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The Asylum

Welcome to the Asylum. This is a site devoted to politics and current events in America, and around the globe. The THREE lunatics posting here are unabashed conservatives that go after the liberal lies and deceit prevalent in the debate of the day. We'd like to add that the views expressed here do not reflect the views of other inmates, nor were any inmates harmed in the creation of this site.

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Gingrich Said What?

This morning I woke up to this story, presented by Captain Ed. It seems that Mr. Gingrich has decided that freedom of speech might have to be curtailed to win this war. And no, I'm not making this up. The New York Sun has the story:

A former House speaker, Newt Gingrich, is causing a stir by proposing that free speech may have to be curtailed in order to fight terrorism.

"We need to get ahead of the curve rather than wait until we actually literally lose a city, which I think could literally happen in the next decade if we're unfortunate," Mr. Gingrich said Monday night during a speech in New Hampshire. "We now should be impaneling people to look seriously at a level of supervision that we would never dream of if it weren't for the scale of the threat."

Speaking at an award dinner billed as a tribute to crusaders for the First Amendment, Mr. Gingrich, who is considering a run for the White House in 2008, painted an ominous picture of the dangers facing America.

"This is a serious, long-term war," the former speaker said, according an audio excerpt of his remarks made available yesterday by his office. "Either before we lose a city or, if we are truly stupid, after we lose a city, we will adopt rules of engagement that use every technology we can find to break up their capacity to use the Internet, to break up their capacity to use free speech, and to go after people who want to kill us to stop them from recruiting people."

Mr. Gingrich acknowledged that these proposals would trigger "a serious debate about the First Amendment." He also said international law must be revised to address the exigencies posed by international terrorists.

"We should propose a Geneva Convention for fighting terrorism, which makes very clear that those who would fight outside the rules of law, those who would use weapons of mass destruction, and those who would target civilians are, in fact, subject to a totally different set of rules that allow us to protect civilization by defeating barbarism before it gains so much strength that it is truly horrendous," he said.

It's not our freedoms that are killing us in this war. It's the idea that we have to fight this war so we don't "offend" anyone. While I respect Newt, this has to be added to the other numerous statements he's made that just simply scream out "This man says moronic things," which is why I can't even fathom him trying to make a run for the White House. It's not that he couldn't run, but rather it's how he will run, and what he will say on the trail. He's addressing a crowd in New Hampshire here. Does he really think the voters want to hear that he'll work on ripping more of our free speech rights away? Was it not bad enough when McCain and Feingold did it a couple of years ago?

If this is about the speech used in this war by our enemies and their enablers, we'd be remiss if we didn't remember that the freedom to speak out still has limits. It's not as all-encompassing as people think it is. There are laws on the books preventing the sort of speech to whip people into a frenzy, and incite violence. You still can't yell fire in a movie theater, and you still can't verbally threaten someone. So, I'm not quite sure what sort of limitations Mr. Gingrich has in mind.

One thing is sure and that's the fact I doubt conservatives would appreciate this sort of idea. The First Amendment is one of our most cherished rights, which is why John McCain doesn't have a chance in Hell of taking the nomination. His work on CFR, which greatly limited our freedom of speech in an election cycle has not been forgotten or forgiven. When the Framers wrote the First Amendment, the entire point of it was to protect our religious identity, and prevent government interference there, but also our basic political rights; the same sort that King George had quashed in Great Britain.

The sort of speech he'd like to target is that which gives aid and comfort to our enemies. I get that. WE understand that completely. But the answer is not less speech. It's more of it. A cadence of thousands of voices and thoughts reaching out across the nation, the world, and the 'Net. And if this is Mr. Gingrich's only solution, he's never getting the nomination to be the GOP candidate in '08. Speaking honestly, this sort of speech is exactly the sort that just counted him out, and removed him from our list. Not that he was on it in the first place. Being the House Speaker is nice and all, but he's never held any other serious office where tough decisions are made.

People don't want someone who compromises. That's why they rejected John Kerry in 2004, and why they'll reject nearly every House- or Senate-bound candidate in '08, as well. This is a pipe dream for Newt, and I hate to be one of the people waking him up this morning, but he really has no chance. Have fun on that campaign trail Newt. You'll be on your own with your staff, and wondering where all the people are.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but they'll be exercising their freedom of speech.

Publius II


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