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Like Bush, Obama disables our privacy

January 23, 2009
Nat Hentoff

After testimony by our new Attorney General, Eric Holder, on Jan. 14 before the Senate Judiciary Committee, I have regained my skepticism about how much of our Constitution President Barack Obama intends to restore – for one example, our privacy rights under the Fourth Amendment. Holder declared that the Obama administration will defend the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Amendments of 2008 immunizing and protecting America’s telecommunications companies from many lawsuits about their involvement with the Bush administration’s mass surveillance of Americans’ telephone and Internet communications.

Sen. Obama, after dodging his opposition to thaI bill by intending to filibuster it, wound up voting for it, to the deep disappointment and surprise of some of his ardent supporters. Now, under President Obama, Verizon, AT&T and other major telecommunications organizations are assured that they can continue to provide continuous streams of our communications data to the omnivorous National Security Agency, which will share the information with other intelligence agencies.

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