In the category of “if you love personal liberty, this is a must-read” . . .

 
The recent USA Freedom Act permits the NSA to ask the FISA court for a search warrant for any person — named or unnamed — based on the standard of “governmental need.” One FISA court-issued warrant I saw authorized the surveillance of all 115 million domestic customers of Verizon. The governmental need standard is no standard at all, as the government will always claim that what it wants, it needs.

This is not some nut-job from the far-right claiming this (though he is a frequent guest on Fox News); this is Judge Napolitano. And he’s adding commentary to news already reported by the New York Times.

 
Now, because of the Lynch secret order, revealed by The New York Times late last week, the NSA may share any of its data with any other intelligence agency or law enforcement agency that has an intelligence arm based on—you guessed it—the non-standard of governmental need.

“So President Barack Obama, in the death throes of his time in the White House, has delivered perhaps his harshest blow to constitutional freedom by permitting his attorney general to circumvent the Fourth Amendment, thereby enabling people in law enforcement to get whatever they want about whomever they wish without a showing of probable cause of crime as the Fourth Amendment requires. That amendment expressly forbids the use of general warrants—search where you wish and seize what you find—and they had never been a lawful tool of law enforcement until Lynch’s order.
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