In 2018, the U.S. government filed 1,117 final applications to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court for authority for the FBI to conduct electronic surveillance and physical searches. One application was withdrawn. One other was denied. The remaining 1,115 were granted.

Hours before the FISA court issued a December 17 order openly declaring that it could no longer trust any of the sworn statements the FBI had submitted to justify spying on Americans, The New York Times published an opinion article by William Webster, a former director of both the FBI and the CIA. Webster wrote, “Today, the integrity of the institutions that protect our civil order is, tragically, under assault from too many people whose job it should be to protect them.”

Gone are the days The New York Times worked to expose government abuse of power. The New York Times now defends power from truth.