In this article, we get a foreshadowing of the new, lawless use of the “no-fly” list: Senate Intelligence Chairman Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said a “very comprehensive no-fly list” would be “the greatest protection our country has.” In an interview, she said the definition of who can be included should be expanded to include anyone about whom there is “a reasonable suspicion.”
While not exactly house arrest, being on the no-fly list would be enough to severely diminish a person’s economic prospects and quality of life. If Sen. Feinstein’s characterization is correct, this will not be dictated by law or judicial review. It appears that anyone can be placed on the list by a bureaucrat (though lawsuits are inevitable).
Now, flying is becoming less important in the age of the Internet — I can work anywhere there is an ‘net connection. This will become increasingly true for terrorists, or persons under Feinstein’s “reasonable suspicion”.
So one wonders if we will see a bureaucratic “no-net” list at some point, and whether it will have any basis in law. There is at least one precedent.