Fourth Amendment

Fourth Amendment Takes a Back Seat Under Obama

Civil liberties, now despised by both major parties

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Did the surveillance state just take another gigantic Big Brotherish step forward? The New York Times and Washington Post are reporting that the Obama administration is planning to support an FBI plan for "a sweeping overhaul of surveillance laws that would make it easier to wiretap people who communicate using the Internet rather than by traditional phone services."

Facebook posts, Skype calls, Google chats, Apple's iMessage — under the new plan, every form of Internet communication would have to be accessible to law enforcement wiretapping. Civil libertarians, Internet companies and privacy activists are all understandably unenthused. A blogger at FireDogLake immediately labeled the news proof that Obama intended to support the "end of the 4th Amendment on the Internet."