Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Video Clip of the Day


Reason.com's Matt Welch talks IRS and NSA surveillance with Stuart Varney on Fox's Business Network:

(Doggone it. So sorry, no embed. Please go here for 4 minute video)

The flippant who cares? attitude we have heard as a defense of the NSA snooping as in "I'm not doing anything wrong, what's the big deal?" is troublesome. In a vacuum, government represents, by varying degrees, an existential threat to our freedoms and liberties. The Founders realized this and that is precisely why the Bill of Rights is essentially a can't-do list for the federal government, a bugger-off and mind your own business manifesto.

But we're not living in a vacuum now are we? Matt Welch gets into this with respect to the IRS and its bullying of conservative groups seeking tax exempt status. Welch contends that it is actually a far greater problem if there is an entrenched, even intractable political bias within this powerful government agency rather than its employees acting upon orders from Washington DC as has been suggested by at least one Cincinnati office employee. One or two bad eggs can be taken out but institutional bias is forever.

Knowing what we do then about the IRS and the Department of Justice going after Associated Press reporters and naming Fox News reporter James Rosen as a criminal co-conspirator in two separate leak investigations, it would take a suspension of disbelief of the highest order to simply shrug off the deeds of the NSA in this snooping scandal as a who cares?

Again, even in a vacuum, it's always been our contention that the burden of proof with respect to wrong-doing by the government resides with that very government. With the IRS and now the NSA our consented-to government has much to answer for and we can't say we are necessarily re-assured with what we've been hearing so far.


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