“Edward Snowden as he appears in the interview for Britain’s Channel 4”
Photo credit: Channel 4 / AFP – Getty Images
NSA leaker Edward Snowden’s recent interview has insight for us locally:
“I believe the cost of frank public debate about the powers of our government is less than the danger posed by allowing these powers to continue growing in secret, he replied, calling them a direct threat to democratic governance.
The Yelm Blogger has always challenged Yelm officials in their decisions that exclude consideration of their constituents, the lack of public process and side-stepping the public’s right to know.
This was highlighted when NVN Editor/Publisher Michael Wagar lampooned in his Christmas Eve Editorial:
“Stories I wish the Nisqually Valley News could have written in 2013”
“Mayor Ron Harding joins RSE, practices remote viewing, hits Lotto. Harding buys all of downtown Yelm, plans to turn it into Prairie Disneyland via partnership with Red Wind Casino complete with massive water park and a few city park upgrades. Local activist Steve Klein protests, says not enough water to power waterslide from Triad Theater to Red Wind Casino. Klein says $1 billion waterparks are fine, but need public input.”
Wagar “gets it” about my convictions involving the public!
My point on the Yelm Park Bond was identical to Snowden’s,
“I didn’t want to change society. I wanted to give society a chance to determine if it should change itself.”
Bottom line here in Yelm:
Not enough of our local society voted to “change itself” on two failed Yelm Park Bond ballots.
– Christmas Day: “Snowden urges US to ‘end mass surveillance'”
“NSA leaker Edward Snowden urged the United States and other world powers to “end mass surveillance” Wednesday in his first televised interview since arriving in Russia to avoid prosecution by authorities.
The whistle-blower compared modern surveillance techniques to George Orwells novel “Nineteen Eighty-Four” and said that ‘a child born today will grow up with no conception of privacy at all.’
‘…today’s children will grow up never knowing what it means to have a private moment to themselves. An unrecorded, un-analysed thought.
…and that’s a problem, because privacy matters. Privacy is what allows us to determine who we are, and who we want to be.’
The pre-recorded interview was broadcast on Britain’s Channel 4 for its annual “Alternative Christmas Message” to coincide with the queens formal Christmas Day public address,'” quoting Alexander Smith, NBC News contributor.
– Snowden: I defected from the government to the public.
“NSA leaker Edward Snowden: ‘Mission’s already accomplished'”
From Alastair Jamieson, NBC News:
“National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden said his “mission’s already accomplished” and spoke of having personal satisfaction at the revelations about U.S. surveillance policies in an interview published Tuesday.
The former intelligence contractor, who exposed extensive details of global electronic surveillance by the U.S. spy agency, said he was not being disloyal to the U.S. or to his former employer.
[It is commonly said of Snowden that he broke an oath of secrecy, a turn of phrase that captures a sense of betrayal. NSA Director Keith B. Alexander and Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr., among many others, have used that formula.
In his interview with The Post, Snowden noted matter-of-factly that Standard Form 312, the classified-information nondisclosure agreement, is a civil contract. He signed it, but he pledged his fealty elsewhere.
‘The oath of allegiance is not an oath of secrecy,’ he said. ‘That is an oath to the Constitution. That is the oath that I kept that Keith Alexander and James Clapper did not.’
People who accuse him of disloyalty, he said, mistake his purpose.]
‘I am not trying to bring down the NSA, I am working to improve the NSA,’ he told The Washington Post. ‘I am still working for the NSA right now. They are the only ones who don’t realize it.’
“He also told the Post: ‘There is no evidence at all for the claim that I have loyalties to Russia or China or any country other than the United States,’ he said. ‘I have no relationship with the Russian government. I have not entered into any agreements with them.’
‘If I defected at all,’ Snowden said, ‘I defected from the government to the public.’
– “Edward Snowden, Person of the Year”
“I can’t think of any individual who had more influence in 2013 than Edward Snowden,” quoting Eugene RobinsonWashington Post Writers Group.
– “Freedom Rider: Edward Snowden: Person of the Year”
“Edward Snowden is vilified as a traitor by politicians of the American political duopoly, and hunted like Public Enemy Number One by the global imperial apparatus. However, for a large proportion of Earthlings, Snowden has made the singular contribution to humanity of the year 2013.”
By Margaret Kimberley, Black Agenda Report editor and senior columnist