Questina gets it:
According to the 2012 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Report, the Department of Justice submitted 1,856 applications to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC), a 6.4% increase over 2011. Of the 1,856 search applications, 1,789 sought authority to conduct electronic surveillance. The FISC did not deny any of the applications, although one was withdrawn by the Government. However, the FISC did make modifications to 40 of the applications, including one from the 2011 reporting period.
FISC = rubber stamp agency.
Cooler also gets it, the lack of choice is killing our political system. When there are 4 or 5 candidates, you can't simply run a negative ad campaign or "be cool" and expect to win. Look at how contentious the Republican primaries were (a different front-runner every month). Amazingly, the most successful 3rd party candidate (Ross Perot - most attribute him for George Bush senior losing his election by splitting the vote) could not get into the debates today because of how the rules have changed.
I think Rydaar has it right as well, so many Americans are comfortable. If people can get medical Mary Jane, stay on unemployment for 3 years, and play video games - what are the chances those people will stand up and be counted? As long as people can get food, their kids can go to college, and the standard of living doesn't drop too much, you won't see people rioting in the streets. I would also add that there are no leaders today. Occupy Wall Street was a joke. Instead of Martin Luther King we get jokers like Jesse Jackson? When was the last time we saw a serious protest where 250,000 Americans took to the streets? Vietnam disrupted lives, Afghanistan and Iraq, not so much...