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Thread: Edward Snowden, NSA leaker

  1. #1
    the druthers Mordecai's Avatar
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    Edward Snowden, NSA leaker

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013...r-surveillance

    Edward Snowden: the whistleblower behind the NSA surveillance revelations


    The 29-year-old source behind the biggest intelligence leak in the NSA's history explains his motives, his uncertain future and why he never intended on hiding in the shadows
    Snowden will go down in history as one of America's most consequential whistleblowers, alongside Daniel Ellsberg and Bradley Manning. He is responsible for handing over material from one of the world's most secretive organisations – the NSA.In a note accompanying the first set of documents he provided, he wrote: "I understand that I will be made to suffer for my actions," but "I will be satisfied if the federation of secret law, unequal pardon and irresistible executive powers that rule the world that I love are revealed even for an instant."
    Despite his determination to be publicly unveiled, he repeatedly insisted that he wants to avoid the media spotlight. "I don't want public attention because I don't want the story to be about me. I want it to be about what the US government is doing."
    He does not fear the consequences of going public, he said, only that doing so will distract attention from the issues raised by his disclosures. "I know the media likes to personalise political debates, and I know the government will demonise me."
    Despite these fears, he remained hopeful his outing will not divert attention from the substance of his disclosures. "I really want the focus to be on these documents and the debate which I hope this will trigger among citizens around the globe about what kind of world we want to live in." He added: "My sole motive is to inform the public as to that which is done in their name and that which is done against them."
    He has had "a very comfortable life" that included a salary of roughly $200,000, a girlfriend with whom he shared a home in Hawaii, a stable career, and a family he loves. "I'm willing to sacrifice all of that because I can't in good conscience allow the US government to destroy privacy, internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they're secretly building."



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    Remember. Steve SFM's Avatar
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    Goddamn it. I was just gonna start this thread and call it "It's the Ed Snowden Fun Thread!"

    But yeah, shit just got real yo. This stuff has been bubbling for awhile now, and it started to poke into the mass media with the DOJ vs. investigative journalism stuff a couple of weeks ago. And then it exploded last week, but this is even more important, because it gives the whole thing a Face. That gives the issue a relation point for a wider audience, and a person to cheer or boo. My take on this guy is that he's a bit full of himself, but he's sincere and even eloquent at times. And, he's very, very brave. I mean. Bradley Manning was tortured for the better part of a year. And finally, I think he did the right thing.

    I kind of love that Glenn Greenwald has his hands in all of this. He's been talking about it for years, and it's right that he, among others, got the scoop. And he's entering the mass consciousness too. I doubt that he's going to be well liked, because he's not particularly warm and cuddly. Indeed, he's kind of a prick. But he's OUR prick, and he backs his shit up like woah. I actually changed my avatar at HuffPo, which had been Matt Taibbi since I joined up, to a GG picture a couple of weeks ago when the DOJ stuff dropped. He was my avatar here for awhile, and I'd change it again, but Jen Lawrence is prettier.

    Speaking of HP, I was discouraged at first that so many posters were calling Snowden a traitor and praising Obama for saving our freedumbs by rifling through our free speech. But, shit, it is what it is. Maybe it'll change. In any case, it'll be interesting to see how this develops.

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    Remember. Steve SFM's Avatar
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    Daniel Ellsberg!

    In my estimation, there has not been in American history a more important leak than Edward Snowden's release of NSA material – and that definitely includes the Pentagon Papers 40 years ago. Snowden's whistleblowing gives us the possibility to roll back a key part of what has amounted to an "executive coup" against the US constitution.
    more

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    Senior Member uncanny hats's Avatar
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    Poll says Murkans are okie doke with surveillance. So, like drones and a lot of really horrible things, nothing will probably change. But it will make the US look foolish when discussing human rights. The fact is you are 8 times more likely to be murdered by law enforcement than a terrorist. We're just going to have to get used to a changing nation, one more delusional and afraid. I mean "if you aren't doing anything wrong, you have nothing to worry
    about."

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    Remember. Steve SFM's Avatar
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    I've seen plenty of comments saying that. EXACTLY that.

    In at least one important way, Osama bin-Laden won.

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    Senior Member uncanny hats's Avatar
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    Well I believe people are really afraid. I think the media plays this up largely, because it makes money, but also the events that provoke fear are different. If it's one commonality I've noticed about rural and urban areas it's the fear of difference. The event in West, Texas, for example, didn't surprise most people and if it had, we couldn't have a war on business owners. We can't have war on police or medical errors or heart disease. Even with guns, urbanites fear guns, and in the country, I have otherwise smart relatives who believe there is a Muslm communist cabal headed up by Obama trying to take away people's guns. And even on a
    personal level, what do we call people who think they are different? Well, different implies special, so, either delusional or douche-bags. It's not that going after
    terrorism is bad, but imagine violating the Constitution to go after doctors, business owners, or gun freaks.
    Last edited by uncanny hats; 06-11-2013 at 06:17 PM.

  7. #7
    Remember. Steve SFM's Avatar
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    Yeah. I think I probably was a little glib above. I mean, I was crippled by fear for so long, and I was finally so crushed by it that I had nowhere to go except through it. Today, I'm much better, but I understand visceral fear. And if people feel that towards terrorism, I should be able to understand it.

    At the same time, I know a bit about how fear is used to manipulate and control individuals and societies. If someone says, ""if you aren't doing anything wrong, you have nothing to worry about", well, that's something they were taught. And I feel that I have to speak up about that. I just need to be a bit more gentle w/r/t individual people. I mean, I don't want to be one of those assholes moaning about "sheeple".

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    Senior Member uncanny hats's Avatar
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    Lawsuit. And steve, as you know, these are always the worst times to have alt politics. I spend a lot of time IRL, silent. If I don't, bad things happen. Just yesterday, I did open my mouth and basically unless I started liking yuppies, I was a misanthrope. But, I am remaining positive. A lot of Gen Y seems less receptive to a lot of dominant paradigms. Granted they're young, but certainly they are less nihilistic than our generation at their age.

    Also, edit: From the Snowden files: US has been spying on China for years.
    Last edited by uncanny hats; 06-13-2013 at 12:06 AM.

  9. #9
    the druthers Mordecai's Avatar
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    It's sad to see the reaction against Snowden. It reminds me of a great book (available online!) I read about the "authoritarian personality" in psychology.

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    Remember. Steve SFM's Avatar
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    Which throws a bit of a monkey wrench into our moral outrage about China spying on us. And yay lawsuit! This guy's going after the companies. and the ACLU is suing the government. Nice one-two punch. But here's what I wanted to contribute.

    Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) called for the prosecution of Glenn Greenwald, a journalist for The Guardian whose stories based on interviews with National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden detailed the agency's phone and Internet spying programs.

    Fox News' Megyn Kelly asked King on Wednesday whether he believed that Greenwald and Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman, who also wrote about the program, should be prosecuted for publishing the leaks.

    "I’m talking about Greenwald," King said. "Greenwald, not only did he disclose this information, he has said that he has names of CIA agents and assets around the world, and they're threatening to disclose that. The last time that was done in this country, we saw a CIA station chief murdered in Greece ... I think it should be very targeted, very selective and certainly a very rare exception. But, in this case, when you have someone who discloses secrets like this and threatens to release more, yes, there has to be -- legal action taken against him."
    Glenn, of course, responded as he often does: with nasty tweets. And, did he bring up King's past association with the IRA? Of course he did.

  11. #11
    thirst world problems Octopussy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve SFM View Post
    Goddamn it. I was just gonna start this thread and call it "It's the Ed Snowden Fun Thread!"
    We can still make it fun:

    Edward Snowden 2001 modeling shots.



  12. #12
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    We haven't even gotten to the pole-dancing girlfriend yet.

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    I keep seeing this, “is he a hero or a traitor?” question popping up via the little bits of news I’ve caught on this story. The fact that the question is even being asked is yet another sad reflection of how polarized things have become in this country. Should we praise him? Should we lynch him? If this happened 30 years ago—a.k.a. America sans its nauseating, corporate-media-driven, shaming mentality—and someone who worked for one of these agencies came forward and alerted the public that their mail was being read and their phone calls were being monitored, I’m pretty sure the overwhelming majority of us would be outraged and we wouldn’t even be asking such a ridiculous question. I agree with Edward: he is neither hero nor traitor. He’s an American. And I also believe that his “worst fear” will unfortunately be realized. The ball is already in motion and some things have to play themselves out. I hope they have fun with that!
    Last edited by C33; 02-07-2014 at 05:14 AM.

  14. #14
    Mr. Tricorder Pete!'s Avatar
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    I'm surprised there's not more discussion going on in here about this. This is staggering; maybe not completely surprising, but still shocking. For my part, the fact that we've a Conservative government pushing for a mandate to collect data on precisely this scale whilst its own Intelligence has unhindered access to it via the NSA anyway makes me do a squinty-face; the suspicion that the draft Communications Data Bill has all along been an attempt to legitimise an incredibly grey practice.

    Massively fuckin' dodgy, innit?

    Quote Originally Posted by c33 View Post
    If this happened 30 years ago—a.k.a. America sans its nauseating, corporate-media-driven, shaming mentality...
    That's some extremely rosy nostalgia you've got going on there. I think you're forgetting a lot of your own history.

    Still, with regards your comments surrounding the "hero or villain" hoopla, the best comments from my Twitter feed of late:

    @doingitwrong lol @ people acting as if there is a reasonable ‘debate’ about mass surveillance. remember when there was a ‘debate’ about torture
    @doingitwrong A debate is an event where two sides engage a question that’s been constructed such that reasonable people could reasonably disagree.
    @doingitwrong There is/was a pantomime of a debate that muddied the water long enough for the people in charge to prosecute their agenda.

    @cascio The use of “bad guys” is a puerile cover for ignoring the complexity of politics and morality. It’s not just cartoonish, it’s insulting.

  15. #15
    Why is this happening to me? beanstew's Avatar
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    The Guardian are hosting a live Q&A with Edward Snowden.

    Edward Snowden Q and A: NSA whistleblower answers your questions
    Maybe for once, someone will call me "Sir" without adding, "You're making a scene."

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