ECHELON

As you may have heard, the NSA hopes to create a massive database of every single phone call made in the USA. They approached the big phone companies, and they all handed over data about your phone calls except Qwest. No warrants, no questions, they just gave the information away. [Update 2 days later: If you think it’s no big deal, consider that the government is already illegally tapping journalists’ phone lines in an attempt to root out leakers and whistleblowers.

John McCain

Something to remember next time you’re tempted to view John McCain as the acceptable face of the Republican Party: A last-minute amendment added by Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., would require the Department of Homeland Security to create an “integrated screening system” inside the United States. McCain envisions erecting physical checkpoints, dubbed “screening points,” near subways, airports, bus stations, train stations, federal buildings, telephone companies, Internet hubs and any other “critical infrastructure” facility deemed vulnerable to terrorist attacks.