Recently, PolicyMic covered the very strange silence of the anti-war crowd and the celebrities that accompanied them on a possible war with Syria. Be it fear of crossing the Obama administration or fear of charges of racism, the left-wing statists' silence is most intriguing.
However, they are not the only ones with a peculiar attitude. Right-wing statists, or conservatives if you will, have also acted in a strange way: They now seem to oppose big government. Have they been taken out of a trance? Were they drugged? Or are they simply against big government only when it's run by Democrats? Either way, here are 11 conservatives who now oppose government infringement of our liberties or its useless wars.
1. Sean Hannity, Fox News host
What he said then: “Is it right to say that ... on issues of national security, be it the NSA surveillance program, the data mining program, the Patriot Act, Guantanamo Bay, that Democrats are weak on issues involving national security?”
What he says now: “Big Brother is monitoring your every move, whether it's online or on the telephone ... Let's talk about why ... this is important to you. Number one: This is America, and as law-abiding citizens, you have a right to privacy. Number two: these actions by the Obama administration are ... clear violations of the Fourth Amendment, which prohibits unreasonable search and seizures...”
I guess Hannity has become weak on national security issues in 'Murica.
2. Bill O'Reilly, Fox News host
What he said then: (Talking about a judge who ruled that the surveillance program was unconstitutional) “Does she want Americans to die? … She is a far-left, activist jurist. Does she want dead people in the streets in America?”
What he says now: “Phone calls and emails to and from American citizens are being scrutinized. And I believe the judges have no idea how it's a massive intrusion, and it affects all of us.”
I guess O'Reilly now wants dead people in the streets of 'Murica.
3. Ann Coulter, conservative pundit
What she said then: The Republicans took the War on Terror seriously; the NSA was merely “looking for patterns and not the content of phone calls.”
What she says now: “People just can’t trust Obama at this point, because they don’t care about terrorism, they want to spy on their political enemies.”
4. Rush Limbaugh, conservative radio host
What he said then: “Pat Leahy opposes NSA intercepts of the enemy. It's time to ask what does Senator Leahy support other than his 'Al-Qaeda bill of rights.' He is wasting one of 100 seats in the U.S. Senate.”
What he says now: “This government's already too big, it's too damn powerful, and it's too unforgiving — and this doesn't have anything to do with competent intelligence gathering.”
Come on, Rush. You wanted the NSA to intercept the enemy; of course you need a big, powerful government!
5. Glenn Beck, "libertarian" radio and TV host
What he said then: “Well, over the weekend, the House failed to pass this bill (Protect America Act), which would have prevented the Protect America Act from lapsing — an extension requested by the president. It's got a six-month sunset over and over again. He feels — and I happen to agree with him — that this congressional game-playing by Nancy Pelosi will end up killing Americans.”
What he says now: “The NSA patriot leader is just another chance for America to regain her moral compass and set things right. No red or blue. Just truth.”
The truth now seems that he wants 'Muricans to die.
6. The Washington Times
What they said before: “The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) asserts that, under section 215 (of the Patriot Act), the FBI could spy on a person because they don’t like the books she reads, or because they don’t like the Web sites she visits. The above is nothing more than hyperbole that bears little relation to the facts.”
What they say now: “Lies (from the NSA) are a dangerous in a democracy. James Madison warned that leaving the citizens of a popular government in the dark “is but a prologue to a farce or a tragedy.” The House on Wednesday voted against doing anything about the domestic surveillance program.”
Who's overhyped now?
7. Jim Inhofe, GOP senator
What he said then: “I actually supported it originally. I felt a little more comfortable supporting it with Bush as president.”
What he says now: “The NSA violations are very concerning as it appears the Obama Administration has abused the authority granted to them by Congress ... As we uncover any violations, it is important we strike a balance of civil liberty protections with intelligence collection against those seeking to attack us overseas and here at home.”
Hmm ... George W. Bush was able to find such and illusive balance?
8. John Culberson, GOP representative
What he said then: “It (the Patriot Act and subsequent NSA) had some good language in it. It was designed to listen to foreign nationals on foreign soil.”
What he says now: “It looks like everyone who warned me about the Patriot Act was right — we have all been systematically lied to. It is as though we live in a totalitarian police state, and I will do everything in my power to undo the damage done to our privacy, our liberty, and our Republic. As the Declaration of Independence states, 'whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it …'”
So long, good language.
9. Ralph Hall, former Democrat, now GOP representative
What he said then: “In the vote, it's going to appear to be George W. Bush versus Saddam Hussein, and I don't think a lot of politicians have the courage to vote for Saddam.”
What he says now: “I have received hundreds of calls and letters from constituents expressing strong opposition to any U.S. involvement in Syria, and I plan to vote ‘no’ in accordance with their views.”
No one opposed the war with Iraq?
10. Dana Rohrabacher, GOP representative
What he said then: Saddam Hussein is “a monster who is a gangster heading a gangster regime who threatens the world. He has been spending billions of dollars on developing chemical and biological weapons, which he wants to use against the United States because he has a blood grudge against us.”
What he says now: “For those who say we should intervene against Assad because he's a dictator … we should have learned our lesson in Iraq, which cost us the lives of 6,000 Americans and tens of thousands wounded, not to mention a trillion dollars added to the debt that hangs around the necks of the American people. Even worse, those we sacrificed for are not grateful.”
Act now, act questions later, I suppose...
11. John Shimkus, GOP representative
What he said then: Congressmen “with military backgrounds are probably more cautious than those who don't have them,” which made him vote for the war in Iraq.
What he says now: “Until I see evidence of a real threat against the United States or our allies or unless the international community reaches a consensus and leads, I am not convinced that a limited strike against Syria at this time is warranted.”
Glad to see that he's finally more cautious.