The time is long past that the fight should have been started. This is not partisanship. I am not American: I have no dogs in your partisan battles. I excoriate both of your parties equally, because both have been busily eroding your rather magnificent constitution and exporting the mess to the rest of us - call me an equal opportunity excoriator.
The important thing to note here is this: there is no such thing as objective reporting. “He said, she said” is lousy reporting - it assigns equal weight to viewpoints that don’t have equal worth, but it implies that they do, and thus undercuts the truth, often deliberately so. That is an exercise of bias, but a covert one. On the rare occasion that a reporter uses “He said, she said” to hoist one of the parties on his own petard, that too is an exercise of bias (although possibly a more worthy one).
When I was a lad, I used to look forward to the Sunday edition of the (sadly defunct) Montreal Star, so I could read the big editorial section to get caught up on the news. You know why? Because the editorialists back then, whether I agreed with them or not, were obliged to back their opinions with facts that I could verify, facts that the “objective” reporters tended to overlook. I prefer to know where a reporter stands.
Whether you like it or not, Snowden, Greenwald, Poitras and company have been exposing facts. Each time they’ve done so, we’ve had a pretty repetitive dance from your government and the NSA: deny, smear, and then “Well, maybe we have, but…”. Yeah, Greenwald et al have pretty strong opinions about those facts. That’s fine. They should have strong opinions about this. If they are open about those opinions, I know where to look for distortions, if any. So far, they’ve been proven right every step of the way.
Understand this too: what has been going on has severely damaged your nation, both internally and externally. Not the leaks, please note, but the actions themselves: your intelligence apparatus is so bloated and hubristic that expecting that this info would have stayed secret is more than a little bit stupid. (Indeed, I would not be surprised to find that it has been leaked in quieter, less benign fashions by people who are quite a bit less responsible than Snowden.) You cannot run a functioning democracy with a Super-J. Edgar Hoover in the background gathering blackmail information on everyone “of interest”. American companies cannot run the world’s network resources without trust that they aren’t diddling with other people’s data.
Cripes, you should have a strong opinion about this. You really can’t afford to sit on the fence.
(Edited for a missing indefinite article. Call it an ex-editor’s OCD… <wry grin> )