Who said this — Joe McCarthy or John Ashcroft?

“To those … who scare peace-loving people with phantoms of lost liberty, my message is this: your tactics only aid ___, for they erode our national unity and diminish our resolve. They give ammunition to America’s enemies and pause to America’s friends”.

Take the test at morons.org. (I scored 9 out of 14, which isn’t bad).

Alec wrote [12.12.2001]: I achieved exactly the same score! … Looking at one or two of the mistakes I made, I feel like a bit of a moron myself. Ah well. Here is my own ‘favourite’ McCarthy moment, from one of his earlier speeches:

“The great difference between our Western Christian world and the atheistic Communist world is not political, ladies and gentlemen. It is moral. There are other differences, of course, but those could be reconciled. For instance, the Marxian idea of confiscating the land and factories and running the entire economy as a single enterprise is momentous. Likewise, Lenin’s invention of the one-party police state as a way to make Marx’s idea work is hardly less momentous. Stalin’s resolute putting across of these two ideas, of course, did much to divide the world. With only those differences, however, the East and the West could most certainly still live in peace.

“The real, basic difference, however, lies in the religion of immoralism – invented by Marx, preached feverishly by Lenin, and carried to unimaginable extremes by Stalin. This religion of immoralism, if the Red half of the world wins, … will more deeply wound and damage mankind than any conceivable economic or political system.”

Nick wrote [13.12.2001]: OK, then, who wrote this:

“There is a concern that the Internet could be used to commit crimes and that advanced encryption could disguise such activity. However, we do not provide the government with phone jacks outside our homes for unlimited wiretaps. Why, then, should we grant government the Orwellian capability to listen at will and in real time to our communications across the Web?

“The protections of the Fourth Amendment are clear. The right to protection from unlawful searches is an indivisible American value. Two-hundred-years of court decisions have stood in defense of this fundamental right. The state’s interest in effective crime-fighting should never vitiate the citizens’ Bill of Rights.

“The President has proposed that American software companies supply the government with decryption keys to high level encryption programs. Yet, European software producers are free to produce computer encryption codes of all levels of security without providing keys to any government authority. Purchasers of encryption software value security above all else. These buyers will ultimately choose airtight encryption programs that will not be American-made programs to which the U.S. government maintains keys.”

Answer: John Ashcroft, in 1997. Gosh, that was a long time ago…

PS: I got 12 out of 14 at morons.org! Thanks for the link.

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