So I have been so out of it between certain family events, being on vacation, etc, that I knew nothing of Greenwald's bombshells until late Friday and didn't get a chance to read his columns until Saturday. So people reading this I'm sure already know what's going on. He had been somewhat limited in his access to cable news since some of his Wikileaks appearances where he embarrassed the critics, like what happened here with Fran Townsend. I'd read he didn't go on CNN again after that appearance. Until now. He's back on. And he's doing to others what he did to Fran Townsend and the idiot CNN host back then.
From the right wing Newsbusters website, watch him expose the CNBC host's errors and spin. Here he is with CNN's Anderson Cooper taking on Ari Fleischer. Here in a fair interview with Howard Kurtz he addresses some of his critics.
Unfortunately, but for me unsurprisingly, polls show a majority of Americans do support this total surveillance state that has been revealed. I think we shouldn't get discouraged by that. Even Greenwald himself after 9-11 still bought off on a lot of lies, generally assumed our government was engaging in foreign policy with benevolent intent, and supported the invasion of Iraq from a kind of uninformed perspective that granted the benefit of the doubt to our leaders. This was the place I found myself in as well. I think a lot fewer Americans are similarly duped today. We need to keep plugging away.
I want to address one argument you hear frequently from people that don't object to this total surveillance that is in the hands of this largely unaccountable institution called the NSA. People say they don't object because they have nothing to hide. If you have nothing to hide and it can conceivably prevent terrorism, what's the harm?
But it's not necessarily about what you have to hide. Consider that Edward Snowden said he had access to everything, even conceivably emails involving the President. Can democracy really function in this way? Suppose Snowden had a friend facing a DUI. What's to stop him from taking a look at emails from the presiding judge, digging for something to embarrass the judge and pressure him to offer a favorable ruling? What's to stop someone from serving the interests of a powerful corporation that wants to pollute in your district from taking a look at your Congressman's history. Suppose he discovers an affair. Then for reasons that aren't clear your Congressman suddenly doesn't mind putting a toxic landfill upstream from your house. What's to stop even more powerful people from similarly manipulating the President?
This is not a hypothetical scenario. This is exactly the kind of abuse that was going on with the FBI under J Edgar Hoover. You can be sure it's happening now. Give unaccountable people all the power and they'll abuse it. That's why we have a 4th amendment to our Constitution.
Mika Brzezinski takes on Glenn. Wow, it's hard to find a person more skilled. And it's kind of like Chomsky. He has his facts in order, so to try and spin just doesn't work. We couldn't ask for a better spokesperson than Glenn Greenwald. You see how these talk show hosts get embarrassed and you understand why they don't want to interview him.