Just recently we heard the great news that the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York had handed down a decision which stated that the NSA surveillance program, widely considered to be a violation of the Constitution, exceeds the scope of what Congress had authorized under the Patriot Act. Congress must act in the next few days, decide whether to reauthorize Section 215 of the Patriot Act, amend it, or let it die a natural death on June 1, 2015.
President Barack Obama, the Constitutional scholar and law professor, must be beside himself with anger after hearing that this court had arrived at this decision that maybe, just maybe (it’s a long shot to say the least) will ban the NSA from collecting up masses of the electronic communications of the American people.
It’s always amazed me how this president who is known as a Constitutional scholar could be so strongly supportive of the NSA spying program that clearly violates the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Edward Snowden, the former NSA contractor who revealed this surveillance program to America and the world in 2013 must be ecstatic about this momentous decision; and the same is probably true of the journalist Glenn Greenwald and others who aided him in publishing the NSA’s documents that clearly proved that the NSA was sweeping up these billions of records.
It seems as if we may be living under the rule of Big Brother as we the American people become today’s version of the proles of 1984; the working class, the masses who were not trusted by their government; who lived under the stifling control of Big Brother and were powerless to do anything about it.
While this court’s decision may represent a major breakthrough on this spying program we can bet that the White House and many members of Congress will fight tooth and nail to see that this decision is overturned. So when I say that the NSA spies have been stopped in their tracks it may only temporarily until those who are determined to invade the privacy of the American people, let’s call them anti-Constitutionalists, find the ways to restore their invasive spying agenda.
It’s very difficult to understand why this government has to resort to spying on all Americans, sweeping up all these communications, to identify potential terrorists. Anyone who knows anything about problem solving knows that the most important thing to do is to concentrate one’s efforts on the areas where the most potential for solving the problem lies; not to try to cover the entire spectrum involved. But those in the NSA apparently do not possess that kind of knowledge and expertise.
What in the world is wrong with this government? Can’t its officials, this president and the NSA comprehend that the vast majority of the American people pose no threat to this country, are not terrorists and will never support terrorists? If some Americans might have intentions of doing that, it would seem that the NSA could ferret them out by using the techniques that the FBI has used for many years in successfully tracking and apprehending suspected criminals, often before they can commit crimes.
Spying, invasions of privacy, and mistrust of the American people are all issues relating to integrity. With the issue of integrity in mind, let’s talk about the associated issue of transparency. We have a president, Mr. Obama, who, at the beginning of his presidency, delivered the following promise to the American people: “My Administration is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in Government.” And “Openness will strengthen our democracy and promote efficiency and effectiveness in Government.” Well, unfortunately he didn’t follow through on that promise and now he has earned the distinction of being the least transparent president in American history.
Now, back to the situation involving NSA spying. Since the Patriot Act will be expiring in its current form in a matter of days Congress will have to re-authorize it or just let it expire. If anyone thinks it will not be renewed in one form or another, they need to think again because that’s a given. The only question is; what form will it take relative to the provision that allows the NSA to spy on the American people?
What is very troubling is that all the while this entire controversy over the NSA spying program has been going on we have heard nothing from the American people; are they outraged at the fact that this government agency is listening to and documenting all their communications? I haven’t heard any great outcry from them and the mainstream media has completely stayed away from debating its effect on this country.
It seems like the mass of Americans just don’t care; while many don’t have a clue as to what is actually going on, others have the attitude of “Who cares; I’m not a danger to this country so why should I worry about someone listening in on my communications.” Well, that’s the same kind of attitude the proles had when they lived under the rule of Big Brother; they said not a word in protest, remaining totally compliant and docile.
How will this situation be resolved? Well, don’t look for this pathetic Congress to fight for the rights of privacy of American citizens because they won’t. Will this president finally do what is right for America? Or will he, once again side with the NSA? There is no doubt in my opinion as to what he will do; staunchly support the NSA.
Then will the American people, when they see this government completely failing them finally rise up, say ‘that’s enough” and strongly and relentless demand that this government and this president restore their rights to privacy?
Absolutely not; they will do no such thing. They will continue to be the modern-day version of 1984 proles and remain in total silence and submissiveness; they will see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil; they will continue to be totally resigned to their station in life.
And around and around we go in the same vicious circle; and when and how this stops nobody knows.