The widespread bulk data collections exposed by defense contractor Edward Snowden have been quite a controversial subject lately. The renewal of the Patriot Act has brought up many uncomfortable questions for the NSA regarding unwarranted wiretapping and data collection. The most important question of all: is any of this stuff actually making a difference in fighting terrorism?
According to the FBI the answer to this question is a resounding no. Agents at the FBI can’t actually point to any evidence of the NSA spy programs providing a significant lead in any sort of terrorism case. But wait, isn’t all this NSA spy stuff in place to protect us from terrorism? If it isn’t doing that then what is the point?
Despite the fact that no significant leads have been extracted from the mountains of data collected congress is still adamant about mass surveillance. We’d have more success comparing dog food to human food. The new USA Freedom Act attempts to address the expiration of the Patriot Act while reigning in NSA surveillance programs. It was passed in a landslide vote and will effectively keep NSA spy programs active through 2019.
Why should the privacy of so many innocent Americans be compromised for a program that has little effect on the terrorism it’s meant to protect us from?