Good times all around. It never fails to amaze me that people don't understand putting additional power into an institution, failing to properly oversee it by placing limitations on its mission and authority to carry out a task, and allowing it to persist long after its intended purpose has been served, doesn't work out the way that we all were told it would.
As I usually intone, whatever party actually limits the power and scope of government's ability to invade our individual rights is the one I'll support. I won't support parties that pay lip service to such things, ala the GOP, only so long as they're not in power (and while they busy themselves oppressing various social freedoms for no apparent reason in addition to this higher crime of oppressing general individual liberty, this merely pushes things over the edge into total hypocrisy).
Obviously one should fail to surprised that this vast expansion of power hasn't immediately dissipated with the expulsion of the Bush administration. I had some hopes merely because Obama was something like a Constitutional scholar that we'd have some provisions that again protect the privacy and primacy of individual rights. But considering much of his legal advisers are being held up by the Senate confirmation hearing process, I guess that rebelling against these silly notions will take time.
During which, of course, I could be labeled as a dangerous and subversive radical (not that I mind). More to the point, all those people who went around with the calling card of "if you've got nothing to hide...", will suddenly discover they do have something to hide. Funny for me. I get to get in a few "I told you so"s. Giving such power of censorship or a sort of broad data mining of subversion in the futile attempt to control a few thousand potentially violent anarchists is pointless in the face of a few random nutcases who could show up at any point at a church or school armed to the teeth. Such witch hunts tend to only demonstrate the ability of power to corrupt as it will sooner or later turn its ugly gaze into places that it has no business being in.
Sheldon Richman: Lessons for the Liberty Movement
34 minutes ago