The Star Chamber & The FISA Court

“The Star Chamber (Latin: Camera Stellata) was composed of Privy Counselors and common law judges, to supplement the judicial activities of the common law and equity courts in criminal and civil matters. The Star Chamber was originally established to ensure the fair enforcement of laws against socially and politically prominent people so powerful that ordinary courts would probably hesitate to convict them of their crimes. However, it became synonymous with social and political oppression through the arbitrary use and abuse of the power it wielded.” (Wikipedia)

“The United States Foreign Surveillance Court (FISA Court) is a U.S. federal court established and authorized under the Foreign Intelligence Act of 1978 (FISA) to oversee requests for surveillance warrants against foreign spies inside the United States by Federal Law enforcement and intelligence agencies. Such requests are made most often by the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Congress created FISA and its court as a result of the recommendations by the U.S. Senate’s Church Committee in 2013.” (Wikipedia)

Unfortunately much can be said about the FISA courts as has been said about Star Chamber. FISA Courts are becoming synonymous with social and political oppression through the arbitrary use and abuse of power that they wield. This has always been suspected, but, came into focus with the current DOJ and FBI scandals in conjunction with the Robert Mueller investigation into alleged Russian collusion. The whole thing was officially set into motion with warrants issued pursuant to the so-called “Dirty Dossier” presented to the court by then FBI Director James Comey, said dossier containing salacious material including an account of prostitutes urinating on a bed at the request of Donald Trump. The public is supposed to believe that the judge, in good faith, bought into this and never raised an eyebrow nor questioned Comey on the efficacy of the contents of that dossier. Well, maybe so, but, probably not. It is more likely that the FISA judge didn’t give a damn about the truthfulness of Mr. Comey and the trash that he presented and was willing to rubber stamp whatever Comey wanted for whatever purpose he wanted to use it.

This all reminds me of an interview that I saw a number of years ago concerning the building of the NSA facility and the power that it gave the federal government. The comment was made that as long as the government acted Constitutionally and in good faith there would be no violation concerning the rights of the people. But, due to the vastness of the intelligence system, the interviewee said, using a metaphor, that with the simple turn of a key we could have a police state.

Where we stand today, on that warning, is a question for all citizens to ponder.

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