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Federal Judge Limits DHS Laptop Border Searches 359

Posted by timothy
from the oh-you-wanted-the-fourth-amendment-here-too? dept.
Declan McCullogh is reporting at CNET that a federal district court judge has rebuked the Department of Homeland Security, "which had claimed it can seize a traveler's laptop and search it six months later without warrant." As described in the article, DHS policies have been stacked against travelers entering the US, including citizens returning from abroad: "There's no requirement that they be returned to their owners after even six months or a year has passed, though supervisory approval is required if they're held for more than 15 days. The complete contents of a hard drive or memory card can be perused at length for evidence of lawbreaking of any kind, even if it's underpaying taxes or not paying parking tickets." This ruling does not address immediate searches at the border, but says that DHS cannot hold computers for indefinite searching, as in the case to hand, concerning a US citizen returning from a trip to Korea, whose laptop was seized and held for months before a search was even conducted on it.
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Federal Judge Limits DHS Laptop Border Searches

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  • Re:Rights?! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by f3rret (1776822) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:20PM (#32526752)

    I foresee TrueCrypt's website will be getting a lot of new visitors soon.

  • ruling makes sense (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:22PM (#32526800)

    After all the speed at which your nice 3k laptop becomes a paperweight via obsolescence means that a 1 year warrant-less censure effectively fines you what 1k or so without any charge.

  • Finally ... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:23PM (#32526802)

    I'm glad to see that the law is finally curtailing some of these absurd laws. For the last bunch of years a bunch of draconian policies have been deemed legal "because we say so". It's about fucking time the courts started bitch-slapping these down.

    America has become absurd, and many people simply won't go there while it's like this.

    I think every country should start doing exactly the same things to all US citizens. Let's see how long it takes before Americans start to complain about being fingerprinted, cavity searched, and arbitrarily detained.

    I like most Americans, but your fucking government is out of control.

  • Re:Finally ... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by logjon (1411219) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:25PM (#32526834)
    Sometimes to preserve freedom you have to give up...freedom...wait...
  • Re:Rights?! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Izabael_DaJinn (1231856) <slashdotNO@SPAMizabael.com> on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:25PM (#32526840) Homepage Journal
    But for many people the problem is NOT that they have something incriminating on their laptops, but the fact they are taken for soooooooooooo long and not returned. TrueCrypt folders or whatever would most likely cause the powers-that-be to keep the laptop even longer.
  • by mollog (841386) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:35PM (#32526928)
    It still scares me to see how badly the Bush administration has damaged democracy and the American constitution. It will take years, but this is another step away from the proto-fascist path that our country had started down when the far right-wing neocons came to power.

    They are still out there. The Supreme Court has been loaded with ideologues and until one of them leaves the bench we are stuck with a judicial system that has been gamed for the sake of the wealthy and well-connected who care nothing for our country's laws and traditions.
  • Re:Rights?! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by vxice (1690200) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:37PM (#32526952)
    Rights are meant to protect you from a corrupt government. It is your duty as an American to resist a corrupt government just as the red coats were removed from this country by force after being told to leave so much for 'violence is never the answer.' Laws that make criminals easier to catch make revolutionaries against corrupt government easier to catch and the only one interested in that are the entrenched corrupt government. Liberties are meant to defend you from your government and should NEVER be surrendered. Violent revolution adds a physical cost to corrupt governance.
  • by hypergreatthing (254983) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:42PM (#32527028)

    Yeah see, that's where you are wrong. I don't mind inspecting, even reasonable searches, but seizing anything? At least there needs to be a reason like it's contraband or illegal. Seizing equipment because they can is the same thing as stealing private property, and as far as i know that's covered by the 5th amendment of the constitution. You want to take my property? Fine, just provide me with enough cash so that my property, time spent on it and sensitive information on it is completely compensated for.

  • by JesseL (107722) * on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:43PM (#32527036) Homepage Journal

    Thank goodness Obama has done so much to fix all that.

  • by Peach Rings (1782482) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:43PM (#32527044) Homepage

    It scares me how scared people are that they think this is rational behavior. The "reasonable suspicion" that the border agent had at the scene was:

    Hanson appeared nervous, the discovery of the condoms and the male-enhancement pills, and Hanson's statement that he had been working with children

    Then they searched his laptop 3 times and found [pbfcomics.com] a single image of what appeared to be an adolescent girl naked on a beach, so they arrested him for possessing and transporting child pornography, and since it's federal, he's going to PMITA prison.

  • Re:Rights?! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by u-235-sentinel (594077) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:45PM (#32527068) Homepage Journal

    Rights are meant to protect you from a corrupt government. It is your duty as an American to resist a corrupt government just as the red coats were removed from this country by force after being told to leave so much for 'violence is never the answer.' Laws that make criminals easier to catch make revolutionaries against corrupt government easier to catch and the only one interested in that are the entrenched corrupt government. Liberties are meant to defend you from your government and should NEVER be surrendered. Violent revolution adds a physical cost to corrupt governance.

    According to the Constitution there are rights we cannot be forced to give up because they were not given to us by men.

    But they were sure taken by force by weak minded men

  • Re:Burned CDs (Score:5, Insightful)

    by u-235-sentinel (594077) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:46PM (#32527078) Homepage Journal

    No CDs?? I would like to see the rule on that, that would mean you can't bring music CDs, and you might as well not have CDR disks anyway, if you can't use them while you are out. This doesn't sound legit.

    what part of DHS does?

  • by tophermeyer (1573841) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:47PM (#32527094)

    I am not going to defend the Bush administration. But it is worth noting that Obama has been President for 1 1/2 years already and he's done pretty much nothing to roll that back. Bush hating made sense back in 2007 while we was still enacting crap like this, but its only fair to also be critical of the guy who came into office promising "change" and has instead protected the status quo (in terms of fascist analogies towards government).

  • You forgot your sarcasm tag. It's a testament to Bush's awfulness that yet another centrist, milquetoast suit was hailed as liberal saviour.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:56PM (#32527204)

    Seizing equipment because they can is the same thing as stealing private property, and as far as i know that's covered by the 5th amendment of the constitution.

    Except, under Bush's administration, the AG (Gonzales [wikipedia.org]) decided that non-citizens are not eligible for those rights, and that until you've been admitted into the country you exist in a legal limbo whereby they can detain anyone indefinitely without reason or oversight. So, if you're still in customs and haven't been admitted, you're a legal non-entity.

    All of the ideals America has espoused for centuries are more or less swept under the carpet in your current security paranoia.

    The people making the decisions are ignoring hundreds of years of your own law and principles, and deciding that, "no, that's not what they meant and we are allowed to suspend that". Basically, they've decided they can do anything they want, no matter what the laws and the Constitution says.

  • by Darkness404 (1287218) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @03:58PM (#32527224)
    The ruling does not make sense. Please tell me how warrantless searches of computers are legitimate to begin with.

    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    I'd say searching anyone's laptop as an unreasonable search and seizure, unless someone beat someone's head with the laptop and the laptop in question becomes a murder weapon.

    We need judges who uphold the constitution and which deliver practical rulings to make us safer. All this does is further "legitimize" what should be an illegal practice by the DHS.

  • by commodore64_love (1445365) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:02PM (#32527274) Journal

    >>>It still scares me to see how badly the Bush administration has damaged democracy and the American constitution

    Yes George Duh Bush is a git, but Obama signed the Patriot Act Renewal bill, so now he's just as much of a git. Obama should have kept his promise and let the Patriot Act expire. Obama's other broken promises:

    1 - Stop snatching people off streets. Provide a Right to fair trial. - (REALITY: We no longer have Miranda rights even for U.S. citizens.) (Can be held indefinitely w/o trial)
    2 - Right to Privacy - (They now spy on us via warrantless wiretaps and track our cellphones) (Patriot Act renewed by Obama.)
    3 - No interrogation. Close Guantanamo. - (Revoked - now they interrogate American citizens too.)
    4 - End the war. - (Now it's been extended two more years.)

    So now we've had three shitty presidents in a row.

  • by PrimaryConsult (1546585) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:10PM (#32527402)

    Mod this up...
    Honestly there is absolutely no point to a laptop search, unless the physical laptop may have been tampered with (which the visual inspection already done for domestic travel would suffice). What keeps someone from putting data onto a memory card and sticking it into their phone / game system / whatever on a hidden partition? Or better yet, using the internet to simply transfer it from a public PC lab outside of the country to a server they set up inside (if they are a returning US citizen it isn't hard to expect them to have a computer already on the inside of the border). The reverse, a visitor could use a public pc lab / free wifi to download whatever from a server in their home country. If the laptop was used for criminal activity worthy of scrutiny, a criminal would simply throw it away and buy a new one (since the activity would certainly have been worth the cost of a new computer, if it was worth searching for to begin with).

    Laptop drive/media searches are *entirely* security theater... all it does is cost criminals $400 and everyone else time and dignity...

  • by Kpau (621891) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:11PM (#32527416)
    As opposed to a central corporate string-pulling government economy... yeah that was so much better (/sarcasm). Get a grip - both sides of the ocin here suck.
  • Re:Rights?! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pluther (647209) <pluther.usa@net> on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:14PM (#32527468) Homepage

    They weren't taken by force.

    They were gleefully surrendered by frightened cowards.

  • by jbeach (852844) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:22PM (#32527568) Homepage Journal
    There is NO WAY that Obama was worse than Hillary (who fully approved the invasion of Iraq without looking over the evidence) or John Edwards (willing to be nominated while he was having a reckless affair, which shows how much he values honesty *and* the efforts of all working for him).

    Simply not possible.

    What I think is going on here, is that Obama is being called awful simply because he's not a savior. There are a lot of big messes going on right now, people. Any one of them would be the most notable thing to happen in a presidency - and we're getting all of them at once. He inherits two wars, a historic recession, and now possibly the worst ecological disaster in US history.

    McCain would clearly have been worse, just by continuing more of Bush's policies than Obama. I wish Obama were continuing none, but at least now the economy has been pulled back from the cliff.

    And above all else, Obama shows himself as better than McCain simply by not foisting on us an obscenity like Palin.
  • by commodore64_love (1445365) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:23PM (#32527602) Journal

    >>>A country has ALWAYS had the right to fully inspect or seize ANYTHING coming in across its border!

    Where in the Constitution was the United States government given that power of unlimited property theft (or limitless imprisonment)??? MY reading of the constitution says the exact opposite (Bill of Rights, sections 5 and 9 and 10).

  • by Grishnakh (216268) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:25PM (#32527628)

    As a 2nd Amendment supporter, about the only thing I can say positive about Obama is that he signed the bill into law allowing people to carry firearms in National Parks. Of course, he didn't really want to sign that, but it was attached to some other crap he wanted, so he signed it anyway. So, in a way, Obama has been better for gun-rights supporters than Bush, who never signed any such bill, and also wanted to renew the idiotic "Assault Weapons Ban" (but Congress refused to renew it at the time so he never got to sign it).

    As for shitty Presidents in a row, I think it's been a lot more than 3, unless you want to try to segregate them based on their shittiness. Honestly, I can't think of the last GOOD President this country has had. It certainly hasn't been within my lifetime. Eisenhower, perhaps? FDR? Jefferson? Washington? All the ones since the 60s have sucked:
          JFK: Bay of Pigs
          LBJ: Vietnam war, welfare
          Nixon: extending Vietnam war, Watergate
          Ford: dunno
          Carter: ineffective in mideast crisis
          Reagan: massive deficit spending on military, Iran-Contra affair
          Bush I: Gulf War I, "read my lips: no new taxes"
          Clinton: not horrible, but didn't do anything good either, stupidly got caught getting blowjob from ugly intern with loose lips; signed bill overturning Glass-Steagal Act leading to Mortgage Meltdown
          Bush II: Afgh & Iraq wars, Patriot Act, Cheney, Halliburton, Blackwater, ineffective in Katrina, the list goes on and on
          Obama: extending Afgh & Iraq wars, ineffective with BP oil spill, promised "change" but everything's still the same as under Bush even though he has a Democrat-controlled Congress to work with

  • by commodore64_love (1445365) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:28PM (#32527660) Journal

    You're aim is poor, because you're targeting the wrong person. I hate corporations. Centralized power of ANY kind, whether it is in a corporation or government, is dangerous to individual liberty. I guess that's why I hated BOTH bush and Øbama.

    Why must decisions always be placed in someone else's hands? Why can't I make my OWN decisions of what I want to buy, or wish to work, or desire to live. Bush/Obama both tried to take away my freedom of choice. As if I'm serf.

  • by Jedi Alec (258881) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:28PM (#32527672)

    He wants to turn the USA into a central, government-run economy (like Cuba is today, or the Soviet Union used to be).

    No, he doesn't. He doesn't even get anywhere close. We western europeans are miiiiiiles to the left of you in terms of the economy and social security(please note i do not include our attitude to furreners after the amount of votes the esteemed mr wilders got last night) and *we* are nowhere near Cuba or the former Soviet Union. Compared to the kind of politicians we elect Obama is a corporate shill, as is most of your congress, so no worries, you'll be happily bent over the barrel of whichever corporation is in line to assrape you next.

    See how empty hyperbole rhetoric serves no purpose except to scare stupid people and make you look like a total ass to the intelligent ones? If you guys want to change shit, stop talking in terms of ridiculous absolutes and start living in the real world for a change. You know, the one that is full of other countries that have all tried various approaches and gathered tons of valuable data on what does and does not work.

  • by Darkness404 (1287218) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:32PM (#32527758)
    Yes, but that still doesn't make it right or truly legitimate. However, I think we can all agree that the intent of it wasn't to search everything but rather give border officers the authority to search for things like weapons not search computer files.

    We need government to be limited and this allows for baseless, pointless searches, both destroying freedom and destroying sane fiscal policies. This must be repealed either at the legislative or by the courts as unconstitutional.

    And for those delusional masses who think that this prevents "terrorism", ask yourself, what computer file can be gotten in a foreign country that is illegal that can't be gotten via the internet?
  • by Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:36PM (#32527828)

    When you are at the border you are no longer "in" the US. You are "between" countries. You have no rights.

    Its like a little mini-gitmo for everyone coming to america!

  • by Darkness404 (1287218) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:36PM (#32527840)
    Not according to the US founding fathers.

    We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness---That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these Ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it,

    Rights are not given to the people by the government, rights are natural, given by God (or nature). Governments are given rights by the people. People, however have natural rights given to them simply by being human. The right to oppose government and the right to not be subjected to unreasonable searches is a natural right, not a right given by government because the government has no authority to give or take away rights.

  • by commodore64_love (1445365) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:46PM (#32527998) Journal

    His Democrats Congress passed a bill, and he signed into law, a requirement that I MUST buy health insurance, or be punished (fined $950). Now they are pushing a bill that would require me to have a license to publish on the web. Plus this idea to charge people for how much carbon they use. They bail-out companies like GM that should be been allowed to pass away.

    What's next? I buy a normal car instead of a hybrid car, and I get fined $1000 per year? This is called central government control of the economy.

  • by commodore64_love (1445365) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @04:49PM (#32528028) Journal

    Corporatism and central planning are the same thing - it's government and corporations working as one. Obama's policies certainly qualify

  • by macaulay805 (823467) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @05:08PM (#32528300) Homepage Journal
    Ironically, your tagline fits your post "-1 Wrong". The solution you're suggestion is fixing the symptom, NOT the problem. The problem is unreasonable search and seizure. That is the problem we should be tackling.
  • by lgw (121541) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @05:20PM (#32528432) Journal

    That's an insightful idea: really, the problem from government central planning, and monopoly (or non-competitive oligopoly) central planning are about the same, aren't they? With no need to please the customer, problems don't get fixed. "We're AT&T: we don't have to." Corporate lobbying of government decision makers and coprorate lobbying of big monopoly players through partnership agreements, whic quite different in style, seem to end up working the same way.

    Hmm, if only we could move the seat of power in America from one central monopoly to 50 or so competing smaller governments, so we had a choice - nah, that's a radical kook idea, no one would ever buy that.

  • by Wyatt Earp (1029) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @05:25PM (#32528502)

    Obama is very far from Lenin.

    Obama hasn't instituted the killing of people politically opposed to him, nor has there been a mandate to sell off farms Zimbabwe style with a mandatory percentage of the crops going to the urban workers.

    Obama maybe left of Bush and a bit left of the Clintons, but he is far from European Labour or the Greens and way right of Soviet Union Communist Party.

  • by Grishnakh (216268) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @05:29PM (#32528574)

    A chimpanzee could do just as effective a job as President as him

    Actually, we already tried that. George W Bush did a much worse job than Obama is doing.

    So we've changed from a chimpanzee to a baboon. Great. Big improvement. Chimps are actually smarter than baboons.

    I think the real problem is that, after eight ruinous years of Bush, people were looking for a savior. What we got was an everyday politician. Obama is not great, but he's not bad either. I would prefer to have a great president, but I'll settle for average over abysmally shitty any day.

    No, he's not "not bad" or "average", he's downright shitty. Maybe not quite as abysmally shitty as Bush, but the improvement is so slight that it's pretty much unnoticeable. As I said before, his response to the oil spill disaster has been every bit as ineffective as Bush's response to Katrina. And he hasn't done anything to end the stupid and unproductive wars, and in fact has added more troops. I really fail to see how this guy is substantially different from Bush at all. At least he doesn't talk like a moron, but speeches don't equal results.

    If that happens, this country will not survive. I mean that quite literally. A Palin presidency would actually make us long for the days of George W Bush.

    I have serious doubts this country is going to survive, regardless of who wins the next election. It's tearing itself to pieces.

  • by Shotgun (30919) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @05:48PM (#32528798)

    Wasn't there a few Democrats in power when all of these laws enabling this bullstuff were being passed?

  • by lgw (121541) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @05:51PM (#32528832) Journal

    And you can't even blame "fear of terrorists". We gave away the 4th Amendment for the War on Drugs, and we'll never get it back. The cops can just take your stuff for fun now, and there's nothing you can do about it. It's not even a "border" thing.

  • by Shotgun (30919) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @05:52PM (#32528858)

    No the real problem is that someone making $30,000 a year expects someone else to pay $15,000 to take care of their health.

  • by JesseMcDonald (536341) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @07:00PM (#32529656) Homepage

    You have to BE here to be receive your guaranteed rights

    No, you have your rights no matter where you are. That's why they're called "natural rights"; everyone has them. More to the point, to the extent that someone is acting as an agent of the US government under the authority of the US Constitution their authority is limited to that actually granted by the Constitution. The Constitution does not grant the US government or its agents the authority to perform any search or seizure without a warrant. If anyone were to perform such a search or seizure without a warrant then said search or seizure would be an illegal act under US law, lacking any Constitutional "legitimacy", regardless of where the act takes place.

    Whether you can enforce your rights is a different matter, of course. Clearly the US government isn't going to help, but there are other options one can try.

  • by aztektum (170569) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @07:13PM (#32529810)

    Requiring people to have healthcare so they can stay healthy is uhm a bit on the oppsite side of the spectrum of a man responsible for murdering ~4 million men, women and children.

  • by element-o.p. (939033) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @08:24PM (#32530474) Homepage
    Because the modern Republican party is not really Republican. That's why I no longer consider myself Republican (and haven't for a long time).
  • by Peach Rings (1782482) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @08:50PM (#32530668) Homepage

    You do pay your own bills, through taxes. Everyone shares the cost.

    Consider the alternative that you're suggesting. You suggest that people who get sick should have to pay for their care, as if it's a good/service that they're consuming. But the sick are in a situation where declining to visit the doctor can put a human life at risk!

    The thing that must be avoided at all cost is a financial disincentive to receive medical attention. That's the human rights part- a person in need of care should never have to balance their life against the needs of their family, and recovering people in a hospital should never have the additional burden of worrying about bills. The easiest way to accomplish this is to simply make medical care free, and to bill everyone. Sick people (who have enough to worry about anyway) aren't penalized for things out of their control, which I would think that Free Marketers would understand is pretty sensible from an economic perspective.

  • by jthill (303417) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @09:44PM (#32530946)

    a requirement that I MUST buy health insurance, or be punished (fined $950)

    So buy insurance. If you don't, nobody's going to just let you die because civilized countries, decent humans, don't do that. If you get sick and can't afford the hospital stay that would make you healthy again, then somebody's going to pay for it anyway -- that somebody being the taxpayer. So we don't care if you're young and healthy and say you don't need it when the truth is you'd rather gamble with our money, and we don't really lend much credence to accusations of immorality from anyone who suggests we would or should just watch someone's child die right here in our own country.

  • by drsmithy (35869) <drsmithy@NOSPam.gmail.com> on Thursday June 10, 2010 @09:47PM (#32530962)

    P.S. Also you didn't answer the question: How can Obama BE any more liberal? He's only a few steps away from where Lenin stood on the political spectrum (central planning).

    Wow. Just.... wow.

    Folks, this is probably the most graphic display of how far to the right the American political spectrum is skewed you're likely to see for some time.

  • by Grishnakh (216268) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @09:56PM (#32531004)

    Well, I just think Palin would tear it to pieces faster.

    Yes, definitely. She'd probably start a nuclear war or something.

    But, we are rapidly entering the kind of mentality that got us into the original Civil War. The main difference is that the battle lines are not as strictly drawn on state lines.

    Yep. It seems to be more urban vs. rural, but still more complex than that. The country is pulling apart in many directions, over many issues: immigration, spending, bailouts, foreign wars, taxation, corporate power (particularly over government), loss of manufacturing and other economic changes, etc.

  • by kuei12 (1555897) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @10:05PM (#32531044)
    The real issue is neither Obama or McCain should have made it that far up the ladder. We had several better people to choose from, and americans typically pick the two biggest idiots to compete in the final leg of the race. The american people are to blame. NOBODY ELSE!
  • by Cassius Corodes (1084513) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @10:13PM (#32531084)
    Its the same stuff as people calling democrats communist, its just a place-holder for things they dont like, without giving too much though to reality.
  • Re:Finally ... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by interkin3tic (1469267) on Thursday June 10, 2010 @11:04PM (#32531358)

    I think every country should start doing exactly the same things to all US citizens. Let's see how long it takes before Americans start to complain about being fingerprinted, cavity searched, and arbitrarily detained.

    I like most Americans, but your fucking government is out of control.

    I find that, in general, my countrymen and women who are most opposed to ridiculousness like this are the very ones who leave the US the most often. Those numbskulls who approve of treating all international travelers like terrorists on the other hand stay at home

    Maybe its that travellers experience security theater firsthand and then become opposed to it. Maybe it's more that people who want full body cavity searches of all people coming into the US are so xenophobic about the evil non-americans trying to steal their precious "freedom" from them that they won't leave. Or maybe it's just that those people who can't see that it's doing nothing are so dumb they don't realize there's anything worth seeing outside of our borders.

    Whatever the case, blaming Americans who do venture past our borders is blaming the wrong demographic.

  • by Immostlyharmless (1311531) on Friday June 11, 2010 @12:40AM (#32531874)

    "...quoted high-deductible, catastrophic insurance..."

    So...in other words..insurance that's basically useless for:

    A) Anyone who has a chronic health problem.
    B) Anyone who occasionally visits a doctor for routine health care and check ups
    OR
    c) for a family or couple.

    Thanks for making *that* convincing argument!

  • I've never understood this. Fascists supported a dictatorship where individual freedom is all but dead. Republicans support a libertarian philosophy (albeit not as extreme as the actual LP) for maximum individual freedom.

    Republicans, not all but many, do not support the libertarian philosophy. That is why dissatisfied Republicans left the Republican Party to start the Libertarian Party. Republicans seek to restrict liberty just as much as Democrats do, only in different arenas. Businesses can do whatever they want to make a profit but individuals can't do whatever they want in private.

    Falcon

  • a requirement that I MUST buy health insurance, or be punished (fined $950)

    So buy insurance. If you don't, nobody's going to just let you die because civilized countries, decent humans, don't do that. If you get sick and can't afford the hospital stay that would make you healthy again, then somebody's going to pay for it anyway -- that somebody being the taxpayer.

    That might be true elsewhere but not in the US. Taxpayers don't pay the medical bills for those unable to pay, those who use medical services pay.

    So we don't care if you're young and healthy and say you don't need it when the truth is you'd rather gamble with our money

    What is this if not trolling? Neither I nor many others want to gamble with other people's money, what I want is to be able to pay out of pocket for regular medical bills, and be able to shop around for the providers of said services. With most medical care if the medical staff is told the bill will be paid out of pocket, so they don't have to file an insurance form, they will reduce the cost. It does cost money to file those forms after all. And just as with everything thing else, I want to be able to shop around for health care.

    and we don't really lend much credence to accusations of immorality from anyone who suggests we would or should just watch someone's child die right here in our own country.

    It doesn't happen often where we allow children to die because of lack of medical care now. Though an adult, being unemployed, a student, and not having insurance after I was hit in an accident after my classes I was Medevaced [wikipedia.org] by helicopter to a hospital where I stayed while in a coma. After I came out of the coma I was moved to a rehab house where I stayed a few more weeks. Once I left there I still went through more months of therapy. All together my medical bills came to more than $120,000, without any guarantee the docs, hospital, rehab house, and therapists would ever be paid.

    Not only that, but for children there are a number of Shriners Hospitals for Children [wikipedia.org], 22, in the USA. There is no requirement children admitted to any of them or their parents be able to pay. The same with comedian Danny Thomas's [wikipedia.org] St. Jude Children's Research Hospital [wikipedia.org]. Let's see what Funding [wikipedia.org] says"
    "All medically eligible patients who are accepted for treatment at St. Jude are treated without regard to the family's ability to pay. St. Jude is the only pediatric research center in the United States where families never pay for treatments that are not covered by insurance, and families without insurance are never asked to pay. In addition to providing medical services to eligible patients, St. Jude also assists families with transportation, lodging, and meals. Three separate specially-designed patient housing facilities--Grizzly House for short-term (up to two weeks), Ronald McDonald House for medium-term (two weeks to 3 months), and Target House for long-term (3 months or more)--provide housing for patients and up to three family members, with no cost to the patient. These policies, along with research expenses and other costs, cause the hospital to incur more than $2.4 million in operating costs each day. Around $180,000 is covered by patient insurance, the remaining $2.22 million/day is funded by charitable contributions."

    "We don't really lend much credence to accusations of immorality from anyone" who makes up BS!

    Falcon

  • "...quoted high-deductible, catastrophic insurance..."

    So...in other words..insurance that's basically useless for:

    A) Anyone who has a chronic health problem.
    B) Anyone who occasionally visits a doctor for routine health care and check ups
    OR
    c) for a family or couple.

    You left out a very important OR
    d) Anyone who wants to pay out of pocket for regular medical expenses.

    I'd rather have catastrophic medical coverage and use a health saving account to pay ordinary medical costs. If I were married, even if I had children, I'd still prefer my option. The only thing that would change that is an expensive chronic issue. In which case I'd be willing to pay more for more coverage. Unlike others I believe in personal responsibility.

    Falcon

  • by JesseMcDonald (536341) on Friday June 11, 2010 @01:14PM (#32537816) Homepage

    He has the same rights there as he has here. Enforcement is a separate issue. The US Constitution doesn't grant rights, it simply states that the government is required to respect them in exchange for receiving whatever appearance of legitimacy the Constitution can provide. The rights themselves exist independent of the Constitution, and predate the Constitution.

    If rights only existed to the extent they could be enforced then it would be impossible to violate anyone's rights; the moment they were violated they would disappear. That would render the concept meaningless.

    Anyway, we are speaking of U.S. citizens and agents of the U.S. government. Regardless of what may occur in other countries, they must adhere to U.S. law in every respect to maintain their legal status. The U.S. government obviously cannot authorize them to act contrary to U.S. law, and if they do so on their own they can be held accountable for it within the victim's jurisdiction.

FORTH IF HONK THEN

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