Edward Snowden's revelation about NSA surveillance of the American people has drawn a line that many do not know how to walk. It isn't liberal or conservative, and so winds up making some strange bedfellows -- such as Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, George Bush and Dick Cheney.
Meanwhile, Pelosi's defense of NSA surveillance draws boos from liberal "friends".
On the heels of all this we learn that the FBI has received aviation clearance for at least four domestic drone operations and that "Congress has directed the FAA to open domestic airspace to drones by 2015."
In a Washington Post transcript of Dianne Feinstein and Saxby Chambliss defending the NSA phone records program, Senator Chambliss, Republican from the state of Georgia and the vice chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, made the following claim a couple of weeks ago: "To my knowledge, we have not had any citizen who has registered a complaint relative to the gathering of this information."
Seriously? Well, just in case, here is an "Open letter" to Senator Saxby Chambliss:
Dear Senator Chambliss,
Just in case you still have not had any citizen who has registered a complaint relative to the gathering of this information:
1. I am a citizen of the United States of America.
2. I am registering a complaint relative to the gathering of this information.
Thanks for listening, if you are listening.
Mark Shields points out Washington Snobbery in their attempts to smear Edward Snowden: "What we do know is that Edward Snowden has been relentlessly attacked by Washington pundits and politicians for one, unforgivable offense: He did not graduate from high school." Shields then gives us a quick list of some highly accomplished American high school dropouts: Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, Florence Nightingale, Orville and Wilbur Wright, Rosa Parks, Milton Hershey, Mark Twain and Abraham Lincoln.
"...candidate Obama has been shown as opposing president Obama. The straight-face with which his administration claims transparency while prosecuting whistleblowers would be Comedy Central gold if not so serious." -- Marty Duren in Edward Snowden does matter. Really, he does.
But remember, President Obama and NSA are doing exactly what many Americans wanted after September 11, 2001, and what Congress authorized via the Patriot Act.
Americans need to have a serious discussion about the valid intersection of security and privacy. (And as one op-ed columnist pointed out, we will never be able to return to an 1980's kind of vision of privacy in the digital age in which we live.)