In less than a week since it became public, the Obama administration’s NSA spying scandal has progressed far beyond the accumulation of Verizon’s phone records.
We now know that the NSA and its friends at Eric Holder’s Department of Justice are also utilizing Google (GOOG), Facebook (FB), Yahoo! (YHOO), and almost every other large tech firm to spy on us.
Of all the recent scandals, the NSA spying scandal is particularly frightening. Between our phone records, emails, text messages, and our whereabouts – which are provided courtesy of our cellphones – the government has admitted to knowing all our secrets.
Now, the justification for granting the regime this unconstitutional spying power is based on the idea that the snooping makes us safer. But does it really make us more secure? Ben Franklin said that “Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.”
Broadly speaking, Americans agree that politicos are slippery folk. So why would we trust them with such untold power? The record shows that, up to now, Obama and his team aren’t worthy of unlimited access to our most personal and intimate information.
Our Fears Are Justified
Based on their statements and actions, America’s leaders believe that we‘re all potential threats to the Federal government. And now Obama is learning that trust (or a lack of trust) is a two-way street.
You see, everything comes down to trust. And the American people have lost theirs in this administration. Following the string of recent scandals, it’s impossible to ignore that there’s a distinct pattern of abuse of power in Obama’s administration. Let’s face it…
- It’s abuse of power when the IRS and other federal agencies are used to target political opponents.
- It’s abuse of power when the DOJ is digging into the phone records of journalists.
- It’s abuse of power when Kathleen Sebelius shakes down the same insurance companies that she regulates to pay for Obamacare.
- It’s abuse of power when the government blames a YouTube video for what happened at the Benghazi compound.
- It’s abuse of power to order the summary execution of an American citizen without a trial via drone strike… even if the execution takes place in Yemen, or some other far-off land.
So here’s the bottom line… why would we trust the Obama administration to not abuse the NSA’s spying powers, too?
The Sad Truth
All this spying on innocent Americans didn’t collar the Tsarnaev brothers ahead of the Boston Marathon bombing. And it’s clear they made abundant use of smartphones and the internet. Heck, we even had a warning from Russian security officials that the older Tsarnaev brother was a threat, and we couldn’t catch them.
The spying on innocent Americans didn’t collar Major Nidal Hasan before he massacred soldiers at Fort Hood, and he regularly surfed to jihadi websites.
Instead of focusing on the real problem characters, the Obama administration wants to know who you and I talk to. As Senator Dianne Feinstein, who was supposed to be providing congressional oversight, stated this last week, the authorities need this information in case someone might become a terrorist in the future.
But only the most compliant of citizen sheep would believe that Obama and his team won’t abuse this spying power.
Let’s hope that Congress will have the fortitude to put this frightening episode of domestic spying in the history books and make clear that the government only has the power to collect data on suspects of a crime.
This article originally appeared at CapitolHillDaily and is reprinted here with permission.
Photo credit: waif69 (Creative Commons)