Monday, 10 June 2013

No, Edward Snowden is not a traitor but Diane Feinstein is

The security-financier-war-profiteer nexus now controlling our lives and livelihoods is on the defensive, at least for a while, and doesn’t it feel great? Just to see former chief spook Dennis Blair, California Senator Dianne Feinstein, Jane (‘The Bouffant’) Harmon and all of rest of them scramble to explain why Americans should be reassured about mass snooping is delightful. They know they’ve been caught red-handed in the revelations about PRISM and metadata.

Their fallback position, as usual, is that only Really Bad People will be affected by the Stasi-fication of the U.S.A., and therefore you and me and Uncle Artie can go about our business just fine, play video games and sleep peacefully in our beds. I’m sure a lot of people in socialist Poland thought and felt the same way—until they ran afoul of the ruling clique and discovered that the secret police could chew them up and spit them out for breakfast. It always feels remote until it’s not.

That’s why Senator Udall and the voices of minimal reason should drop their claims that the snooping and data-massing doesn’t work to stymie terrorist acts. Who knows? It probably does sometimes—police states can be quite effective. Is that how we want to live? We’d better decide soon. Meanwhile, the snooper state can always say, Tut, tut, you don’t know the secrets, and we can’t reveal them.

Jane Harmon spent a decade on the highly select super-panel (‘gang of eight’) in the House of Representatives that had oversight over all this, and she admitted tonight on The News Hour that she was completely surprised to learn in the mid-00s of the vast and illegal wiretapping that occurred under Bush. This was, perversely, her attempt to defend the current system of review, which is laughable on its face—if one of eight people in the elected branch of government who are the only ones permitted to know what is going on confesses that she didn’t have a clue, the security state is by definition out of control.

Harmon argued that she and her colleague solons passed new laws right away, so the system worked. She didn’t admit (and the useless Gwen Ifill didn’t ask her) that the only way anyone found out about the violation was through an Edward Snowden-style leak. Thus unintentionally, Harmon admitted that such leaks--not her undistinguished self--provide our only real check on the runaway power of the security state.

That’s why Snowden’s face should be stamped on quarters, and profiteering traitors like Feinstein should be exiled to a remote swampland and shunned from patriotic society. It’s not whistle-blowers and alarm-sounders who are putting our nation in jeopardy—it’s the intellectual thugs who wrap themselves in the ashes of the 9/11 victims to insist we need Karla to protect us and who get paid handsomely to sell us out.

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