Patriot Act no-oversight warrant use up by 100x

The dread PATRIOT Act created many new powers for law-enforcement, including the ability to secure the prized super-warrants called National Security Letters without judicial oversight. In the time since PATRIOT was passed, their use by the FBI has increased by 10,000 percent. Each of these warrants can be used to invade the lives of many Americans, and none of them are being issued with a judge’s oversight after presentation of evidence justifying these intrusions into the lives of private individuals. These warrants are issued on a copper’s say-so, without the due process that is the hallmarks of democracy.

How far can one FSA go? Well, in 2003, one was used to secure the records of guests in hotels in Las Vegas over a four-day period: 250,000 people (the investigation was inconclusive). The use of NSLs is common, but us hearing about them is rare: NSLs come with gag-orders that prohibit those who receive them from discussing them.


The searches that you don’t put to a judge are generally a waste of time. The judge will tell you if you’ve got any chance of uncovering some wrongdoing, and if you don’t want him to vet your warrants, you are going to waste a lot of taxpayer dollars on snipe hunts.

More information. I like how they can get “all customer records” from any business they feel like.

I remember reading somewhere that ISPs have, for some time, kept their router logs. As in, every connection you ever made since a certain time is in a router log at your ISP.

I feel so safe and warm and fuzzy right now!

All I have to say is, if they want to know what porn sites I like, they could just ask.

What porn sites do you like?

Are you sure you want the answer to that question?