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A federal judge says the National Security Agency's bulk collection of phone records violates the Constitution's ban on unreasonable searches. The judge put his decision on hold pending a nearly certain government appeal.
reply to post by mikell
Whistleblowers when they can't go through the normally channels of command to report unethical organisational behaviour.
God Bless America
Sadly, this will likely go nowhere. Even if the NSA gets "shut down," we all know what that means--it'll just get put on the long, long list of blackops projects on the shadow government's payroll. Until we the people completely walk away from this corrupt system, until we stop feeding it our time, money, and consent, these infringements of our liberties will only continue.
The game is rigged, folks. Until we walk away from the table and refuse to keep playing, nothing will ever improve.
(But it is heartwarming to see that not all federal judges are complete establishment goons... at least not all the time.)
The Fourth Amendment typically requires 'a neutral and detached authority be interposed between the police and the public,' and it is offended by 'general warrants' and laws that allow searches to be conducted 'indiscriminately and without regard to their connections with a crime under investigation,'" he wrote.
He added: "I cannot imagine a more 'indiscriminate' and 'arbitrary invasion' than this systematic and high-tech collection and retention of personal data on virtually every single citizen for purposes of querying and analyzing it without prior judicial approval. Surely such a program infringes on 'that degree of privacy' that the founders enshrined in the Fourth Amendment. Indeed I have little doubt that the author of our Constitution, James Madison, who cautioned us to beware 'the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power,' would be aghast."
The Obama administration has defended the program as a crucial tool against terrorism.
But in his a 68-page, heavily footnoted opinion, Leon concluded that the government didn't cite a single instance in which the program "actually stopped an imminent terrorist attack."
"I have serious doubts about the efficacy of the metadata collection program as a means of conducting time-sensitive investigations in cases involving imminent threats of terrorism," he added.
He entered an order to bar the government from collecting "any telephony metadata associated with their personal Verizon accounts" and requiring the government to "destroy any such metadata in its possession" collected through the program.
I do think this is a politically motivated move on his part. I can see him coming out like a knight in shining armor for the people over this one if it goes anywhere. He could play this card for years to come.