Sunday, January 07, 2007

"...exigent circumstances..."

Another bill, another signing, another Orwellian statement...

The bill was the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (HR 6407), which sounds harmless enough, but with the signing statement President Bush swept away any right to privacy you ever had in sending mail.

Think the government needs a warrant to open and read your personal mail? Not any more:
The executive branch shall construe ... the Act, which provides for opening of an item of a class of mail otherwise sealed against inspection, in a manner consistent, to the maximum extent permissible, with the need to conduct searches in exigent circumstances, such as to protect human life and safety against hazardous materials, and the need for physical searches specifically authorized by law for foreign intelligence collection.
There's no need to show a judge evidence that you might have black market anthrax or that you might be planning a bombing, all the right people in power need is a hunch that you might not like them.

Okay, you don't care. You get all your personal messages by email, and all that's in your mail box is bills and advertisements. The media doesn't care either; ABC, CBS, and CNN pretty much ignored the statement in their coverage.

And that's what worries me even more. That 95% of Americans will never hear this news is scary. That of the few who do hear it, 75% of those won't care is what truly terrifies me.

It's not the idea that some government agent is going to be peeking into my mailbox I'm upset about, it's the idea that this government has blatantly said that we no longer have any privacy rights, that there is no more due process of law, and that most people can't be bothered to care.

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