Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower

Chris Hedges, writing in TruthDig, has raised an issue that will be familiar to my regular readers:

It is argued that Snowden, in exposing the National Security Agency’s global spying operation, judiciously and carefully leaked his information through the media, whereas WikiLeaks, Assange, Manning and Hammond provided troves of raw material to the public with no editing and little redaction and assessment. Thus, Snowden is somehow legitimate while WikiLeaks, Assange, Manning and Hammond are not.

Hedges too charitably calls this argument ‘misguided’ and wrings his hands accordingly, correctly noting that “it lends credibility to the relentless attacks by the government” against whistleblowers who don’t meet the Snowden standard.  But Hedges is timid about who exactly injected this extremely toxic Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower notion into the discourse in the first place. ‘It is argued…’ he writes. But by whom Chris, by whom? He doesn’t say, even though the record could not be more clear. Indeed, Hedges muddies the water further when he quotes an equally vague Michael Ratner, a lawyer for Wikileaks, who says:

It sounds to me like the so-called Fourth Estate protecting its jobs and ‘legitimacy.’

But Hedges’ misdirection doesn’t end there. By introducing hacker Jeremy Hammond into the discussion, he also misleads on the extent to which Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower originated in a campaign against Chelsea Manning and Cablegate at the onset of The Snowden spectacle. Having been injected into the discourse, it now serves usefully against Hammond, but that is certainly not how it started.

Before tracing the omitted history, I should first point out that Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower is built entirely on lies. The first lie is that Snowden reviewed every NSA document in his cache. We now know that the trove is far too big for him to have done that within the time he is said to have done it. The second lie, mostly promoted by implication, is that Manning was indiscriminate in her selection of documents. The third lie, also promoted by implication, is that Wikileaks dumped Manning’s trove onto the internet without review or redaction.

I have covered these matters in detail here and here. The short version is that Manning was very deliberate in her document choices; she shared documents with a far lower security classification than Snowden’s; she did not ‘dump’ on the internet, but instead gave them to Wikileaks; Wikileaks shared the documents with the world through journalists in a way much like the arrangement Snowden has with Greenwald et al. It is remarkable that the baldly false and easily refuted assertions of Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower have passed for six months almost entirely without scrutiny.

It’s also important to point out that Manning’s trial — in the words of Leak Keepers Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras and Ewan MacAskill — “coincidentally began the week Snowden’s leaks began to make news.” But by what coincidence, exactly? We know why Manning’s trial had to begin on June 3, a date which was known months before. Less obvious is why the NSA stories had to begin the same week and with a prolificacy that would later prove highly uncharacteristic.

This coincidence merits scrutiny, if only because venerable media watchdog Project Censored chose Manning’s trial as the most censored story of 2013. Certainly media abuse of Manning didn’t begin with the onset of the Snowden stories, but surely the NSA deluge the week her trial began was a devastating blow. This Buzzfeed article credits the timing of the first NSA story to Greenwald, who, by his own account, strong-armed his editors, because he was “eager to have the world learn about this spying as soon as possible.”  But this urgency seems an odd alibi for this ‘coincidence’, given that six months on, the world is only privy to 1% of the Snowden documents.

Since the NSA stories were likely squashing the last chance that Manning’s humanity might intrude on the public, one would expect Snowden and his elected interpreters to at least unequivocally ally themselves with her. But they did just the opposite. Two days after strong-arming his editors into publishing his first NSA story, Greenwald administered the first injection of Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower (hereafter GW/BW)  into the chatter, though without naming names, via a June 8 Buzzfeed post:

“We’re not engaged in a mindless, indiscriminate document dump, and our source didn’t want us to be,” said Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian writer, in an email to BuzzFeed Saturday. “We’re engaged in the standard journalistic assessment of whether the public value to publication outweighs any harms.”

The next day,  Barton Gellman, Snowden’s contact at the Washington Post, wrote this:

Snowden said he did not intend to release a pile of unedited documents upon the world. “I don’t desire to enable the Bradley Manning argument that these were released recklessly and unreviewed,” he said.

This is quite the deft smear: Snowden vaguely suggests Manning has been disparaged in bad faith, without noting that the ‘Bradley Manning argument’ is a lie.  Instead he gives the lie new life, and suggests that Manning brought the resulting aspersions on herself.

The same day that Gellman published his article, The Guardian published a story by Glenn Greenwald, Ewen MacAskill and Laura Poitras that contained this:

…[Snowden] admires both [Pentagon Papers whistleblower, Daniel] Ellsberg and Manning, but argues that there is one important distinction between himself and the army private.

“I carefully evaluated every single document I disclosed to ensure that each was legitimately in the public interest… There are all sorts of documents that would have made a big impact that I didn’t turn over, because harming people isn’t my goal. Transparency is.”

To the increasing alarm and bewilderment of Manning supporters, Greenwald — who was tirelessly making himself the avatar of the Snowden Leaks — promoted GW/BW more vigorously than anyone, each time placing particular emphasis on the importance of journalists to the whistleblowing enterprise. From a June 10 MSNBC appearance:

if you ask [Snowden] what the difference is [between Manning and himself], he will say that he spent months meticulously studying every document. When he handed us those documents they were all in very detailed files by topic. He had read over every single one and used his expertise to make judgments about what he thought should be public–and then didn’t just upload them to the internet–he gave them to journalists who he knew, and wanted to go through them each one by one and make journalistic judgments about what should be public and what wasn’t, so that harm wouldn’t come gratuitously, but that the public would be informed, and that he was very careful and meticulous about doing that

In addition to the quaint notion that each of 50,000+ documents can be ‘meticulously studied’ in ‘months’, these comments are notable for their blatant dishonesty toward Manning and the exceptionally thick layer of  self-promotion. Greenwald’s  “if you ask Snowden” is his charming, lawyerly way of absolving of himself of blame for the numerous deliberate lies by implication that follow: that Manning dumped directly onto the internet; that her documents were not mediated by journalists; that she risked causing “harm” “gratuitously.”  Of course  Greenwald knows all of this to be false, having burnished his brand with Manning and Wikileaks only a few years before.

Bear in mind that while this campaign continued to some degree in the ensuing months, everything I quoted above came out between June 8 and June 10. Obviously a promotional strategy had been decided upon and pursued from the start with a great deal of discipline. Clearly we can’t blame Ratner’s too general ‘Fourth Estate’ for this, though I think he has pegged the motive exactly. 

Unsurprisingly, members of the mainstream media instantly saw a cudgel to use against Manning, and how convenient for their purposes that  the start of her trial and Snowden’s arrival so elegantly coincided. Chris Hayes, Radley Balko and Ari Melber were among the journalists who promoted GW/BW on Twitter.  Within days, articles appeared in The New Republic, The New York Times, Talking Points Memo and elsewhere expounding on the same theme, all taking Snowden’s unverified self-assessment as established fact.  From The New York Times, June 10:

[Snowden] was also not nearly as reckless as Bradley Manning, the soldier on trial on charges with giving classified materials to WikiLeaks, who seemed not to know or care what secret documents he was exposing.

That Greenwald and Snowden mixed their smears with professed admiration for Manning made it easy for their more credulous advocates to blame the mainstream entirely for this too predictable result. Even after the beatdown got underway, Greenwald had clearance from his adoring fans to sing the same song, though with Manning now established as meticulous Snowden’s reckless antithesis, he mentioned her less by name; instead he would return to the phantom indiscriminate dump of that first Buzzfeed mention, juxtaposed against the prudent journalists to whom Snowden had so wisely entrusted his trove. From a July 31 CNN appearance:

If you have access to classified information, you could just spew it out all into the ether … [Snowden] could have uploaded it onto the internet en masse…he could have given it to Wikileaks and asked them to just publish it all. He did none of that. He came to established media organizations and said ‘please be extremely careful.'”

In September, WaPo Leak Keeper Barton Gellman said something strikingly similar in an NPR interview, citing Manning by name:

Let’s consider what [Snowden] could have done. If Chelsea Manning was able to exfiltrate and send to Wikileaks and publish, in whole, half a million US Government documents, Edward Snowden who is far far more capable, had far greater access…he could have sent them to Wikileaks…That’s not what he wanted to do.

It is a tribute to both GW/BW’s sticking power and its perniciousness,  that servile WaPo hack Richard Cohen parroted these exact talking points three months after Greenwald had introduced them on CNN:

[Snowden] has been careful with his info, doling it out to responsible news organizations — The Post, the New York Times, the Guardian, etc. — and not tossing it up in the air, WikiLeaks style…

Shortly after Cohen had declared his new-found love for Snowden, the whistleblower himself returned to GW/BW with explicit reference to Manning — at least as paraphrased by fellow NSA whistleblower Thomas Drake — in a Washington Post piece published on October 25:

“[Snowden] made it quite clear that he was not going to compromise legitimate national intelligence and national security operations,” said Thomas Drake, a former NSA executive.

Indeed, Drake said, Snowden made clear in their conversation that he had learned the lessons of prior disclosures, including those by an Army private who passed hundreds of thousands of diplomatic cables to the anti-secrecy organization WikiLeaks, which posted them in bulk online. “It’s telling,” Drake said, “that he did not give anything to WikiLeaks.”

Note that Manning has almost no existence here beyond Snowden/Drake’s familiar, power-serving mischaracterization. The Post even omits her name, along with any mention of her 35-year sentence, handed down in August.

Finally, Janet Reitman, in her December 4 Rolling Stone Greenwald-Snowden hagiography, mashes up both of Snowden’s above-cited June 9 Manning quotes to explain why he didn’t go to Wikileaks. She then quotes Greenwald who, with his patented yappy hyperbole, extols yet again Snowden’s superhuman ability to un-Manningly download, read, and meticulously file tens of thousands of documents in mere months:

“…every last motherfucking document that he gave us was incredibly elegant and beautifully organized.” Greenwald had no doubt that the leaker had read every page; not a single one was misfiled. “It’s 1,000 percent clear that he read and very carefully processed every document that he gave us by virtue of his incredibly anal, ridiculously elaborate electronic filing system that these USB sticks contained.” (h/t Jay23)

‘Incredibly elegant and beautifully organized…1000 percent clear…ridiculously elaborate…’ Greenwald’s vulgar hucksterism is firing on all cylinders here but Reitman — true to the strict ethical code of resurgent journalism — doesn’t do the simple math that quickly reveals how flagrantly dishonest and stupid this legend truly is. So GW/BW finishes the year emanating from the same source with whom it began, unexamined as ever.

Thus ends the history of GW/BW to date. As I have written elsewhere, the Snowden Spectacle is unique as dissidence in the degree to which its stars repudiate dissent and accede to, and even promote, state and corporate power. Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower embodies this more dramatically than any other aspect, being nothing less than the mendacious, calculated erasure of Manning except as a bad example, in a power-appeasing bid  for legitimacy and status.  It is, as a friend noted recently, the Leak Keepers’ original sin.

UPDATE 4 (link to this update)

Just a few weeks after Snowden revealingly squirmed and equivocated when John Oliver asked him how many documents he’d actually read, Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower took another hit. Today in Italy, at the International Journalists Festival, Alexa O’Brien, the no-bullshit, indispensable chronicler of Manning’s battle with the state, said this during a panel discussion of whistleblowing:

The dump narrative regarding Manning is also a red herring. As I said before, Manning was convicted of disclosing 247 documents under The Espionage Act. So if you use that paradigm, the Good vs Bad Whistleblower that has been covered by people like Rancid Tarzie on Twitter and the like  [woo hoo! – ed.], it doesn’t stand up under scrutiny.

I don’t know how many documents Snowden has been charged with because he hasn’t gone to trial and there’s no Bill of Particulars. But when it comes to making an educated guess, I would posit that he would be charged with more than 247 documents under the Espionage Act at a higher classification than Manning…and Snowden’s leaks cover more than simply mass surveillance. So, if you’re going to use that paradigm, Manning would appear to be the responsible whistleblower, and Snowden appears to have dumped.

She goes on to say that she rejects the GW/BW paradigm that forces this kind of comparison. Good stuff. Transcribed content starts at 15:50

UPDATE 3  (link to this update)

If you thought there could not possibly be a liberal pseudo-rebel more cringe-makingly delighted with himself than former Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, you clearly have not watched Last Week, an HBO-show hosted by Daily Show alum, John Oliver. Last night, in a shockingly reactionary segment that would have been mostly at home on CNN, Oliver demonstrated that 22 months after Snowwald first concocted it, Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower still lives.

In the lead-up to his predictably over-praised interview with Snowden — They talked about dick pics. How cool is that? — Oliver did a shallow, cool kid take on Julian Assange. Manning was only damned by implication, but it was fundamentally the same GW/BW canard.

In the same reactionary vein, Oliver elsewhere admonished The New York Times in a Rachel Maddow – like way for screwing up a redaction. In the interview itself, Oliver mentioned the screwed up redaction again and grilled Snowden on whether or not he’d read every document. Snowden hedged — I evaluated every document…I understood what I turned over — suggesting that maybe even he thinks it’s time to stop lying so emphatically. (Remarks begin around 8:34. Transcribed below embedded video)

Edward Snowden is not the Wikileaks guy. The Wikileaks guy is Julian Assange and you do not want to be confused with him, partly because he was far less careful than Snowden in what he released and how and partly because he looks like a sandwich bag full of biscuit dough wearing a Stevie Nicks wig. And that is critical. Julian Assange is not a likable man. Even Benedict Cumberbatch could not make him likable. He’s un-Cumberbatchable!

UPDATE 2 (link to this update)

Oct. 2014 and Snowden’s still working his Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower schtick, though with truly impressive subtlety. From a recent Nation interview:

You know, [Manning’s disclosures] are the kinds of things voters in a democracy need to know in order to make meaningful choices. But when they were brought forward—regardless of your opinion on how it was done or whether it could’ve been done better or if it was a good or bad thing—Manning got thirty-five years in prison. Meanwhile, I’m still free.

Note, once again, for those who are still too fucking stupid to get this, there is no real functional difference between Manning’s and Snowden’s document selection and distribution method, other than that Wikileaks distributed Manning’s documents to more journalists, and Snowden’s documents have a higher security classification.



Confronting Edward Snowden’s Remarks on Manning

Fuck the Guardian: Take Your Drip and Stick It

Another Snowden News Story, Another Lesson in Proper Whistleblowing

The Pejorative Use of ‘Dumping’

In Conclusion

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113 Responses to Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower

  1. mspbwatch says:

    Thank you for persevering despite all the lies and smears these past six months. Both the GW/BW dichotomy and the hoarding of documents are troubling fault lines in the Greenwald/Snowden narrative, and ones which won’t go away. It’s not just corporate/NSA mouthpieces who are critiquing GG, but those on his left. It’s telling he can’t meaningfully respond to you, Silber, and others without his usual snarl and abuse. One can’t take a raincheck on keeping your house in order.

  2. Dissent Now says:

    As it’s undoubtedly going to be the wreck that keeps on twisting and turning and burning, I am glad you have returned to the car wreck. Love the third paragraph – I might even say it’s done Greenwald-style! J/K.

  3. Romancing the Loan says:

    I’d like to think this whole GW/BW propaganda, though, is only going to work on a very few people. That is, mostly older, wealthier folk (well, Guardian readers) who still have enough trust in our institutions to not find the claim that the NYT and the WaPo are “responsible news organizations” totally laughable. I suppose they might be enticed by all this to look away from the WoT in favor of ridiculing our spies for tapping the phones of foreign leaders (I’m sorry, but isn’t that what spies are supposed to be doing?) and spending what amounts to peanuts in comparison playing World of Warcraft, but no one else will. Please keep hammering at this topic. Watching the respectable Left squirm in agonies of cognitive dissonance is fantastically entertaining.

    • Tarzie says:

      I’d like to think this whole GW/BW propaganda, though, is only going to work on a very few people. That is, mostly older, wealthier folk (well, Guardian readers) who still have enough trust in our institutions to not find the claim that the NYT and the WaPo are “responsible news organizations” totally laughable

      That’s speculative and even if true I don’t think appeal to older, wealthier folk is insignificant, considering the influence they wield over whistleblowers, like in courts, for instance. Also, I think you’re wrong. The process-fetishing of the Snowden Spectacle seemed to have pretty wide appeal if only as a performance of savviness. People seem to be buying GGs hype that this is The Best Whistleblowing Ever, largely because of its assumed deftness, despite the sparseness of leaks and how mediocre most of the reporting is. My concern is that prospective whistleblowers are buying this hype also.

      It’s also worth considering that this lengthy campaign for journalist-arbitered whistleblowing precedes the emergence of NewCo, which is aiming to be the sexier, younger, more trustworthy version of the same old paternalist game and will undoubtedly attempt to become Leaks Central. Since this enterprise is headed up by one of GW/BW’s most avid promoters, possibly even its originator, those old people reading the Guardian may meet their match in a younger crew of suckers. Greenwald is the Pied Piper of pseudo-savvy rubes and disaffected conformists.

      Generally I think it’s a bad idea for dissidents to mind the gates of dissidence on behalf of power regardless of the impact, especially since the impact can only be guessed at anyway.

      Please keep hammering at this topic.

      No. This was a one-off. Hedges pilfered from this blog and defanged it, so I put the fangs back on. Really need to write these people off and walk away.

  4. mardy says:

    What an important and timely blog post. You did the right thing in returning. People need to read this.

    “consider its intentional incorporation of establishment lies.”

    Powerful statement. And if you’re honest with yourself, it is undeniable. Way to bring that home.

    “It’s telling he can’t meaningfully respond to you, Silber, and others without his usual snarl and abuse.”

    As a person who spent 2 years in a Barack Obama facebook group filled with stary-eyed 20 somthings, I can say with certainty that is always telling of a person whos cognitive dissonance is on full display. The anxiety that creeps up their spine once they realize they’re actions are pushing back against the ideals they supposedly hold dear is too much to take – especially from someone they don’t respect. So they lash out.

    • Tarzie says:

      a person whos cognitive dissonance is on full display.

      The reaction has been quite bizarre, certainly. Kinda changed my outlook.

      • Mardy says:

        “Kinda changed my outlook.”
        Yes, it does.

        And he can largely ignore this blog if he wishes, as he knows it’s likely to have minimal influence.
        It’s amazing he’s benefiting from the same disconnects he once spoke out against. What powerful and influential people say in the clutch when responding to smart, probing questions is where the truth will lie. Law makers who give big business a pass for not investing and who institute destructive economic policies, never have to come under a *public* inquisition with Dean Baker. Just like it seems Greenwald will never have to answer for his behavior. They guy who criticized power, now has power – is that natural the order of things?

  5. Pingback: Confronting Edward Snowden’s Remarks on Bradley Manning | The Rancid Honeytrap

  6. diane says:

    Hedges is of the class who can repeatedly get arrested (and deliberately provoke little people to get arrested by the droves, with absolutely life threatening long term consequences), get immediately released (while those droves sit in overcrowded cells, rightfully wondering if their ability to get a job again in this WEB age of constant surveillance and little people ‘outing’), and never, ever suffer the consequences of those arrests … as a matter of fact, it appears to be of further economic benefit – for him (and his ilk), only – which wouldn’t quite as bad if he acknowledged that fact (though maybe I missed it?).

    As to not naming names, that’s a genteel courtesy from one elite – who appears to derive his income from informing the little people how very fucked and screwed they are – to his Elite, Lilly White Fellows.

    • Tarzie says:

      Hedges is of the class who can repeatedly get arrested…

      Yeah, something I have become more concerned with in the wake of Manning, Snowden and Hammond is their host/parasite relationship to professional lefts who use these martyrs to burnish their brands and move up the food chain. Greenwald’s use and abandonment of Manning just as her trial got underway puts this in fairly stark terms.

      • diane says:

        Indeed, ‘USE.’ Though, at this point, I’m not quite so sure about ‘abandonment’ in light of his Omidyar association, that would have to presume human association, true outrage and true empathy in the first place.

        (As a side note, following up on Pierre’s disdain for anonymity, well fuck Pierre, then maybe you [Pierre] should come out and admit that your tweeter person, is not you, and announce their fucking name, as many of us rightfullly and logically suspect that isn’t you, because, in fact: you have a billionaire’s life to enjoy; other billionaires to ‘confer’ with; and that tedious delegating to your lackeys who handle your obsessive investing and that 100 plus of your investments, and therefore would never be stuck tied to your mobile phone or twitting all day about one of your Hobby Investments.)

      • diane says:

        (speaking of those “NonProfit” Omidyar Network: For Profit (yep, quite Ironically, as the upper echelon running the IRS has been bought by Pierre and his BIPARTISAN ilk) and ‘Non-Profit, – yet quite profitable in and of themselves – Investments, this jawbz ‘page’ would likely provide endless hours of outrage and ‘amusement’ (if any of the wee people actually had the time, or untrampelled spirit to peruse it), along with this incomplete investments listing (where is Federated [ADVERTISING/HUMAN MONETIZING] Media Publishing, for just one ? (perishable “page 18” url Omidyar Network Jawbz link).)

      • diane says:

        (And one truly has to lurve wee Billionaire, litl Jimmy Whales, agreeing to redirect the old[e] Federated Media Publishing Website back to litle obscenely wealthy, Elite Lilly ‘White’r, John Battelle, despite Batelle’s Federated Media Publishing‘s quite extensive and lucrative background.)

        John Battelle
        From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
        (Redirected from Federated Media)

      • diane says:

        Oh, speaking of profitable ‘non profits,’ and The Omidyar Network, Nitasha Tiku has this piece:

        12/11/13 Airbnb’s Industry Mouthpiece Astroturfs for Donations

        (Though I should note that, contrary to Nitasha’s quoting of Fast Company, I think it’s possible Pierre’s Peers and fwends, creepizoids Andreessen and Thiel, may have equally contributed along with Pierre – contrary to the Fast Company Piece she links to – looking at Tom Slee’s piece, which appears to have been heavily ‘borrowed from by both Fast Company and the Columbia Review piece just short of a quite lengthy four months after his Peer revelations (at least they linked to him, though the Fast Company piece didn’t even note his name or website).

        Tom Slee was the first that I know of to post at length – later on duplicated as the ‘Charity Asset’s piece at the New Inquiry site might ring a bell – regarding Omidyar’s ‘non profit’ microfinancing biznest.)

  7. Michael says:

    “the difference is [between Manning and himself], he will say that he spent months meticulously studying every document.”
    Ponder this.Meticulously studying. Where is he? How long does it take him to do that? Meticulously studying, night after night after night, for hours. How long? Months? With a demanding day job and a hotsy-totsy gf on standby. I can’t do the math, but something about that narrative clangs false.

    “My concern is that prospective whistleblowers are buying this hype also.”
    Dude that’s huge. They’ve created an intake orifice of pseudo-trustworthiness.
    How many smaller but holding possibly significant data whistlers are out there right now, trying to get to Greenwald or someone close to him? Cause he’s the man.
    Try a scenario where in timewarpish parallel Manning first goes to Omidyar’s joint-venture and its public shadow players?
    Is that even imaginable? Goes to them before Wikileaks?
    Plausible outcome? Goose farts.

  8. hahahahaahaha!

    You lifted this post from my comment on Hedges’ piece!

    • Tarzie says:

      Nope, sorry.

      I have been blogging on Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower since June, and this post is largely a digest of stuff elsewhere on this site arranged in chronological order. You should know this, since a search on your IP shows you’ve been reading and commenting here for awhile. Which suggests you may have the whole lifting progression exactly reversed. Or it’s possible we are reaching the same conclusions, based on the same evidence, in parallel. Your comment here, on a post in which I go over a lot of the info I reproduce in this post, suggests the latter. Like I said above, the truth of this matter is out in plain sight. The remarkable thing is how few have scrutinized it. Flattering, though, to be accused of plagiarism by a regular reader. That’s a new one.

      • Mardy says:

        How do you search people’s IP?

      • Tarzie says:

        Your IP is logged with each comment. I can find all comments logged with a certain IP.

      • BTW, no joke, I was commenting at Greenwald’s Guardian site about the issue long before you wrote your posts here making similar complaints about the same issue, and you know that because you emailed me and I told you my user name there.

        So, don’t be such a dick.

      • Tarzie says:

        So it wasn’t a joke. Thanks for keeping us updated on your mood swings.

        I admit it. Your comments on a web site I almost never read are the source of all my writing, including the Manning piece I posted on June 10, the day after Snowden came forward. One problem, though: my first direct contact with you was on Nov. 4, when I inquired about comments you made here. Everything I’ve written on the trove size and Good Whistleblower/Bad Whistleblower came before that. Last one before this one was posted 10/15. If I have been harvesting your comments, why did I ask you to direct me to them in November? To cover my tracks, because I am getting so rich plagiarizing you? I would happily give you everything I’ve been paid for these posts, but troll beatdowns aren’t transferable.

        If you’re going to accuse people of plagiarism, get your dates in order. Also, aim higher.

  9. hahahaha! Preceding a comment is generally consider to be a joking preface, at least where i come from.


  10. Trish says:

    HI Tarzie,

    Just wanted to thank you for taking the time to shine the light on GG. I understand why you needed to wrap this up – it has all become a farce. GG is despicable, repugnant, self serving A hole with a “jesus” complex. Poor Snowden to put his trust in him. What a nasty, spiteful man he turned out to be.

  11. Trish says:

    You must read this. I have never laughed so hard. If only half of it is true let me say as someone who lived in one of those “dangerous” countries for most of us it was just another day.

    Seems JS and GG are well suited.

  12. adversitystrikes says:

    You’ve definitely opened my eyes to specific things I’ve missed, and you’ve coloured in the lines of unease I’ve had about Snowden/Greenwald and their disgusting abandonment of Manning.

    Thank you for your writing; I totally understand you moving on from this depressing debacle, and look forward to reading your future commentary.

    • diane says:

      The posts are definitely worth the read, but there is something about Sibel that never sat right in my gut. That last post was really disingenuous, when it needn’t at all have been. Logic might even lead back to her being quite in league with the whole mess.

      I think it’s pretty telling that Black Agenda Report has not bothered with any of this, as the underdogs who either: can not get a job, since they are not trusted to go along with what they clearly know to be a stunningly cruel and abusive abusive system; or, do the things actually necessary for a civilization (shipping and receiving, for just one of millions of examples), in order to just barely stay alive (if that) have always been, always will be horrendously violated, privacy wise.

      • Tarzie says:

        Black Agenda Report has not gotten caught up in the GG kerfuffle — not the kind of thing they do — but they have touched on NSA spying now and again. Likely they correctly see it as just one aspect of the huge disciplinary apparatus. A point I made here is that taken by itself, the NSA is something of red herring. Chase Madar’s piece on The Criminalization of American Life does a good job of painting a bigger picture. Madar cites this blog post, The Surveillance State Outside Your Door, which suggests the Snowden Affair is kind of missing the point. Both good reads.

        I feel the same way about Edmonds. She raises good points at times — as she has this time — but she uses the dishonest conspiracist style and undermines herself.

      • diane says:

        I’ll check out Chase’s piece. I really appreciated some of Chase’s commentary on Koh (Department of Justice), a few years back.

      • diane says:

        …but she uses the dishonest conspiracist style and undermines herself.


        You’re possibly kinder than I … in giving a benefit of the doubt there. She chose the Ivy Leaguer, US MIC/CAPITALIST SNOOPER PROFESSION, AS A VOCATION, and she knows fully well that those who have been forced into connecting dots know that what she has posted does not hold water, the way she has chosen to write it.

      • diane says:

        I should clarify (and certainly not pointing at you here Tarzie), the first very first time I attempted to post my last opinion I received the ‘you’ve made a duplicate post message’ (THOUGH I HAD NOT, AT ALL) just another hideous example of what the little people have been stuck with, after having been so separated and set against one another ….made so transient ……reliant on a system which violates and monetizes them so thoroughly? One which requires that they learn ‘CODING’ in order to speak five words which use to take only a few seconds, versus two plus minutes, and were immediately understood.

        Who would question as to whether Omiya, Obama, Cheney, Boner (spa?), et al, are forced to deal with such life sucking insanity? No doubt, they still communicate privately and intimately, likely they still have land lines, intact.

      • diane says:

        “Omidyar” and “(sp?)” …. (I despise spell check, and don’t recollect okaying those changes from “Omidyar” and “(sp?)” which were definately there before that “spell check.” (Not that I don’t have spelling issues with words I generally never use in day to day conversation with those I love most dearly.)….If I were able to speak, versus being forced to CODE and rapidly edit before the subject is quickly forgotten and bypassed by a Noo Da’ze Horror, my comment would have been understood immediately, instead of being set up for dismissal, on THE WEB.

      • Tarzie says:

        Diane, I sympathize, but I’m pretty sure we’re not so dangerous around here that our posts are being sabotaged. If you’re using Tor, you’re likely to run into problems with posting all over the place. That’s my experience anyway.

      • diane says:

        I don’t use TOR, honey (never cared for the Naval Intelligence backdrop, my dad, oldest brother, and stepdad were in the Navy .. all three of them got fucked, BIG TIME), and I probably should’ve made clearer that I did use the hideous “MS spellcheck,” since I felt the (quite manufactured) need to rapidly say what I had to say, before all became bored with yesterdaze nooz, so spellcheck was the likely insidious, legally clear culprit of insinuating other than what I intended to state. Not to claim at all that the powers that be are not capable of ‘gaslighting’ and fucking with posts though.

      • diane says:

        My dearest uncle was in the “D Day Invasion” on “the Beach” …he was an artist who knew how to sketch …in fine fucking detail ….manually …by his own hand ….every agonized muscle in one’s body … the MIC electroshocked the fuck out of him …so he instructed and ‘bullied’ my dad to take a somewhat less horrific path to the Navy …..

      • Tarzie says:

        oh my God. Diane, you should write a book.

      • diane says:

        well honey, I suppose he felt a bit lucky that he wasn’t lobotomized (that is the book that should first be written). I will never forget the photographic testimony he had, of the bodies stacked in the box cars, which reflected in the stunning artwork he did, some of which was stolen from an institute in Philadelphia which he had studied at. He died – despite the couldn’t be denied mastery of the human body and soul he had painstakingly aquired – in a hospice, having refused be patronized by the elite. He decided against the dialysis prescribed, as it would totally prevent him from practising his vocation.

        In my childhood, I laid on my back with my siblings, as he instructed us on the constellations, which stars he knew by name and season of appearance in the Northern Hemisphere we inhabited, …in the sweet of summer and the indigo night.

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  14. Trish says:

    I read the posts by Sibel. I agree her tone is conspiratorial, but given what she has been through perhaps understanding. i find her point about how hard it is to get published interesting. i remember Col. Schaffer on Dylan Rattigan’s show about what the the govt did when he tried to publish his book. I am not sure if publishers are less under the yoke of govt when the writer, in this case GG,is not the original source, but certainly interesting that he had no problem.

    IN any event it is good that others are putting the spotlight on GG, he was probably quite happy you retired Tarzie. I think what you started here is causing people in other venues to start questioning GG.

    Well done for turning attention on the gatekeepers.

    • Tarzie says:

      It’s not Edmonds tone I object to. It’s the hackish drawing of conclusions that are not substantiated. In addition to being an unethical MO, it makes her easy to discredit. It’s disappointing that people who see through Glenn happily promote her shit when it’s as bad or worse from an argumentation standpoint.

      I am not interested in the personal traumas of these people. I am interested in the quality of their work.

  15. Jay23 says:

    I believe it was on Democracy Now recently that Glenn doubled down on his “Snowden carefully reviewed every document first” claim, after appearing to back off it for a while. He reported that when he first began reading the cache it was so meticulously organized that it was clear Snowden had examined every document.* It’s crazy to watch him waving the flag for two starkly diametric principles: 1) Snowden is the anti-Manning, carefully reviewing every single document to make sure they only contain things in the public interest; and 2) each document must be worked through painstakingly slowly and journalisticly, to go any faster might be extremely dangerous as the docs are littered with things like the identities of people unfairly targeted by the NSA and all kinds of other things the public shouldn’t know that must be heavily redacted in an extremely slow process.

    It’s really remarkable to watch. Not sure if you remember, but I gave GG much more of a benefit of the doubt than you did – he’s exhausted it and then some. This isn’t even to mention his abject silence on Ebay’s stance on the prosecution of the paypal 14, who strike me as 14 Aaron Swartz’s…. the antithesis of everything Greenwald ever claimed to stand for.

    • Tarzie says:

      I did not see that Democracy Now interview. Thanks for the tip. Amazing that they stick to this story after all this time. Was this the same interview where he extolled Pierre’s civic virtue? That would be quite the time capsule.

      • Jay23 says:

        Sorry, it wasn’t DNow, it was the recent Rolling Stone interview:

        “Each memory stick had an elaborate filing system. “On the front page were, let’s say, 12 files. You click on one of the files and there are 30 more files. You click on one of those files and there are six more, and finally you got the documents. And every last motherfucking document that he gave us was incredibly elegant and beautifully organized.” Greenwald had no doubt that the leaker had read every page; not a single one was misfiled. “It’s 1,000 percent clear that he read and very carefully processed every document that he gave us by virtue of his incredibly anal, ridiculously elaborate electronic filing system that these USB sticks contained.”

  16. Jay23 says:

    * as you pointed out… the time it would take Snowden to carefully review each makes the claim implausible… but there’s Glenn reporting in detail how meticulously organized the trove was. What do you make of it? Is Glenn lying? It would seem unnecessary for him… he could maintain the GW/BW narrative without going into detail about the meticulously organized folder hierarchy on the zip drive. Does it lend any credence to the Jon Rappoport/Snowden as a CIA plant delivering the trove they assembled theory?

    • Tarzie says:

      I try to stick to the facts on the surface. It is simply not possible for Snowden to have reviewed the documents in the way he and Greenwald claim he did. It is also highly probable that Glenn is lying because, well, Glenn’s a habitual liar. If he’s not lying in this case then he is simply clueless in taking Snowden at his word that he reviewed and neatly filed over 50k documents in the few months in which he is claimed to have done so. But my hunch is that the whole GW/BW thing originated with lawyer Glenn, and my wager would be on everyone else lying based on his advice. The orderly little files just seems like a detail to add authenticity. But that’s just a guess.

      Any hypothesis based on Greenwald being clueless, self-seeking, manipulative, conniving, dishonest or some combo of all is highly credible. Credibility-seeking seems the most obvious motive for GW/BW. It’s paying off. I feel no need to dig deeper. Instead, I simply long for a culture that would instantly recognize GG for the parasitic huckster he is.

  17. diane says:

    Whereby, Nick Denton’s hiree “Journalist”, Samuel Biddle, promotes OBombster conferring with CORPORATE Apple and Face Fiend, etcetera to ‘solve’ the Corporate OWNED NSA Privacy Violations and ONLINE (STUNNINGLY HIPAA ACT VIOLATED) MED RECORDS issues:

    12/16/13 Obama Meeting with Silicon Valley Elites to Figure His Shit Out

    After months of chanting We could have done sooo-oo much better, TIME reports America’s tech sector will have a chance to school President Obama on and NSA surveillance. But he probably should have reconsidered some of these choices.

    Tim Cook, definitely. Sheryl Sandberg—one of the sharpest tech leaders out there. Netflix CEO Reed Hastings—makes sense, Netflix is a hugely complicated internet machine that still runs smoothly. ….

    Yup, ya’ll read that correctly, all those entities most successful at collecting everyone’s personal data and selling it to the highest bidder, should be in charge of determining how to correct the privacy violations.

    In other ghastly reads of the day, there was this, Whitey on the Moon, sweaty tantrum:

    12/16/13 Extinction is Guaranteed if We Do Not Colonize Space

    which succeeded this, just slightly less sweaty, pointer finger wagging, first person possessive, proclamation (bolding mine):

    Ian Welsh
    December 16, 2013

    Who said anything about getting everyone of the rock? You don’t have to do that to do what I want, you get breeding populations off, and they… breed.

    • diane says:

      This nasty ass shit from Ian, poor bought (?), at the very least severely befuddled, Ian. …Talk about a toxic cloud of puffy rhetoric (a quote from a wonderful, ‘citizen’ of Ireland, Bono critic whose name escapes me), is so fucked up, it almost makes me want to give up, but I will not, as most humans refute that the stunningly greedy are superior to their generally, overwhelmingly far more kind and generous, human(e) peers:

      The nobility saw themselves as better than their inferiors because they were.

      (fucking sad and pathetic , bolding mine. …..)

  18. diane says:

    You’re not at all forgotten, by millions who seek truth …. and mourn the captivity of other truth seekers, Chelsea Manning.

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  22. anonnnnn says:

    A really good article about the relationship of Chomsky to state academia and his later emergence as an outspoken dissident.

    • Tarzie says:

      Thanks. You musta been reading my TL.

      • anonnnnn says:

        Yep. And well, it has been my experience that we must never consider any person in the public sphere as somehow beyond reproach. As much as I like Chomsky, he does come with no small number of problems.

        That article goes a really long way towards escaping the gaping void between his person as academic and political dissident. He has tried to distance the two spheres and accomplished it in most peoples minds, but I do not see how it is possible. Most academics are woefully dishonest about the uses and greater social implications of their research.

        He was at the center of the so-called cognitive revolution, a paradigm shift in the behavior sciences that is continually being used in the insidious ways which we see manifest today. If you can abstract a person into some sort of basic functionally equivalent computational model, you can then start using those models to do all sorts of nastiness.

      • Tarzie says:

        That was a really fascinating article. Chomsky is the living, breathing embodiment of everything that obsesses me politically right now. I am really in your debt for pointing that article out. I wish it had fleshed out the alienation of other left-wing academics a bit more. They seem to take a sort of provisional attitude toward science that I think Chomsky would reject. It almost seems to suggest that a different science could have emerged — one less helpful to the military — if Chomsky hadn’t gone the route he did. I think he would just say he doesn’t make the science, he just reports it. It seems to me he was right to reject behaviorism and the social sciences generally for precisely the reasons he did.

        I can’t speak with any authority to the ‘cognitive revolution’, but I am reluctant to blame advances in science for the ends to which they’re put. Doesn’t it follow that the sounder the theory the more useful it is? And if something is useful, isn’t it going to be used for ill and good? I am curious what you would propose as an alternative trajectory for his life. Like, let’s say he had funding from a disinterested party. Would the science have been different?

      • anonnnnn says:

        Well, that may the case, but remember crucially that when we are dealing with social problems, the formulated objects of knowledge at which the techniques of science are directed are fundamentally bound by the assumptions and intentions directing them.

        I find it hard to speculate to what ends Chomsky’s research would have served had he not been funded the way that he had. For one, interpreting human behavior through its reduction into a computational machine ( which essentially is what the cognitive revolution was about ) lends itself quite readily to domineering and militaristic purposes. Secondly, it is made implicitly clear which objects of research will be rewarded, not unlike the way our Most Celebrated Journalists decide what shall be considered “news”. Chomsky himself has described in detail how people are weeded out ideologically. It is pretty clear though, that he would not have had impact that he had if his work had not been such a critical part of the machine.

        The reason Chomsky’s thesis that we are hard wired not unlike computers to understand language is so important to the power structure is this: if a person can easily be reduced to a known set of inputs and outputs not unlike a computer then the game is already won. In a way he and his heirs in academia have created their own behaviorism. People can then be reduced to a Pavlovian black box: inputs in the form of language go in, and behaviors and responses come out. It all depends on the wiring. If I can describe the workings of that black box to an extent that the impact environment becomes negligible or a known factor, I have successfully abstracted that which is relevant, and can now make predictions about what they will do.

        Think about how ads or surveillance are targeted or whatever other modern day behavioral manipulations are cooked up on a daily basis to target and control the populace. They invariably find their antecedents in academic research of the kind of which Chomsky has been one of the most influential — public relations, industrial psychology, cognitive research, language processing etc. In fact, these are quite active areas of research. How could an institution such as what we popularly refer to as science be but political?

        Foucault, whom perhaps unsurprisingly Chomsky insulted once in a joint interview, concludes the motivations for doing so are to be able to maintain continuous compulsion of the body. He argues explicitly against the notion of a science that is not coextensive with power, or as he describes as a single unity: knowledge/power.

        Click to access foucalt.pdf

        He delves into these concepts more deeply in his more extended works. He describes in detail how persons are not only the subjects of power but are also themselves its agents. With this perspective it becomes possible to analyze why surveillance is so important. A regime of continuous application of power to the body politic is created in order to maintain its subordination. I fail to see how his disciplinary model does not closely mirror the current situation with America, which is an utterly disciplinary society both domestically and abroad.

        If there is to be any principled opposition to the abysmal status quo, it will have to emerge from a clearer understanding of how we arrived at the present condition. The lack of even a basic historical perspective seems to pervade the punditry which shape public opinion. Marx, for all his flaws, was particularly astute to recognize that meaningful social change has as its precondition informed historical critique.

  23. anonnnnn says:

    If you want to see Chomsky’s relation to the rest of the intellectual Left, you can see here:

    My idea of why he is so rabid in attacking them is that they tend to undermine the very basis of his academic career.

    • Tarzie says:

      My idea of why he is so rabid in attacking them is that they tend to undermine the very basis of his academic career.

      Hmm, I’m not sure about that. I’m content to take his misgivings about Foucault and Co at face value, perhaps because I share some of them. In this video, I think they’re mostly talking past each other, rather than usefully disagreeing, though I find it interesting. I find them both persuasive mainly because they’re talking about different things. I really liked Foucault’s discussion of scientific discovery, which somewhat goes to your own points about “the techniques of science are directed are fundamentally bound by the assumptions and intentions directing them.” But I don’t think it is entirely at odds with Chomsky’s view of things, and he said as much. His answer to the Dutch questioner about his work at MIT was revealing and not in a good way. It seemed kind of dishonest in how it separated his own work from the war machine he was serving. This is a difficult question for the left generally, I think, is how implicated can we be in the work we do when capitalism really gives us no choice but to get up to our eyeballs in blood. There is no clean money, but is some money dirtier than other? I used to think, no, it’s all the same, but in considering the way, say, a person like Chomsky loans out his lofty anti-imperialist credentials (and also his talent) to militarists, I am inclined to think distinctions can be made. Still trying to sort that out.

      In actual effect, I don’t find Foucault a more politically useful figure, really, than Chomsky. My biggest complaint about Chomsky is that he’s a handwringer who tends too little to strategy and tactics, but Foucault’s view of things seems even more inclined to paralysis, as his rejection of a provisional attempt to improve the French justice systems suggests. I think in a vulgarized form he may be the cause of this horrible tendency among educated lefts to identify and root out oppression secretly residing in everything and to act as if this is radical, necessary practice, no matter how trifling it becomes.

      I don’t think basic human needs are a great mystery and I reject Foucault’s assertion that the main problem with the Russian Revolution was that it was too fraught with bourgie values and ideals. Overall I like that Foucault is unwilling to grant the existing order any legitimacy, something Chomsky is far too willing to do, but at the same time I find Chomsky’s willingness to make a qualified recommendation for anarcho-syndicalism more useful than just throwing up one’s hands on the grounds that any imagined alternative will be tainted with the cultural poison of what preceded it. Generally speaking, I find both lines of thought increasingly beside the point, considering all the crises confronting us right now. I think the question of what comes next can actually wait awhile. I guess put another way, I would hypothesize that both Foucault and Chomsky occupy iconic places because they tend to lead people nowhere in the way of effectively fighting power and so one is not really the antithesis of the other, despite their much-discussed theoretical differences.

  24. Anabraxas says:

    Your critique does hit home, Tarzie. Even though I’d first like to know why you’re so convinced that Snowden is one of the active players in that global Game of Thrones, and not just a rogue agent who, in his dangerous isolation, has seen no other choice than to collaborate with the Glenn “Good Cop” Greenwald.

    Seeing how Greenwald was lauded as the pope by those elite leftist hackers at Chaos Conference in Hamburg, a city targeted by the very same gentrification that this caste of skilled tech workers participate in, this reveals the sectarian nature of this network of liberal hacktivists.

    What revolts me the most in the whole GG/Omiddya/Snowden (can I add Appelbaum to that?) is the godawful ELITISM… How in their messianic perspective of standing up to the privacy of the entire fucking human race yet holding back most of the secrets that would actually free it from the grasp of the NSA, the little people, the proles, the poor, the laymen, the average Joe’s and Jane’s like me and you, they don’t matter in the equation.

    What is the part that I -and we- the Ignorant Many, who don’t hold positions of privilege and knowledge in well-known news outlets or tech giant, can play in this already closed game, aside from just being the benevolent slaves of their crowd-sourcing schemes?

    Actually we DO matter… at least as mere statistics to be *processed*, within the context of social control through complicated webs of orwellian computerization, as same old human cattle slaves to be herded, exploited, submitted to compulsory labor, for the hacker elite of the upper-caste, the new “revolutionary” intelligentsia, bent on becoming the new political elite in a digital democracy ruled by controlled “transparency”.

    Remember “The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism” in 1984? This is the same pattern of an endlessly self-actualizing tyranny, where the only class struggle is fought by an upper caste, for the sole purpose of gaining and consolidating power, and becoming the power gang.

    Fuck this whole shit. Power games and politics are what makes people ugly, like Greenwald’s cop mug. Let’s keep building self-managed counter info of all kinds. The fact that this odd romantic couple (Laura and Glenn) -or cop duo- holds back Snowden’s stash of State secrets only shows how decentralization and freedom is their enemy.

    I urge anyone here to have a read (if they haven’t already): at CrimetInc’s “Deserting the Digital Utopia”. It pretty much covers the power dynamics happening behind-the-scenes in that big messianic spectacle. CrimethInc isn’t part of this whole gangster conspiracy of Mormons/Bahaists/social-democrat liberals who sleep with billionaires. Well at least I don’t think so… 😉

    • Tarzie says:

      I’d first like to know why you’re so convinced that Snowden is one of the active players in that global Game of Thrones, and not just a rogue agent who, in his dangerous isolation, has seen no other choice than to collaborate with the Glenn “Good Cop” Greenwald.

      I don’t have a theory about Snowden, other than that I dislike most of what comes out of his mouth: the smears against Manning; his bizarre ideas about whistleblowing and democracy; and now this nonsense about ‘Mission Accomplished’ and how he’s ‘working for the NSA, they just don’t realize it.’ Between him and Greenwald, the whole thing is just so overwhelmingly subservient and simple-minded. Even if I were to concede that this bullshit is a ruse to keep themselves alive — which I don’t — I don’t have to like it or applaud it. Among the many tactical obstacles of heroism, is that the hero is credited with all kinds of unwarranted authority. Snowden’s ideas on leaking and democracy are not made less dumb by virtue of his having leaked and I’d be most grateful if he kept them to himself. People like Sibel Edmonds now want his input on how he feels about Greenwald. But why? What he thinks about Greenwald won’t alter my assessment one way or the other.

      I am in complete agreement with you on the elitism — and yes, please do include Appelbaum — which was what I was getting at when I first complained of the leak oligopoly. Once that oligopoly is a done deal, though, the topic becomes the specifics of that oligopoly’s custodianship, which I think is particularly poor. To a great extent, the elitism is baked in by the state since it likely will really fuck with The Leak Keepers if they don’t redact those names of NSA analysts, for instance. The NSA knows it can weather just about any scandal, probably even be strengthened by it, but don’t fuck with its operations. This is why I just think leaking can’t be left to small cabals of risk-averse, establishment journalists and transparency celebrities. That Greenwald is convinced he’s ‘fucking with power’ while power celebrates him as this year’s most important journalist and showers him with lucrative deals is preposterously self-deluded if it’s not an outright con job. But it’s not just stupid. It’s toxic because it promotes this idea that there is some sweet spot between rebellion and subservience that actually undermines power while landing the dissident on top of the world. Every time Greenwald idiotically beats his chest, he is pissing on Gary Webb’s grave.

      Completely agree that decentralization is key. Greenwald vs. Wikileaks is one of the underlying motifs of this whole affair, but if I were a whistleblower, the choice for me would be neither. These cabals of dissent are philosophically objectionable as well as extremely problematic from a tactical standpoint.

      This is the same pattern of an endlessly self-actualizing tyranny, where the only class struggle is fought by an upper caste, for the sole purpose of gaining and consolidating power, and becoming the power gang.

      That’s what this is really starting to look like. Some kind of contest between elites, which is why it’s been given the greenest of lights from the beginning, despite this Great Reversal we’re being treated to now. I think the rest of us are quite incidental.

      • mardy says:

        “These cabals of dissent are philosophically objectionable as well as extremely problematic from a tactical standpoint. ”

        How so? Do you mind explaining what that means when we’re talking about wikileaks?

      • Tarzie says:

        I don’t think small groups of people should have almost exclusive discretion over leaked documents. Reasons are all over this blog.

        Tactically, I think it creates bottlenecks in disclosure. I also think centralized leaking is vulnerable to penetration by malefactors.

  25. diane says:

    A meaty piece from Chris Floyd:

    Last month, 500 famous authors signed a petition protesting the encroachments of the all-pervasive, techno-surveillance culture that is covering the earth with hidden eyes and ears, like a metastasized Stasi run amok. We’re talking heavy literary lumber here: Nobel Prize-winners, critic list-toppers, best-sellers – big names calling on the UN to create “an international bill of digital rights.”

    The authors state the indisputable truth: the “fundamental human right” of personal privacy “has been rendered null and void through abuse of technological developments by states and corporations.” They rightly declare that “a person under surveillance is no longer free; a society under surveillance is no longer a democracy. To maintain any validity, our democratic rights must apply in virtual as in real space.”

    Of course, one might like to see those “democratic rights in real space” applied a bit more vigorously in these days of airport x-rays, mandatory drug tests, “indefinite detention,” “extrajudicial execution,” “free speech zones,” etc. The accelerating degradation of “real space” liberties hardly inspires hope for preserving freedom in the virtual realm. Still, no sensible person would dispute the very worthy goals espoused in the petition.

    And yet, a cankerous old worm of skepticism keeps creeping in. Especially when the petitioners declare that this assemblage of Tolstoyan speakers of truth to power is not actually “against government.” Good gracious no! As Danish writer Janne Teller told the Guardian: “This initiative must be seen as helping governments, who like to preserve democracy in the western world.”


    Here our earnest authors come up against a very 21st-century conundrum: the ever-widening notion that the fate of our liberties should be taken out of the hands of governments and given to … corporations and oligarchs. This is the logic behind the move by Glenn Greenwald and other dissident superstars to “partner” with hi-tech oligarch Pierre Omidyar, “leveraging” Greenwald’s control of Edward Snowden’s NSA documents to create a profitable new media venture. This would be the same Omidyar whose PayPal cut Wikileaks off at the financial knees in its hour of greatest peril, whose “microfinancing initiatives” have led to mass suicides among the debt-ridden poor in India and who now appears driven to monetize dissent in the same way he’s monetized poverty relief. It’s unlikely that hard-hitting exposes of hi-tech corporate chicanery will feature overmuch at Pierre’s new plaything


    As always, our betters – in this case, not government apparatchiks but knee-capping oligarchs and government-consulting journalists – will let us know whatever modicum of truth they deem fit for our limited understanding. ….

    (thanks for the heads up, BLCKDGRD.)

  26. diane says:

    Sorry for the lateness, but had been meaning to get around to bleakly verifying (and finally have) that Barton Gellman/Seeming Unpaid Volunteer Washington Post Snowden Files ‘Director’ was the same Barton Gellman as the Sickening ‘Journalist’ who authored Angler in 2008, a purported ‘truly revealing’ Dick Cheney Bio. From the last page, of the last chapter, Regime Change (page 394 in the first, Penguin Press, hardcopy edition , Barton Gellman reveals his sickening lurve of that monster:

    Cheney had defended the nation and the powers of its commander in chief. He fought the fight and never bent and did what had to be done.

    (Bolding mine. Does anyone recollect who chose Gellman as one of the interpreters?)

    [1] Currently, he is leading The Washington Post’s coverage of the global surveillance disclosure based on top secret documents provided ex-NSA contractor Edward Snowden. . It’s not clear (at least to me) when (though the why appears clear) he returned to share his ‘wisdom’ with the Washington Post, despite a presumably ‘fulltime’ position at Time, see under Career:

    After 21 years on the staff of the Washington Post, Gellman resigned in February 2010 to concentrate on book and magazine writing.[3] He now holds positions as Senior Fellow at the Century Foundation,[4] Contributing Editor at Large of Time magazine,[5] and Lecturer and Author in Residence at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.[6]

    the murky, above linked ‘wiki bio’ seems to imply that Gellman is just doing an unpaid WAPO freebie for Bezos’ WA Post, as it’s never noted that he was rehired by WAPO – as consultant, or employee.

    • diane says:

      (sorry, I had intended to include a footnote referencing “[1]” after the first appearance of Gellman’s name.)

    • diane says:

      Not at all to take the truly deserved HEAT off of PO Man Pierre, Greenwald, et al. ……

    • diane says:

      My apologies, to be concise (as there was one remaining, every bit as sickening pathetic ode to a monster, paragraph on page 375 which certainly implies – though of course I cannot prove it – that Barton Gellman found Dick Cheney’s shadow private ‘governing’ appropriate and laudable):

      From the last full page, of the last chapter, Regime Change (page 394 in the first, Penguin Press, hardcopy edition) , Barton Gellman reveals his sickening lurve of that monster:

      Cheney had defended the nation and the powers of its commander in chief. He fought the fight and never bent and did what had to be done.

      • Tarzie says:

        Oh my God.

        How did someone like this get looped into the Snowden Affair? This all just gets weirder and weirder.

      • diane says:

        That book brought to mind NSA Microsoft’s Silicon Valley Whizbang (In Q Tel in the early daze wings?) Jaron Lanier’s You are not a Gadget, loaded with hopeful cuddlies … until one ended up at the horrifying final chapters’ suggestions and implications.

      • diane says:

        And yeah, who invited Gellman from Time, to ‘analyze’?

      • diane says:

        I’m deeply wondering about Bruce Schneier (The Guardian [Expert] US ‘analyzer’, brought on board immediately) also. How very ‘endearing’ that those who proclaimed the ultimate virtue and possibility of tight security (and then, ONLY FOR CODERS with plenty of time and money on/in their hands) of the WEB admit all have been snooped after calling (or certainly implying that) people who realized – early on – the stunning technological capacity for abuse of power: tin foil hatters and Luddites (as if that is even a blotch) for at least a decade (and I certainly have not seen any apologies by any of them since those since mid summer acknowledgments).

      • Tarzie says:

        Did Schneier call people who expressed security concerns, Luddites and tin-foil hatters? Of the Leaknoscenti, I have always found him the least objectionable.

      • diane says:

        And I’m clearly, to anyone not brain dead, not the only one wondering about Bruce Schneier:

        Chet Bredwell • September 24, 2013 12:45 PM


        Congratulations, Mr Scheiner, for having the “courage” to say now what many of us were complaining about 10 years ago.

        3650 days late, millions of dollars short.

        Hope your Greenwald-penned late stardom feels powerful. Why weren’t you grousing about this a decade ago? Why wasn’t he?

      • diane says:

        Perhaps not directly, but far more subtly with prescriptions that the vast majority would never be able to afford, or accomplish. He always gave the impression from the many times I visited, prior to the Snowden Affair, that all was protectable. BUT HE WAS IN THE PERFECT POSITION TO KNOW THE REALITY. I am betting that he did know the reality, though I cannot prove it.

        Hell, non- coders knew they were being snooped. I would love to access emails he’s received from those who knew they were being snooped. I was snooped on a temporary job, almost a decade ago, in the most venal manner, because they could, it was not even personal.

      • Tarzie says:

        Also, the other thing is, until recently, Greenwald, Schneier and Co have been leading us all to believe that the hacking is mostly a software problem, which we can relieve, at least in part, with software. But then along come Appelbaum and Poitras, with documents from 2008, to tell us all that the hardware is owned too. Nothing these people do makes any sense at all.

      • diane says:

        Appears to be a sadistic version of in between the lines transparency after it is near too late for anyone to do anything about it (other than Night Crawlers immensely PROFITING off of the Noo$e).

  27. diane says:

    Welp, and shhhhhhhh, they are voting on the Trans Pacific Pact Nail In The Coffin while all were all looking the other way a good day to call ’your’ Senators and at least remind them of the contempt you hold for them -if nothing else, as asking them to do the right thing appears to be like praying that the droning of innocents will end and ‘our’ Fourth E$tate has the best interests of the humane at heart:

    Alan Tonelson ‏@AlanTonelson 3h File under “Coincidence”? #Obama reptdly will drop #fasttrack bill this afternoon – on day of news-devouring #Christie presser. #TPA #TPP [And the noo HuffPo Omidyar Merger – diane]
    Retweeted by Sandra

    For those in California:

    No Income Taxes (OR SNOOPING/HUMAN COMMODITIZING RESTRICTIONS) for the NSA/CIA/et al connected [Contractor]MIC/Banker/TECH Oligopoly, while the Homeless with no prior criminal records, exponentially increase – Babs Boxer [For the Elite]: (510) 286-8537 and [DC phone line] (202) 224-3553

    Profiteers off of every Misery imaginable DIFI[Diane Feinstein]/Blum: (415) 393-0707 and [DC phone line] (202) 224-3841

    (My results after 3:20 PM EST, regarding such world changing legislation, equaled: phone interns, wanna be punitive Senators themselves one day, have not heard how they are voting on that NAIL IN THE COFFIN (i.e. I am just another Kafkaesque insect, not even included on the Totem Pole). Perhaps I should have pretended to be one of the Sly Con Valley Tech Gawdz? It was a bit enjoyable to air my contempt though (no doubt recorded and phone id’d for posterity [malcontent tracking]). Not that their votes, particularly Boxer’s, will even represent their motivations, as there must always be the appearance of a handful of tear stained $enators voting on behalf of their otherwise apparent prey.)

  28. diane says:

    I just saw your comment re Gary Webb, I think I noted previously on this site that there was a far lesser known hispanic journalist for theSan Jose Mercury News (which ultimately sold Gary out, with much assistance from The Los Angeles Times [LAT], etcetera) who literally gutted himself in the mid 2000’s. Of course there is always the possibility of domestic and financial issues making one despondent, but, to my mind, one never reads of disemboweling as regards domestic disputes and financial issues. I will always believe that horrid self disemboweling was very much connected to the Sly Con Valley’s Fourth E$tate.

    (Also, I have an earlier comment, at 4:28 PM EST, snagged in spam.)

    • Tarzie says:

      Yeah, I’ve read about him. Was he the one that was investigating The Octupus, or something like that?

    • Tarzie says: I guess he’s a different one. Is there nothing online about the guy you mean?

    • diane says:

      To my recollect (my last puter died and ‘obsolesced,’ of course way earlier than the money spent on it at all warranted, so it’s not easy to provide fuller detail from the notes I wrote) his surname was Ramirez, and of course, if one does a search, all they come up with is a California Razed hispanic serial murderer …versus an hispanic journalist at THE LOCAL noosepaper representing one of the largest, most deadly at the end of the day, economies in the world …. who likely became a journalist …to truth tell ……

      • Tarzie says:

        That’s weird, though. Why would his story be completely disappeared, if Webb’s and Casolaro’s can stay in play?

        I think I read about a journo who stabbed himself on Counterpunch once. Hard to search with so little info.

      • Tarzie says:

        This seems to be the extent of it online. Do you know what he was reporting on? What makes you think there was foul play apart from the rarity of abdominal knife wound suicides?

      • diane says:

        I believe he actually did commit suicide, and that the stunningly foul play was what he was told, on a daily basis, not to comment on, the final straw being a demotion in pay and standing (which may have taken place when Fucker Dean Singleton took the reins, not to say that Singleton didn’t succeed other Fuckers.)

      • Tarzie says:

        I am not sure from anything you’ve said, how this connects to journalists like Webb and Casolaro. All I’m getting is that he was screwed.

      • diane says:

        I’ll try to see what further I can find, because, to my mind, suicide is more often than not the wet dream of the Sadistic Elite, intended for those who actually care about others. A perfected, ‘white’ gloved Murder. Most definately the FOULest of ‘PLAY'[TIME].

      • diane says:

        All I’m getting is that he was screwed.

        Well I was reading between the lines that he was not only screwed, but worse, he was prevented from validating in writing (there lies the connection I made to Gary Webb, especially since he was writing for the same newspaper, though Gary’s work was published before it was ‘invalidated.’) what he felt to be important. I guess we may never know.

  29. mardy says:

    Your last 2 posts have “hooked” me on your content. Looking forward to see what else you have to say.

  30. Pingback: Edward Snowden’s Incredible Mutating Document Trove | The Rancid Honeytrap

  31. diane says:

    Whereby our betters, remind us that the technology behind The Web was only intended for the ‘art’ of white gloved VIOLATION …… thieving, killing, and ultimate premature death for the wee peeps:

    01/13/14 Policing Is a Family Affair

    Last Thursday, I wrote about a breathtakingly reprehensible article in the Guardian in which Emma Keller mused about “the ethics” of Lisa Bonchek Adams tweeting about her terminal cancer.

    Over the weekend, Emma Keller’s husband, Bill Keller, wrote a companion piece for the New York Times, which is similarly stunning in its cruel audacity to audit whether Lisa Bonchek Adams is talking about her illness in the “right way,” or even dying in the “right way”—that is, the way in which Bill Keller approves.

    Oh wee balded mare, why can’t you just die quietly?

    Apparently our betters would prefer tracking every conversation, monetary transaction, protest and thought we engage in, except when it comes to thoughts and push back regarding our premature demise.

  32. Interesting interview with Stanley Cohen, though unfortunately as the leak keepers need their criticism “polite”, “calm”, and “proportional”, I don’t think that they’ll be engaging.

    I’ve been wondering what you think, or if you think, about the leak keepers’ dismissal of threats to privacy that come from the private sector. I would expect them to downplay that angle given that their story is the NSA, a government agency, and you could at least argue that the government has the threat of violence and confinement backing it up, but I was a bit surprised at how snarkily dismissive they were, from Snowden’s comment about “warheads on foreheads” in the recent WaPo piece, to a few dismissive tweets from Jay Rosen, not only is there a lack of concern, but mocking of those express concern.

    Surely if you are care about privacy it’s still a violation if the entity that’s violating can’t launch a warhead. Beyond that, let’s remember that Snowden was working for a private company when he…acquired…the NSA documents, so it’s probable that a private/public, government/corporation framework isn’t very helpful anyway.

    I thought it might be ideological, but could it be as simple as the leak keeping not being very bright?

    • Tarzie says:

      I thought it might be ideological, but could it be as simple as the leak keeping not being very bright?

      It could be either or it could be something worse. I’ve remarked upon it without speculating about motives here and here.

      It’s very hard to say with certainty why, but there need be no uncertainty as to what is happening here: a neatly circumscribed discussion that narrowly focuses on the NSA to the near-exclusion of the 15 other agencies in the Intelligence Community and the private sector. In the case of the recent Google story, it looks like a deliberate whitewash, as there was no mention in either the Guardian or WaPo of the agreement Google struck with the NSA in 2010 to collaborate on securing Google’s network.

      What this state/private sector dichotomy glosses over is that it’s all one thing. Putting aside all the havoc that private companies can wreak with your data on their own, it doesn’t matter that Google can’t put you in jail if they’re providing your data to a government that can. Twitter may not put warheads on foreheads, but it does provide its prized ‘Firehose’ to companies that service the surveillance apparatus and local police. It’s bizarre that Snowden can on one hand provide some of the information that draws the connection, and on the other hand, discount its ramifications.

      The links between the intelligence community and Silicon Valley go back years. There is a revolving door between the state intelligence apparatus and the companies they work with. This notion that Silicon Valley has cooperated under duress is bullshit, plain and simple. If I had to guess, I’d say there is widespread agreement among people on both the public and private sides of the surveillance apparatus that it’s best for all concerned that the NSA fall on the sword for everyone else, not least because the taxpayers will absorb the cost of reforms, without withdrawing their business from the NSA’s co-conspirators. It’s worth noting that Barton Gellman said that the element of his PRISM story the government was most keen to suppress was the names of the PRISM partners. Gellman didn’t comply, but that the Leak Keepers seem to be very much in favor of that approach in broad terms is yet one more reason to regard them with suspicion.

      • Thanks for the links, I had somehow missed the Fuck These Google Guys post.

        It’s bizarre that Snowden can on one hand provide some of the information that draws the connection, and on the other hand, discount its ramifications.

        Truly bizarre, and there is some serious whiplash to be had in reading about how Snowden views privacy as universal right just after he mocks concerns over Twitter. If it’s such an important universal right, why be unconcerned about private corporations violating it?

        But instead of a more wide ranging debate about technology, capitalism, and government, something like what Evgeny Morozov suggests in his FT oped, we have what you say, a “neatly circumscribed discussion” that is beginning to look for all the world to me like Kabuki theater, theater I’ll admit I’m having trouble finding the energy to watch. With Obama suggesting some small reforms to a narrow slice of the surveillance/security apparatus, and Greenwald ostentatiously telling him he’s full of shit. Though next week we can look forward to Snowden’s response to Obama’s speech, remembering that this is not about him…at all.

        I figure after this is all said and done that there are going to be some people much better off, but at this point I’m really pessimistic that it’s gonna be us.

  33. Michael Griffin says:

    So either my experience of the web is in the hands of really really clever hoaxing fantasists or Greenwald just did a series of Israeli venues hyping among whatever else the case for the release of……Jonathan Pollard?
    And that passes into newsish insignificance because?
    Well because I’m the only one reading that weird crap. Everybody else is getting the real news of the real world as it really happens.
    A world where Greenwald isn’t advocating for the release of Pollard. Because that would be unbelievable.
    I don’t believe it.
    But then it seems to have happened.

    • Tarzie says:

      Greenwald just did a series of Israeli venues hyping among whatever else the case for the release of……Jonathan Pollard?

      While I don’t put anything past Greenwald, I actually think this Pollard business is a non-starter.

      There is no ‘series of venues’ that I am aware of. In one interview for Israeli television, the host asked him if the jailing of Pollard was hypocritical in light of how the NSA spies on other countries, including Israel. Greenwald said yes. Unless I’m missing something, this is a correct answer, which by no means equates to advocacy for Pollard’s release. While I think the interviewer had an axe to grind, I don’t think Greenwald does.

      In the absence of other evidence, I am content to take Greenwald’s word that he doesn’t know much about Pollard’s case and that he wasn’t sucking up to Zionists when he answered the question. As far as I know, that interview was the only time Greenwald has talked about Pollard, apart from defending himself from the fallout.

      There is plenty wrong with Greenwald’s conduct right out in the open. I see no need to wildly extrapolate zionist sympathies from an off-the-cuff, not-egregiously-wrong answer given in one interview. It just gives him and his acolytes one more excuse to paint his critics as a bunch of cranks and fabulists.

      • Michael Griffin says:

        point taken. the initial hit was a bunch of differently worded but same message stuff, making it sound like advocacy.
        I got played a little there.
        tho it seems a little irresponsible of him to even assent to the suggested idea, considering he’s probably standing on the second-biggest soapbox in the world right now.
        and I keep waiting for his impassioned defense of Manning.

      • Tarzie says:

        it seems a little irresponsible of him to even assent to the suggested idea

        Yeah, especially since he freely admitted later that he was talking out of his ass, something he might not have done were no brownie points at stake.

        I keep waiting for his impassioned defense of Manning

        Don’t hold your breath. His relationship to whistleblowers is entirely parasitic. He’s making bank on the taming of whistleblowing. Manning offers him nothing now.

  34. mikecorbeil says:

    I could comment regarding other things said or cited in this article but will just comment based on one citation of some of Greenwald’s words.

    What Greenwald said in his June 10th MSNBC appearance about Snowden supposedly having meticulously studied EVERY document and applied his “good” judgment to evaluate whether or not they should be made public, it’s bs.

    Firstly, and as John Young of as well as some former NSA officials or officers who are true NSA whistleblowers have stated, these documents belong in the public domain; belonging to The People of the USA. Secondly, what competence could Snowden possibly have for making such judgment calls?

    High school:

    He reportedly said that he did poorly in high school (HS), and it’s clear that he dropped out, for he reportedly obtained his GED many years later; after his second year at the college he/some Edward Snowden attended in Maryland. The college reportedly said that [an] Edward Student had attended from 1999-2001 and then again 2004-2005. Reportedly, he later gets his GED.

    Eric Lach, writing for TPM, Talking Points Memo, published a piece on June 10th and a second related one on June 11th. The June 10th one is the source I’m referring to for Snowden’s HS and college education, but the piece also provides a link for a Wa. Post article in which the second part refers to words from a number of CIA officials or officers about the Snowden story and one of them reportedly said that he didn’t have a HS diploma (HSD) while working at the CIA. Maybe that CIA officer just refuses to treat a GED and a HSD as equivalent, or perhaps Snowden’s employment records there don’t show that he had a GED. They surely would, if he had said that he had it. In any case, if he got his GED, then it reportedly is sometime after his second year at the college.

    Afaik, having successfully completed HS is a requirement for being accepted at any college or university, but maybe some of them make exceptions. Well, if some do, then would they if the applicant did poorly in HS as well, in addition to dropping out? Surely not normally.

    The college also said that they have no record of this student having taken any cyber-related or NSA-approved ISS, information systems security, courses. Furthermore, he surely took no computer science (CSC) courses whatsoever, for a prerequisite is having done considerably well in maths.

    IT job titles:

    He stated in a video-recorded interview with Greenwald that The Guardian published on June 9th and at the beginning of the interview, some seconds into it, Snowden states IT job titles he supposedly had while working at the CIA and possibly NSA, or the CIA and wherever he worked afterwards.

    The first title he mentioned is (computer) systems engineer (SE). It’s impossible! Computer SE requires both CSC and electrical engineering (EE), and both of these require having done considerably to very well in maths. Being a SE, Snowden? Forget it. Impossible!

    Second job title is (computer) systems administrator. Gotta be joking! At the NSA, the kind of computing facility he was supposedly working at? Again, absolutely not qualified.

    Third title, “[a] senior advisor for the Central Intelligence Agency’s solutions consultant”. Ha. The CIA’s solutions consultant must’ve been laughing his or her buttocks off. Snowden? Again, absolutely not qualified.

    Fourth title, ha. He had a difficult time remembering this one (possibly also the third one, above) in the interview, needing to take a few seconds or so to try to recall what it was. It’s as if he was trying to remember what he had read in interview preparatory material, f.e.

    Anyway, the title is, “telecommunications information systems officer”. And, again, absolutely not qualified.

    Possible explanations:

    Snowden might be lying, or someone else, such as Greenwald and/or other people at The Guardian, f.e., put him up to state absolutely non-credible, impossible job titles in IT for him and he either naively or else complicitly accepted to go along with this fraud. They’re journalists. What do they know about what’s involved in serious IT jobs? Pretty much only buzzwords they read here and there, now and then. They could’ve rushed to the Internet to look for some IT job titles and selected some that sounded good to them, good enough to make Snowden seem like a very serious IT pro. When journalism wants to fabricate stories, then the Internet is a resource that can be used for a little assistance.

    Another possibility is that perhaps some people at the CIA told him he had these job titles in order to fool him while never having actually perform the sophisticated work involved for people who truly have such job titles because of being really qualified.

    As Jon Rappoport said at his WordPress blog in some of his articles published last June and July, the CIA is in a “turf war” with the NSA, because while the NSA is getting large amounts of funding, billions of dollars, the CIA is seeing its funding get cut by a roughly equal amount. As Rappaport also said, it’s highly non-credible that Snowden himself got the NSA documents. Instead, it’s possible that he, wittingly or not, actually is still working for the CIA and that it’s the CIA that got the documents and then gave them to him. This obviously would also be while getting him to claim that he’s the one who accessed, copied and took the files with him on a “flash drive”, which Rappoport calls a “thumbnail drive”.

    Last words for this comment:

    It’s struck me as odd that I haven’t yet read or heard anyone else questioning the IT job titles Snowden claims to have had at the CIA and that he’s definitely not qualified. We could entrust him with administrating his own computers at home and wish him luck with this; but he’s definitely not qualified for truly professional IT jobs.

    Oh, and as John Young said in an interview on Corbett Report that CR published on 17 Dec 2013 at CR says in this, it’s possible that the NSA tricked Snowden into believing that he was “lifting” truly important documents.

    Otoh, Sibel Edmonds has reported at BoilingFrogsPost that some of these documents contain information about the PayPal-NSA relationship and, therefore, the Pierre Omidyar-PayPal-NSA relationship. Greenwald and Laura Poitras are both in league with Omidyar, who fully supports NSA spying on citizens, as well as being foe of whistleblowing. It’s a fact that Omidyar is guilty of both of those views and that PayPal has LONG been in relationship with the NSA, but then it also seems, very credibly too, and according to other sources, perhaps some of the real NSA whistleblowers, that all financial institutions have relationships with governments, for reporting.

    In any case, Snowden is definitely not qualified for the types of IT jobs he claims to have had. He may’ve been assigned the titles, but he definitely isn’t qualified for the kind of work involved in such jobs.

  35. mikecorbeil says:


    Quote: “[Snowden] has been careful with his info, doling it out to responsible news organizations — The Post, the New York Times, the Guardian, etc. — and not tossing it up in the air, WikiLeaks style…”

    Those words should be causing ALARMS to be sounding off.

    Quote: ““…every last motherfucking document that he gave us was incredibly elegant and beautifully organized.” Greenwald had no doubt that the leaker had read every page; not a single one was misfiled. “It’s 1,000 percent clear that he read and very carefully processed every document that he gave us by virtue of his incredibly anal, ridiculously elaborate electronic filing system that these USB sticks contained.” (h/t Jay23)”

    Spoken like a journalist turned liar; if he wasn’t also one before! “every last motherfucking …”. No self-respecting and honest journalist would ever communicate with such verbiage or expression. And that Greenwald “had no doubt that” Snowden “had read every page” is indicative of being a liar. It’s like Greenwald wants people to confound him with God. Ha.

    His words stink of lying.

    Btw, in my prior comment I mentioned the video published at The Guardian on June 9th for the interview or so-called interview that Snowden gave to Greenwald and that Snowden clearly had difficulty recalling the fourth or maybe third and fourth IT job titles that he supposedly had at the CIA, or ther and possibly the NSA or one or more of the companies he worked for after the CIA. When Snowden finally thinks to correctly remember it, he states it with some hestitation. He’s somewhat fumbling with the words for the title. Once stated, he then seems to look in the direction of the interviewer, Greenwald, as if seeking approval; like, “Did I get that title right?”. He seems to have received approval and then moves on.

    No real IT pro. qualified to perform such IT jobs would forget what he/she did and what the job titles were.

    Between Snowden’s own story in this and Greenwald’s lack of professional, ethical journalistic conduct, say, we have us a STAGE SHOW.

    It evdiently was to DISTRACT the public’s attention. It may very well be to distract the public away from the Manning trial and sentencing. (I still call him/her Bradley, because I don’t recall the new name, first name. I’m not living in the USA and people will just have to excuse me for not recalling the new first name. I’m not a walking encyclopaedia and anyone who wants me to be one will be told to go out and buy one or to use the Internet. Besides, a woman could be named Bradley. I recall having once known of a woman named Patrick, rather than Patricia or Patty, and she was born female, fully. She was also still female even if she had a traditionally male first name. It may seem unsual, but there’s no natural law against this.)

    But, the purpose of the distraction could be for more than the above-stated reason. After all, there’re other highly and extremely important/critical issues. One, f.e., could be the US covert war in Syria using proxy forces and Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar as “partners” say. Based on what I recently learned about the extremely horrible situation in Iraq and the extremely little to nearly no reporting this for a long time now, it could be another of the issues Washington wants people to be kept very ignorant about. Actually, Washington definitely doesn’t want us to be informed of what’s really going on there. It isn’t a maybe. It’s a certainty. And what about the war in and against Afghanistan? We’ve been getting very little about this as well. The covert war in the Congo, DRC/Zaire, has been extremely underreported for over 15 years; the genocide to enrich western corporations wanting to steal the country’s mineral resources is extremely ignored. Etc.

    Greenwald has become roguish, but then maybe this isn’t altogether new about him. I’ll leave it to others, however, to comment in this respect.

  36. poppsikle says:

    All I can say, is that is it becoming increasingly apparent, that they are ignoring the early NSA whistleblowers who suffered years of persecution for speaking out. I don’t understand why.

    • mikecorbeil says:


      I think that one thing we can be certain of is that these early and real NSA whistleblowers are being ignored … not due to ignorance of them. Greenwald et al journalists and media surely know about these whistleblowers. The NYT definitely does. After all, and f.e., Russell/Russ Tice is one of the principal sources for the NYT publication of December 2005 about NSA spying on citizens. The NYT had to know who the sources were.

      • poppsikle says:

        So long as they keep doing that, and the more I learn and know, the worst the picture is, of the hold/clamp Big Tech has on the press. The NSA has taken a lot of heat but notice how little examination their Years and years of dealings – and they were caught many times – with Tech, Google etc. has been written about.

        So long as this cover-up and manipulation exists, the Big Brother future – which is close and getting closer – is being served.

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