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Fourth Amendment

Renewing the Patriot Act While America Sleeps

John W. Whitehead | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
John W. Whitehead

Of course, there is no doubt that if we lived in a police state, it would be easier to catch terrorists. If we lived in a country that allowed the pol...

Attention, Walmart Shoppers: Big Sis Wants You to Spy on One Another

John W. Whitehead | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
John W. Whitehead

You have power, so use it. Be what those who founded America wanted us to be -- engaged, active, informed. After all, we are the government.

Michael Roberts: One Man Against the Surveillance State

John W. Whitehead | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
John W. Whitehead

Michael Roberts, a 35-year-old airline pilot, is pitting himself against the American surveillance state and putting everything on the line for freedom because of it.

Not Everything Is Our Business

Andrea Lyon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Technology
Andrea Lyon

We need to talk about the ubiquitous invasion of our private lives -- by law enforcement, the media and each other. Since when is it okay to secretly tape private behavior and broadcast it?

GPS and the Police State We Inhabit: Living in Oceania

John W. Whitehead | Posted 05.25.2011 | Technology
John W. Whitehead

By ensuring that we never get lost, never lose our loved ones and never lose our wireless signals, we are also making it possible for the government to never lose sight of us, as well.

Poverty's Penalty

Christopher Brauchli | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Christopher Brauchli

Welfare recipients participating in San Diego's "Project 100%" are forced to consent to unannounced visits from the Public Affairs Fraud Division, trading their protection afforded by the Fourth Amendment for welfare benefits.

Full Body Scanners: From Airports to the Streets?

Jay Stanley | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jay Stanley

Andy Greenberg at reported yesterday that company representatives told him that backscatter X-rays mounted in vans that can be driven arou...


Shahid Buttar | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Shahid Buttar

Revelations of the FBI's "COINTELPRO" prompted a national outrage that forced the Department of Justice to enact limits in 1976 curtailing the Bureau's various abuses. Today, these problems are back.

Friday Talking Points [121] -- Swampy Muck

Chris Weigant | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Chris Weigant

Once you get started, it becomes quite easy to justify shaking people down for their papers. I think the police should pull over anyone who looks like they work on Wall Street, at any time.

"Hey, Jose, You Look Mexican! Pull Over!"

Tamara N. Holder | Posted 05.25.2011 | Home
Tamara N. Holder

Arizona can't really think its new criminal law allowing the police to stop "suspected undocumented" Mexicans is Constitutional! There's something e...

Restoring the Fourth Amendment: How We the People Can Win Over Washington

Shahid Buttar | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Shahid Buttar

With 2010 finding our government institutions tone deaf and disengaged on addressing our mounting constitutional crises, there have been few riper times for a transpartisan political offensive.

Saying "Nyet" to RoboCop in Colorado Springs

Sean Paige | Posted 05.25.2011 | Denver
Sean Paige

The best way to avoid Big Brother is by saying "no" to Little Brother, before he gets too big for his britches.

Troubling Reports of Census Taker Abuses on the Uptick

John W. Whitehead | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
John W. Whitehead

Many reports suggest that some Census workers are adopting an aggressive and harassing modus operandi in an attempt to obtain information that goes beyond the head count authorized by the Constitution.

Body Scanners and the 4th Amendment

Mahawish Rezvi | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Mahawish Rezvi

For most Pakistanis, it is an insult to be included on the list of fourteen countries selected for additional security, when publicly the United States calls Pakistan an ally.

Police Taser Rules: Federal Appeals Court Issues Ruling On Use Of Tasers

McClatchy | Hudson Sangree and Kim Minugh | Sacramento Bee | Posted 05.25.2011 | Home

A federal appeals court on Monday issued one of the most comprehensive rulings yet limiting police use of Tasers against low-level offenders who seem ...

Conservatives for Privacy, Where is the Left?

J. Bradley Jansen | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
J. Bradley Jansen

The best way to keep us safe and free is eternal vigilance--no matter which party is in office. So, let's hold our friends on the left accountable when it's needed.

Obama and the Global Police: More Friendly Fascism?

John W. Whitehead | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
John W. Whitehead

Over the course of his first year in office, President Barack Obama has shown himself to be a skillful and savvy politician, saying the things Americans want to hear.

On Guns, Scalia is Right For Once, and Obama Agrees

Jackson Williams | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jackson Williams

If we don't like the Second Amendment, then we should agitate to get rid of it in the methods the Founders prescribed. But we might want to think twice.

Where Have All the Steroids Gone?

Roger I. Abrams | Posted 05.25.2011 | Entertainment
Roger I. Abrams

It has been months now since we have heard the word "steroids" uttered in the sporting news about the allegedly "cheating" baseball players.

Friday Talking Points [95] -- A Call To Action

Chris Weigant | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Chris Weigant

The progressives and Blue Dogs are going to have a showdown. It is going to culminate not in statements to the press (or the lack thereof), not in some whispered whip count, but rather in a very public vote.

Laura Dean

Strip Searches Pervasive Despite Huge Settlements | Laura Dean | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics

One sunny fall afternoon, a mother of seven answered a knock at her door to find a cluster of policemen waiting on the step. She wore pajamas because ...

Friday Talking Points [48] -- Throwing Out The Rulebook

Chris Weigant | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Chris Weigant

Back in Volume 36 of this Friday Talking Points column, I pointed out what seemed to me to be an obvious observation -- that the media was going a lot...

Journalist Amy Goodman Arrested/Released In MN (Update With Press Conference)

Linda Milazzo | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Linda Milazzo

Amy Goodman of Pacifica Network's Democracy Now! was arrested in St. Paul, Minnesota, while trying to free two of her producers, Sharif Abdel Kouddo...

Hands Off My Laptop, iPod, Cellphone, Pager, Beeper, Flash Drive, Pocket Litter, First Born (OK, Not My First Born)

Alan Rosenblatt | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Alan Rosenblatt

Customs and Border Protection just released its new policies for searching and seizing laptops at the border.

Keep Your Hands Off My Laptop

Alan Rosenblatt | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Alan Rosenblatt

As it stands, Customs can grab anyone at the border, seize their laptop, and demand passwords and encryption keys as a pre-condition to entering the country. And who knows when you'll get your computer back?