Sunday, March 09, 2008

Privacy in (more) danger

Here's a link to the Register's editorial on the latest abuses of the Patriot Act. The act allows National Security Letters, a non-warranted demand the FBI can issue without judicial oversight, demanding bank records, phone records and the like on suspected terrorists. But FBI Director Robert Mueller told Congress that a new report will show that FBI agents used them improperly again in 2006, after having done so in 2004 and 2005. Mueller says new controls are in place to make sure it doesn't happen again. I'm skeptical. When people have power, some of them will abuse it. Wouldn't be a bad idea to junk the Patriot Act, or at least modify it to reduce temptation. Suppose the Democratic Congress will do anything constructive? Wouldn't bet on it.

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