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November 7, 2007

Status of legislation repealing the 4th Amendment

Today’s Downsizer Dispatch . . .

Recruit more Downsizers. Forward this to others.

Quote of the Day:

“Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?”
– John Belushi as Bluto in the movie “Animal House”

Subject: Status of legislation repealing the 4th Amendment

The 4th Amendment of the Bill of Rights protects Americans against searches and seizures without a warrant. In August 2007 the Democratic Congress repealed the 4th Amendment, in fact if not in name. They did so at the request of a Republican President. The instrument of this repeal was a bill called the “Protect America Act.”

In the wake of this crime against the supreme law of the land the Democrats have claimed that they are working to undo the damage they did. They claim to have not fully understood the real impact of what they passed. This could actually be true given that they did not read the “Protect America Act” before they voted on it.

It is less true that the Democrats are really working to undo the damage. It increasingly appears that the Democrats are just going through the motions, making minor changes to impart the impression that they have restored 4th Amendment protections when really they have not.

Why the charade?

The Democrats are responding to public pressure to correct their mistake, but that pressure is not so great as to make them do something real. At the back of the Democrats’ minds is the fear that they will be blamed for the next terrorist attack if they do not give the President every unconstitutional power he demands.

We’ve created the “Read the Bills Act” (RTBA) to make Congress read their bills before they vote on them. If you’ve not yet asked Congress to pass RTBA, or have not done so lately, please do so today. RTBA might have been enough to prevent the passage of the “Protect America Act.” You can send your message here.

We’ve also created a campaign to strike at the fear issue. Congress is convinced that the American people are terrorized by terrorism. Here at Downsize DC we believe the only way to win the war on terror is by not being afraid of terrorism, and by convincing Congress to stop being afraid on our behalf. If you haven’t yet sent Congress an “I am not afraid” message, or have not done so recently, please do so today. You can send your message here.

We’re also striking at the root of all the constitutional violations committed in the name of the so-called “war on terror.” We are doing so by supporting Congressman Ron Paul’s “American Freedom Agenda Act of 2007.” The Freedom Agenda would . . .

  • Repeal the “Military Commissions Act of 2007” and thereby restore the ancient right of habeas corpus, as well as end legally sanctioned torture by U.S. government agents
  • Repeal the “Protect America Act” by restoring the old “Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act” (FISA). Doing so would restore the 4th Amendment, and outlaw warrantless spying on American citizens by the President of the United States.
  • Give Congress standing in court to challenge the President’s use of “signing statements” as a means to avoid executing the nation’s laws
  • Make it illegal for government agents to kidnap people and send them abroad to be tortured by foreign governments
  • Provide legal protection to journalists who expose wrong-doing by the Federal government
  • Prohibit the use of secret evidence to label groups or individuals as terrorists for the purpose of criminal or civil sanctions

You can send a message on behalf of Ron Paul’s “American Freedom Agenda Act” here.

Strike at the roots of America’s problems. Make Congress feel the right kind of pressure and the right kind of fear. Make them feel your pressure. Make them fear you. Show the fighting spirit of Bluto from “Animal House.” He may have been wrong about who bombed Pearl Harbor, but he wasn’t wrong about what needed to be done.

You can do what needs to be done by taking one or all of the actions above, and also below . . .


Our Goal: Recruit 1,000 monthly credit card pledgers of at least 16 cents per day ($5 per month)

Purpose: To launch Operation Everywhere — an advertising campaign designed to recruit a huge army of DC Downsizers and make Downsizing proposals like the “Read the Bills Act” seen and heard by everyone, everywhere, every day.

Status (as of close of business Monday): 21 new pledgers, 951 left to go

Relentless progress will get the job done, so we plan to be relentless. Help us prepare to exploit the new political environment that will exist after the presidential primaries are over. Congressman Ron Paul has caused an explosion of public discussion about smaller government. This discussion must not end when the campaign ends, it must expand.

Here are the new monthly pledgers: David Clark, Mike Spalding, Monroe Jeffrey, David Sill, Shawn Loy, David Newberger, Deborah Trimmer, Nicholas Parisi, Ryan C Underwood, Tom Savage, Talya Shoup, Joshua Hicks, Carol Himes, Robert Brooks, Leona F Valencich, Terence Peterson

Here are the Downsizers who made one-time donations: Merl Webster, J. R. Greig, Benjamin Quatrano, Harry W Plott, Robert E Graham Sr, Patrick Krey, Barbara E Fitzpatrick, Sandy Huntress, Philip De Souza, Susan C Brown, W Michael O’Brien, Babs Smith, Robert L Knowlden, Kenneth Miller, William Wesson, Matt Luna, Theodore Skye Welch, Harry W. Plott, Judith A Shellabarger, Karen Roubal, Michael C Parish, Gregory Camia, Diane M McFarland, Chad Nelson, Beth Johnson, Kay Samalin, William Buchanan, Peter C Mapes, Louis R Colombo, Amy Mozzocchi

You can get your name added to the list (unless you choose not to be listed), plus receive a copy of our glossy 16-page booklet, “The Downsize DC Vision.” Just start a monthly pledge of at least 16 cents per day ($5 per month). You can do so here.

Thank you for being a DC Downsizer.

Jim Babka
President, Inc.

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