In this case, ACLU v. Clapper, the judge notes a government admission that it has been collecting substantially ALL phone connection metadata since May 2006. This vacuuming of data by the government isn't something new or unique to the Obama administration. The government is continuously increasing its surveillance, as technology permits. Once in awhile it gets caught and Congress puts on a dog and pony show, complete with enactment of meaningless legislation. See, e.g., the Church Hearings.
“SCOTUS ruled, in Smith v. Maryland, 442 US 735 (1979), that individuals have no legitimate expectation of privacy regarding the telephone numbers they dial because they knowingly give that information to the telephone companies when they dial the number.”
I publish my home address. So, I guess I have given the government the right to a little look-see in my front window. But it’s ok if they are doing it to everybody.
This also violates the 5th amendment right against self-incrimination, even though I’m sure the black-robed cabal would argue that I didn’t invoke those rights with the proper words.
It all stinks, IMHO.