Remember the controversies over Obama's NSA and his use of drones? Back then, cautious people pointed out that expanded powers granted to one president would also go to all other presidents, including the ones you don't like or don't trust.
Well, that unhappy thought has finally hit home
Many intelligence specialists describe the digital spying barriers standing in the Trump administration’s way as flimsy at best.
“I don't think [civil libertarians’] fears are overblown,” said Mieke Eoyang, a former Democratic congressional aide focused on defense and intelligence policy, who is now vice president for the national security program at the center-left think tank Third Way.
If Trump said, “Hey let's take the gloves off,” added Eoyang, “there are very few people [in government] who can say … ‘This is a problem.’”
Obama came into office vowing to “revisit” many of these powers, but privacy advocates believe he has largely failed to do so. While the president has regularly spoken about the need for greater checks and public oversight of the system, he has defended the powers themselves.
“This may go down in history as President Obama’s most consequential mistake,” Timm said.
I would argue that Obama's most consequential mistake was to advertise himself as a firebrand reformer and then reveal himself, in office, as just another politician. I would say that the hatred which many liberals felt toward Hillary was really -- at least in part -- deflected fury toward Obama.
To paraphrase a joke currently zooming around social media:
What more does Trump have to do to prove that he's a Nazi -- steal the Ark of the Covenant?