All the Better to Hear You With

All the Better to Hear You With

It occurs to me that it may help to include articles giving background on the cartoons I draw. Since this topic is a pretty big deal, I think it’s especially important this time.

Basically, the shorthand version of the story is: The EFF took the NSA to court over the latter’s illegal surveillance activities, and the Obama Justice Department has filed a motion calling for this court challenge to be thrown out, citing “state secrets.” Combining this with Obama voting in the Senate to grant the telecoms legal immunity for cooperating with the wiretapping program, and Obama’s refusal to discard Bush’s expansion of executive privilege, we get a very depressing picture, indeed.

What the HELL, Mr. Obama!? This is exactly the kind of thing you were elected to STOP, and you should have stopped it on day ONE of your Presidency!

This entry was posted on Thursday, April 9th, 2009 at 5:26 am and is filed under Cartoons & Commentary. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

29 Responses to “All the Better to Hear You With”

Funny thing is all the Obama supporters will keep silent or try and justify it. Just like the Bush supporters did for the last 8 years.

Just turn a blind eye to the issues until your political opposites are in power. Yep.

I hope all of you that voted for obama are happy. Look at this S**t hes already sold us to china now our Fredom… WTF

As someone who voted for Obama, I am not by any means happy. However, I didn’t expect him to walk on water.

I don’t think it helps to point fingers at supporters, or act as if supporters of President Bush wanted him to do everything he did.

I believe we should seek to hold all presidents, no matter whether we voted for them or not responsible for their actions in office.

Yeah, the Republican Party would NEVER infringe upon our freedoms. McCain was the better choice by far.

By » cheech_sp (April 9th, 2009 at 3:59 pm)

Chris Says: “Yeah, the Republican Party would NEVER infringe upon our freedoms. McCain was the better choice by far.”

Wow, Chris. You missed the point completely.

Isn’t interesting how power changes people, or does is just expose. Really, we should have expected a change in perspective after he got his first CIA briefing. The presidency is a lot of power for any one man to be trusted with. Pray that he uses it wisely, judiciously and fairly. We have trusted him with our lives, our livelihood and our future. He wasn’t my first choice but he is my president and I pray for him to make wise decisions. I trust God to save our nation. No man is wise enough.

Bob, keep praying and blindly trusting a “god” to save you. I hear the tooth fairy has a strong plan for healthcare reform. The rest of us will be over here intelligently debating the issues, creating solutions, and getting our hands dirty.

I voted for Obama. And this pisses me off to no end. He SHOULD have stopped this on day one. He had promised to roll back Bush’s expansion of executive power and has only rolled it back 3/4 of the way, which is an improvement. However, it is not what was promised and I and many other’s who voted for him WILL hold him accountable if he pushes too far on issues like this.

Chris, is that sarcasm? Or are you really that ……..
Ron, thats rather disrespectful of you to mock Bob about his religious beliefs, especially when he can pray that the god he worships, most likely the same god Obama and Bush pray too, will help to guide those in power.
As for the cartoon, wire-tapping is a violation of privacy yet at the same time I still understand why Obama has yet to end it. I am by no means an Obama supporter but as President I expect him to be at least somewhat capable of fixing these violations of privacy.

By » MntlWard (April 9th, 2009 at 10:22 pm)

I kinda heard Chris’ statement as sarcastic, too. Then again, the right-wing blowhards on the radio and Fox are saying exactly what Chris said, and they’re definitely not being sarcastic.

I voted for Obama, but I never expected him to be perfect. This is very disappointing, though.

Ya know I see no problem with wiretapping. I dont talk about anything illegal over the phone and if the government wants to listen in to what I’m talking about they sure can. It would be the biggest waste of their time but it doesn’t bother me one bit. Maybe Im missing the whole point but what is the big deal?

By » Horselover_Fat (April 9th, 2009 at 11:35 pm)

I don’t know if i am making the same point in any posts above, but here is the way it is. We, the people, (of the global community) are EXPENDABLE (forgive the caps), and don’t you dare kid yourself that the elite (not political leaders by the way, they are just puppets) give a flying fart about what happens to US. And, the funny thing is, THEY know that they don’t have to lift a finger to wipe out most of the earths population. They know what is coming, and have known for some time. They are waiting for our Suns binary companion to sweep back through our solar system, as was ‘foretold in prophecy’, and let the inevitable effects of an 8x+ jupiter mass celestial body take their toll. They do not need to kill us, they only need to control the masses long enough to ensure that we don’t make adequate plans for our immediate future. Planet X is not a myth, not a lie, not a conspiracy theory, it is a part of our solar system, and its coming back. As was foretold. Good luck, good life, I love you, humanity. But its time to get ready for the 2nd coming. And it is YOU.

By » smilidon (April 10th, 2009 at 1:54 am)

So… your saying that if the NSA or CIA or maybe even the FBI has one of these wiretaps right now that is monitoring a known terrorist cell in the U.S. and they want to keep it that way so that the cell is not alerted (as they would be if there was a warrant) and discontinue talks with whomever they might be communicating with that the authorities are trying to pinpoint like maybe another cell or the head of terrorist group x. Then they should be stopped? And then when there is another attack and it comes up that they knew of this cell years prior to attack y and they did nothing because they were forced to stop when Obama’s camp took over and repealed their ability to use these taps to find the people ultimately responsible then you will be ok with it and those lives would have been lost in a good cause. Right?…get over yourself

Since this is such a big issue for all of you, what have you done to try and fix it? Do you think Bush just ordered it and it happened? No.
YOUR congressmen also allowed this to happen also. So make some noise & tell them you want this to end instead of complaining online.

Anyhow you guys act like the government actually cares what your talking about..your not that important. If you confessed to robing a bank on the phone and you were being tapped they couldn’t do anything because its not usable evidence in court, so stop whining.

as for the 2012 guy….calm down. please.

Were you one of the people panicking about the millennium? 06/06/06?
It’s time to learn your lesson. I hope these comments are here 01/01/2013…your going to look silly.

Responding to smilidon: You’re debating whether the Federal government should or should not use unlimited powers to invade the privacy of its constituents when what you should be debating is whether or not it’s even been granted those powers, and if it hasn’t, whom should be held accountable for overstepping their authority, and what that accountability should entail.

But to answer your question, I’d like to pose my own exaggerated hypothetical: Suppose each of the ten amendments in the Bill of Rights represents a bomb rigged up so that it will kill an arbitrary, unknown number of people when a terrorist in a bunker somewhere presses a button, but–BUT–you can immediately disarm the bomb associated with any amendment by sacrificing that amendment, and permanently giving up all the rights it stands for.

Assume that you cannot locate the terrorist in time to stop him using any method other than the above. Also assume that amendments sacrificed in this way will not be sacrificed merely symbolically–the terrorist has set things up so that you (as well as the people whose lives you’re trying to save) will not only lose the protections they grant, but will also have to deal with the consequences related to giving them up–for example, sacrificing the Fourth Amendment doesn’t just mean you’re no longer protected from unreasonable search and seizure, it means the government will actively go out of its way to unreasonably search-and-seize you at every opportunity.

So, which amendments would you sacrifice? Which would you keep?

Question for all you “head up your ass” faint hearts out there. What if a warrantless phone tap could have prevented 9-11? Would you have suppressed the information as a violation of the privacy right? Obama is right on this issue albeit wrong on most others.

Jerryd: Yes, I would have. And then I would have had those who put the wiretaps in place on trial for treason.

Violations of the Bill of Rights are inexcusable. Why even bother protecting the security of our country when those in charge seek to destroy the very freedoms they claim to protect?

Seriously, HOW are people actually defending the dismantling of our civil rights? How is it that people can excuse this behavior under the guise of “security?”

I voted for Obama, and have been pretty much let down every day since then. Do I think McCain would have done a better job? Hell no, so I guess I should be thankful for that. Strangely, I’m not. I guess I (like many others) am just tired of the lesser of two evils.

wtf everyone here is just giving legitimacy to warrantless wire taps, it VIOLATES the rights of the american people, I understand wiretaps are a successful means of catching criminals, but what is so hard about getting a warrant for said criminal, all a judge needs is probably cause and for something like a wiretap, it doesn’t have to be much. Somebody way up there just got pure lazy and bypassed the warrant. I personally have a device on my phone that emits a 200 decibel blast that shatters ear drums if someone tries to listen in on a tapped call, well maybe I do, maybe I don’t but Homeland security your move, I hope you have good benefit’s for your employee’s there’s gonna be a lot of deaf phone but seriously get the fucking warrant and stop being pencil dicked, brown nosing, assholes, or they will find you…

By that logic, we should ban guns, cars, and anything pointy, because they’re all potentially dangerous. It’s the argument that the country in 1984 was absolutely perfect, because since Big Brother gave nobody privacy, there was no possible way for any seditious action to occur.

In short, shut up. It’s hyperbole, and you have no idea what you’re talking about. I’d give you respect, but anyone who uses this kind of argument deserves none.

Some great points made here regarding citizen surveillance not being consistent with a transparent government for the people or, really, with the Bill of Rights.

That said, this forum may not be the best place to express our concern. Email the White House: Tell ’em how you feel. Unfortunately, the way our government seems to work (regardless of the party in charge), is that silence equals agreement. So expressing our dismay is great – let’s just make sure we’re aiming at their eyes and ears.

Everyone kept telling me that he said he was going to pull the troops out of Iraq and bring them home.

However, this was a huge misnomer. He said in multiple interviews he was putting them into Afghanistan where they “should have been in the first place.”

He hasn’t lied yet. It’s just that everyone isn’t really listening to what he is really saying.

By » MntlWard (April 11th, 2009 at 9:50 pm)

Since when were the targets of wiretaps notified when a warrant has been issued to tap their phone?

“Hey, just dropping by to say we’re going to be listening in on your phone calls for the next few days. Please be sure to call all your partners in crime and discuss your plans in great detail.”

In those circumstances where a law enforcement agency feels the need to listen first and get permission later, the FISA Court serves that purpose.

The problem with the leeway given to law enforcement under the PATRIOT Act was that even if a judge rejected the request for a warrant, law enforcement could go ahead and do it. All hearings were secret, and the only oversight the court had was the ability to file paperwork that had to be sealed for the purpose of national security.

It’s unreal to me that people are able to so completely miss the point, when they argue that we should allow wiretapping, because “I’m not saying anything illegal” or “maybe we could have prevented 9/11.”
First of all, making a general and acceptable practice out of spying on the public brings with it all the myriad problems of panopticism (wiki this, if you don’t know what it means). Not even mentioning the various theories about what happens to a people when it becomes a mere object of information to its government, rather than a subject participating in its activities; and even IF the government had heard some terrorists planning 9/11 over the phone, and had been able to prevent it; there is no way, once this machine has been set into motion, to stop it down the line. If we give this power to a current administration whose methods and ideologies we like (and even IF they genuinely would use it ONLY for good), we have set the maxim in place that the government now has this power (or CAN be given this power, if someone [voters?] deems it necessary), forever. It’s all fine and good to give this power to the great and wonderful Bush or Obama, both of whom obviously have pure and altruistic intentions at heart, but down the line when some less pure administration gets their hands on this power, you’re not going to be so eager to be observed, without your knowledge, at potentially any moment of your life. You have effected given the government the power, forever, to enforce any policy they later put into effect, based on having watched you perpetually. See the visceral “1984” or the more subtle “Discipline and Punish” for some clear expositions of this. The precedent we set here is extremely dangerous.
And secondly, the mere argument for giving up the right to privacy for the sake of security is blatantly hypocritical, especially coming from many on the right who support the freedom to own guns. As someone pointed out above, that argument could be directly adapted to show that nobody should ever be allowed to own guns, to speak freely in public, to protest the government in any way, to have a drivers license, or to do just about damn near anything that potentially could be misused to do harm to people. Just because some people could potentially use the phones to communicate with evil intent, does that really mean that we must now all be willing to completely sacrifice the possibly dangerous ability to merely communicate with each other privately? By that logic, you better be damn well prepared to sacrifice a lot, I mean a lot, of your personal freedoms in the name of safety.
Sorry for writing the novel.

This is hilarious! Obama here is stooping to a lower level and doing the same thing as Bush and Cheney!
Personally though, I found it kind of offensive that you made them children– while I am for Obama, I respect Bush and Cheney for leading our nation for 8 long years and do not regard them as children.

By » garrett (May 24th, 2009 at 9:36 pm)

punk obama,, punk obama.. punk Obama… O did i mention Punk Obama wait there is more…. Big ears Obama..LOL.. OK Ok iLL level.. he’s just another political Liar.. Duh like you guys didnt know this..WoW.. Ok how about this..he views america like a standard Automobile, but when he is finished we will be riding in a pimped up car with rim’s and a kick ass O and high off the ground..LOL Gimmy a break Obama is a Major Mistake. did i mention big ear

[…] All the better to hear you with. I’ll just link to the comic, because it’s big. […]

[…] I’ll just link to the comic, because it’s big. […]

I wish this cartoon didn’t hit home. I really do.

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