The Great Debate

Senate must rein in the NSA

By Elizabeth Goitein
June 2, 2014

An illustration picture shows the logo of the U.S. National Security Agency on the display of an iPhone in Berlin

The House of Representatives seemed poised last month to rein in the government’s ability to spy on its citizens by prohibiting the bulk collection of Americans’ telephone records. On the eve of the vote, however, the Obama administration and House leadership intervened. In secret negotiations, they took a carving knife to the bill, removing key privacy protections.

NSA: Listening to everyone — except oversight

By James Bamford
August 27, 2013

ILLUSTRATION: Matt Mahurin

For 35 years the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court has been the judicial equivalent of a stellar black hole — everything goes in but nothing is allowed to escape.