January 17th, 2014
03:33 PM ET
3 months ago

What is the FISA court?

Washington (CNN) – It may be the most powerful court you have never heard of - operating out of a bunker-like complex blocks from the Capitol and the White House - sealed tightly to prevent eavesdropping.

Its a tribunal that is secret (or supposed to be). Its structure is largely one-sided and its members are unilaterally chosen by one unelected person.


Filed under: NSA
soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    I think some civil libertarians are going overboard with their claims of government intrusion. Monitoring metadata on the information highway is not all that different than a trooper monitoring traffic on an interstate highway. The trooper can see the make, model, and color of your vehicle. Heck, the guy can even read your license plate and state of origin. But, he cannot eavesdrop on the conversation you're having as you cruise by.

    January 17, 2014 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  2. just asking

    What is the FISA court?
    --

    it is a government create sham that rubber stamps every single government request to violate the rights of citizens. npbody stands in front of this court to represent the us citizens who are having their rights trampled.

    January 17, 2014 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  3. Donna

    Rudy NYC
    I think some civil libertarians are going overboard with their claims of government intrusion. Monitoring metadata on the information highway is not all that different than a trooper monitoring traffic on an interstate highway. The trooper can see the make, model, and color of your vehicle. Heck, the guy can even read your license plate and state of origin. But, he cannot eavesdrop on the conversation you're having as you cruise by.
    -–

    Get a clue Rudy. A better analogy would be if the trooper manned a trailer full of super computers that recorded every car that passed by, recorded every detail about the car and its occupants for the entire length of the trip and recorded every other vehicle that car or person came in contact with. And did this for every single trip for the last 10 years just in case the government needs to know who you passed at mile marker 10 3 years ago and how many people were in that car and where did that car go afterwards.

    January 17, 2014 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  4. Gurgyl

    I don't know what it is but it is the right time to pass stricter Gun-Control Laws in the nation. Again shooting in Phylly school. Pathetic nation,athletic NRA greedy thugs. Defeat all.

    January 17, 2014 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  5. carlos

    Good point, Rudy. However, monitoring metadata flowing through wires or over the air is not quite the same as "watching" traffic. What a can of worms we opened when we consented to using these devices. We are complicit.

    January 17, 2014 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  6. Richard Long

    Obama's "most transparent Administration in history"... just another lie as he has freely used the FISA to forward his agenda to destroy citizens' rights and freedoms.

    January 17, 2014 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  7. HenryMiller

    America's very own Star Chamber!

    January 17, 2014 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  8. just saying

    Gurgyl
    I don't know what it is but it is the right time to pass stricter Gun-Control Laws in the nation. Again shooting in Phylly school. Pathetic nation,athletic NRA greedy thugs. Defeat all.
    --

    second amendment. it's the law of the land! you dense or what?

    January 17, 2014 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  9. Rudy NYC

    Donna wrote:

    Get a clue Rudy. A better analogy would be if the trooper manned a trailer full of super computers that recorded every car that passed by, recorded every detail about the car and its occupants for the entire length of the trip and recorded every other vehicle that car or person came in contact with. And did this for every single trip for the last 10 years just in case the government needs to know who you passed at mile marker 10 3 years ago and how many people were in that car and where did that car go afterwards.
    ---------------------
    Reality check. They already pretty much do exactly that. They're called traffic cameras. They send pictures to servers.

    January 17, 2014 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  10. Donna

    Rudy NYC
    Donna wrote:
    Get a clue Rudy. A better analogy would be if the trooper manned a trailer full of super computers that recorded every car that passed by, recorded every detail about the car and its occupants for the entire length of the trip and recorded every other vehicle that car or person came in contact with. And did this for every single trip for the last 10 years just in case the government needs to know who you passed at mile marker 10 3 years ago and how many people were in that car and where did that car go afterwards.
    -------
    Reality check. They already pretty much do exactly that. They're called traffic cameras. They send pictures to servers.
    --

    I doubt it but who knows. The NSA has probably hacked their way into that system as well as is capturing all that "metadata'. All to be used for very good purposes of course. Like finding out where your political opponents are parking their car and visiting.

    January 17, 2014 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  11. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    Here's a movie for you guys to refer back to: Enemy of the State starring Will Smith. There is no public camera that the Feds can't get access to. That thing called "privacy" is a figment of your imagination. You typing on this blog can pinpoint your location. It's not called a "smartphone" for no reason.

    January 17, 2014 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  12. Tommy G

    Well now that we know the government can force us to buy anything, maybe they will force us all to have tracking chips implanted. Think of all the money that will be saved not having to hunt people down? Thanks Democrats, Obama and Supreme Court.

    January 17, 2014 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  13. Gurgyl

    @just saying–what did you do when NY passed gun-control. Not too far to pass total gun-ban to save people. Learn it. You dumboooo.

    January 17, 2014 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  14. ironman59

    If you have a problem with the fisa court, don't blame Obama. Simple fact is that every judge on the court is appointed by the Chief Justice. Since the court was created every chief justice has been and is a gop appointed justice. Thank nixon, ford, ronnie, daddy bush & "W" for how the court is constructed.

    January 17, 2014 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  15. Sniffit

    Hmmmm...I thought fisa was that stuff you make baklava with...

    January 17, 2014 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  16. Sniffit

    "America's very own Star Chamber!"

    Shut up and take your soma.

    January 17, 2014 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |