This is a rush transcript from "Special Report," May 14, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
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(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GRETCHEN WEST DOMESTIC DRONES ADVOCATE: There is not going to be long-term surveillance of these systems that are just hovering over people's homes. They will be used for very specific missions for a very short period of time.
REP. ED MARKEY, D - MASS.: We have to make sure that the protections are built in up front rather than having a privacy tsunami hit our country where people now realize that they have no privacy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BRET BAIER, ANCHOR: There is a statement on the FAA website that said that they are streamlining the process for public agencies to fly unmanned aerial surveillance planes, drones, inside the U.S. What about this we're back with the panel. Raised a lot of eyebrows up on Capitol Hill, Charles.
KRAUTHAMMER: It should. I'm going to go hard left on you here, I'm going to go ACLU. I don't want regulations, I don't want restrictions -- I want a ban on this. Drones are instruments of war. The founders had a great aversion to any instruments of war, the use of the military inside of the United States. They didn't like standing armies, it has all kinds of statutes against using the Army in the country. A drone is a high-tech version of an old army and a musket. It ought to be used in Somalia to hunt bad guys, but not in America. I don't want to see it hovering over anybody's home.
Yes you can say we have satellites, we've got Google Street. And London has a camera on every street corner. But that is not an excuse to cave in on everything else and accept a society where you are always under -- being watched by the government. This is not what we want. I would say you ban it under all circumstances. And I would predict, I'm not encouraging, but I predict the first guy who uses a Second Amendment weapon to bring a drone down that's been hovering over his house is going to be a folk hero in this country.
MARA LIASSON, NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO: I don't know if you can do that. Aren't they awfully high up?
CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: You may have to use a lot of them. You may have to use a very high powered one. You may have to use a bazooka. I'm not encouraging. I'm simply making a prediction.
BAIER: The Libertarian Charles is stepping up.
LIASSON: I think there is going to be a huge outcry from conservatives and Republicans in the House of Representatives against this. This is like black helicopters redux.
KRAUTHAMMER: It doesn't worry you?
LIASSON: Yeah, I want to know what they're gonna be used for, if this is more than a crime helicopter. But all I'm saying is the politics of this regardless of my personal opinions, that this is going to rub a lot of people the wrong way and it's going to be like black helicopters.
BAIER: Well, it's been used once already. There's already a case, a North Dakota man apparently testing the legality of drones in the domestic law enforcement cases. Tucker, I mean, it sounds like it's coming to a head. The FAA says it's moving forward to streamline this. Is this going to run into a wall?
CARLSON: I hope so. Let me say, I've never admired Charles Krauthammer more -- and that's saying a lot as a longtime fan -- than I do now for saying that. And I don't think it's obvious that conservatives will rally against this. There is a reflexive feeling on the right that law enforcement deserves our respect. I think -- of course, that is right. But I do think there is maybe less suspicion than there should be about things like this.
Look, here is what we know about drones. They're cheap, they're very cheap, they're much cheaper than a police helicopter, multiples cheaper. They're highly sought after by the military. And there are a lot of them for sale as we are withdrawing from Afghanistan and Iraq. This is the perfect storm. We are going to see these around the country and they will be used for uses not yet considered and the result will be to lessen our privacy from what it is now. I think it's a terrifying prospect and I hope based on Charles' comments just moments ago there will be a tsunami of opposition that culminates in a preemptive ban.
KRAUTHAMMER: Rifles aimed at the sky all across America.
BAIER: What about from the law enforcement point of view that is dealing with a budget that they can't handle. They're saying, listen, we can't afford helicopters but we need the eyes in the sky to be able to see where the bad guys are. And if we are cutting budgets across state and local governments, this is a way to help us out. What do you say to that?
KRAUTHAMMER: I would say the price of liberty. You can hear a helicopter. You can't hear a drone. If you hear a helicopter you can hide under a bush. You can't with this, which is why it's effective in Pakistan and elsewhere. It's deaf and it's silent.
I don't think we want a society where if there are these objects hovering over, streaming real-time information about you, your family, your car, your location. We know it's going to be abused. Yes, you say sure, we're going to start restricting here, so we can save maybe $80,000. It's not worth it.
CARLSON: This is also part of a longer-term trend toward the militarization of police department. I travel a lot. I'm always struck. You go into some town and you see police. And they look like members of delta force with the automatic weapons.
BAIER: What about in Europe where they have cameras all over the streets?
CARLSON: That used to be one of the things that separated living in the United States from being in almost any other country abroad. You don't see soldiers on the street in this country. You never did. That is changing.
KRAUTHAMMER: And the founders were deeply opposed to the militarization of civil society. We had all kinds of aversion to it. And this is importing it because it's -- as you say -- it's cheap, it's easy, it's silent. It's something that you can easily deploy. It's going to be, I think, the bane of our existence. Stop it here, stop it now. Strong letter to follow --
BAIER: Yes. Tell us how you really feel about this. OK, Charles Krauthammer, that's as animated as I've seen you on a topic.
CARLSON: This could be a moment, this is a convergent. People always say, oh Washington is terrible because nobody agrees. There is no union set between the left and the right. This could be an issue on which libertarians and conservatives and the ACLU people get together.
LIASSON: Well, that's happened time and again with the Patriot Act and other kinds --
BAIER: That is it for the panel. But stay tuned to see what the president was up to on a recent visit to California.
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