WAMU 88.5 : The Kojo Nnamdi Show

Domestic Surveillance: Verizon Releases Phone Records

The Guardian newspaper revealed the second largest phone company in the U.S., Verizon, is handing over millions of private phone records to government agencies. Authorized by the Patriot Act, the order came from a secret court overseeing foreign and domestic surveillance, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. Experts say this is the tip of the iceberg, and the government collects far more information on American citizens than is revealed. We explore the legal, political and privacy issues around domestic surveillance.

Authorizing Domestic Surveillance

Many Americans were shocked by the Guardian's recent revelations that the N.S.A. and F.B.I. are secretly poring over millions of private phone records. But Philip Bump, from the Atlantic Wire, reminds us that Congress has consistently voted to expand the government's authority to conduct domestic surveillance. Bump compares the voting records of members of Congress. Below, we took his database and ranked the skepticism of Maryland and Virginia congress members (as measured by number of "no" votes"):

The amended data-set is available here

NPR

Jhumpa Lahiri Finds Freedom In Italian Memoir: 'No One Expected Me To Do It'

The Interpreter of Maladies author is a successful, Pulitzer Prize-winning English-language writer. But she found writing in Italian gave her true freedom; "Language is a very messy thing," she says.
NPR

Gulf Of Mexico Open For Fish-Farming Business

For the first time, companies can apply to set up fish farms in U.S. federal waters. The government says the move will help reduce American dependence on foreign seafood and improve security.
WAMU 88.5

What's Behind Trends In U.S. Violent Crime Rates

FBI data suggest there was a slight uptick in violent crime in the first half of last year, but overall violent crime rates in the U.S. have dropped dramatically over the last twenty years. What led to the long-term decline, and why do some say it’s likely to continue?

WAMU 88.5

Blocked: Twitter's Role In Combating Violent Extremism

Over the course of seven months, Twitter has suspended over 125,000 accounts for threatening or promoting terrorist acts.

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