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(Time)   A majority of Americans approve of Edward Snowden's actions and also want him to go to jail for them   (swampland.time.com ) divider line
    More: Asinine, Americans, Americans approve, u.s. national, personal privacy  
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765 clicks; posted to Politics » on 14 Jun 2013 at 10:02 AM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-06-14 08:50:35 AM  
img.photobucket.com
 
2013-06-14 09:07:54 AM  
Isn't an act of civil disobedience only complete if one expect to be punished for their act of civil disobedience as well? What is the point of civil disobedience if there is no consequence to you?

"I have paid no poll-tax for six years. I was put into a jail once on this account, for one night; and, as I stood considering the walls of solid stone, two or three feet thick, the door of wood and iron, a foot thick, and the iron grating which strained the light, I could not help being struck with the foolishness of that institution which treated me as if I were mere flesh and blood and bones, to be locked up. I wondered that it should have concluded at length that this was the best use it could put me to, and had never thought to avail itself of my services in some way. I saw that, if there was a wall of stone between me and my townsmen, there was a still more difficult one to climb or break through, before they could get to be as free as I was. I did not for a moment feel confined, and the walls seemed a great waste of stone and mortar. I felt as if I alone of all my townsmen had paid my tax. They plainly did not know how to treat me, but behaved like persons who are underbred. In every threat and in every compliment there was a blunder; for they thought that my chief desire was to stand the other side of that stone wall. I could not but smile to see how industriously they locked the door on my meditations, which followed them out again without let or hindrance, and they were really all that was dangerous. As they could not reach me, they had resolved to punish my body; just as boys, if they cannot come at some person against whom they have a spite, will abuse his dog. I saw that the State was half-witted, that it was timid as a lone woman with her silver spoons, and that it did not know its friends from its foes, and I lost all my remaining respect for it, and pitied it. "

- Henry David Thoreau, Civil Disobedience
 
2013-06-14 09:11:26 AM  
Don't do the crime if you can't do the time.

And good luck getting a jury to convict him.
 
2013-06-14 09:15:42 AM  
I sort of get it.  I'm leaning towards Snowden being a hero but I won't be outraged if he goes to jail.  He's a hero because he risked going to jail for his principles.  He's goal was to expose the criminality of what the NSA is doing.  He's achieving his goal.  If he goes to jail that is unfortunate but it shouldn't surprise anyone.

Someone suggested yesterday that he should be tried by a jury of his peers.  I doubt in those circumstances he would be convicted.
 
2013-06-14 09:18:54 AM  

Marcus Aurelius: Don't do the crime if you can't do the time.

And good luck getting a jury to convict him.


People think he's stupid for going to China but there will be a certain poetry of one country not giving a flying fark about peoples' rights surrendering him to the US with a like-minded policy in terms of privacy.
 
2013-06-14 09:36:42 AM  
And when asked, I'd bet that these same idiots think that our Intel operations are terrible, and could be a whole lot more effective.

It's kind of hard to have effective intel when you're cheerleading people who leak classified information to foreign media sources.
 
2013-06-14 09:40:53 AM  

Grand_Moff_Joseph: And when asked, I'd bet that these same idiots think that our Intel operations are terrible, and could be a whole lot more effective.

It's kind of hard to have effective intel when you're cheerleading people who leak classified information to foreign media sources.


It is technically impossible to leak something just to Americans.  So you are either guilty of leaking something to everyone or no one.  No in between so the link to China is irrelevant.
 
2013-06-14 09:46:42 AM  

mrshowrules: No in between so the link to China is irrelevant.


Except when he goes to China and extensively talks about specifically China for a while. I don't think it's ENTIRELY irrelevant.
 
2013-06-14 10:08:54 AM  
I just think its a little disturbing that according to polls that the American people are ok with what the NSA is doing. I hate the people that say if you don't have anything to hide you're fine. I don't have anything to hide and its not right that the government can obtain a SECERET warrant from a seceret court. I didn't think those existed in this country.
Snowden should be looked at as a hero. He didn't commit treason as some have suggested.
 
2013-06-14 10:10:34 AM  
That's "jail" as in county jail. Not prison, not Florence ADX.

Words mean things.
 
2013-06-14 10:11:38 AM  
I think his girlfriend should be punished. Punished hard.
 
2013-06-14 10:12:44 AM  

soupafi: I just think its a little disturbing that according to polls that the American people are ok with what the NSA is doing. I hate the people that say if you don't have anything to hide you're fine. I don't have anything to hide and its not right that the government can obtain a SECERET warrant from a seceret court. I didn't think those existed in this country.
Snowden should be looked at as a hero. He didn't commit treason as some have suggested.


Hey boo boo, let's take a look in that seceret pic-a-nic basket!
 
2013-06-14 10:17:36 AM  
Even with it exposed, is it even possible for it to be stopped?
 
2013-06-14 10:18:20 AM  
I think it's a little disturbing that anyone is surprised by this, or think that it is new. I'm not supporting it, nor am I one of those "if you aren't doing anything wrong" plebes. I just think it's a bit silly to get all worked up for things that have been happening for the better part of 30 years. Technology has simply allowed authorities to get more and more granular with the data, but the general approaches to domestic surveillance haven't changed a whole lot since the 1970s.

But hey, if you voted for the guy then he is "protecting America", if you don't agree with the guys politics it must be "Unamerican".
 
2013-06-14 10:20:28 AM  
He should be tried in a court of law as should those who practice(d) and authorize(d) torture. It's really kind of the same rehashed argument, isn't it?
 
2013-06-14 10:20:56 AM  
The world isn't made of black hats and white hats subby.
 
2013-06-14 10:20:59 AM  

Grand_Moff_Joseph: It's kind of hard to have effective intel when you're cheerleading people who leak classified information to foreign media sources.

-- Valerie Plame quote?

What a cheerleader might look like.

4.bp.blogspot.com
 
2013-06-14 10:23:01 AM  
"If people can't trust not only the executive branch, but also don't trust Congress and don't trust federal judges to make sure that we're abiding by the Constitution, due process and rule of law, then we're going to have some problems here," Obama said Friday.

This is easily the most jackass-ey and bullshiat comment I've ever seen Obama make.

No, I don't trust them. Not when I can't farking see what they're doing. Part of what makes that three-part oversight system so effective is that the voters are supposed to be able to put their gaze on any or all of them so that they can punish officials in elections if they do things the public disapproves of.

It all goes to shiat when we can't see what the hell they're actually doing and who they're doing it to.
 
2013-06-14 10:30:48 AM  

mrshowrules: I sort of get it.  I'm leaning towards Snowden being a hero but I won't be outraged if he goes to jail.  He's a hero because he risked going to jail for his principles.  He's goal was to expose the criminality of what the NSA is doing.  He's achieving his goal.  If he goes to jail that is unfortunate but it shouldn't surprise anyone.

Someone suggested yesterday that he should be tried by a jury of his peers.  I doubt in those circumstances he would be convicted.


I think we had this conversation before, but he's not a hero. He didn't reveal anything illegal the government was doing, and if merely believing you are doing the right thing is enough to garner praise from the public, and damn the law, then you get into some very dangerous territory, about who and what we call heroic.

soupafi: Snowden should be looked at as a hero. He didn't commit treason as some have suggested.


Why? What information did he reveal that was illegal, or, really, that hadn't been revealed at some point over the last few years of being within the capability of the US government? Leaking that the government is secretly doing something that you don't like does not a hero make.
 
2013-06-14 10:30:59 AM  

soupafi: its not right that the government can obtain a SECERET warrant from a seceret court.


Sure, we'll force all warrants to be made public, and they must be processed in a public court before any action is taken.

Just don't be surprised when the authorities continually miss their targets because the targeted person(s) saw it coming a mile away.

Intelligence operations don't work that way.
 
2013-06-14 10:31:46 AM  

LasersHurt: mrshowrules: No in between so the link to China is irrelevant.

Except when he goes to China and extensively talks about specifically China for a while. I don't think it's ENTIRELY irrelevant.


It looks bad but you could also say that he is also leaking the information to North Korea, Iran and the Al Qaida and you would technically be accurate.
 
2013-06-14 10:31:54 AM  
This administration is in big trouble. Their reaction is already showing. Get ready for drones and bombs over Syria. Wag the motherfarking dog.
 
2013-06-14 10:34:02 AM  

socodog: This administration is in big trouble. Their reaction is already showing. Get ready for drones and bombs over Syria. Wag the motherfarking dog.


I'd say you should go sit in the corner until you have something smart to say but after that spew I'm afraid you'd just starve to death first.
 
2013-06-14 10:34:09 AM  

RexTalionis: Isn't an act of civil disobedience only complete if one expect to be punished for their act of civil disobedience as well? What is the point of civil disobedience if there is no consequence to you?


This.
 
2013-06-14 10:36:10 AM  

nmrsnr: I think we had this conversation before, but he's not a hero. He didn't reveal anything illegal the government was doing, and if merely believing you are doing the right thing is enough to garner praise from the public, and damn the law, then you get into some very dangerous territory, about who and what we call heroic.


Ghandi and MLK did some stuff that was technically illegal also.  Beauty like heroism is in the eye of the beholder.  If you assume what the NSA does is perfectly acceptable than certainly you would not consider his actions as heroic, just criminal.  I think it is both heroic and possibly technically criminal but these are not mutually exclusive possibilities.
 
2013-06-14 10:37:13 AM  

skozlaw: This is easily the most jackass-ey and bullshiat comment I've ever seen Obama make.


It's really not. If you can't trust them to not spy on you, when it is already against the law for them to spy on you (and it is, FISA is only for foreign communications), then how can you trust any amount of oversight? They just won't report to the oversight committee, and who will make them? Congress? You don't trust them. Judges? You don't trust them either. As soon as you say "I don't trust any branch of government with abiding by US law" then there is no level of laws passed by Congress or governmental oversight that can change your mind, because you already said you don't trust them to follow the rules.
 
2013-06-14 10:41:09 AM  
It's a catch-22.  If you support what he did, then defending him just makes the story about him instead of what you'd prefer... the information.  See also: Julian Assange.  If you don't support what he did, then you're gonna want him in jail for doing it.

Ergo: Fry the bastard!  And you don't know what I believe about this.
 
2013-06-14 10:42:16 AM  

nmrsnr: because you already said you don't trust them to follow the rules


I'm not supposed to have to, I'm supposed to be able to see that they are.

If they can just do whatever the fark they want in secret what's the point of even having elections? You're talking about allowing people you elect to appoint people you don't and then "trusting" them to just all keep an eye on each other and tell you what you need to know.

That's insane. There's absolutely no way to know any of them are ever doing what they're supposed to in that scenario so there's absolutely no way to hold them accountable which means they have absolutely no reason to do what they're supposed to.

The entire lynchpin of our system is that the people are to hold their officials accountable. If you remove their ability to do that you have nothing.
 
2013-06-14 10:47:21 AM  
I think those two impulses are completely compatible.  First off, the poll was whether or not he should be "prosecuted", not sent to jail.  Prosecution requires a fair trial and due process of law.  And if he is suspected of breaking laws to do what he did, he should be prosecuted, and if innocent, freed.

I, for one, am glad for the revelations, if only for keeping the topic of gov't surveillance in the public eye.  Whether or not Snowden is a hero, I think, remains to be seen.
 
2013-06-14 10:47:24 AM  

mrshowrules: Ghandi and MLK did some stuff that was technically illegal also.  Beauty like heroism is in the eye of the beholder.  If you assume what the NSA does is perfectly acceptable than certainly you would not consider his actions as heroic, just criminal.  I think it is both heroic and possibly technically criminal but these are not mutually exclusive possibilities.


The metric isn't whether or not you broke the law, it's whether you did something above and beyond for the betterment of your fellow man when there is no other recourse. If Ghandi or MLK could have organized a political campaign and gotten out the vote, then their illegal stunts wouldn't have been necessary and would make them look more like PETA activists than the great leaders that they were. But the governments at the time disenfranchised their people, and used threats of violence (and actual violence) to silence those who were in opposition, so someone had to stand up to the threat in order to allow a truly free exchange of ideas where all eligible people could openly and without fear have their voices heard.

The ACLU is more of a hero here than Snowden. They've been fighting for years to have more oversight into the FISA courts, and have been suing repeatedly that the surveillance program is not legal. They've been doing everything they can to change it within the framework of our laws. What Snowden did was not necessary, it did not reveal anything truly unknown for those who cared to look, nor did it reveal any abuses of the system used by the government. He's not a hero, he's a dude who broke the law because he thought he should.
 
2013-06-14 10:49:05 AM  

nmrsnr: It's really not. If you can't trust them to not spy on you, when it is already against the law for them to spy on you (and it is, FISA is only for foreign communications), then how can you trust any amount of oversight? They just won't report to the oversight committee, and who will make them? Congress? You don't trust them. Judges? You don't trust them either. As soon as you say "I don't trust any branch of government with abiding by US law" then there is no level of laws passed by Congress or governmental oversight that can change your mind, because you already said you don't trust them to follow the rules.


And bear in mind that three branch oversight is better than what Bush was doing, which was one-branch oversight.  And there were a hell of a lot of people defending that when it came to light.
 
2013-06-14 10:50:54 AM  

skozlaw: If they can just do whatever the fark they want in secret what's the point of even having elections? You're talking about allowing people you elect to appoint people you don't and then "trusting" them to just all keep an eye on each other and tell you what you need to know.


If you feel this way, and I'm not saying it's unreasonable, you're going to have to turn the clock back to at least 1978.
 
2013-06-14 10:52:06 AM  

skozlaw: I'm not supposed to have to,


At some level, you kinda do.

Do you think that all the intelligence that the NSA collects should be made public?

If not, how do you know what they keep secret? It could be every E-mail you ever write. How do you know its not? You've already said you don't trust either congressional or judicial oversight, so without being able to see every piece of data the NSA has, what could satisfy your distrust of the government?
 
2013-06-14 10:54:01 AM  

nmrsnr: The ACLU is more of a hero here than Snowden.


I agree that this is probably the case.
 
2013-06-14 10:55:43 AM  
Sheep think like sheep.  What's the surprise ?

Actual responsible citizens trust their government only if it SHOWS itself to be trustable.

And anyone who tells you "trust me" is not to be trusted
 
2013-06-14 10:58:04 AM  

Skleenar: If you feel this way, and I'm not saying it's unreasonable, you're going to have to turn the clock back to at least 1978.


Which brings me back to "I just can't give that much of a shiat about this 'outrage' anymore".

The horses have no only escaped the barn, the doors fell off, it burned down, was rebuilt, restocked and the new stock fled as well....

The only reason anybody's biatching now is because the thing we all knew existed actually has a name now and some republicans seem to think they can somehow weave a whole new scandal out of it with their own filthy hands.

If you're just now pissed off about this, you're too farking stupid to have a valid opinion either way as far as I'm concerned.

nmrsnr: Do you think that all the intelligence that the NSA collects should be made public?


There's a significant difference between redacting specific lines on a printout and pretending that the printer it came from doesn't even exist. I'm not going to get all nitpicky with you over hypotheticals. We're talking about a program designed and deployed in secret against secret targets for secret reasons approved by secret courts through secret rulings, the primary response to which has been "what is wrong with you people, we're the government, trust us!"

That's not the same thing as taking an operative's name off a document and that's the end of it.
 
2013-06-14 10:58:22 AM  

nmrsnr: mrshowrules: Ghandi and MLK did some stuff that was technically illegal also.  Beauty like heroism is in the eye of the beholder.  If you assume what the NSA does is perfectly acceptable than certainly you would not consider his actions as heroic, just criminal.  I think it is both heroic and possibly technically criminal but these are not mutually exclusive possibilities.

The metric isn't whether or not you broke the law, it's whether you did something above and beyond for the betterment of your fellow man when there is no other recourse. If Ghandi or MLK could have organized a political campaign and gotten out the vote, then their illegal stunts wouldn't have been necessary and would make them look more like PETA activists than the great leaders that they were. But the governments at the time disenfranchised their people, and used threats of violence (and actual violence) to silence those who were in opposition, so someone had to stand up to the threat in order to allow a truly free exchange of ideas where all eligible people could openly and without fear have their voices heard.

The ACLU is more of a hero here than Snowden. They've been fighting for years to have more oversight into the FISA courts, and have been suing repeatedly that the surveillance program is not legal. They've been doing everything they can to change it within the framework of our laws. What Snowden did was not necessary, it did not reveal anything truly unknown for those who cared to look, nor did it reveal any abuses of the system used by the government. He's not a hero, he's a dude who broke the law because he thought he should.


and yet we are here discussing him.  There is a name and a face to this issue.  When/if he goes to jail, there will be a person suffering for his belief in the principle.

I agree that you must exhaust all peaceful and legal means of fixing something like this.  Groups who try and do this are admirable.  However, the knowledge of this has been out there for over a decade and no one cares or even wants to know.  Someone showing the actual information collected and great personal risk seems like a logical form of civil disobedience.

The Government should be transparent and the public should have privacy.  What you are moving to is the complete opposite.  Not just the US either.  This is not something that can really be clearly debated, it comes down to opinions more than facts.
 
2013-06-14 10:58:51 AM  
It's like the Onion Knight. You reward him for preventing you from starving to death, but also chop off his fingers for stealing the food he gave to you.

/Stannis is a jerk
 
2013-06-14 11:01:26 AM  

Skleenar: nmrsnr: The ACLU is more of a hero here than Snowden.

I agree that this is probably the case.


I would concede what the ACLU does is perhaps more admirable and important but they aren't really taking any personal risk or exercising bravery which is an aspect of heroism.
 
2013-06-14 11:01:57 AM  
Please pick me for the jury. I will take an oath to take the charges seriously and keep my mouth shut and then hammer down some serious jury nullification and then shrug to the media and act like "We just didn't see enough evidence that he actually did the things he was accused of. Sorry!" *wink wink*
 
2013-06-14 11:07:06 AM  

mrshowrules: they aren't really taking any personal risk or exercising bravery


I think the ACLU takes an enormous level of personal risk when they take on many of their more unpopular stances in support of individual freedom.
 
2013-06-14 11:07:51 AM  

nmrsnr: The ACLU is more of a hero here than Snowden. They've been fighting for years to have more oversight into the FISA courts, and have been suing repeatedly that the surveillance program is not legal. They've been doing everything they can to change it within the framework of our laws. What Snowden did was not necessary, it did not reveal anything truly unknown for those who cared to look, nor did it reveal any abuses of the system used by the government. He's not a hero, he's a dude who broke the law because he thought he should.


If you've followed any of the ACLU's cases you've seen that they've constantly been stuck by not having any details on the surveillance that is occurring; the gov't wraps up everything in "state secrets" and makes it impossible to bring any sort of case. Snowden's revelation of the Verizon order is an important part of breaking that deadlock.
 
2013-06-14 11:13:00 AM  

skozlaw: There's a significant difference between redacting specific lines on a printout and pretending that the printer it came from doesn't even exist.


True, but if you don't trust government oversight from all three branches, how can you be satisfied that there isn't a secret printer you don't know about? Like I said, at some point you do have to trust the government.

mrshowrules: The Government should be transparent and the public should have privacy.


I would love for both of those things to be true, but the real world does not comply with such cleanliness. I am not overly troubled by what we know about the NSA program, since by law it's restricted to foreign surveillance, and has congressional and judicial oversight. But I'm not opposed to people debating what authority we give the government to collect data, or having congress add restrictions the current system. What I do have trouble with is people encouraging dissemination of classified information because they dislike current US law.
 
2013-06-14 11:15:48 AM  
If you've followed any of the ACLU's cases you've seen that they've constantly been stuck by not having any details on the surveillance that is occurring; the gov't wraps up everything in "state secrets" and makes it impossible to bring any sort of case. Snowden's revelation of the Verizon order is an important part of breaking that deadlock.

...maybe. The PRISM slides still doesn't show any individual whose information has been gathered, so the government can still argue that the ACLU doesn't have standing. The ACLU says this gives them standing, but that remains to be seen. Also, that is tangential to what Snowden thought he was doing, so I'm not sure I want to give him credit for that.
 
2013-06-14 11:23:04 AM  

mrshowrules: nmrsnr: mrshowrules: Ghandi and MLK did some stuff that was technically illegal also.  Beauty like heroism is in the eye of the beholder.  If you assume what the NSA does is perfectly acceptable than certainly you would not consider his actions as heroic, just criminal.  I think it is both heroic and possibly technically criminal but these are not mutually exclusive possibilities.

The metric isn't whether or not you broke the law, it's whether you did something above and beyond for the betterment of your fellow man when there is no other recourse. If Ghandi or MLK could have organized a political campaign and gotten out the vote, then their illegal stunts wouldn't have been necessary and would make them look more like PETA activists than the great leaders that they were. But the governments at the time disenfranchised their people, and used threats of violence (and actual violence) to silence those who were in opposition, so someone had to stand up to the threat in order to allow a truly free exchange of ideas where all eligible people could openly and without fear have their voices heard.

The ACLU is more of a hero here than Snowden. They've been fighting for years to have more oversight into the FISA courts, and have been suing repeatedly that the surveillance program is not legal. They've been doing everything they can to change it within the framework of our laws. What Snowden did was not necessary, it did not reveal anything truly unknown for those who cared to look, nor did it reveal any abuses of the system used by the government. He's not a hero, he's a dude who broke the law because he thought he should.

and yet we are here discussing him.  There is a name and a face to this issue.  When/if he goes to jail, there will be a person suffering for his belief in the principle.

I agree that you must exhaust all peaceful and legal means of fixing something like this.  Groups who try and do this are admirable.  However, the knowledge of this has been out there ...


Transparency shouldn't extend to blowing the lid off a system that tracks terrorists who are putting American lives at risk.
 
2013-06-14 11:23:45 AM  

nmrsnr: mrshowrules: The Government should be transparent and the public should have privacy.

I would love for both of those things to be true, but the real world does not comply with such cleanliness. I am not overly troubled by what we know about the NSA program, since by law it's restricted to foreign surveillance, and has congressional and judicial oversight. But I'm not opposed to people debating what authority we give the government to collect data, or having congress add restrictions the current system. What I do have trouble with is people encouraging dissemination of classified information because they dislike current US law.


I think the NSA stuff is a case where the "slippery slope" false argument is not so false.   Countries that have very poor privacy rights, did not get there overnight.  It was gradual.

A public debate is useful.  I would suggest having a sample of the actual data collected may know allow aninformed debate.

Bush argued that torture was necessary for National security.  Do you think the people who leaked the photos at Abu Gharib were guilty of something?  Certainly what they did is inspiringterrorists and aiding in the recruitment of terrorist all over the world.  I would concede that.   It in fact has jeopardized National security and maybe lead to some of the attacks since it happened.   However, was the person who released these photos a hero.  IMHO yes.  Would there have been away to shed light on the problems there without releasing the photos?  I doubt it.  It is not a precise parallel but you get the idea.

If you think what the NSA does is less of a danger to the US than terrorism, you will disagree with me.  I think what the NSA does is a greater threat to the US than terrorism.
 
2013-06-14 11:26:35 AM  

Wayne 985: Transparency shouldn't extend to blowing the lid off a system that tracks terrorists who are putting American lives at risk.


Transparency is knowing that the Government is tracking everyone, not just those suspected of terrorism.  Privacy is preventing them from doing precisely that without a court issued warrant to monitor a specific suspect.
 
2013-06-14 11:27:47 AM  

Skleenar: mrshowrules: they aren't really taking any personal risk or exercising bravery

I think the ACLU takes an enormous level of personal risk when they take on many of their more unpopular stances in support of individual freedom.


In some cases, but I don't think anyone is considering this particular stance unpopular.
 
2013-06-14 11:28:35 AM  

mrshowrules: Skleenar: mrshowrules: they aren't really taking any personal risk or exercising bravery

I think the ACLU takes an enormous level of personal risk when they take on many of their more unpopular stances in support of individual freedom.

In some cases, but I don't think anyone is considering this particular stance unpopular.


Also, risking your reputation is not the same as risking imprisonment or execution.
 
2013-06-14 11:32:02 AM  

Marcus Aurelius: Don't do the crime if you can't do the time.

And good luck getting a jury to convict him.


Over half the country supports the government position on snooping people's records. If Snowden is extradited and charged, conviction is more likely than not.
 
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