Ever wonder how the law adapts to technology that makes it harder or easier for police to search and seize suspected criminals? Orin Kerr posits that an Equilibrium-adjustment exists. "Courts respond to the new facts by trying to restore the old level of protection. If a new technology or practice increased government power, courts ratchet up Fourth Amendment...
Data Mining or the Fourth Amendment?
"Boalt Hall Law Professor and Visiting AEI Scholar John Yoo writes in a short piece on the AEI website that we should consider using data mining to pursue terrorists. He makes at least two errors: one historical and one statistical.
Discussing the recent vogue for making U.S. law more like Britain's, Yoo writes:
'[I]ncreasing detention time or making warrants easier to come by merely extends an old-fashioned approach to catching terrorists. These tools require individualized suspicion and 'probable cause'; police must have evidence of criminal activity in hand. Such methods did not prevent 9/11, and stopping terrorists, who may have no criminal record, requires something more.'
It's hard to put aside that the vogue for making U.S. law more like Britain's would undo part of what the Revolutionary War was fought for. And Yoo's placement of the phrase 'probable cause' in quotes — I hope that's not to suggest that the language of the Fourth Amendment is quaint."
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