USA PATRIOT Act Topics

An archive of Democracy Now! reports on the USA PATRIOT Act since it was signed into law by President George W. Bush on October 26, 2001. It has been reauthorized several times by both President Bush and President Barack Obama.

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  • Democracy Now! speaks with prolific author, journalist, Village Voice columnist and longtime civil liberties commentator Nat Hentoff about the controversial USA Patriot Act.
    Oct 01, 2003 | Story
  • On this Indigenous Peoples Day, we hear from historian Howard Zinn who wrote extensively about Columbus’ so-called discovery of the Americas. Today Zinn examines the occupation of Iraq, the role of the media in the build-up to war and the historical role of dissent in the United States.
    Oct 13, 2003 | Story
  • "If you repeat it loudly enough it will become the truth"–MIT Institute Professor of Linguistics and author Noam Chomsky speaks out on U.S. hegemony, controlling the domestic population through fear and the historical parallels of current U.S. foreign policy. [Includes transcript]
    Oct 22, 2003 | Story
  • "Lying has been one of the essential tools of [Bush’s] presidency"–We speak the Nation’s David Corn about his new book The Lies of George W. Bush: Mastering the Politics of Deception on how the president lied about the invasion of Iraq, tax cuts, the environment and September 11th. [Includes transcript]
    Oct 31, 2003 | Story
  • We speak with the ACLU about the FBI’s demand for guest and passenger information in Las Vegas over the New Year’s holiday period using the Patriot Act and subsequent rounds of anti-terrorism legislation passed to give the FBI an expansion of its information-gathering powers without judicial oversight. [includes transcript]
    Jan 06, 2004 | Story
  • In the third State of the Union address of his term, President Bush defended the war on Iraq, called for the renewal of the Patriot Act, praised the improving economy and called for a ban on gay marriage. We spend the hour listening to responses to Bush’s address that paint a different picture of the State of the Union.
    Jan 21, 2004 | Story
  • In his State of the Union address, Bush claimed if the US did not invade Iraq, "the dictator’s weapons of mass destruction programs would continue to this day." He did not acknowledge, however, that U.S. inspectors have uncovered no unconventional weapons.
    A year ago at the 2003 State of the Union, Bush made the case for war by claiming that Iraq had 25,000 liters of anthrax, 38,000 liters of botulinum toxin, 500 tones of sarin,...
    Jan 21, 2004 | Story
  • We speak with Leslie Cagan of the antiwar coalition United for Peace and Justice about Bush’s statements on Iraq. She criticizes Bush for "talking about a war but not mentioning that anybody has died in the war–either Iraqis or U.S. soldiers."
    And we hear from columnist and Institute for Public Accuracy director Norman Solomon who likens the State of the Union address to the "sanitized" media coverage of the Iraq...
    Jan 21, 2004 | Story
  • Bush called for a renewal of the controversial Patriot Act saying, "key provisions of the Patriot Act are set to expire next year. The terrorist threat will not expire on that schedule." We speak with the Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union. [includes transcript]
    Jan 21, 2004 | Story
  • A district judge ruled unconstitutional one provision of the USA Patriot Act that bans certain types of support for terrorist groups saying the law was so vague that it risked running afoul of the First Amendment. We speak with the attorney who argued the case. [includes transcript]
    Jan 27, 2004 | Story