The US Senate Fracks The US Constitution In The Rectum
We had a perfectly reasonable means to do these things before the Patriot Act. All law enforcement needed to do is get a warrant. They even had the power to begin surveillance, without a warrant, so long as they got one within 48 hours.
The purpose of the Patriot Act is to allow these activities with no oversight or accountability. And Congress passed it, because Bush didn't want law enforcement to get warrants.
Some folks have argued that some law enforcement activities need to be secret and that you can't trust judges to be discreet. Well if you can't trust judges, how can you trust law enforcement? Especially when they are engaging in anti-constitutional / illegal activities.
And that's the real stickler here. Much of the Patriot Act is unconstitutional, and those that use the powers granted by it, are committing felonious crimes.
But just as bankers have had to adopt fraud as part of their business models to make a profit, I guess it makes sense that law enforcement officials have to commit crimes to uphold the law.
Patriot Act Elements Extended
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: February 24, 2010
The Senate on Wednesday extended for a year key provisions of the nation’s counterterrorism surveillance law that are scheduled to expire at the end of the month. One provision authorizes court-approved roving wiretaps that permit surveillance on multiple phones. A second allows court-approved seizure of records and property in antiterrorism operations. A third permits surveillance against a noncitizen suspected of engaging in terrorism who may not be part of a recognized terrorist group. In agreeing to pass the bill, Senate Democrats retreated from adding new privacy protections to the USA Patriot Act. The Senate approved the bill on a voice vote with no debate. It now goes to the House.