As if the National Security State was not intrusive enough, the FBI is now demanding even more ability to listen in to our conversations. And it looks like they’re gonna get it, with the backing of both parties in Congress and — of course — President Obama as well.
Category Archive: Privacy
May 11 2013
May 08 2013
Glenn Greenwald asks the question “Are all telephone calls recorded and accessible to the US government?” He knows the answer already and the answer is yes. We’ve known this for years. He spotlights this admission of that by a former FBI counterterrorism agent on CNN:
May 07 2013
The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court was set up by FISA to handle requests for warrants that involve the gathering of intelligence on foreign operatives in the US, though it deals almost entirely with terrorism now. So how can it be both important and a rubber stamp? Because as Kevin Gosztola reports, while it rarely denies …
Apr 15 2013
In yet another example of the federal government thinking the constitution is a dead letter, the Internal Revenue Service apparently thinks that they can read your emails without bothering to get a warrant from a judge. They claim there is no expectation of privacy when sending email.
Apr 14 2013
Glenn Greenwald has done a great job of critiquing the National Security State in print and Robert Greenwald (no relation as far as I know) has a new documentary out called War on Whistleblowers: Free Press and the National Security State. Steven Rosenfeld discusses the documentary on AlterNet.
Mar 13 2013
In a rare en banc ruling, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, for the first time, said that the 4th Amendment does have at least some application in searches performed on those entering the country, particularly searches of one’s computer. Previously, the courts have held that border searches were essentially unlimited, with no need for …
Mar 08 2013
Wired’s Threat Level blog reports that Google has released information that shows the FBI is spying on as many as a thousand people through their Google accounts. But they can’t get any more specific than that because it might hurt national security for weird, vague, unstated reasons.
Feb 22 2013
The Supreme Court handed down its ruling in Florida v Harris, a case challenging the use of drug dogs to establish probable cause. The early date of the ruling suggested that it was a lopsided decision and that would indicate that it went the wrong way, and that is exactly the case. In a 9-0 …
Jan 01 2013
Remember the battle over amendments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act a few years ago? Well those amendments are set to sunset at the end of the year so Congress has been trying to pass a bill to reauthorize them without any changes to the law. The House passed the package in September and the …
Dec 21 2012
In an article that should surprise no one who has been paying attention, the Wall Street Journal reported last week that the Obama administration rewrote the rules on government surveillance to make them even worse than they were under the Bush administration.
Nov 16 2012
Much has already been written and said about the scandal that ended the career of David Petraeus. The infidelity is by far the least interesting aspect of the story. Far more interesting is how the story intersects with the 4th Amendment and the government’s ability to access our private communications. Glenn Greenwald is, predictably, all …
Nov 08 2012
The Supreme Court heard oral argument in two cases out of Florida involving drug-sniffing dogs last week and Radley Balko, the single best criminal justice reporter in the country, has an article at the Huffington Post about those cases, the precedents and how the outcome could further erode the 4th amendment. He points out something …
Nov 01 2012
Rep. Steve King, the prom king of Wingnuttia High School, has again claimed that the Supreme Court’s decision in Griswold v Connecticut was wrongly decided, on the specious grounds that the court had created a new right out of thin air. He did this during an appearance at a high school in Iowa:
Nov 01 2012
The U.S. Supreme Court will hear two cases involving the use of drug dogs that could be very important in restoring some minimal safeguards from the 4th Amendment — or could further entrench the abuse of power routinely engaged in by law enforcement around the country. Orin Kerr previews the two cases, Florida v. Jardines …
Aug 31 2012
Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Oregon) has submitted a bill that would place a tiny little safeguard on the government’s use of warrantless surveillance. David Kravitz of Wired’s Threat Level blog explains the details of that proposal, the full text of which can be found here.