DOJ Position http://www.usdoj.gov/ “Visit DOJ's new website www.lifeandliberty.gov, launched to educate Americans about how we are preserving life and liberty by using the USA PATRIOT Act.” http://www.lifeandliberty.gov/
ACLU Position http://www.aclu.org/SafeandFree/SafeandFree.c fm?ID=12126&c=207 “With great haste and secrecy and in the name of the “war on terrorism,” Congress passed legislation that gives the Executive Branch sweeping new powers that undermine the Bill of Rights and are unnecessary to keep us safe. This 342-page USA PATRIOT Act was passed on October 26, 2001, with little debate by Members of Congress, most of whom did not even read the bill.”
Bill of Rights Amendment IV The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized. http://www.archives.gov/national_archives_experie nce/bill_of_rights.html
Privacy Act of 1974 (r) Report on new systems and matching programs Each agency that proposes to establish or make a significant change in a system of records or a matching program shall provide adequate advance notice of any such proposal (in duplicate) to the Committee on Government Operations of the House of Representatives, the Committee on Governmental Affairs of the Senate, and the Office of Management and Budget in order to permit an evaluation of the probable or potential effect of such proposal on the privacy or other rights of individuals. See http://www.usdoj.gov/04foia/privstat.htm and http://www.usdoj.gov/04foia/04_7_1.htmlhttp://www.usdoj.gov/04foia/privstat.htm http://www.usdoj.gov/04foia/04_7_1.html
More from DOJ Website The Computer Matching and Privacy Protection Act of 1988 (Pub. L. No. 100-503) amended the Privacy Act to add several new provisions. See 5 U.S.C. § 552a(a)(8)- (13), (e)(12), (o), (p), (q), (r), (u) (2000). These provisions add procedural requirements for agencies to follow when engaging in computer-matching activities; provide matching subjects with opportunities to receive notice and to refute adverse information before having a benefit denied or terminated; and require that agencies engaged in matching activities establish Data Protection Boards to oversee those activities. These provisions became effective on December 31, 1989. OMB's guidelines on computer matching should be consulted in this area. See 54 Fed. Reg. 25,818-29 (1989).
By the way, if you visit the DOJ site … PRIVACY AND SECURITY NOTICE Thank you for visiting the Department of Justice's Web site and reviewing our privacy and security notice. We remind you that if you link to a site outside of the Department of Justice, you are subject to the policies of the new site. PRIVACY Here is how we handle information about your visit to our Web site: A. Information Collected and Stored Automatically If you visit our site to read or download information, we collect and store the following information about your visit: - The name of the Internet domain (for example, "xcompany.com" if you use a private Internet access account, or "yourschool.edu" if you are connecting from a university's domain) and the IP address (a number that is automatically assigned to your computer when you are using the Internet) from which you access our site; - The type of browser and operating system used to access our site; - The date and time you access our site; - The Internet address of the Web site from which you linked directly to our site; and - The pages you visit and the information you request. This information is primarily collected for statistical analysis and technical improvements to the site. This government computer system uses software programs to create summary statistics, which may be used for such purposes as assessing what information is of most and least interest, determining technical design specifications, and identifying system performance or problem areas. In certain circumstances, however, we may take additional steps to identify you based on this information and we may share this information, including your identity, with other government agencies.
The Wages of Fear: Sherman Austin gets a year Steven Mikulan, LA Weekly, AUGUST 8 - 14, 2003 “Austin, whose anarchist Web site, Raisethefist.com, had aroused their interest when it posted a link to another site offering bomb-making instructions.” “Sentence: 12 months in prison, a $2,000 fine and three years’ probation.” “Austin will not, during those three years, be allowed to sit in the same room with anyone who vents violent anti - government rhetoric or to use a computer without the okay of a probation officer — who will also have access to Austin’s telecom bills.” http://www.laweekly.com/ink/printme.php?eid=43956
GORE VIDAL / “We are the Patriots” The Nation v.276, n.1, 2 June 2003 It was Benjamin Franklin, of all people, who saw our future most clearly back in 1787, when, as a delegate to the Constitutional Convention at Philadelphia, he read for the first time the proposed Constitution. … Franklin urged the convention to accept the Constitution despite what he took to be its great faults, because it might, he said, provide good government in the short term. "There is no form of government but what may be a blessing to the people if well administered, and I believe farther that this is likely to be well administered for a course of years, and can only end in Despotism, as other forms have done before it, when the people shall become so corrupted as to need despotic Government, being incapable of any other."