change or deepen as more details about the effort become known over the next few days.

    USA Today disclosed in its Thursday editions the existence of the massive domestic intelligence-gathering program. The effort began soon after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Since then, the agency began collecting call records on tens of millions of personal and business telephone calls made in the United States. Agency personnel reportedly analyze those records to identify suspicious calling patterns but do not listen in on or record individual telephone conversations.

    Word of the program sparked immediate criticism on Capitol Hill, where Democrats and Republicans criticized the effort as a threat to privacy and called for congressional inquiries to learn more about the operation. In the survey, big majorities of Republicans and political independents said they found the program to be acceptable while Democrats were split.

    President Bush made an unscheduled appearance yesterday before White House reporters to defend his administration's efforts to investigate terrorism and criticize public disclosure of secret intelligence operations. But he did not directly acknowledge the existence of the NSA records-gathering program or answer reporters' questions about it.

    By a 56 percent to 42 percent margin, Americans said it was appropriate for the news media to have disclosed the existence of this secret government program.

    A total of 502 randomly selected adults were interviewed Thursday night for this survey. Margin of sampling error is five percentage points for the overall results. The practical difficulties of doing a survey in a single night represents another potential source of error.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/05/12/AR2006051200375_pf.html
     
  2. Diuretic
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    Diuretic Permanently confused

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    The people that own the copyright to the term "Land of the free" want you to stop using it. However they said that you can use "Land of the sort-of free" with no problems. But they reserve the right to withdraw permission for that one too if things go downhill.
     
  3. GotZoom
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    GotZoom Senior Member

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    Imagine terrorists flying a Quantas Airliner into the Sydney Opera House on an evening when both the Concert Hall and Drama Theater are filled to capacity.

    I think your entire outlook on things would change.
     
  4. jillian
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    jillian Princess Supporting Member

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    http://news.yahoo.com/s/usatoday/20...s45s678B2YD;_ylu=X3oDMTA3MXN1bHE0BHNlYwN0bWE-
     
  5. GotZoom
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    GotZoom Senior Member

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    Thank you for your input.

    Now, if you would please refer to the title of this thread:

    Looks Like Most Americans Have No Problem With NSA/Phone Record Program
     
  6. jillian
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    jillian Princess Supporting Member

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    :thanks: :thup:
     
  7. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    I wonder how many people are aware that the program is illegal .
     
  8. GotZoom
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    GotZoom Senior Member

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    Everyone has an opinion on it's legality.

    "This activity by the NSA doesn't violate anything the court has said with respect to the Fourth Amendment," Fairfield University professor Don Greenberg, chairman of the college's politics department, said Thursday. "It's definitely not an unreasonable seizure. They are not listening in on your calls. People who have access to your phone records are not necessarily sworn to any kind of secrecy," Nevertheless, the NSA's phone record compilation is a "bad idea," he said, because it overreaches. "Instead of collecting good information, it bogs the government down in information overload. They would be better off taking a more selective tactic collecting information, rather than this shotgun approach."

    http://www.connpost.com/news/ci_3814068
     
  9. jillian
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    jillian Princess Supporting Member

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    I'm wondering what a poli sci prof knows about the law. One doesn't necessarily have to do with the other.

    Whether it's illegal or not isn't any more a matter of opinion than whether robbery is illegal. It seems that the way the statute is written, it doesn't matter if they think what they did was legal or not. Seems pretty straightforward to me, even without delving into the Constitutional arguments.
     
  10. JOKER96BRAVO
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    JOKER96BRAVO Senior Member

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    I really don't care if it's legal or not.
    If it proves useful, or if it could have prevented a child I knew from being
    a victim in the OKC bombing, I'm all for it.
     

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