A couple of opinion pieces. First, from Legal Insurrection:
…I’m also concerned with what could be done with the information gathered about American citizens not suspected of a crime if put into the hands of politicians and political groups, and bureaucrats who work for or are sympathetic to such politicians and political groups.
The threat, oddly enough, is proven by the [present] leaks…If some government employee who has sworn to keep information secret is willing to leak [it]…for (allegedly) good purposes, what’s to stop that person from violating his or her oath by leaking data-mined information…for other than good reasons…?
…The issue goes beyond the NSA programs. Obamacare is a form of data mining. Obamacare will put into the hands of the IRS medical and health information of an unprecedented level.
And from Reason:
…everything and everyone are relevant to everything, because anything could yield some clue that could conceivably solve some crime. But that view is the same one that justified those general warrants from King George III.
The problem with indiscriminate [surveillance] of homes and effects is not that it’s ineffective in finding wrongdoing. It’s that the innocent people should not be punished in the pursuit of the guilty….
The danger isn’t (just) in what’s being done with the surveillance databases now; it’s in the fact that they exist, i.e., what could be done with them – and will be, sooner or later. Especially under an administration as power-hungry, deceptive and corrupt as Obama’s.
In the Bush 43 days, I believed that the government was only after real terrorists. But because of Obama’s IRS/Tea Party scandal specifically, I now know otherwise. That scandal has proven that the government’s motives are not pure.
And thus the NSA revelations, while they may be a non-scandal by themselves, they do carry the whiff of all of Obama’s other scandals. Because all of them fit together in a disturbing pattern. I am not against responsible counter-terrorism; I am against Obama’s pattern.