While the Western world was watching and grieving over the slaughter in Paris last week, and my colleagues in the media were fomenting a meaningless debate about whether President Obama should have gone to Paris to participate in a televised parade, the feds took advantage of that diversion to reveal even more incursions into our liberties than we had known about.
We already knew that the NSA, our 60,000 domestic spies, has captured and retained the contents of nearly all emails, text messages, telephone calls, bank statements, utility bills and credit card bills of all Americans since 2009. We already knew that Obama has used CIA drones to kill Americans overseas and claims that he somehow can do so legally and secretly notwithstanding the express prohibitions in the Constitution.
We already knew that President George W. Bush authorized the illegal torture of a hundred-plus people, about 20 percent by “mistake,” and now we know that because he refuses to prosecute the torturers, Obama is as culpable for the torture as Bush is.
Last week, however, the Department of Justice revealed that since the 1990s, the Drug Enforcement Administration, whose job is to interdict controlled dangerous substances before they enter our borders and to do so consistent with the Constitution, has been monitoring the phone calls of selected Americans. Prior to 2001, the DEA intimidated, coerced and bribed telecom providers into making their telephone lines available to its agents. Since 2001, it has no doubt taken advantage of the provisions of the so-called Patriot Act that permit federal agents to write their own search warrants to custodians of records, in direct contravention of the Constitution, which requires warrants from judges.
Last week, the Government Communications Headquarters, the British equivalent of the NSA, known as GCHQ, acknowledged that it has been reading the domestic emails of U.S. journalists since 2008. This can only be done (a) by stealth illegally, or (b) if the NSA has given this data illegally to the GCHQ, or (c) on the odd chance that an American domestic email or cellphone call has been routed through Canada or Britain. The GCHQ boasted of its ability to download 70,000 American emails in 10 minutes! Did you hear Obama condemn this?
Read the rest via Who Will Keep Our Freedoms Safe? by Andrew P. Napolitano — Antiwar.com.