The Patriot Act scares me...it scares me far more than any terrorists; it scares me far more than Iraq or North Korea. Where can we, as "free" individuals, go where we aren't oppressed by this, or any other government?
I've noticed that especially in the past five years or so (possibly longer), the interests of the US government seem to run counter to the interests of individuals in the US. When you have a situation like this, the end can never be pretty...the government ends up taking over, and ruling with an iron fist. The Constitution was designed to provide checks and balances for that sort of thing...but when you have such a strong republican president, backed by a strong republican congress, who's going to do the checking and balancing?
[Yes, "republican", "president" and "congress" were deliberately left uncapitalized.]
The US system of government is flawed in one fatal way...people are not required to think. They are required to vote for representatives to do their thinking for them. The problem is, these representatives have a very large stake in the government. If laws were subject to direct voting (much like the election of these so-called representatives), the system would be slower, and less efficient, however I believe we would have a set of laws that reflected much better on the will of the people.
I firmly believe the US is heading more and more towards a dictatorship, and further and further away from a republic. I just hope we can stop this trend, before it's too late.