NSA spying's roots go back to Progressives

  • 23 June 2015
  • NormanL
NSA spying's roots go back to Progressives

The National Security Agency's various intelligence programs (otherwise known as "spying") have generated a lot of commentary recently. But an agency like NSA doesn't just pop-up of its own accord. It's created by politicians who have a certain political philosophy and world view. And as Mark Fitzgibbons writes, the roots of the NSA's spying reach back to the Progressives:

The NSA's actions have roots in progressive New Deal ideology, with its contempt for the constitutional separation of powers and private property rights. More specifically, this debate is traced to the New Deal-era erosion of the centuries-old rule of law that only judges may issue warrants, and after a showing of probable cause.

Even some Liberals found this troubling:

A 1946 opinion in Oklahoma Press Publishing Co. v. Walling cited in this chain of case law upheld judge-less "administrative subpoenas" issued by bureaucrats. One justice dissented. Citing the Declaration of Independence clause about "sen[ding] hither swarms of officers to harass our people," and even hinting that judge-less administrative subpoenas approved in that case were the stuff that had previously contributed to "successful revolt," liberal Democrat Justice Frank Murphy's dissent warned his Democrat-appointed brethren about the consequences of their dangerous direction.

Murphy was prescient in claiming that judge-less subpoenas and the growth of the administrative state would be a bad mix. He wrote that they could even lead to the undoing of administrative processes. Murphy, an FDR appointee, was also an adamant dissenter in the Korematsu case allowing Japanese civilian detention.

We are still following that "dangerous direction" today. While the NSA's spying powers have been slightly curbed recently, the federal government's encroachment on the Fourth Amendment to the constitution">constitution">Constitution continues.

The Progressives started it. We are the people who have to stop it.