While the US and much of the world is embroiled in the so-called scandal of US government spying on its citizens, I am left wondering why this is news at all?
The Patriot Act enacted after September 11, 2001 was designed to do exactly that, spy on voice and data communications in the US. Yes there are some subtleties in the act to supposedly protect the constitutional rights of the Americans, but really, who would believe any of that?
I fail to see the uproar on the so-called leak because it's just absurd. What do people think organizations such as the NSA or CIA do all day? They listen to conversations, intercept emails, mine data, and decipher intelligence based on events. That's what they were set up to do.
When I make a phone call to my mother in Iran, the whole time there are pops, hisses, clicks, and various tones. Some may be line issues, but I bet most are a bunch of people or recording devices eavesdropping on the phone call in Iran and the US. Of course in this case, it's a bunch of boring news about family members and who got married or divorced or had a child or passed away.
So Guardian pays some low-level NSA employee in Hong Kong a bunch of money to reveal secrets about the US government spying on its people. Who knows, maybe the Chinese want to divert attention from their own hacking, or perhaps it's just a sham by the US government to serve its own end in some manner.
Whatever the case those secrets were not much of a secret at all. What's next, Iranian government spying on its people? I had no idea, that is shockingly outrageous.
Robert, the United States is supposed to be different. We successfully fought -- and beat -- the reigning global superpower, and with the U.S. Constitution, we created a nation that *would not* do to its citizens what the British did to us.
Today, we've become the preeminent global superpower, and in defense of that power, we've overthrown democratically-elected regimes in Iran (1953) & elsewhere, supported dozens of brutal dictators worldwide, and blithely ignored our own Constitution in order to shield corrupt leaders of both political parties from accountability.
The people who stand up to this injustice are the true Patriots, who like the Founding Fathers, risk everything to expose and shed light on the unconstitutional acts, practices, and policies that are being done **in our name**, and supposedly "for our own good."
We have no enemies but those of our own making.
If our Founding Fathers witnessed the current "debate" on the NSA/DHS/private sector datamining, they would wonder why they bothered.
Comment by Phred — June 18, 2013 @12:43 pm