Back-door searches are a shameful end-run around the Fourth Amendment. Three weeks ago, the House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly to require the government to show probable cause and obtain a warrant before searching Section 702 data for information about Americans. Despite their mandate to safeguard Americans’ civil liberties, not a single member of the Board backed this common-sense approach.

"What money corrupts is the whole activity of governing. The legislative docket is the game board. The electorate and the elected alike are the pieces. Most of us don’t have the money to play in that game, and because we don’t have the money—and because we do, thanks to our constitutional history, have the vote—we are the pawns."

-William Hogeland, Boston Review

These revenues are profits—the government is profiting from student debtors. That some commentators have objected to this terminology illustrates widespread denial about the nature of the student-debt crisis. Even the political leaders who are rightly disgusted by such profiteering and favor lowering interest rates on student loans do not grasp the problem. These epic profits are merely the tip of a huge cost iceberg, formed from the skyrocketing baseline costs of education. No lawmaker has proposed a genuine, long-term solution to the crisis.

Since this story, Congress—now on vacation—has allowed student-loan rates to double.