The FISA Court and USA Patriot Act
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▼ Show Notes

If you have been listening to Relentless Truth for a while, you know the role of government in the United States. You have a general working knowledge of the Constitution. It is important to have this understanding to place the FISA Court and USA Patriot Act in proper context.

FISA and the USA Patriot Act

President Jimmy Carter signed the law that created the FISA court in 1978. The act and this specialty court were intended to rule on matters related to electronic surveillance by our government. The act has been amended many times with the most significant revisions occurring after the terrorist attacks on 9/11.

The USA Patriot Act, while intended to combine Federal agencies under Homeland Security, was approved in a manner that expands surveillance and allows the Federal government to overreach. We seemed to be comfortable with this in the immediate aftermath of the attacks on 9/11, but we are living with the consequences of this overreach today. The Justices of the FISA Court are appointed by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. This court abbreviates processes to more efficiently issue warrants and rulings.

The Challenge

The challenge is that this court has been used to expand the reach of government. Our Federal government  has used FISA to spy on American citizens. In fact, this act was used by our Federal government over 278,000 times to spy on U.S. citizens.

I discuss this government overreach in this episode. It is time to revisit both of these pieces of legislation to curtail the government overreach that has occurred in recent years. The good people who work for our Federal law enforcement need checks and balances just like the rest of us. It is time to revisit FISA and USA Patriot to again limit the power of government so that the liberties we enjoy are protected.

Sunshine on government is cathartic and is much needed today. A more nuanced approach to our security in a way that protects our liberties is required. I’m calling on Congress to evaluate these complex matters promptly. It is imperative that we protect the Constitution and the freedoms it is designed to protect.

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“It is time to revisit both of these pieces of legislation to curtail the government overreach that has occurred in recent years.”

John Warren