Congress is stampeded into another compromise of Americans' rights.
The thrust of the article is that Congress caved in to the administration allowing
…warrantless surveillance of the phone calls and e-mails of American citizens, with scant judicial supervision and no reporting to Congress about how many communications are being intercepted.
This a problem, according to the editorial, because
Instead of having the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court ensure that surveillance is being done properly, with monitoring of Americans minimized, that job would be up to the attorney general and the director of national intelligence. The court's role is reduced to that of rubber stamp.
The implication is the Federal Government has unfettered license to trample on the rights of citizens.
This argument has been raised at various times through history about one thing or another. But, in the absence of proven abuse by the Feds, this argument is hard to accept at face value.
There is a balance that needs to be struck between unfettered freedoms on the one hand and necessity in times of crisis on the other. The Congress, by arguing the case, has fulfilled it's role in striking that balance.
And, the revised surveillance legislation notwithstanding, our system of laws always provides relief to citizens whose rights have been unjustly abused by the government.