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Member since: Tue Sep 4, 2007, 06:36 AM
Number of posts: 7,804

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One day there's going be another Republican administration. They will have access to PRISM.

Bearing in mind that you voted for Obama on the back of getting rid of the kind of dirty, slithering, clandestine soul-fuckery that Bush and his nest of scorpions put in place... how do you feel about that?

Glenn Greenwald is no good at billiards.

He has a third nipple.

No-one has ever heard him say the word "love".

He smells faintly of dead things.

Meat spoils when you put it near him.

Even when you look straight at him it's like seeing something out of the coroner of your eye.


Oh, wow, deja vu...

Behemothic surveillance is the enemy of freedom.

State apparatus must serve the populace, not the other way round.

The individual cogs in the State machinery, the people who punch in the database queries, collate data, establish profiles, are no different from you or I. They are flawed. They sin.

They are bribable.

The more flexibility and power you give a surveillance system over the populace it is supposed to protect, the more scope for abuse you allow. Any decent law enforcement officer will tell you how easy it is to frame someone if you work in the right positions.

The NSA itself does not need to be "malevolent" (although there is no reason to assume it isn't, or that it's benevolent) for it to become a toxic influence on the public discourse.

It's not at all difficult to place a convenient "witness" near a prominent public figure in a moment of weakness in order to discredit their efforts, in any political field, to provide a useful cover for having found out about that weakness via other means and then conflate the efforts of that prominent public figure with that weakness. Anyone's life looks strange when it's covered with sparkly graphics and put on TV. Rampant speculation about the consequences of such weakness don't hurt either.

Remind you of anything, DU?

All it comes down to is what a focussed, amoral individual, or a group of similar, is/are willing to do to get what they want. Are we going to assume that political figures are universally trustworthy because some, or even most, are?

Why would someone seek a position of power? For worthy purposes?

Why not other purposes?

Who's phoning who?


How can we turn that to our advantage?

What's it worth to YOU, Mr Cog? Don't worry.

No-one will find out.

One of my pals is turning into an alcoholic!

Every time we meet him for games night he's slightly less coherent, louder, can't count, forgets game rules...


Necking 2 or 3 pints before 8:00pm?

What do we say to him?

Do you assess a politician on how they make you feel or what they do?


The problem with attacking Snowden...

... is that large amounts of imaginary or obviously insignificant information has to be included in the attack to make it look like an attack.

Among the positions that must be adopted by those who wish to suggest that Snowden's behaviour is untoward are:

1. Snowden is not "whistleblowing" but "X" - where X is some word that essentially carries exactly the same function as "whistleblowing" but has a nebulous negative association along with it... like "leaking"

2. Snowden should allow himself to be taken to jail, which is rather easily countered with - "...um...why?"

3. There is "something fishy" about his "story", which is a little bit difficult to get any traction out of as various other public personalities have now come out and started talking about the NSA scandal so anything fishy about his story presumably also has to be fishy about theirs...

4. Foreign governments made him do it.... which is thus far denied by these same foreign governments, always to be followed with "WELL THEY WOULD, WOULDN'T THEY?" which attempts to circumvent the idea that it's idle speculation and nothing more but doesn't

5. Snowden's poledancing ballerina girlfriend and his (apparently unceremonious) dumping of her is of great significance to the national debate about the rights of citizens to control their information, which is clearly a bugfuck position unworthy of Free Republic

6. Snowden's actions were "pre-planned" which, leaving aside that this word is identical to "planned", does not actually distinguish his actions from those of any other whistleblower as Doing Things requires Planning whether they are Deeply Sinister or Otherwise and does not, in fact, impart any extra sinisterness unless you already find him sinster and would like just one more scintilla of juicy sinisterness to feel vaguely intimidated by

7. Lots of other people think Snowden is a Thoroughly Bad Lot, a Rotter, a Cad, a Naughty Bad sort of chap who is X AND Y AND Z and suffering from an elastic range of entirely convenient personality flaws, among other assessments, which doesn't really do anything other than indicate that someone somewhere has the same opinion of Snowden that you do, which is no reason for anyone else to change theirs

8. Lots of people "Trust Obama", which in and of itself doesn't really mean anything as Obama may presumably be "trustworthy" whether the NSAs muck-raking is acceptable or not and, unfortunately, carries the name of Obama into the fight, which might not go well for him... (the vast majority of posters unimpressed with the NSA's programme studiously avoided mentioning Obama's name in the initial stages of the current "discussion" and he only turned up halfway through when various paranoid Obama fans chose their "opponents'" position by calling them racist for... opposing things that have nothing in particular to do with with black people)

9. Opponents of broad-spectrum surveillance have never been part of the left but are presumably Rand Paul supporters, which is clearly nothing more than an idiotically transparent triangulation excercise that will leave no-one genuinely disturbed by surveillance at all moved and looks like an idiotically transparent triangulation exercise to anyone who, as yet, doesn't care

10. If people don't all stop whinging about the potential for giving future Republican administrations access to their personal information... GAAAAASSPPP!!! HORRORS! the Republicans will WIN and then everyone will be sorry, unfortunately this argument leaves out the possibility that the Republicans will win next time for potentially entirely different reasons and will HAVE access to the NSA surveillance programme as it stands which presumably, for some reason, isn't even worse, also the argument rests on the assumption that the left wing anti-surveillance cohort are going to magically start voting for Republicans. Which is a strange idea. It is, really, isn't it?

Have I left anything out?

All attempts to criticise Snowden AT ALL reveal EVERY TIME that the critic is more interested in celebrities than politics as Snowden's actions can be easily dismissed by making credible arguments against the necessity for his revelations, which are not, thus far, forthcoming (I think I've seen, like, two threads featuring anything even resembling an attempt to present the NSAs need to gather such information sensibly, neither of which were much more than rank assertion), being passed over in favour of reality TV style running commentary and shedding no light whatsoever on the issues raised by the NSA surveillance programme.

The critics mostly resemble a frustrated toddler with a laser pointer trying to confuse a cat that isn't interested.

Maybe the NSA just wants lots of free porn.

Good perks, I'd say.

Do you assess opinions based on WHO makes them or what they ARE?


So they were pompous with Putin... without having checked anything?

Am I right?

Politicians can be replaced.

Freedoms cannot.
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