WE GOT YOUR WARRANT SWINGING  2:35 pm August 9, 2012

Breaking: Warrantless Wiretapping Has Been Illegal This Whole Time, Apparently

by Kris E. Benson

if you're not doing anything wrong, then why would you mind?Oh hi, judicial branch of the United States, how are you serving as a check or balance on the executive and legislative branches of government today? Why, by allowing the federal government to spy on Americans’ communications without warrants or exposure to lawsuits in order to keep us SAFE, of COURSE, which is exactly as the Constitution envisioned? Very good then!

The federal government may spy on Americans’ communications without warrants and without fear of being sued, a federal appeals court ruled Tuesday in a decision reversing the first and only case that successfully challenged President George W. Bush’s once-secret Terrorist Surveillance Program.

“This case effectively brings to an end the plaintiffs’ ongoing attempts to hold the executive branch responsible for intercepting telephone conversations without judicial authorization,” a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals wrote. (.pdf)

Oh so warrantless wiretapping has actually been illegal this entire time? Learn something new every day! See, we were under the impression that it has been a sort of a Fourth Amendment free for all ever since 2001, because of Terrorism and Keeping Us Safe and everything, but it turns out, a warrant WAS required until sometime around yesterday afternoon. We’re sure that this is EXACTLY what the Founders had in mind when they wrote the Fourth Amendment, so kudos to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. 

[Wired]

 

Hola wonkerados.

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{ 113 comments }

ChernobylSoup August 9, 2012 at 2:37 pm

4th Amendment? How quaint.

actor212 August 9, 2012 at 3:02 pm

If it really meant something, it would have been the Second Amendment! It didn't even get the Bronze in the Amendment Olympics!

Typodong3 August 9, 2012 at 3:26 pm

This is REALLY going to put a damper on my weekend warrentless wiretapping activities.

One_who_wanders August 9, 2012 at 2:38 pm

Who needs that silly old third branch of government restraining the rightful power of the Executive?

bumfug August 9, 2012 at 2:39 pm

"Warrants? We don't need no stinking warrants!"

neiltheblaze August 9, 2012 at 2:41 pm

The rubber stamp court has spoken.

Oblios_Cap August 9, 2012 at 3:41 pm

I thought the 9th Circuit was overflowing with Lieberal Activist judges. What happened?

BaldarTFlagass August 9, 2012 at 2:41 pm

Meh, I only use a cell phone these days, and it doesn't have any wires to tap, so I can say whatever the hell I want on the phone.

ChernobylSoup August 9, 2012 at 2:45 pm

And that old "steam through the adhesive" trick doesn't work on email.

WhatTheHeck August 9, 2012 at 2:52 pm

If you type/text quietly, they can’t hear you.

actor212 August 9, 2012 at 3:02 pm

I just use the Cone of Silence. Works like a charm.

mlle_derp August 9, 2012 at 3:36 pm

What? I can't hear you?

UnholyMoses August 9, 2012 at 2:41 pm

Haven't you been paying attention? The only Amendments that matter are the 2nd and 10th.

And maybe repealing the 13th and 14th.

Biff August 9, 2012 at 2:50 pm

We also reserve the 1st amendment right to spew utter bullshit all the time.

bikerlaureate August 9, 2012 at 5:06 pm

Only if it's Santorum-type bullshit.

BigSkullF*ckingDog August 9, 2012 at 2:54 pm

Don't forget to repeal the 19th because women are dumb an have periods and cooties.

BaldarTFlagass August 9, 2012 at 2:58 pm

That's okay, as long as they keep their pussy clean.

actor212 August 9, 2012 at 3:04 pm

And the Fifth, but only if it's a Republican on trial

mavenmaven August 9, 2012 at 2:42 pm

yeah, like they aren't going to do it anyway.

Extemporanus August 9, 2012 at 2:42 pm

More importantly, what impact will this ruling have on warrantless ass tapping?

BaldarTFlagass August 9, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Ass tapping is always warranted.

Extemporanus August 9, 2012 at 3:04 pm

…said Judge Wapner to Rusty the Bailiff.

smokefilledmeltdown August 9, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Or warrantless spinal tapping (!) gah!

Extemporanus August 9, 2012 at 2:59 pm

After the 9th District Court of Appeals, this case now goes to 11.

BoatOfVelociraptors August 9, 2012 at 3:10 pm

Ya gotta be hung to move from an ass tap to a spinal tap.

Extemporanus August 9, 2012 at 3:33 pm
bikerlaureate August 9, 2012 at 5:08 pm

They can have my cerebrospinal fluid when they suction it out of my cold, dead lumbars.

RadioBowels August 9, 2012 at 2:53 pm

No more butt tapping? (Nervously looks over shoulder.)

Extemporanus August 9, 2012 at 3:01 pm

*tap tap*

SOOPRISE BUTTSECHS!!1

smokefilledmeltdown August 9, 2012 at 5:41 pm

Shocker! *boink*

elviouslyqueer August 9, 2012 at 2:56 pm

According to Larry Craig, public restroom tapping is somewhat frowned upon.

Extemporanus August 9, 2012 at 3:09 pm

Shhh…

Widestanceromance is in the next stall.

widestanceromance August 9, 2012 at 2:57 pm

How about just a little white ass slapping? Who am I kidding, if you slap it, you're gonna tap it.

Extemporanus August 9, 2012 at 3:16 pm
YouBetcha August 9, 2012 at 2:43 pm

Would anyone like my rights? I'm not using them at the moment.

WhatTheHeck August 9, 2012 at 2:56 pm

sorry, your rights are as worthless as mine. Keep em to yourself.

actor212 August 9, 2012 at 3:05 pm

Are they fresh? Cuz mine are kinda gamey.

IndianaKevin August 10, 2012 at 7:22 am

Can I get that with a side of lefts?

noodlesalad August 9, 2012 at 2:44 pm

A conservative's guide to the Bill of Rights:
1st – I have the right to hate you, to talk about that hate, and to get paid to talk about that hate. You have no right to complain about this.
2nd – I have the right to kill you, dead, forever. You have no right to complain about this.
3rd – You don't have to live with a soldier. You do have to refer to them as heroes now and forever.
4th – If you're not doing anything wrong, you have nothing to hide.
5th – Only guilty people use this one. And you're all guilty anyway.
6th – You have the right to be put to death as quickly as possible for being any one or combination of the following: hippie/black/illegal/liberal commie/terrorist.
7th – You can get a jury in Gitmo. You just won't know they're there.
8th – Waterboarding is totes OK.
9th – We can ignore any law that conflicts with our freedom to oppress you.
10th – STATES RIGHTS FOREVER EXCEPT WHEN INCONVENIENT!!!!

RadioBowels August 9, 2012 at 2:55 pm
mlle_derp August 9, 2012 at 3:18 pm

This is a public service announcement- with guitar!

elviouslyqueer August 9, 2012 at 3:00 pm

And don't forget the important caveat/reminder:

Fuck the remaining amendments, since they weren't what God and the Founding Fathers (with the exception of that godless intellectual slave-fucking asshole Thomas Jefferson) intended. USA USA USA USA USA, also.

bikerlaureate August 9, 2012 at 5:09 pm

You forgot the end part of the 3rd:

"…unless they like the ghey."

HogeyeGrex August 9, 2012 at 2:44 pm

And this from those commies in the 9th Circuit, too.

I guess we can just hold on to the fact that it's a good sign the plaintiffs haven't been extraordinarily rendered yet.

They haven't, have they?

Schmannnity August 9, 2012 at 2:53 pm

You're thinking of the 5th and 11th Circuits.

mlle_derp August 9, 2012 at 3:19 pm

God-damned Arabic numerals…

shelwood46 August 9, 2012 at 3:27 pm

Of course not. According to the nice man in the suit, they're on a round-the-world cruise, on a boat with no phones, and they'll be back when you've forgotten they exist.

NorthStarSpanx August 9, 2012 at 2:45 pm

The SCOTUS is still operational after the Obamacare ruling?

Baconzgood August 9, 2012 at 2:45 pm

I'm sure that the right wing will blame Obama on this ruling.

FREEDUMBS!!!!!

Goonemeritus August 9, 2012 at 2:45 pm

Well as long as we are tearing up amendments that second amendment looks like it will rip up real easy like.

BaldarTFlagass August 9, 2012 at 2:48 pm

You could also blow it to shreds with an assault rifle.

smokefilledmeltdown August 9, 2012 at 2:46 pm

What kills me are the people who say, "I don't care. I have nothing to hide, if it makes us safer, I'm all for it." That's not the point you stupid fucks.

mlle_derp August 9, 2012 at 3:22 pm

“Every nation that has ended in tyranny has come to that end by way of good order. It certainly does not follow from this that peoples should scorn public peace, but neither should they be satisfied with that and nothing more. A nation that asks nothing of government but the maintenance of order is already a slave in the depths of its heart; it is a slave of its well-being, ready for the man who will put it in chains.”
― Alexis de Tocqueville

bikerlaureate August 9, 2012 at 5:09 pm

Worse, it's usually "if it might make us safer…", since proof is such a pinko egghead concept anyway.

deanbooth August 9, 2012 at 10:03 pm

But god forbid the government investigate neo-Nazi skinheads! Oppression!!

Baconzgood August 9, 2012 at 2:48 pm

"The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized. NOT!!!!!"

FIXED

emmelemm August 9, 2012 at 3:07 pm

"The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized. NOT!!!!!"

Done.

Baconzgood August 9, 2012 at 3:10 pm

I don't know how to do that. I'm not smart on the intertube.orgcom

mlle_derp August 9, 2012 at 3:32 pm
Baconzgood August 9, 2012 at 4:03 pm

There was no pornography on that site…

Ducksworthy August 9, 2012 at 2:49 pm

They really should sue the Obama administration for doing what W. did if they want to limit Executive Branch power. Whats that acronym for "It OK if a Republican does it"? And is there a corollary that "Its treason if a blah Demonrat does it."

bikerlaureate August 9, 2012 at 5:10 pm

Any blah, really.
Or any Demonrat.

Boojum August 9, 2012 at 2:49 pm

Yeah, but scary black Muslin Preznit.

PuckStopsHere August 9, 2012 at 2:49 pm

In a related note, the Court also ruled that the right of citizens everywhere to get their asses shot off while attending a movie is absolute.

HogeyeGrex August 9, 2012 at 2:50 pm

When does the Bush Legacy go the fuck away?

Biff August 9, 2012 at 2:55 pm

When Roberts croaks or quits.

BaldarTFlagass August 9, 2012 at 2:57 pm

We need to vote him out!
What? Are you fucking kidding me?

BigSkullF*ckingDog August 9, 2012 at 3:11 pm

When we try him for war crimes and make an example of him?

PhilippePetain August 9, 2012 at 2:50 pm

When our kids hear Cherry Pie and they ask what the band's name means, we will just cry and cry, and they will never know what they said that hurt us so.

SorosBot August 9, 2012 at 2:50 pm

Everyone say hi to the nice FBI man monitoring our conversations!

BaldarTFlagass August 9, 2012 at 2:52 pm

*waves, then gives the bird*

ChernobylSoup August 9, 2012 at 2:54 pm

01100111 01101111 00100000 01110100 01101111 00100000 01101000 01100101 01101100 01101100

(FBI uses computers for most of that kind of work)

BoatOfVelociraptors August 9, 2012 at 3:15 pm

Errbody knows they just build a parallel datacenter, make the service provider copy the traffic, and leave enough compute cycles on standby to decrypt anything interesting.

Negropolis August 10, 2012 at 2:14 am

"Goodnight, Gracie."

sbj1964 August 9, 2012 at 2:50 pm

Yes but the chineese judges gave the 9th court of appeals a 8.7 even though they stuck the landing perfect.

HogeyeGrex August 9, 2012 at 3:24 pm

That was just because the court didn't get Google to self-censor.

coolhandnuke August 9, 2012 at 2:52 pm

Does this mean I can listen to Warrant really loud without the neighbors calling the cops?

SayItWithWookies August 9, 2012 at 2:52 pm

I can't wait until Dubya and all the assholes who unilaterally decided we didn't have any rights during his administration have croaked — it's going to be a great pee-on-their-graves road trip.

(edited to fix abysmal syntax).

Biff August 9, 2012 at 2:52 pm

But how will this affect $arah??

FlownOver August 9, 2012 at 2:53 pm

The only wires being used these days are like the one Clemenza used on Carlo. Quite effectively, I'd add.

Lionel[redacted]Esq August 9, 2012 at 2:55 pm

Actually, having skimmed the decision, what the court said was that Congress had made it impossible for you to sue over it, as they didn't waive sovereign immunity related to the wire taps. As such, you can't sue for damages.

HistoriCat August 9, 2012 at 3:50 pm

So it's illegal for them to wiretap but if they DO wiretap there are no consequences? Awesome.

Lionel[redacted]Esq August 9, 2012 at 6:26 pm

I just skimmed it, but that is how I read it.

WhatTheHeck August 9, 2012 at 2:55 pm

This country needs a good exorcist.

fartknocker August 9, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Habeas corpus is way over-rated…

actor212 August 9, 2012 at 3:01 pm

Most Amercian corpuses are hardly worth habeasing…

RadioBowels August 9, 2012 at 2:59 pm

I'm sure a Romney Administration would correct this affront on our liberties.

actor212 August 9, 2012 at 3:01 pm

I wondered about that click on my phone line this morning…

IncenseDebate August 9, 2012 at 3:04 pm

This will all be solved when we learn to love Big Brother.

Blueb4sinrise August 9, 2012 at 3:06 pm

I'M OKAY WITH THE RULING AND ALL THE WARRANTLESS STUFF AND THE DRONES AND EVERYTHING!!!!!

REALLY!!!!!

TribecaMike August 9, 2012 at 3:16 pm

I'm guessing you don't live in the USA. Am I right or am I right?

Blueb4sinrise August 9, 2012 at 3:52 pm

Correct.
Arizona.

mrblifil August 9, 2012 at 3:07 pm

Yeah but the Second Amendment is still cool right? Because that's the IMPORTANT one.

Baconzgood August 9, 2012 at 3:12 pm

What's the big deal? You only get dew process if you've already done somthing wrong. The government NEVER locks up innocent people, amIright?

BigSkullF*ckingDog August 9, 2012 at 3:13 pm

I am okay with warrantless stuff because WARRANT sucked!

TribecaMike August 9, 2012 at 3:15 pm

With that out of the way, the judges can move on to more pressing matters like why wizards, witches and presumably house-elves in the Harry Potter books celebrate Christmas.

CrunchyKnee August 9, 2012 at 3:16 pm

Haha, fuckwit founding fathers, your experiment didn't last very long.

Now I will go drink.

HarryButtle August 9, 2012 at 3:45 pm

Have a Sam Adams. For freedum.

Blunderthing August 9, 2012 at 3:20 pm

Tap on this. (Never miss an opportunity to shamelessly self-promote. This is, after all, the Innernetz.)
http://soundcloud.com/lbullock1955/watching-out-f

outragedcitizen August 9, 2012 at 3:32 pm

Next up on the chopping block – the need for a warrant to search your home, car or person.

Who says Conservatives are progressive?

Generation[redacted] August 9, 2012 at 4:03 pm

And woe be to those who refuse to quarter soldiers in their homes. That's just plain hating our troops.

bikerlaureate August 9, 2012 at 5:12 pm

I say they're post-regressive.

If it was good enough for the Know-Nothings, gosh darn it…

mlle_derp August 9, 2012 at 3:38 pm

Meh- wake me up when you realize that all the Amendments are unwarranted…

Generation[redacted] August 9, 2012 at 4:02 pm

"Hi. I'm the government. You don't need the 1st, 4th, or 5th Amendment rights anymore. In fact, all you need is the 2nd Amendment, and that should be sufficient to protect you from any abuse of government power. Go ahead. Here's a gun. Pick it up. I double dog dare you."

pinkocommi August 9, 2012 at 4:38 pm

The government can still strip search me without a warrant, right? Because I LOVE being strip searched. Also.

IndianaKevin August 10, 2012 at 8:08 am

Now, if you'll just relax that sphincter, we'll have you on your way in a moment …

proudgrampa August 9, 2012 at 4:49 pm

OUR TOP STORY TONIGHT:

THE FOURTH AMENDMENT IS STILL DEAD!!!

STAY TUNED FOR AN UPDATE ON THE CONDITION OF THE FIRST AMENDMENT.

ttommyunger August 9, 2012 at 11:20 pm

Don't forget the all-seeing eye. CCTV cameras are people too, my friend.

BZ1 August 10, 2012 at 5:31 pm

we don't need no stinkin' warrants (I'm using this stale phrase to death now)

mlle_derp August 9, 2012 at 4:11 pm

I don't know how to do that. I'm not smart on the intertube.orgcom

Baconzgood August 9, 2012 at 4:14 pm

Thanks for the help….But there was STILL no pornography on that site!

mlle_derp August 9, 2012 at 4:37 pm

Sorry, snark fail- I just meant I don't know how to get porn onto that site…

Baconzgood August 9, 2012 at 4:45 pm

My snark bad.

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