The Justice Department has proposed a new domestic spying measure that would make it easier for state and local police to collect intelligence about Americans, share the sensitive data with federal agencies and retain it for at least 10 years.Repeat after me: you and your family have nothing to worry about, because you are of course patriotic American citizens. Only terrorists would oppose these measures, because we would never use these measures against upstanding American citizens like you and your family. The ten years of information collected on your activities is harmless unless you have something to hide. But you, being a patriot and and honest American, have nothing to hide. This is for your safety. Trust us.
The proposed changes would revise the federal government's rules for police intelligence-gathering for the first time since 1993 and would apply to any of the nation's 18,000 state and local police agencies that receive roughly $1.6 billion each year in federal grants.
Quietly unveiled late last month, the proposal is part of a flurry of domestic intelligence changes issued and planned by the Bush administration in its waning months. They include a recent executive order that guides the reorganization of federal spy agencies and a pending Justice Department overhaul of FBI procedures for gathering intelligence and investigating terrorism cases within U.S. borders.
Taken together, critics in Congress and elsewhere say, the moves are intended to lock in policies for Bush's successor and to enshrine controversial post-Sept. 11 approaches that some say have fed the greatest expansion of executive authority since the Watergate era.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
...about even more Federal domestic spying capability, in this case allowing local law enforcement officers to be spies. Page one of the Washington Post, no less.
- Michael Phelps goes 7 for 7, with his chance for number 8 coming up tonight.
- The Russians are still milling about smartly inside Georgia, cease fire or not. Meanwhile, many Georgians are convinced somebody will rescue them from Russia...eventually.
- Both McSame and Obama will take on Purpose-Driven Life author Pastor Rick Warren tonight...and millions of evangelical Christian voters will be paying close attention.
- The FBI is finally getting around to that whole forensic evidence thing in the anthrax case.
- If you're wondering what those 75,000 Wall Street types who have lost their jobs this year are doing, wonder no more. (hint: cupcakes.)