Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I will have a respectful and open minded look at your essay, but I'm a hard sell.  I understand that you  believe that those who take government power for granted are naive.  In general I would agree, but I would also argue that the same view can be had of those who contend incessantly that "government" is always abusing its power/responsibility.  

More to the point.  I suspect that neither of us are really in a position to state categorically that there is or is not "objective evidence that the level of secret spying going on in the US is proportional to any foreign threats..." particularly with regard to FISC issued wiretapping warrants.  I haven't been involved with such matters for quite a few years, but I do know that in the past there was more than enough reason for this court to exist and for the warrants it issued.  Has the "war on terror" changed everything.  I can't say for certain, but I will state that  despite the historic examples of law enforcement/intelligence abuse you mention, the US does have a "built-in" system of self examination and correction that tends to react against government abuse of civil liberties.  The FISA itself is an example of such a correction, as pointed out earlier.  I see no historical or current evidence that would lead me to believe that the US is in fact morphing into a police state.  What is happening is public and official attention rightfully focused upon selected instances of abuse which over time should result in corrective action.  There is and never will be a perfect society or a perfect government.    

I can swear there ain't no heaven but I pray there ain't no hell. _ Blood Sweat & Tears

by Gringo (stargazing camel at aoldotcom) on Sun Jun 22nd, 2008 at 11:22:15 PM EST
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