Rights Of The Individual
14 October 1998 1998 Ron Paul 119:7
At least he is consistent. No president has ever been more willing to assault liberty in the pursuit of political happiness than has this one. Clinton is always willing to embrace any new erosion of rights, as long as there is a group of voters or political contributors out there who wish it so. This is one area in which Clinton has been thoroughly bipartisan. In his five years in office, he has joined Republicans in Congress on quite a spree of liberty-bashing. He has signed laws that have stripped habeas corpus to its bones, vastly increased the number of crimes deemed federal offenses, established mindless mandatory sentencing and targeted certain classes of defendants — terrorists, drug pushers — for the special evisceration of rights.
Statement on Counter-Terrorism Proposals and Civil Liberties
October 12, 2001 2001 Ron Paul 87:6
I am very disturbed by the provisions centralizing the power to issue writs of habeas corpus to federal courts located in the District of Columbia. Habeas corpus is one of the most powerful checks on government and anything which burdens the ability to exercise this right expands the potential for government abuses of liberty. I ask my colleagues to remember that in the centuries of experience with habeas corpus there is no evidence that it interferes with legitimate interests of law enforcement. HR 3108 also codifies one of the most common abuses of civil liberties in recent years by expanding the government’s ability to seize property from citizens who have not yet been convicted of a crime under the circumvention of the Bill of Rights known as “asset forfeiture.”
Is America a Police State?
June 27, 2002 2002 Ron Paul 64:54
Political propagandizing is used to get all of us to toe the line and be good patriots, supporting every measure suggested by the administration. We are told that preemptive strikes, torture, military tribunals, suspension of habeas corpus, executive orders to wage war, and sacrificing privacy with a weakened 4th Amendment are the minimum required to save our country from the threat of terrorism.
Congress Erodes Privacy
November 16, 2005 2005 Ron Paul 121:8
Congress is not much better when it comes to protecting against the erosion of the centuries-old habeas corpus doctrine. By declaring anyone an “enemy combatant”—a totally arbitrary designation by the President— the government can deny an individual his right to petition a judge or even speak with an attorney. Though there has been a good debate on the insanity of our policy of torturing prisoners, holding foreigners and Americans without charges seems acceptable to many. Did it never occur to those who condemn torture that unlimited detention of individuals without a writ of habeas corpus is itself torture—especially for those who are totally innocent? Add this to the controversial worldwide network of secret CIA prisons now known of for 2 years, and we should be asking ourselves what we have become as a people. Recent evidence that we’re using white phosphorus chemical weapons in Iraq does nothing to improve our image.
The Blame Game
December 7, 2005 2005 Ron Paul 124:4
All wars invite abuses of civil liberties at home, and the vague declaration of war against terrorism is worse than most in this regard. As our liberties here at home are diminished by the Patriot Act and national ID card legislation, we succumb to the temptation of all empires to neglect habeas corpus, employ torture tactics, and use secret imprisonment. These domestic and foreign policy trends reflect a morally bankrupt philosophy, devoid of any concern for liberty and the rule of law.
The Blame Game
December 7, 2005 2005 Ron Paul 124:35
Personal liberty at home is under attack; assaults on free speech and privacy, national ID cards, the Patriot Act, National Security letters, and challenges to habeas corpus all have been promoted;
17 December 2005 2005 Ron Paul 128:4
All wars invite abuses of civil liberties at home, and this vague declaration of war against terrorism is worse than most in this regard. As our liberties here at home are diminished by the PATRIOT Act and national ID card legislation, we succumb to the temptation of all empires to spy on American citizens, neglect habeas corpus, employ torture tactics, and use secret imprisonments. These domestic and foreign policy trends reflect a morally bankrupt philosophy devoid of any concern for liberty and the rule of law.
17 December 2005 2005 Ron Paul 128:25
Personal liberty at home is under attack; assaults on free speech and privacy, national ID cards, the PATRIOT Act, National Security Letters, and challenges to habeas corpus all have been promoted.
President Would Define Enemy Combatants
27 September 2006 2006 Ron Paul 88:4
This legislation eliminates habeas corpus for alien unlawful enemy combatants detained under this act. Those thus named by the President will have no access to the courts to dispute the determination and detention. We have already seen numerous examples of individuals detained by mistake, who were not involved in terrorism or anti-American activities. This legislation will deny such individuals the right to challenge their detention in the court. Certainly we need to prosecute those who have committed crimes against the United States, but we also need to be sure that those we detain are legitimately suspect.
The Real Reason To Oppose The Supplemental Appropriation
20 March 2007 2007 Ron Paul 36:17
Only with the complicity of Congress have we become a Nation of preemptive war, secret military tribunals, torture, rejection of habeas corpus, warrantless searches, undue government secrecy, extraordinary renditions, and uncontrollable spying on the American people.
In The Name Of Patriotism (Who Are The Patriots?)
22 May 2007 2007 Ron Paul 55:40
The attack on privacy has not relented over the past 6 years. The Military Commissions Act is a particularly egregious piece of legislation and, if not repealed, will change America for the worse as the powers unconstitutionally granted to the executive branch are used and abused. This act grants excessive authority to use secretive military commissions outside of places where active hostilities are going on. The Military Commissions Act permits torture, arbitrary detention of American citizens as unlawful enemy combatants at the full discretion of the President and without the right of habeas corpus, and warrantless searches by the NSA. It also gives to the President the power to imprison individuals based on secret testimony.
Resolution On Situation In Burma
2 October 2007 2007 Ron Paul 97:2
More importantly, perhaps, I am concerned that while going around the world criticizing admittedly abhorrent governmental actions abroad we are ignoring the very dangerous erosions of our own civil liberties and way of life at home. Certainly it is objectionable that the Burmese government holds its own citizens in jails without trial. But what about the secret prisons that our own CIA operates around the globe that hold thousands of individuals indefinitely and without trial? Certainly it is objectionable that the government of Burma can declare Aung San Suu Kyi a political prisoner to be held in confinement. But what about the power that Congress has given the president to declare anyone around the world, including American citizens, “enemy combatants” subject to indefinite detention without trial? What about the “military commissions act” that may well subject Americans to military trial with secret evidence permitted and habeas corpus suspended?
Living by the Sword
13 March 2008 2008 Ron Paul 14:16
No more abuse of habeas corpus!
MISTAKES: JUST A FEW!
June 3, 2009 2009 Ron Paul 63:14
Theres no end in sight for secret prisons, special courts, ignoring the right of habeas corpus, no penalties for carrying out illegal torture and a new system of preventive detention. We continue to protect the concepts of state secrets and Presidential signing statements. We are enlarging Bagram prison in Afghanistan, and theres no cessation of the senseless war on drugs.
Torture, War, and Presidential Powers
14 June 2004 Texas Straight Talk 14 June 2004 verse 5 ... Cached
The greater issue presented by the Defense department memo, however, is the threat posed by unchecked executive power. Defense department lawyers essentially argue that a president’s powers as Commander-In-Chief override federal laws prohibiting torture, and the Justice department appears to agree. But the argument for extraordinary wartime executive powers has been made time and time again, always with bad results and the loss of our liberties. War has been used by presidents to excuse the imprisonment of American citizens of Japanese descent, to silence speech, to suspend habeas corpus, and even to control entire private industries.
Ignoring Reality in Iraq
13 December 2004 Texas Straight Talk 13 December 2004 verse 9 ... Cached
Non-interventionism was the foreign policy ideal of the Founding Fathers, an ideal that is ignored by both political parties today. Those who support political and military intervention in Iraq and elsewhere should have the integrity to admit that their views conflict with the principles of our nation’s founding. It’s easy to repeat the tired cliché that “times have changed since the Constitution was written”- in fact, that’s an argument the left has used for decades to justify an unconstitutional welfare state. Yet if we accept this argument, what other principles from the founding era should we discard? Should we reject federalism? Habeas corpus? How about the Second Amendment? The principle of limited government enshrined in the Constitution- limited government in both domestic and foreign affairs- has not changed over time. What has changed is our willingness to ignore that principle.
Getting Iraq War Funding Wrong Again
30 April 2007 Texas Straight Talk 30 April 2007 verse 8 ... Cached
Though many will criticize the president for mis-steps in Iraq and at home, it is with the willing participation of Congress, through measures like this war funding bill, that our policy continues to veer off course. Additionally, it is with the complicity of Congress that we have become a nation of pre-emptive war, secret military tribunals, torture, rejection of habeas corpus, warrantless searches, undue government secrecy, extraordinary renditions, and uncontrolled spying on the American people. Fighting over there has nothing to do with preserving freedoms here at home. More likely the opposite is true.
The Fear Factor
30 July 2007 Texas Straight Talk 30 July 2007 verse 8 ... Cached
To calm fears, Americans accepted the patriot act and the doctrine of pre-emptive war. We tolerated new laws that allow the government to snoop on us, listen to our phone calls, track our financial dealings, make us strip down at airports and even limited the rights of habeas corpus and trial by jury. Like some dysfunctional episode of the twilight zone, we allowed the summit of our imagination to be linked up with the pit of our fears.
A Major Victory for Texas
23 June 2008 Texas Straight Talk 23 June 2008 verse 5 ... Cached
However, now is not the time to rest on our laurels. The bittersweet aspect of this victory is that we had to fight at all. We took time away from family and friends, doing other things, to attend these meetings, inform others, write letters, post signs and submit our complaints, and we should not have had to. Government should let us be, if we are peaceful citizens, harming no one. In a perfect world, government could be trusted to act in the best interests of the people without overwhelming pressure of this kind. This is not a perfect world. Constant pressure is needed to keep government in check, and we succeeded this time. But this will not be the last time citizen efforts and involvement will be required. We still face many unreasonable encroachments of big government today, from confiscatory, economy-strangling taxation to creeping disregard of the right of habeas corpus and other Constitutional rights, to thousands of nuisance bureaucratic regulations interfering with our every day lives. We have drifted far from what the founding fathers envisioned for this nation. Last week was just one victory towards getting back on the right path. We must continue to hold politicians’ feet to the Constitutional fire. If I had to guess, they will probably try to implement the NAFTA Superhighway again sometime in the future.
Texas Straight Talk from 20 December 1996 to 23 June 2008 (573 editions) are included in this Concordance. Texas Straight Talk after 23 June 2008 is in blog form on Rep. Pauls Congressional website and is not included in this Concordance.
Remember, not everything in the concordance is Ron Pauls words. Some things he quoted, and he added some newspaper and magazine articles to the Congressional Record. Check the original speech to see.