The real Petraeus scandal is why the bureau was rummaging around in his private communications in the first place.Which is exactly what I posted earlier this week in, "Petraeus and Broadwell: The FBI circles the wagons." Timm continues,
It seems the deciding factor in opening the investigation was not the emails' content, but the fact that the FBI agent was friendly with Kelley. (Even more disturbing, the same FBI agent has now been accused of becoming "obsessed" with the Tampa socialite, sent shirtless pictures to her, and has been removed from the case.)
Regardless of what method the FBI used to read their allegedly explicit communications, the Daily Beast reported, "the FBI agents found no indication that it constituted a crime or a threat to national security. They confirmed this when they interviewed Broadwell and then Petraeus."
Incredibly, this didn't stop the investigation. And if privacy were any kind of priority, this again this should have been the end. The FBI has to comply with legally mandated "minimization" standards under law which, in theory, should prevent the bureau from snooping on personal conversations that do not reveal criminal conduct, even if its agents have permission to read all relevant communications to an investigation.Instead, as the investigation deepened, top FBI officials were alerted, and they in turn told the director of national intelligence. Petraeus eventually resigned. ...
The U.S. government has so far been unable to keep its colossal surveillance state in check. Now that it is so bloated it is eating itself, one hopes more people will finally pay attention.Oh, they are paying attention all right. What they will do is put in place closer checks and balances to make sure that if a equivalent figure to Petraeus comes under the surveillance microscope, we the people will never know. For politically unconnected proles like you and me, no change.
Update: Andrew Napolitano piles on, too.