#1 By: Xeni Jardin, July 12th, 2013 11:13
Photo: Tanya Lokshina of Human Rights Watch. Earlier today, NSA leaker Edward Snowden met with human rights groups and other supporters at Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport, where he has been holed up for weeks, in a stateless legal limbo. Wikileaks, which has been working to facilitate his safe passage to a country where he will not… READ THE REST
#2 By: rocketpj, July 12th, 2013 11:50
Countdown to smears begins now...
#3 By: Graham Martin, July 12th, 2013 11:59
Lawrence Kohlberg's stages of moral development:
Level 1 (Pre-Conventional)
1. Obedience and punishment orientation (How can I avoid punishment?)
2. Self-interest orientation (What's in it for me?) (Paying for a benefit)
Level 2 (Conventional)
3. Interpersonal accord and conformity (Social norms) (The good boy/good girl attitude)
4. Authority and social-order maintaining orientation (Law and order morality)
Level 3 (Post-Conventional)
5. Social contract orientation
6. Universal ethical principles (Principled conscience)
Snowden is at Level 6 (doing what is right despite certainty of punishment). Every politician and official is at Level 1 (Doing whatever you need to do to avoid punishment regardless of the morality of the act.).
#4 By: Justin Morahan, July 12th, 2013 12:05
Thanks for this important information. Every single voice should be heard to oppose the threats of the US and to encourage timid countries such as mine to act with courage and to ignore the threats.
People of the calibre of Edward Snowden are needed badly in this unjust and hypocritical world.
Thanks for your courage and integrity Edward. It may be little but for what it's worth you have my support.
#5 By: Bill Wetzel, July 12th, 2013 12:18
The United States is a government "Of the People". I am the people and I assert that Edward Snowden IS a whistle blower. The government's frequent repetitions, aspirations, or assertions to the contrary do not change this.
#6 By: Scooter, July 12th, 2013 12:23
#8 By: miasm, July 12th, 2013 13:02
If Russia assist Snowden it could, in the long run, have a positive effect on the USA but in the short term is a coup of brinkmanship.
If Russia returned him this would immediately strengthen the USA but in the long run, weaken.
So this is an immediate win for Putin, as he has his cake and eats it, protecting the USA by not complying with their demands.
Hopefully this is a medium-to-short term stage of the affair before it breaks out of its chrysalis.
#9 By: radioactivecat, July 12th, 2013 13:17
http://www.addictinginfo.org/2013/07/06/have-we-all-been-fooled-by-edward-snowden/ - if the IRC chats reproduced in this article are for real, he's really lost any credibility, at least in my eyes.
#10 By: Scooter, July 12th, 2013 13:43
Does it make the information he leaked any less true?
#11 By: IronEdithKidd, July 12th, 2013 13:54
I have high hopes that he'll safely make it to Latin America.
#12 By: beaudotgiles, July 12th, 2013 14:02
Let me know when Snowden speaks to the repression in Putin's Russia. His universal principles seem conveniently silent right now on that subject. Maybe Putin will let him live in Chechnya.
#13 By: Donaleen Kohn, July 12th, 2013 14:06
I hope that every country in the world offers him asylum.
#14 By: Cowicide, July 12th, 2013 14:12
Great post, thank you @Grahamers2002 .
#15 By: Cowicide, July 12th, 2013 14:27
Let me know when Snowden speaks to the repression in Putin's Russia.
Let me know when you put your ass on the line for your country (even for the ingrates) and put yourself in the same position as Snowden is in right now. Then go about seeking political asylum to avoid being silenced, imprisoned, tortured and/or killed while at the same time antagonizing the very few countries that are willing to stand up to the USA and offer you asylum (with terms or otherwise).
Let me know when you do that.
#16 By: Drabula, July 12th, 2013 14:36
I don't get this angle of attack. Snowden is an American and as such he feels his first and main responsibilities are towards his country of birth. I'm an American expat living in the UK and sometimes when I criticise US policy some Americans will call me out for (supposedly) overlooking UK shenanigans. I wasn't born here. I can't vote here (yet). America is the country I grew up in, paid a load of taxes to and helped vote various pols into office and as such I feel responsible for its conduct or at least accountable to standing up to it when it veers way off track. Yes, at heart I'm an internationalist, but in these mean old times, Americans need to fight for America and Russians need to fight to get their own stinking house in order. Regardless of having a degree in Slavic Languages I don't even want to VISIT Russia but if it kept me out of the new US gulag system for doing the right thing I'd shut my mouth, go there and stay out of their business.
#17 By: Cowicide, July 12th, 2013 14:46
if the IRC chats reproduced in this article are for real, he's really lost any credibility, at least in my eyes.
He's lost all credibility? Actions speak much louder than words in my eyes. It's well-known he's a libertarian who supported Ron Paul.
But, it's also commendable to see that he had the fortitude and critical thinking skills to change his position on issues once new information arrived to him. And, on top of that, he turned around and put his ass on the line for his country speaking truth to power and promoting civil rights for average Americans (and citizens of the world, for that matter).
We could use a lot more Americans that think like that instead of being locked into pre-determined mindsets and dogmatic resistance to change.
When I was a kid, I didn't know much about what was going on in the world and like many other young people, I made errant assumptions in ignorance. I eventually worked at a bank and I handled many major accounts such as the Republican National Committee and saw all money that went into and out of their account. That informed and radicalized me as a young person and changed my entire outlook on the world and my actions within it. I was never the same person afterwards and have been trying (and failing) to educate myself ever since.
@radioactivecat , maybe you started out more mentally well-endowed in this world and didn't have to work your way through trial and error like some of the rest of us, but please consider giving us flawed people a break when we do some good actions despite our perceived inadequacies.
It's understandable to question Snowden's credibility if his actions were different, but they weren't. There's so many more people that I know that spout all kinds of wonderful talk, but don't back it up with actions. Those are the people that lose all credibility in my eye.
Before you cast your next stone, ask yourself... aside from talk, what have you done? What actions have you taken to better your world? Just something to chew on.
#18 By: Ygret, July 12th, 2013 15:17
The Snowden Effect, as it has been termed, is really snowballing. We are learning so much about the surveillance capabilities and acts of so many different nations. Its funny to me that people would criticize Snowden for NOT criticizing other nations for their surveillance practices. Snowden worked for the US government, and is a US citizen. That is what he knows about. The other nations he knows about he has opened up about (specifically the UK). But we are finding out about surveillance in France, Venezuela, and many other nations, and the reciprocity arrangements of a great variety of nations that use each other to manipulatively "avoid" breaking their own laws. This is all because of Snowden. None of this would be coming out otherwise. So if you feel free to criticize the nations Snowden is seeking asylum in, realize that a lot of what you know to criticize about those nations is because of Snowden. Pretty ironic. And if people expect Snowden to start criticizing the nations he is hoping to receive asylum from, they are basically demanding that he give himself up to the warm embrace of the US police state.
A question I would ask those who criticize Snowden on these terms is, where were you when the US was giving asylum to Chinese and Russian dissidents? Were you clamoring for those individuals to criticize the US government's human rights abuses? If not, your "concerns" here are thoroughly hypocritical. Snowden is not claiming that Venezuela, or Russia, or wherever he eventually (hopefully) winds up is some paragon of ethical government. He is attempting to save himself from the torture and decades of imprisonment he will certainly encounter if he is kidnapped back to the USA. He has done the job he set out to do, which is inform your sorry and ungrateful asses of the illegal and immoral acts your government is engaging in. There is no nation on earth that is pure and free of any moral taint. The ones that come closest, from my perspective Sweden, Denmark and Norway, have not offered Snowden asylum. I'm sure he would prefer to be there than Russia, or Venezuela. Would you like to work to gain his asylum in one of those nations?
What this affair points out, if we needed it pointed out anymore than it already has been, is that as the sole superpower in the world right now, the USA is completely and utterly above the law. It gets to decide what laws it will follow, and the world is expected to get in line. And the US government is not just flouting international law in its blatant arrogance, but it is flouting domestic laws regarding constitutional protections such as the 4th and 5th amendments, laws on financial fraud, money laundering, peace and humanitarian treaties it has drafted and signed, including the international ban on torture, both for the CIA torture program, the rendition of POW's to torture states, indefinite detention without due process of law, forced-feeding of prisoners... the list goes on and on. And yet the apparatchiks of the US state have the gall to stand up as some sort of moral scolds and pedants to declare the man who exposed just a few of their misdeeds an espionage agent and international criminal. The hypocrisy is astounding in its boldness and dishonesty. "President" Obama should certainly be impeached for gross violation of his oath to defend the US constitution, as should almost all of the senators and congresspersons who have knowingly supported the policies and practices outed by Snowden. And yet because of the power of the state, they will declare black is white and day is night, and no one will question them directly on any of it. They have shown their true nature: might makes right and the law does not apply to them. History will not look kindly on the US government of the current era, that is a certainty.
#19 By: beaudotgiles, July 12th, 2013 15:23
My comment was in protest to this "6. Universal ethical principles (Principled conscience)" bullshit.
If you're going to hold up Snowden as an example of "Universal ethical principles" then I'm going to call you on it when it stops for personal convenience.
And no, you're right. I'm not dumb enough to purposely steal from my own government then run off to China and Russia (whose crimes against their people are far far greater than anything the NSA has done) and expect to be called a hero. Snowden is principled fool, not a saint.
#20 By: Cowicide, July 12th, 2013 15:31
I'm not dumb enough to purposely steal from my own government
Ah, now I see. Ok, flushed you out. That didn't take long.
Snowden is principled fool, not a saint.
#21 By: Cowicide, July 12th, 2013 15:52
You make a very reasoned argument and it's appreciated here, but I fear it's going to fall upon deaf ears.
The goals of these people isn't to make a reasoned point, it's to disparage Snowden. I'm sure they all have various motivations behind it including jealously (they don't have the guts to do what he did), ignorance (there's a lot of that going around) and more nefarious purposes (there's quote a lot of that going around as well).
Still, it's amazing to me how people are trying to turn his act of bravery into some excuse for them to prop themselves upon a pedestal to rip him (and his supporters) apart. If their goal is to show other would-be whistleblowers what piece of shit ingrates the American pubic is composed of, it's not working. Far more of us are showing appreciation in greater numbers, thank goodness.
I'm not embarrassed to say that I truly appreciate his sacrifice. One good thing about the people who keep trying to disparage and slander his actions is that they tend to be unreasonable and express a lack of proper critical thinking skills. As more people keep seeing that their side if full of hyperbole, half-truths, false equivalencies, obtuse distractions, lies, ignorance and otherwise... it just helps Snowden even more so.
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