“Because Snowden is now in Hong Kong, it’s unclear what the United States can do to him. But watch…”

Because Snowden is now in Hong Kong, it’s unclear what the United States can do to him. But watch for officials to tar Snowden—he’ll be called unpatriotic, unprofessional, treasonous, a liar, grandiose, and worse. As in the Bradley Manning case, though, the more badly Snowden is depicted, the more rickety the government’s case for surveillance becomes. After all, they hired him. They gave him unrestricted access to their systems, from court orders to PowerPoint presentations depicting the crown jewels of their surveillance infrastructure….

The worst part about the NSA’s surveillance is not its massive reach. It’s that it operates entirely in secret, so that we have no way of assessing the sophistication of its operation. All we have is the word of our politicians, who tell us that they’ve vetted these systems and that we should blindly trust that the data are being competently safeguarded and aren’t vulnerable to abuse.

Snowden’s leak is thus doubly damaging. The scandal isn’t just that the government is spying on us. It’s also that it’s giving guys like Snowden keys to the spying program. It suggests the worst combination of overreach and amateurishness, of power leveraged by incompetence. The Keystone Cops are listening to us all.



Edward Snowden: Why did the NSA whistleblower have access to PRISM and other sensitive systems? (via dendroica)

Hey; it’s not the government’s fault they have to put treasonous, lying, mentally unstable, incompetent people in the loop as part of their spying operation. The job of sifting through so many innocent people’s emails and phone calls is huge; it’s unreasonable to expect them to do that using only people who are loyal, honest, stable, and competent.

Reposted from http://lies.tumblr.com/post/52626211174.

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