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December 28, 2003

Patriot Act II

A summary of some of the points of Patriot Act II, which was signed into law on the 13th, the day Saddam was nabbed. Among its provisions it grants the FBI the authority to obtain client records from financial institutions by merely requesting the records in a "National Security Letter" without having to appear before a judge, nor demonstrate probable cause. Even worse, the National Security Letters are attached with a gag order, preventing the financial institution from informing its clients that their records have been surrendered to the FBI. In case that doesn't scare you, the law also redefines "financial institution" to include stockbrokers, car dealerships, casinos, credit card companies, insurance agencies, jewelers, airlines, the U.S. Post Office, and any other business "whose cash transactions have a high degree of usefulness in criminal, tax, or regulatory matters."

So, to summarize class:

  1. With no judicial oversight
  2. They can get any information they want, and
  3. They won't tell you.

Filed under Libertarianism | permalink | December 28, 2003 at 02:12 AM

Comments

Well, they passed that without much fanfare. I hadn't heard about it until I read it here today on your blog. Our founding fathers must be rolling in their graves.

Posted by: Doug at Dec 28, 2003 6:31:04 PM

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