Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Consider Joining the #PhoneFree4th as a Protest Against #NSA Surveillance After Reading This

I happened to catch my first bit of MSNBC in a while last night and there were Lawrence O'Donnell and a cast of normal 'liberal' characters reporting on the 'Edward Snowden on the run' story rather than the substance of any of his revelations about the overreaching of our massive national security state. Maybe they have been discussing those important issues while I haven't been around a television, but everything I've been seeing has been on the intellectual level of a Where's Waldo picturebook.

Read this "Seven Myths About Edward Snowden, NSA Whistleblower" article by Chase Madar in The Nation because it's one of the exceptions. He even includes a bonus myth, "Myth 8: The Democratic Party cares deeply about civil liberties," which ends with the following point:
"...Though the surveillance enjoys support from Democrats and Republicans alike­, the opposition to it is equally bipartisan, with veteran social democrat Representative John Conyers co-sponsoring a bill to rein in the NSA with Tea Party freshman Representative Justin Amash, two ideologically antipodal Michiganders united in defense of civil liberties. Nice Democrats, please know this: the NSA surveillance program will someday be in the hands of a Republican president—will you support it then?"
Would any of us be questioning Edward Snowden's motives and defending the NSA's overreach if George W. Bush were still in the White House? Or if Mitt Romney had been elected?

There is not a whole lot that individual Americans (and "foreigners") can do against the NSA. I suggested a symbolic #PhoneFree4th protest to cut down on the radio chatter for a day. Independence Day seems appropriate. A lot of people on the left and right try to put words into the mouths of the Founding Fathers who signed the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia on that first July 4th, but can any of us entertain a scenario in which they would recognize or approve of our current national security mania?

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