Thursday, December 26, 2013

What Is And What Can Never Be

So, Edward Snowden has apparently decided to have a freak-out over losing Time Magazine’s Person of the Year. Let’s review, shall we?

First, the preening, gloating, self-important popinjay had this to say:

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.

"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."

OK, fair enough. He realizes that he exposed an already public program, and that what happens next is up to the people reading his revelations. Altho that last bit, about working as some sort of dubble-sekrit sooperspi is a bit…disturbing. But I digress…

Next up, Diva Snowden:

Edward Snowden has made two prominent appearances in the last two days. The first in an interview with the Washington Post in which he declared "mission accomplished," by which he means that his leaking of secret NSA documents has started a debate on the propriety of the practices he exposed.

This interpretation of events is indisputable. Whether it was any of his business to do what it took to start the debate is another matter.

But the next day, Snowden delivered a short Christmas Day message on British television, and here he got carried away, to put it kindly:

A child born today will grow up with no conception of privacy at all. They'll never know what it means to have a private moment to themselves -- an unrecorded, unanalyzed 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.

So which is it, Snowy? Did you alert us all that the sky is falling or have you suddenly discovered that it was just your nuts?

The debate started. That it’s falling on mainly deaf ears in the world (apart from a few Inspector Reynauds of the world who are shocked, shocked!, to discover there’s spying going on! And who are no doubt taking the hint and covering their own tracks) is something Snowden will have to deal with in his cups.

You can lead a horse to water, after all.

The pure panic in his voice about that child born today nonsense is a tell. There has been no privacy pretty much since the Clinton administration and the rise of the Internet and web. And surprise! It’s not the government we really need to be worried about, which is why Snowden is tilting at windmills here.

Think about it for a moment: governments are accountable to the people they serve, even if it is eventually. No. The privacy we no longer have and can no longer have, is from the multinational conglomerates that actually run the world, run our government, and make decisions affecting our lives and the future of the planet and human society.

You want to do the world a service, Snowy, go after those guys.

If you have the nuts.