Stone Seeks Common Ground
Over the past year, Judge Posner and I have had many opportunities, both public and private, to debate the nation's response to the war on terrorism. In simple terms, I consider myself a "civil libertarian," whereas he describes yourself as a "pragmatist." Not surprisingly, we disagree on many issues. I usually argue that restrictions of civil liberties should be a last resort, considered only after we are satisfied that the government has taken all other reasonable steps to keep us safe. He usually argues that restrictions of civil liberties are warranted whenever the benefit to be derived from those restrictions in terms of increased security "outweigh" the cost to society of limiting the rights. Despite our disagreements, we have increasingly found common ground. I think it will be useful to explore our similarities, rather than our differences, to see if we can agree on some recommendations.
(after the jump, see the rest of Stone's argument, followed by Posner's)