(DAILY KOS) -- Judge Roger Vinson, the FISA judge who allowed the FBI to collect all phone records (Verizon for three months, but various folks have implied that he has allowed this to go on for a long time and from every carrier) must be impeached as must every other FISA judge who approved these fishing expeditions. His disdain for the Fourth Amendment shows a total lack of concern for our constitution and for the rights protected in it.
His court order shows no valid reason for his sweeping decision to allow the FBI to monitor every single phone call in the country (yes, this is Verizon only for this order, but be sure that the FBI requested these illegally broad orders from every single carrier).
This judge did this as the FISA judge, but it is clear from the breadth of his order that the order was far beyond anything that could legally be ordered under FISA. The only possible method of getting similar information under FISA would be under Section 215 which does not authorize this incredibly broad collection of data. Sure the NSA can use it analyze, but the FBI could find out about crimes if it had 300 million cameras watching each of us, too.
It is the duty of Judge Vinson to say "no" to any administration that tries to use laws like this as an unlimited right to spy on everyone. Nothing in his order told the FBI or the NSA that they had to limit the use of the documents being sought. It was just the world's largest unrestricted trawl of data. Judge Vinson failed us and failed the Fourth Amendment with his overly broad order in his Star Chamber hearings.
It's a sad thing. The Star Chamber was originally designed to be a method of providing equitable relief to those who had suffered injustice. It became, over time, the perfect example of injustice. It did everything the FISA court now does. It criminalized discussion of what went on in it and it eventually gave oppressors unrestricted power. The FISA Court is doing everything that we were warned against.
Too bad the right-wing's allegedly huge fan of the Fourth Amendment, Antonin Scalia, decided to ignore his standards in Clapper v. Amnesty International. Had he stood up for the Fourth Amendment there instead of meekly signing on with Alito's "we don't care" opinion, we might not have been surprised that the US government is spying on every single person in the United States. We would have found out about this abuse of power.
I hope that Glenn Greenwald isn't in the US at the moment. I wouldn't want him to be arrested for the crime of Embarrassing the Administration. This was indeed a time when we saw all three branches of government join together to destroy our constitutional rights, but we need to start by impeaching the judges who had the duty to stop it. Read more via Daily Kos...