Harvey Manfrenjensenton writes "According to this story at Newhouse News Service, the assault on Americans' rights known as the Patriot Act, passed by Congress in October, has produced results that are as disturbing -- and rampant -- as could have been anticipated. Law enforcement used to need a court order to tap your phone, read your mail, etc. Now they just need a whim. ISP's and Telcos can barely keep up with the volume of requests by Feds wanting to read your email."
EFF's analysis of the Patriot Act
is good reading.