Lindsey Graham: Sure, I’d support censoring your mail if it was necessary to counterterrorism

posted at 5:11 pm on June 11, 2013 by Allahpundit

Let me repeat what I said last week after he clapped the NSA on the back for collecting Americans’ phone records: It’s not just the fact that he endorses ideas like this, it’s the ease with which he does it. There appears to be none of the usual angst you see from other pols about security/liberty trade-offs when he talks counterterrorism. He’s almost entirely on one side of that topic in much the same way Ron Paul is, but even if you think Paul’s naive about security risks, at least he’s on the side of personal freedom. You get the sense with Graham that if Obama convinced him that Al Qaeda could be defeated only through martial law, he’d head straight to the Senate floor to make the case.

Libertarianism has no greater asset than this guy.

“In World War II, the mentality of the public was that our whole way of life was at risk, we’re all in. We censored the mail. When you wrote a letter overseas, it got censored. When a letter was written back from the battlefield to home, they looked at what was in the letter to make sure they were not tipping off the enemy,” Graham, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, told reporters on Capitol Hill. “If I thought censoring the mail was necessary, I would suggest it, but I don’t think it is.”…

“The First Amendment right to speak is sacrosanct, but it has limits,” Graham added. “In World War II, our population understood that what we say in letters could be used against [us by] our enemies. It was designed to protect us and ensure that we would have First Amendment rights because under the Japanese and Nazi regime, they weren’t that big into the First Amendment. We don’t need to censor the mail, but we do need to find out what the enemy’s up to.”

If he really does believe the First Amendment is sacrosanct, he does so very grudgingly.

Here’s the thing: It’s not just the fact that he’s proposing World War II security protocols for something like the war on terror that’ll last decades, with periods of greater and lesser danger to the mainland. It’s that we all know there’ll never come a point where Graham sees fit to declare the war “over.” On the contrary, he’d almost certainly be indignant at the suggestion. Even if the U.S. military spent the next decade whittling AQ and its affiliates down to nothing, Graham would point to outfits like Hezbollah and Lashkar e-Taiba and nukes in Iran or Pakistan as reasons to keep mail-censoring going or even to expand it. Look at the way he frames the calculus on mail-censoring: It’s not a matter of privacy rights versus security interests, it’s a matter simply of whether censorship is necessary — yet — to protect those security interests. It isn’t, so congrats. The government doesn’t get to read your mail. Yet.

What he’s really proposing is a permanent, gradually but perpetually expanding surveillance state. I think maybe that’s why he seems so unconflicted about this — he’s already accepted the end state, so why sweat the individual incremental steps?


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You’re really obsessed with the Whigs.

Stoic Patriot on June 11, 2013 at 5:56 PM

And you with bending over. Smile.

CW on June 11, 2013 at 5:58 PM

There has to be someone in SC, that can appease soc-cons while also being an actual conservative. Is the bench that thin?

Raquel Pinkbullet on June 11, 2013 at 5:37 PM

There have been murmurings of a primary opponent, but I can’t remember her name. She has little to any name recognition right now, but if she is to truly run–now is the time to make the case for sure.

Graham must be voted out of office.

SouthernGent on June 11, 2013 at 5:58 PM

And you with bending over. Smile.

CW on June 11, 2013 at 5:58 PM

Nah, I haven’t tried kissing Rand’s butt. =P

Stoic Patriot on June 11, 2013 at 5:58 PM

We KNOW that you do, Hot Air’s resident Whig.

Resist We Much on June 11, 2013 at 5:55 PM

You’re really obsessed with the Whigs.

Stoic Patriot on June 11, 2013 at 5:56 PM

Every brilliant person has an obsession or two.

You have no obsessions, then?

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 5:59 PM

Every brilliant person has an obsession or two.

You have no obsessions, then?

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 5:59 PM

Oh, absolutely I have obsessions, but they pertain to current political issues rather than dead political parties.

Stoic Patriot on June 11, 2013 at 6:00 PM

He’s willing to accept the chains as long as he gets his choice of color.

Bishop on June 11, 2013 at 5:56 PM

He has already chosen. Hot Pink. And NSA has the photos. Explains so much…

ROCnPhilly on June 11, 2013 at 6:00 PM

And you with bending over. Smile.

CW on June 11, 2013 at 5:58 PM

LOL That brought back a long-forgotten memory. I had an older cousin who used to say, “Bend over and crack a smile.”

LOL

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 6:00 PM

Didn’t Maxine Walters already commit treason for releasing this secret?
Waters: Obama Campaign Database Has ‘Information About Everything on Every Individual’ - See more at: http://cnsnews.com/news/article/waters-obama-campaign-database-has-information-about-everything-every-individual#sthash.z5TxMk41.dpuf

Someone needs to ask Boehner if Maxine Walters is a traitor. And what about the secrets Obama has revealed? Didn’t he give out all the codes to the UK’s nuke arsenal?

But I really love Grahmnesty. He’s always always right out there to defend the Democrats. I don’t know how we’d get along with out him and McCain.

JellyToast on June 11, 2013 at 6:01 PM

Every brilliant person has an obsession or two.

You have no obsessions, then?

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 5:59 PM

Oh, absolutely I have obsessions, but they pertain to current political issues rather than dead political parties.

Stoic Patriot on June 11, 2013 at 6:00 PM

Too late…

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 6:01 PM

But.. but… the War on Terror has been won… decisively… by Dear Leader.

OBL is with the fishes.

faraway on June 11, 2013 at 6:01 PM

Graham is a weasel.

bigbeachbird on June 11, 2013 at 6:02 PM

that can unite all of the supporters of freedom and liberty from all the parties against the supporters of fascism and tyranny from both parties.

FloatingRock on June 11, 2013 at 5:56 PM

Republicans McCain, Graham and Rubio are certainly supporters of fascism and tyranny and statism in general.

VorDaj on June 11, 2013 at 6:04 PM

Graham is a weasel.

bigbeachbird on June 11, 2013 at 6:02 PM

Wrong. Weasels are cute little rodents.

Lindsey’s a cockroach.

annoyinglittletwerp on June 11, 2013 at 6:05 PM

Graham is a Horstweasel.

bigbeachbird on June 11, 2013 at 6:02 PM

VorDaj on June 11, 2013 at 6:06 PM

Lindsey’s a cockroach.

annoyinglittletwerp on June 11, 2013 at 6:05 PM

But a well dressed one with a little armband and a swastika.

VorDaj on June 11, 2013 at 6:07 PM

Republicans McCain, Graham and Rubio are certainly supporters of fascism and tyranny and statism in general.

VorDaj on June 11, 2013 at 6:04 PM

To be honest, I don’t they’re that idealistic. I think it’s more about their personal gain, to gain, keep, and enhance their personal power.

They embody the two oldest sins in the Bible: Pride and covetousness.

I don’t think they give a whit about ideology, per se. It’s about them, and them only.

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 6:08 PM

so, in an effort to protect us without making bad guy muslims feel bad, they choose to instead punish all of us? Great. How about this devil’s bargain instead, profile muslims!

joeindc44 on June 11, 2013 at 6:09 PM

You’re really obsessed with the Whigs.

Stoic Patriot on June 11, 2013 at 5:56 PM

Er, that would be you, who places the positions of an English Whig, John Locke, above those of the Founding Fathers. Yes, Locke, among others, influenced the Founders, but he didn’t write the founding documents of the United States.

Relying on Locke for the political interpretation of the United States Constitution, rather than what the Founding Fathers of THIS country ACTUALLY wrote, is like asking Peugeot what Ford means when it talks about X in an ‘Owner’s Manual.’

Resist We Much on June 11, 2013 at 6:11 PM

Oh, absolutely I have obsessions, but they pertain to current political issues rather than dead political parties.

Stoic Patriot on June 11, 2013 at 6:00 PM

Apparently, you don’t understand why I refer to you as a Whig – a party’s whose ideas and philosophy died long ago, as you acknowledge.

Resist We Much on June 11, 2013 at 6:13 PM

Weasels are totally not rodents.

Hmph.

S. Weasel on June 11, 2013 at 6:14 PM

There have been murmurings of a primary opponent, but I can’t remember her name. She has little to any name recognition right now, but if she is to truly run–now is the time to make the case for sure.

Graham must be voted out of office.

SouthernGent on June 11, 2013 at 5:58 PM

At this point it could be Todd Akin, Sharron Angle, Christine O’Donnell or Richard Mourdock running against him and I wouldn’t care, just tell me where to send my money.

alchemist19 on June 11, 2013 at 6:17 PM

Someone must have mentioned this by now…

Benjamin Franklin “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

The loss of Liberty is the death of a thousand cuts…

atadOFF on June 11, 2013 at 6:21 PM

Apparently, you don’t understand why I refer to you as a Whig – a party’s whose ideas and philosophy died long ago, as you acknowledge.

Resist We Much on June 11, 2013 at 6:13 PM

Subtlety isn’t a part of the psyche of many, you know.

As I quoted earlier from Cleese, “12. At the same time, you will go metric with immediate effect and without the benefit of conversion tables. Both roundabouts and metrication will help you understand the British sense of humour.”

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 6:21 PM

There have been murmurings of a primary opponent, but I can’t remember her name. She has little to any name recognition right now, but if she is to truly run–now is the time to make the case for sure.

Graham must be voted out of office.

SouthernGent on June 11, 2013 at 5:58 PM

Her? The Graham opponent who has my attention is a man, Richard Cash.

http://www.richard-cash-for-senate.com/

Cash is off to an early start. He also got an early start in the 2010 race for the 3rd Congressional District nomination. He went from an unknown to coming within a hair of winning the nomination, narrowly losing a runoff to Jeff Duncan.

You want Lindsey Graham out of office? Get behind Richard Cash.

backwoods conservative on June 11, 2013 at 6:23 PM

MadisonConservative on June 11, 2013 at 5:24 PM

You’re really kinda pissy since you were booted from the Green Room.

ladyingray on June 11, 2013 at 6:23 PM

M

adisonConservative on June 11, 2013 at 5:24 PM

You’re really kinda pissy since you were booted from the Green Room.

ladyingray on June 11, 2013 at 6:23 PM

I really should have said that you are really kinda pissy toward HA bloggers since you were booted from the Green Room.

ladyingray on June 11, 2013 at 6:30 PM

The problem with Graham’s comparison to WWII is that we entered and fought WWII to win. We didn’t “nation build” and such until we had defeated and disarmed the Axis forces and even most of the civilian population and had complete occupational control of enemy countries. We weren’t fighting bloody skirmishes with Nazi forces in Germany years after we declared victory. The only thing left resembling the Iraq “Green Zone” was West Berlin, but that strangulation was due to our “ally” rather than the enemy we had just defeated.

*If congress is prepared to follow the constitution and actually declare war against the nations that support and harbor terrorism and then follow-up with a full military commitment to total defeat, to the point of unconditional surrender, and total disarmament of the military and civilians of such nations followed by proper reparations for the destruction caused by their terrorism support and harboring, then, and only then, can any argument about this referencing WWII be considered anything other than a tyrannical rambling of someone disconnected from the foundational documents, freedoms and principles of this nation.

*I’m not suggesting this is the proper course, but rather that comparing our military voyeurism in Iraq/Afghanistan and drone strikes in Yemen, Somalia and elsewhere to a declared war committed to utter defeat of the enemy isn’t even an apples/oranges comparison but so different as to be more of a rhubarb plant/fainting goats comparison.

deepdiver on June 11, 2013 at 6:31 PM

Weasels are totally not rodents.

Hmph.

S. Weasel on June 11, 2013 at 6:14 PM

Lay off me, man. I did say that you were cute!

annoyinglittletwerp on June 11, 2013 at 6:31 PM

i’m glad that AP focused on this. It would be too easy to let him off the hook by talking about hypotheticals. this is what Kinsey has called a gaffe.

I think it is very odd that our pols aren’t smarter than that. Just like Sebelius’ ‘some people die, some people live’ was a remarkably stupid comment from a pol. Just the statement. This should be considered an unforced error.

Same with Lindsey. In this context it is a remarkably stupid comment because it looks like little fascist trying to set himself free.

so, is it stupid? or careless? or…maybe they don’t much care anymore

r keller on June 11, 2013 at 6:33 PM

Lindsey Graham fails refuses to understand the US Constitution.

backwoods conservative on June 11, 2013 at 6:41 PM

Accuracy, if you please. :-)

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 6:42 PM

This whole issue should be the ultimate conservative issue, ……. following the Constitution.

I have no problem with the NSA, with a warrant, tracking email and internet traffic with Saudi Arabia or the Al Quaeda website. howevr to simply collect data on American citizens without cause is the ultimate abuse of power and for Graham and other GOP politicians to think otherwise is an insult.

Tater Salad on June 11, 2013 at 6:48 PM

Accuracy, if you please. :-)

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 6:42 PM

Yes, I like your version better. Unfortunately, neither of us wrote the headline for the news article.

backwoods conservative on June 11, 2013 at 6:49 PM

Yes, I like your version better. Unfortunately, neither of us wrote the headline for the news article.

backwoods conservative on June 11, 2013 at 6:49 PM

They wouldn’t let us, anyway — your headline or especially mine.

One thing I tend to keep in mind these days: They (the ruling elite in DC or the media) don’t like us. They don’t listen to us, and they don’t want us. They want us to go away.

One day, I anticipate, they’re going to make that happen.

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 6:56 PM

Well Lindsey…
If putting a bullet in your cranium would stop this traitorous rush to giving AMNESTY and CITIZENSHIP to 30 MILLION illegals, I would do it.
Sadly, the traitorous Senate will pass this crap sammich, but the House is another story.

I just saw the “STAND WITH CONSERVATIVES” ad, paid for by La Raza and Suckerberg. It is a pack of lies. Says secure border first. Says illegals must learn English.
Sheeeshh….they really do think I’m stupid.

God help us.
III/0317

dirtengineer on June 11, 2013 at 7:00 PM

What an un-American little twit. An enemy of the Constitution and the American people.

NealK on June 11, 2013 at 7:07 PM

Someone needs to primary this guy. Trey Gowdy is my top choice, but I’d settle for Elmer Fudd in this case.

ritewhit on June 11, 2013 at 7:13 PM

If this guy can’t get primaried out of office, then the IRS didn’t need to go to all that trouble to suppress the Tea Party.

Doughboy on June 11, 2013 at 5:26 PM

Works the other way around: IRS intimidation of TP’s helps to ensure guys like Miss Lindsey don’t get primaried. Think he and McLame have any reason to be unhappy with the IRS – they’re benefitting just as much as Barky’s guys?

bofh on June 11, 2013 at 7:15 PM

Lindsey Graham is referred to as the “good senator”. Knowing a dem doesn’t stand a chance, they throw their support behind LIndsey ala lisa murkowski

renalin on June 11, 2013 at 7:19 PM

And to think, I used to wonder how a madman like Hitler could come to power. (Wouldn’t sane people object?) *sigh*

SailorMark on June 11, 2013 at 7:28 PM

Another politician who has forgotten what it is to be an American. I wonder if these people can imagine if all that they want to do in the name of security were to come to pass this wouldn’t be America anymore. Nor would it be worth protecting. It woulds just be another totalitarian regime needing toppled by it’s people who want freedom.

Wood Dragon on June 11, 2013 at 7:33 PM

Apparently, he’s been caught with a live boy or a dead girl.

john1schn on June 11, 2013 at 7:39 PM

There is an easy way to win this war on terror. Drop a “Little Boy” on Iran and tell the rest of the Islamo-Fascist countries that they will be next in the queue to receive a “Little Boy” the the war will be over unless they stick their head up again.

hamradio on June 11, 2013 at 7:49 PM

There is an easy way to win this war on terror. Drop a “Little Boy” on Iran and tell the rest of the Islamo-Fascist countries that they will be next in the queue to receive a “Little Boy” the the war will be over unless they stick their head up again.

There is an easy way to win this war on terror. Drop a “Little Boy” on Iran and tell the rest of the Islamo-Fascist countries that they will be next in the queue to receive a “Little Boy” Then the war will be over unless they stick their head up again.

Sorry. Keyboard rebelled

hamradio on June 11, 2013 at 7:50 PM

They don’t listen to us, and they don’t want us. They want us to go away.

One day, I anticipate, they’re going to make that happen.

Liam on June 11, 2013 at 6:56 PM

They may not listen but it seems they are recording everything for future reference.

Corsair on June 11, 2013 at 7:51 PM

Go to hell Graham, you anti american piece of crap.

TX-96 on June 11, 2013 at 7:54 PM

You want Lindsey Graham out of office? Get behind Richard Cash.

backwoods conservative

And if that doesn’t work, back his democrat opponent in the general election. Anything to get Lizzie out of office, even if it costs us the seat.

xblade on June 11, 2013 at 8:04 PM

He is proposing it, contingent only upon its necessity. He’s telling you flat out here he thinks it’s an idea worthy of enacting if/when the need for it arises. He has no qualms about it in terms of liberty or privacy.

Allahpundit on June 11, 2013 at 5:29 PM

…which violates his Oath of Office to uphold and defend the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic.

dominigan on June 11, 2013 at 8:05 PM

deepdiver on June 11, 2013 at 6:31 PM

You may not have suggested it, but you are spot on.
Failure of leadership from the get go.
Failure of leadership at half time too.

And at half time, we switched field positions.

WryTrvllr on June 11, 2013 at 8:11 PM

Lindsey Graham is a nasty little bastard, all too willing to trade rights he’s sworn to protect for votes from idiots.

Wendya on June 11, 2013 at 8:20 PM

Q: Senator, What part of the Constitution don’t you understand?

A: All of it.

EdmundBurke247 on June 11, 2013 at 8:23 PM

And Ted Cruz is called a nut?

OliverB on June 11, 2013 at 8:23 PM

Apparently, you don’t understand why I refer to you as a Whig – a party’s whose ideas and philosophy died long ago, as you acknowledge.

Resist We Much on June 11, 2013 at 6:13 PM

RWM, Whigism is not dead. They were the first to embark on a program of deficit spending, using state bonds for ‘internal improvements’, nearly bankrupting several states, Illinois among them, in the process. The idea was to ‘improve roads, bridges, and waterways to enhance commerce’. Sound familiar? It’s my theory that Whigism is a direct predecessor of Progressivism. FWIW.

jclittlep on June 11, 2013 at 8:27 PM

Come to think of it, instead of following his lead and censoring Graham’s email, maybe someone should just publish them all.

Wouldn’t that be a rich story!

EdmundBurke247 on June 11, 2013 at 8:31 PM

S. Weasel on June 11, 2013 at 6:14 PM

OT:
I stop by your place daily.

It’s a breath of fresh air.

Solaratov on June 11, 2013 at 8:44 PM

Will Someone Not Rid Us Of This Meddlesome Senator Graham?

Resist We Much on June 11, 2013 at 8:49 PM

There’s an app for that.

Solaratov on June 11, 2013 at 8:54 PM

jclittlep on June 11, 2013 at 8:27 PM

I agree, but Stoic Tyrant and I were referring to the Whig Party of John Locke.

Resist We Much on June 11, 2013 at 9:10 PM

There has to be someone in SC, that can appease soc-cons while also being an actual conservative. Is the bench that thin?

Raquel Pinkbullet on June 11, 2013 at 5:37 PM

There have been murmurings of a primary opponent, but I can’t remember her name. She has little to any name recognition right now, but if she is to truly run–now is the time to make the case for sure.

Graham must be voted out of office.

SouthernGent on June 11, 2013 at 5:58 PM

I think you’re talking about Nancy Mace, perhaps. Citadel grad.

Conservchik on June 11, 2013 at 9:15 PM

I am so disgusted with Graham I can’t stand it. He’s a progressive statist with a thin republican veneer.

What in the hell do these republicans have? A party death wish? Then good riddance to the skeezy lot of them like Grahamnesty, McLame, Boehner and Rubio (SHILL).

Conservchik on June 11, 2013 at 9:18 PM

Eff you Lindaey you puffer!

JohnnyMojo on June 11, 2013 at 9:44 PM

You want Lindsey Graham out of office? Get behind Richard Cash.

backwoods conservative on June 11, 2013 at 6:23 PM

Thanks for the information. I forgot what a close race that way, but I wasn’t aware he was running for the Senate seat. I will vote for myself before I vote for Graham in the primary, and the democrat in the general election before I vote for Graham.

SouthernGent on June 11, 2013 at 9:57 PM

I think you’re talking about Nancy Mace, perhaps. Citadel grad.

Conservchik on June 11, 2013 at 9:15 PM

YAAAAS! That’s her name. Thank you.

SouthernGent on June 11, 2013 at 9:58 PM

Coming July 12th —- Pacific Rim</strong>

To Fight Monsters
We Created Monsters

From Warner Brothers.

Doesn’t seem related to our POTUS (who allegedly hails from there)

or the “War on Terror (which seem to share story line).

But there is a cool contest wherein you can tour a studio!

And search for leftys in their own habitat.

http://www.tigerdirect.com/sectors/sweepstakes/pacificRim/index.asp

IlikedAUH2O on June 11, 2013 at 10:03 PM

Oh, my. Well, bless yo little heart, Lindsey. Deah, deah Lindsey… please do retire to your old southern home and stick a mint julep in it. When we want your opinion, we’ll ask the NSA to give it to you.

ghostwalker1 on June 11, 2013 at 10:41 PM

What war? Did Congress declare a war?

Montjoie on June 12, 2013 at 12:21 AM

Maybe Lindsay Gramnesty should focus on monitoring the border more…but then again, he sees ordinary citizens as the criminals, not the illegals streaming across the border and sucking the resources of this country dry. What a joke.

TheAudacityofNOPE on June 12, 2013 at 4:30 AM

This guy is a lawyer and he just violated his oath of office. Come on South Carolina, you can do much better.

Kissmygrits on June 12, 2013 at 8:48 AM

This man is a disgrace. Republicans should be vociferous in denouncing this big government loving twit. South Carolina has got to have someone within their state who can run against this clown. If I lived there I might very well vote for a Democrat and end the embarrassment he brings to our party.

Reggie1971 on June 12, 2013 at 9:25 AM

We have to monitor everything if we are going to have wide open borders with the big giant welcome mat!!!!/

Cindy Munford on June 12, 2013 at 11:37 AM

The new 1 million square foot NSA data bank in Utah, under construction, is to be named the Sen Lindsey Graham Information Exchange.

MaiDee on June 12, 2013 at 1:55 PM

What he’s really proposing is a permanent, gradually but perpetually expanding surveillance state. I think maybe that’s why he seems so unconflicted about this — he’s already accepted the end state, so why sweat the individual incremental steps?

Indeed.

AesopFan on June 12, 2013 at 2:24 PM

that can unite all of the supporters of freedom and liberty from all the parties against the supporters of fascism and tyranny from both parties.

FloatingRock on June 11, 2013 at 5:56 PM

It’s a Mormon in-joke, but we’ve read about this sort of thing happening several times before.

AesopFan on June 12, 2013 at 2:28 PM

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