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Mr. Orwell, your day has arrived.

From the front page of Sunday’s NY Times, a story that—despite recent and overwhelming evidence supporting these greater truths—far too many Americans still refuse to acknowledge: a report about our society’s final march into full-blown, inverted totalitarianism.

Apparently, most didn’t know it, but we have reached our destination.

I was preparing a piece for publication here, tonight, which directly dovetails with this report. However (and quite frankly), to see many of the major aspects of that piece spelled out as news, on page one in the Sunday edition of the Grey Lady, gives me great pause. Upon reading it, I think you’ll agree.

Quite sincerely, I strongly encourage you to sit down before reading this…and, please, make an effort to read Lichtblau’s entire piece. Frankly, it’s one of the most stunning articles I’ve ever read.

In Secret, Court Vastly Broadens Powers of N.S.A.
By ERIC LICHTBLAU
NY Times
Sunday, July 8th, 2013  (Page A1)

WASHINGTON — In more than a dozen classified rulings, the nation’s surveillance court has created a secret body of law giving the National Security Agency the power to amass vast collections of data on Americans while pursuing not only terrorism suspects, but also people possibly involved in nuclear proliferation, espionage and cyberattacks, officials say.

The rulings, some nearly 100 pages long, reveal that the court has taken on a much more expansive role by regularly assessing broad constitutional questions and establishing important judicial precedents, with almost no public scrutiny, according to current and former officials familiar with the court’s classified decisions.

The 11-member Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, known as the FISA court, was once mostly focused on approving case-by-case wiretapping orders. But since major changes in legislation and greater judicial oversight of intelligence operations were instituted six years ago, it has quietly become almost a parallel Supreme Court, serving as the ultimate arbiter on surveillance issues and delivering opinions that will most likely shape intelligence practices for years to come, the officials said...

…While President Obama and his intelligence advisers have spoken of the surveillance programs leaked by Mr. Snowden mainly in terms of combating terrorism, the court has also interpreted the law in ways that extend into other national security concerns…

(Bold type is diarist's emphasis.)

If you’ve been following many of my most recent posts, the greater truths with regard to this last sentence are far beyond stunning, and extremely understated by Lichtblau in this Times story, tonight.

The reality, as I've noted it—if you didn’t already know this—is that virtually all aspects of “the war on terror” that are being implemented by our surveillance state are now being turned very officially inward in the name of “fighting crime.” (I’ll have more on that in a second post on this story--one that I've been putting together for the past day, or so, later tonight.)

It’s a tremendous irony to be reading this on the weekend during which we celebrate our nation’s independence.

To be continued...

Kossack marktheshark has an excellent post on this story with great discussion threads also on the Recommended List, linked RIGHT HERE.

Originally posted to http://www.dailykos.com/user/bobswern on Sat Jul 06, 2013 at 07:45 PM PDT.

Also republished by The First and The Fourth.

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