"Let's party like it's 1984" department. From my current favorite libertarian, Andrew Napolitano:
It gets worse. The Patriot Act, which was enacted in 2001 and permits federal agents to write their own search warrants in violation of the Fourth Amendment, actually amended FISA so as to do away with the FISA-issued search warrant requirement when the foreign person is outside the U.S. This means that if you email or call your cousin in Europe or a business colleague in Asia, the feds are reading or listening, without a warrant, without suspicion, without records and without evidence of anything unlawful.
The Patriot Act amendments to FISA also permit the feds to use anything they see or hear while spying in a federal court. The amended FISA statute permitting these warrantless searches of emails, telephone calls and postal mail expires at the end of this month. Last month, the House quietly voted to extend this dreadful authority for another five years, and in the next week, the Senate will consider doing the same.
[. . .]
The President and the leadership of both political parties in both houses of Congress have abandoned their oaths to uphold the Constitution. They have claimed that foreigners and their American communicants are committed to destroying the country and only the invasion of everyone's right to privacy will keep us safe. They are violating the privacy of us all to find the communications of a few. Who will keep us safe from them? Their behavior is committed to destroying the Constitution.
And then, there is this. It's not quite as intimidating, but on some levels it seems even more insidious:
Transit authorities in cities across the country are quietly installing microphone-enabled surveillance systems on public buses that would give them the ability to record and store private conversations, according to documents obtained by a news outlet.
The systems are being installed in San Francisco, Baltimore, and other cities with funding from the Department of Homeland Security in some cases, according to the Daily, which obtained copies of contracts, procurement requests, specs and other documents.
The use of the equipment raises serious questions about eavesdropping without a warrant, particularly since recordings of passengers could be obtained and used by law enforcement agencies.
It also raises questions about security, since the IP audio-video systems can be accessed remotely via a built-in web server (.pdf), and can be combined with GPS data to track the movement of buses and passengers throughout the city.
"Homeland Security" always did sound a little totalitarian, didn't it? Enjoy what's left of your privacy while you still have it.