Will the Federal Government Grant Itself the Ability to Wiretap Your Emails, Calls and Chats While Y
Originally written by Ron Paul, with additional thoughts added below.
With Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) set to expire on December 31, both Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) are betting the American people will be too busy celebrating the holidays with friends and family to bother paying attention to what's happening in Congress.
What's that and why should we care?
Under Section 702, our federal government (unconstitutionally) grants itself the ability to wiretap (with a secret warrant) and collect information on innocent Americans.
Unlike the recent fight over NSA surveillance, this isn’t just “metadata,” such as time and date stamps on phone calls. This is the actual content of your emails, phone calls, and Internet chats. While under Section 702, communications are required to include a foreign agent that’s “of interest” to the intelligence community, the Deep State has interpreted this power so broadly, it can include virtually any American. In fact, the Director of National Intelligence has flatly REFUSED repeated requests by Congress to inform them of how many innocent Americans’ communications Big Brother is sweeping up. They’ve also REFUSED to say whether or not they’ve swept up conversations involving Members of Congress. Why? Most likely it’s because if the American people knew the scale of the Deep State’s domestic spying programs, it would result in a full-scale revolution in the country. The longer these criminal spying programs continue, the more emboldened the Deep State has become. In fact, both the NSA and the Department of Justice have flat-out REFUSED multiple times to comply with the minimal protections demanded by FISA court orders (which is usually a rubber stamp for the Deep State). And now, under supposed “reform” legislation before the U.S. House, the Deep State is demanding the ability to LIE to the FISA Court without penalty. If you or I ever committed perjury in a federal courtroom, they’d lock us up and throw away the key. The fact is, we cannot allow this to continue if our beloved country is to remain -- in any sense -- free. Those who want to see freedom stamped out in this country know good and well many Americans are wising up to their schemes. Sadly, the last-minute “holiday deals” I told you about have been a trick statists in Washington, D.C. have employed more and more in recent years. You may remember their last-minute budget deal in late 2012 that sent taxes and spending soaring. Even ObamaCare itself was rammed through the Senate on Christmas Eve. Now, I’m worried we’re going to be in for the same kind of madness with FISA. We have to stop it. How?
It has been said that "change" in the rules and structures that we, ourselves, have established and enforce upon ourselves -- both as a unique nation and as a multi-dimensional society -- is a slow and grueling process. That's absolutely how it needs to be. Self-governance seems to be a process of swinging from one "side" to the other, trying to discover the meanings of each while simultaneously maintaining the balance between "personal liberty" and "legitimate constraint." It is a place of maturity and humbleness, and the ability to admit to the potential outcome when we have allowed that exploration to stray beyond the boundaries of each.
Similar to the aftermath of a teen who's left home alone for the weekend for the first time, sometimes the withdrawing of "permission" and an immediate, sharp reduction in those expanded boundaries is necessary -- at least if you want to see them live another day or not cause irreparable harm.
Do we want to lay down the law of a loving father to see the U.S. live another day? Or will we just wait to see the full extent of the "damage" that FISA and "Friends" can do, if left home alone too long without supervision?
The answer seems to lie both within and without, and the secret seems to be finding a way to say "no" from a place of loving power rather than angry tyranny.
In other words, we can sign Ron Paul's petition, call our congressman and also tell the power-lusting, control-hungry part of ourselves "no" -- both within and without.