Terrorism in a police state

The Bush administration has consistently claimed that the government must expand their power and restrict the rights of citizens in order to maintain security and prevent terrorist attacks. They have aimed for warrantless wiretaps, indefinite detention and torture of so-called "enemy combatants", spying on peaceful activist groups, suppression of non-violent protests, etc. I bet they would even love to control the mass media, although they appear to be compensating using the "fair and balanced" FOX News, a news network that blatantly displays its bias in favor of the conservative right.

So it's ironic when there is a bomb attack in China, a police state of the sort that the Bush administration can only achieve in their dreams. Even with an oppressive level of control over the populace, China still hasn't been able to prevent terrorist attacks on their soil. Is a significant erosion of civil rights worth the prevention of a few terrorist attacks? Given that a nation much more like a genuine police state still suffers from plenty of terrorist attacks, I'm somewhat dubious whether expanded government power at the price of civil rights would actually help prevent any terrorist attacks at all. Some might even be able to make the case that it would actually motivate more terrorism.

6 thoughts on “Terrorism in a police state”

  1. Excellent post and well said. The idea that taking away the fundamental values of our society to protect it from some amorphous terrorist attack is insane. It is doubly crazy when you realise how it wont actually protect anyway...

  2. It's especially ironic when the government takes away our freedoms at the same time they say the terrorists hate us for our freedoms. On second thought, maybe not; perhaps the Bush administration really is surrendering to the terrorists ...

  3. Good post. As Franklin is often quoted (especially during times when Congress keeps passing the Patriot Act) "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." It is so sad that many people use the Founders to support their arguments, but ignore the warnings the Founders give us as well.

  4. Excellent point, succinctly made.

    Now if only we can present it to those who can actually do something about it...

  5. It's especially ironic when the government takes away our freedoms at the same time they say the terrorists hate us for our freedoms. On second thought, maybe not; perhaps the Bush administration really is surrendering to the terrorists ...

  6. Good post. As Franklin is often quoted (especially during times when Congress keeps passing the Patriot Act) "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." It is so sad that many people use the Founders to support their arguments, but ignore the warnings the Founders give us as well.

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