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Thursday, February 26, 2015

On this Republican DHS Shutdown Threat

From Senator Barbara Boxer on the Senate floor, yesterday:

We all know Republicans won in huge numbers in the 2014 election, and they took over the United States Senate and they run it. They run it. Or at least they're trying to run it. And let's be clear, less than eight weeks after they took over the Senate, we are facing a shutdown; a shutdown of the very agency that protects the health, the safety, the lives, of the American people - the Department of Homeland Security.
They're shutting down the program that funds our police officers back home, our firefighters, our first responders. Any way you look at it, this is a national disgrace. And think about what our friends abroad, and those who are not our friends, are thinking about this.
Republicans say, 'Oh, we're in danger, we have to go to go to war, put combat troops on the ground!' But they're wiling to shut down the department that protects Americans here in the homeland, from a terrorist attack.
How does it make sense, at a time when we're facing serious threats to our national security, to furlough 30,000, thirty thousand, department of homeland security workers, and to force more than 100,000 frontline homeland security personnel to work without pay?'

Great questions.


Sevesteen said...

We have too many federal agencies with guns and arrest powers. This leads to competition among agencies, fear mongering and an erosion of the rights of Americans in the name of safety. We don't need a Department of Homeland Security competing with the ATF, competing with the DEA, we don't need an armed Department of Education. The terrorist threat in America is 98% hype, mostly to justify power grabs and budget. The department (and name) of Homeland Security was a bad idea under Bush, and remains a bad idea.

The best thing we could do to reduce the terrorist threat would be to stop bombing other countries. When was the last administration where we bombed so many countries? We need to let the rest of the world take care of its own security.

Mo Rage said...

There are so many things, it turns out, we agree on. Big government, for one, being not a good thing, in and of and even for itself. It's only to work for the people, first, and protect us from the wealthy and corporations.

We don't need this Department of Homeland Security that President George W. Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney and the Republican Party and so, the Right Wing of the nation, the "small government" people brought us. It is now and has been, since its beginning,a boondoggle and huge waste of multi-millions of dollars.

Second, it's great to hear you say and know you feel, same as me, that the "war on terror" is, as you said, "The terrorist threat in America is 98% hype, mostly to justify power grabs and budget." It's all been horrible, even stupid.

Another thing great to see you write--again, we agree--that "The best thing we could do to reduce the terrorist threat would be to stop bombing other countries." Bombing our way to peace is certain insanity.

Now, I have a question for you. The Department of Education is armed?

Sevesteen said...

Do a Google search for 'department of education guns', they have an investigative section with full arrest powers.

IMO, federal law enforcement (armed and with arrest powers) should be limited to the FBI and Federal Marshals--other federal law enforcement should be folded in to them. There may be some justification for guards in other branches, but I don't think most other branches should have arrest powers.

One of the points I keep trying to make is that the major parties aren't all that different. I don't see Obama giving up any power that Bush created, I don't expect the next Republican administration to give up any of Obama's new powers. Obama is just as much of a hawk as Bush.

Mo Rage said...

We agree, we disagree.

First, I see nothing out there in the media world showing other departments arresting anyone, nationally, from Federal agencies. People would go nuts.

While I grant you the money given to our representatives makes government representatives from both political parties do their bidding frequently, admittedly, there are still plenty of huge differences, thank goodness, between them. Obamacare being just one huge one, certainly, and there are plenty of others.

Sure, Pres. Obama hasn't given up any of the powers Dubya' claimed for himself and the next one won't either--on that we agree--and there are things that need to change, like our drone policy and the Patriot Acrs, I and II but to say President Obama is "just as much of a hawk as Bush"? Blatantly wrong. Dubya' attacked two nations, for God's sake. Obama went into Syria, bombed for a bit to keep Assad from continuing to kill his people, and then we got out. What one nation have we sent armed troops into on Pres. O's watch?

The answer is, there isn't one.

Don't get me wrong, I no way think President Obama is perfect and I don't worship the ground he walks on, no way (in spite of what some might want to say or think) but we have yet to attack even one nation with troops on the ground remotely close to what Dubya' did. To say he did is just blatantly wrong or mistaken.

Sevesteen said...

Did you bother to do that Google search? I would be surprised if we watched and trusted the same media sources, which is why I used a Google search term rather than a specific source.

Obama hasn't put boots on the ground because dead US soldiers are a public relations nightmare. Bombs aren't an improvement over boots--in fact boots are a bit more likely to spare noncombatants.

Mo Rage said...

Obama hasn't put boots on the ground because he's not so stupid as to do so.