N.S.A. Leaks

Edward Snowden outed himself as Glenn Greenwald’s source to the story about N.S.A.’s PRISM program and call record collection program.  There are several salacious aspects to this story.  First is how did this high school drop out land a $200k job and a top secret security clearance.  And how, after only three months on the job manage to grab the secrets he leaked to Greenwald.    Both Snowden and Greenwald show clear signs of narcissism, but it’s unclear  how that bears on their actions. But the interesting aspects are how Libertarians and civil libertarians are both outraged about the government invasion of their privacy, and how so many are saying they figured this was going on all along and are ok with it.

In 1999 Scott McNealy, CEO and co-founder of Sun Microsystems and Libertarian said:

You have zero privacy anyway. Get over it.

For those not familiar with Sun  Microsystems, they were pioneers in workstation and networking technology.  Their motto was: “The network is the computer.”

McNealy was prescient.  Google reads your email and tracks your searches.  Those loyalty cards you have track your purchases.  Web browsers keep “cookies” on your computer which track information on individual sites.

As to Snowden, when he got his security clearance he signed a non-disclosure agreement.  The agreement states that any un-authorized disclosure of classified information could result in being tried for treason.



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23 responses to “N.S.A. Leaks

  1. Dog's Eye View

    Have you been on Balloon Juice lately?

    This topic is virtually the only thing they discuss. *sigh*

    • dnd

      Want something better than all the BS coming out of DC? Baby deer rescued by fire fighter in Colorado’s Black Forest fire.

  2. Evening all. I really am not sure how I feel about this topic. I think the truth of the matter is it’s damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

    • dnd

      I think the interesting thing about this story is not what the N.S.A. is doing but how this high school dropout got a security clearance and a job with a N.S.A. contractor. And why did he contact Glenn Greenwald, a columnist for the U.K. paper the Guardian? Something smells fishy about all of this.

  3. tempebev

    I was just thinking about my reply when I read Brian’s post. I feel basically the same. I guess I don’t understand the whole thing because there is “for” and “against” reports. I also don’t understand when “whistleblower” is a good or bad thing. I’m pretty sure whistleblower doesn’t mean spy, otherwise that word would have been used. Very confusing.

    So glad to see the baby deer rescue. Can’t believe we were driving up I-25 just a few days ago and the sky was clear. We had just come from Los Alamos NM where we were watching the plume of smoke from the Jemez Mt. fire. Very scary – it would have been their 3rd time to evaluate. According to the news, Colorado is having fires in the same place as last year. What is left to burn except more houses?

    I watched the riots in Istanbul, Turkey with great interest. Mr. Bev Skype’s every day with several Turks who practice English with him and have become friends. Although the riots were bad, it was interesting to see a riot with no guns.

    Done with my rambling tonight.

    • dnd

      There are three current major forest fires in Colorado. Black Forest, Royal Gorge and Rocky Mt. National Park. None of the areas have had fires in at least 100 years. Problem is that it’s been hot and windy last few days.

      BTW, next time you’re on a road trip to SLC, a side trip to the Royal Gorge is recommended. The gorge is very deep and narrow. The Arkansas river runs through it. There’s a train that runs along the bottom of the canyon from Cañon City to Parkdale and back. Or you can walk across the bridge and look down. Don’t do this if you have vertigo 😉

  4. tempebev

    D – I’ve been to Royal Gorge as part of a women’s travel group. We did the “Trains across Colorado.” It was great – I loved the peg train track up Pike’s Peak.

    Thanks also for the info about the fires. I guess the news should be a little clearer when making reports –duh!!!

    Also, a good article relating to my question of whistleblowers – good or bad.

    • dnd

      I think the news confusion is with the Waldo Canyon fire last June northwest of Colorado Springs and the Black Forest fire northwest of Colorado Springs.

  5. I find his comment regarding out spying on China troubling. More and more I’m thinking this is about his own personal political agenda and nothing about being a “whistle blower”.

  6. tempebev

    There has been so much sadness with the Colorado wildfires. Houses have been lost, people have lost their lives, and the end is not in sight. New Mexico has had two big ones and I’m sure Arizona’s turn is just around the corner.

    In the west, these fires are common in the summer and cause similar problems as tornados and hurricanes in the midwest and south. Despite the heat, I’ll stay where we are. Fortunately, we live in a city – not in a forest.

    Change of subject – have to give Gov. Jan a pat on the back for fighting with her own party about expanding Medicaid coverage. She called their bluff and won.

  7. tempebev

    Crossing my fingers and toes about the Supreme Court decision that is predicted this coming week.

  8. Me too Bev, I think the court is going to strike down DOMA, not sure about the rest.

  9. Hello all.

    Continuing to heal; chance of surgery remote (although not zero yet). May start physical therapy next week. Have been driving, albeit without my doctor’s permission. Can recently raise right arm high enough to eat and apply mascara. Most helpful.

    Happy first day of summer. Hope it’s a happy and productive one for all of us.

    And RIP Michael Hastings and James Gandolfini. And goddamn, in both cases. Too young, too much good work not yet accomplished.

    • dnd

      Sra Dog,
      Glad that you’re on the mend. Hang in there.

      p.s. I’m happy for the first day of summer. But in the spirit of those lazy days of summer, not too productive.

  10. Dog glad to hear you are doing better, I’m finished up here in Southern IL and will be heading to Florida in the morning, hope to have some big news to share Monday or Tuesday.

  11. Ears perked, Brian.

    The photo boy on this blogpost has royally screwed up his life. OTOH, if he likes Cuban cigars, he can indulge that pleasure. Who knows where he will end up?

    I don’t know what I actually “think” about Glenn Greenwald, because have never spent time reasoning through, but he seems like a huge drama binger. He makes some good points, on occasion, but let’s look at the (political) world we operate in, and not some nirvana.

    It’s probably more dysfunctional than we know, we have a press that would rather serve us Kardashians and the outrage du jour generated by Fox News/the GOP (a distinction without a difference) than serious information that takes time to learn and digest.

    We live in a very complicated world. We have too many people floating through without thinking, and believing things for which there is no evidence.

    Dog the Obot saying I am glad that President Obama and his administration try to get it right, which they do more often than not, with some missteps, and that I am thankful PBO himself is not on a one-way trip to asylum in Cuba.

    God knows I would be tempted.

  12. tempebev

    My thought for the day: How many air shows don’t have fatal crashes?

  13. Yeah, very sad about that crash. And a wing walker, yet.

    I believe the pilot and walker may have been from Loudoun County, what used to be horse country outside Northern Virginia.


    Story says they had 2 wing walker deaths from 1975-2010, and now three in the past two years. I wonder what’s happened there.

    PS: Tonight’s Supermoon again. Did anyone see it last night? Noticed it was beautiful; didn’t know it was a phenomenon.

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