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``Wherever you are, you are equally within of the power of conqueror´´.
May 28, 2014 9:51 AM   Subscribe

At the end of 2013 Eben Moglen (Metafilter Previously) gave a lecture in four parts ``Snowden and the Future´´ presented here in Audio, Video and Text:
Part I: Westward the Course of Empire.
Part II: Oh, Freedom.
Part III: The Union, May it Be Preserved.
Part IV: Freedom's Future.
From Al-Jazeera - A Timeline of the leaks.
From The Tow Centre - Journalism after Snowden. (scroll down for further links ).
From Foreign Affairs - How to Spy after Snowden.
posted by adamvasco (37 comments total) 57 users marked this as a favorite

 


Yeah, that statement by Kerry was profoundly infuriating. As someone who got his start going after the US govt for having lost their way with their involvement in Viet Nam, he really really should know far better than that. I hesitantly voted for him in 04, but that shit gives me lots of pause.

Hopefully this isn't a derail of what looks like an excellent post. I have a few hours to kill and this looks to be an excellent way to do it. Thanks.
posted by nevercalm at 10:25 AM on May 28 [4 favorites]


Not meant as a derail; more like supporting evidence.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 10:30 AM on May 28 [1 favorite]


I only watched ten minutes and then went to the transcripts.

1. this is great
2. anybody know his note / prompter/ memory system? I don't think I have seen something that long and detailed and apparently extemporaneous anywhere. It almost looks like he is talking to a room with eight big teleprompters spread around.
posted by bukvich at 10:32 AM on May 28


bukvich -- I took several courses with Moglen and did research under him during law school. I can't recall him *ever* referring to notes (and certainly not a prompter) during a lecture. he really can just unspool like that, unassisted.
posted by theoddball at 10:40 AM on May 28 [4 favorites]


Great talk, great post. I just read Part I and it's quite stirring.

What is the context here? What is the audience?
posted by grobstein at 10:45 AM on May 28


That Al Jazeera link is fucking awesome. Really clear and comprehensive.
posted by nevercalm at 10:50 AM on May 28


Perhaps this too belongs here.
posted by semmi at 11:24 AM on May 28


I'm so glad we have at least some unapologetic left wing voices in technology. Eben is a strong proponent of personal privacy (as we were discussing the other day) and is responsible for starting the Freedombox Foundation.
posted by Poldo at 11:33 AM on May 28


re: Kinsley's hack job on Greenwald's text:

Michael Kinsley:
"It seems clear, at least to me, that the private companies that own newspapers, and their employees, should not have the final say over the release of government secrets, and a free pass to make them public with no legal consequences. In a democracy (which, pace Greenwald, we still are), that decision must ultimately be made by the government."

NYT Public Editor replies:
"Here’s my take: Book reviews are opinion pieces and — thanks to the principles of the First Amendment — Mr. Kinsley is certainly entitled to freely air his views. But there’s a lot about this piece that is unworthy of the Book Review’s high standards, the sneering tone about Mr. Greenwald, for example; he is called a “go-between” instead of a journalist and is described as a “self-righteous sourpuss.” (I’ve never met Mr. Greenwald, though I’ve written about his work, as Mr. Kinsley notes.)

But worse, Mr. Kinsley’s central argument ignores important tenets of American governance. There clearly is a special role for the press in America’s democracy; the Founders explicitly intended the press to be a crucial check on the power of the federal government, and the United States courts have consistently backed up that role. It’s wrong to deny that role, and editors should not have allowed such a denial to stand. Mr. Kinsley’s argument is particularly strange to see advanced in the paper that heroically published the Pentagon Papers, and many of the Snowden revelations as well. What if his views were taken to their logical conclusion? Picture Daniel Ellsberg and perhaps the Times reporter Neil Sheehan in jail; and think of all that Americans would still be in the dark about — from the C.I.A.’s black sites to the abuses of the Vietnam War to the conditions at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center to the widespread spying on ordinary Americans."

Glenn Greenwald on Kinsley:

"In 2006, Charlie Savage won the Pulitzer Prize for his series of articles in The Boston Globe exposing the Bush administration’s use of “signing statements” as a means of ignoring the law. In response to those revelations, Michael Kinsley–who has been kicking around Washington journalism for decades as the consummate establishment “liberal” insider–wrote a Washington Post op-ed defending the Bush practice (“nailing Bush simply for stating his views on a constitutional issue, without even asking whether those views are right or wrong, is wrong”) and mocking concerns over it as overblown (“Sneaky! . . . The Globe does not report what it thinks a president ought to do when called upon to enforce or obey a law he or she believes to be unconstitutional. It’s not an easy question”).

Far more notable was Kinsley’s suggestion that it was journalists themselves–not Bush–who might be the actual criminals, due both to their refusal to reveal their sources when ordered to do so and their willingness to publish information without the permission of the government…"

Daniel Ellsberg:
"I wonder how many years Michael Kinsley now thinks I should have spent in prison for revealing the Pentagon Papers? "
posted by whyareyouatriangle at 11:35 AM on May 28 [8 favorites]




The net and globalization have changed things, as noted in one of the links above. Prior to the net, all outgoing and incoming phone calls out of or into the country were monitored. Now ALL are, and that of course includes domestic only messages..

And let us not forget snail mail! records are kept (scanned return addresses I am told)...Other day I went to PO to send a book to Trinidad. The guy at the desk--very familiar with me--said I had terrible handwriting. I told him it would not be an issue if he did not enter my transaction into the computer but instead simply forwarded my mail with a typed address on it (he was using my custom's form to record from whom and to whom it was being sent...
My best guess: despite various potential congressional changes, NSA will continue to pretty much do what they are doing. We will not as a society get overly worried about this because we have readily accepted data brokers, ad folks spying on us.
Obama, a constitutional lawyer, has no qualms about discarding the 4th Amendment.

But here may be some outrage at the end of the summer when Snowden releases will detail specific citizens being monitored by NSA.
posted by Postroad at 11:42 AM on May 28 [1 favorite]


Also from Eben Moglen, in the Guardian yesterday: Privacy under attack: the NSA files revealed new threats to democracy.
posted by atbash at 11:58 AM on May 28 [3 favorites]


Good content.
Neat, legible text on a clean background.
Links to audio or video, if you want them, in your choice of format.
PAY ATTENTION, THE REST OF THE WEB.

(And thanks for the post)
posted by Wolfdog at 12:18 PM on May 28 [3 favorites]


At 50:54 in the second video the bit about "not only have they lit this fire beyond the point where they can piss it out"

In the transcript part II it's missing. I am going to watch all the videos as well as I think he wrote a talk and then gave a slightly different talk and the transcript is the talk he wrote.

Also I found this with google:

Bruce Schneier and Eben Moglen discuss a post-Snowden Internet
posted by bukvich at 2:04 PM on May 28


Yeah, that statement by Kerry was profoundly infuriating.

I am heartened that Kerry made it clear that the Obama administration is not going to kiss and make up to someone who betrayed his oath and country and who served its secrets to foreign rivals. I would lose my remaining respect for the administration if that happened.
posted by knoyers at 2:15 PM on May 28


I am heartened that Kerry made it clear that the Obama administration is not going to kiss and make up to someone who betrayed his oath and country and who served its secrets to foreign rivals.

He did so only because it was incidental to serving those secrets to us, who are supposed to hold it accountable. I am disheartened that people can somehow take your attitude. On the matter of my remaining respect, I will remain silent.
posted by JHarris at 2:38 PM on May 28 [12 favorites]


Also--

That Al-Jazeera link is terrific.
posted by JHarris at 2:40 PM on May 28


I am heartened that Kerry made it clear that the Obama administration is not going to kiss and make up to someone who betrayed his oath and country and who served its secrets to foreign rivals.

So how long do YOU believe Ellsberg should've gone to jail for the Pentagon Papers?
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:08 PM on May 28 [3 favorites]


I am heartened that Kerry made it clear that the Obama administration is not going to kiss and make up to someone who betrayed his oath and country and who served its secrets to foreign rivals.

-So how long do YOU believe Ellsberg should've gone to jail for the Pentagon Papers?


This. The Obama administration is itself betraying its oath and country. I'm not sure about Kerry in the State Dept, but as a member of the cabinet he is probably complicit as well. It's sick that this "Snowden is a traitor" bullshit is the prevailing attitude.
posted by nevercalm at 3:21 PM on May 28 [3 favorites]


He did so only because it was incidental to serving those secrets to us, who are supposed to hold it accountable. I am disheartened that people can somehow take your attitude. On the matter of my remaining respect, I will remain silent.

My only regret is that I have but one favorite to give for this comment.
posted by nevercalm at 3:27 PM on May 28 [2 favorites]


Snowden broke his oath!
Snowden is a traitor!
A coward!
A narcissist!

Endlessly confronting all these non-arguments (some from the commanding heights of our press core and government bureaucracy) is tiresome.

P.S. Anyone making these points has a position that is to the right of Glenn Beck.
posted by Noisy Pink Bubbles at 3:37 PM on May 28 [3 favorites]


I am heartened that Kerry made it clear that the Obama administration is not going to kiss and make up to someone who betrayed his oath and country

Oh, so they're going to finally do something about Clapper lying under oath to Congress?
posted by Drinky Die at 4:29 PM on May 28 [7 favorites]


I do sometimes wish that Snowden had taken the Deep Throat track and found a way to do what he did without disclosing his identity. I think that would have changed the tenor of all of this in a way which would make for a deeply different circumstance than our current reality.
posted by hippybear at 10:13 PM on May 28 [1 favorite]






What is the context here? What is the audience?

I attended the first talk after seeing a flyer popping up around campus the day before. Seemed to be mostly Columbia Law folks & the local free culture contingent. The About page gives some brief context.

I've seen Moglen speak before and was blown away both times, but this especially felt momentous. I look forward to reading/watching the other parts in the series.
posted by milkweed at 7:19 AM on May 29 [1 favorite]


*He did so only because it was incidental to serving those secrets to us, who are supposed to hold it accountable. I am disheartened that people can somehow take your attitude. On the matter of my remaining respect, I will remain silent.*

He revealed far more than was necessary to make his point. I think that the latter may have been more incidental to the real agenda, which at least now appears to coincide with Putin's. The expansionist dictator who supports Assad and whose benevolence does not extend to nearby sovereign nations, political dissidents or unwise crusading journalists.

*So how long do YOU believe Ellsberg should've gone to jail for the Pentagon Papers?*

The Pentagon Papers were all historical material, not nearly so potentially damaging to national security as what Snowden released (which is more than we know the extent of). Ellsberg also didn't go to work for Russia.

*P.S. Anyone making these points has a position that is to the right of Glenn Beck.*

Glenn Beck is naturally sympathetic to anything that undermines the current administration. A disgusting case of strange bedfellows.

I hope that Snowden's luck runs out when Putin or a future Russian government no longer has any use for him. He deserves at least twice the sentence that Manning is serving.
posted by knoyers at 1:28 PM on May 29


Maybe you could help me out here.

Okay, so instead of what happened Snowden hands a limited leak out instead. What exactly is it that presents the government from throwing him in jail, denying the charges (again lying under oath if necessary) and then continuing with business as usual? Senators have proven they would not reveal the confidential information. The only leaker faced swift punishment and nobody knows what really happened. Now what?
posted by Drinky Die at 1:55 PM on May 29




The claim that Snowden went "to work Russia" is comical at best; willfully ignorant and disingenuous at worst.

Snowden's intended destination was somewhere in Latin America, via Havana and Moscow. The U.S. Department of State revoked his passport while en route to Russia, thereby stranding him. Numerous sources verify such as a quick google will reveal. Do some research before making such claims, and then do try to engage in the discussion in good faith.
posted by whyareyouatriangle at 3:17 PM on May 29 [5 favorites]




*Okay, so instead of what happened Snowden hands a limited leak out instead. What exactly is it that presents the government from throwing him in jail, denying the charges (again lying under oath if necessary) and then continuing with business as usual? Senators have proven they would not reveal the confidential information. The only leaker faced swift punishment and nobody knows what really happened. Now what?*

Snowden could have done a limited leak that prevented a government denial regarding a specific issue, rather than a vast flood of secret info and political intelligence. While his strategy of flight has kept him out of jail so far, I have no sympathy for that unjust goal and outcome.

*Senators have proven they would not reveal the confidential information.*

Rightly so

*The claim that Snowden went "to work Russia" is comical at best; willfully ignorant and disingenuous at worst.*

I don't know either way if Snowden was involved with or influenced by Russia (or another foreign government or organization) prior to his flight. I think it's definitely very possible. It's not like either side would admit that if true. Now he seems to be aiding Russia. He also offered to work for the Brazilian government. I think it's very likely that the Chinese government had everything Snowden possessed before allowing him to leave Hong Kong. Who knows who has what now. Neither Snowden himself nor the U.S. government is in a position to know. And that represents the height of callousness on Snowden's part.

Effectively, Snowden has worked to benefit all enemies and rivals of the U.S. government, including terrorist organizations.

*Snowden's intended destination was somewhere in Latin America, via Havana and Moscow.*

If he originally intended to go to some South American country tied to Russia and Iran against America, such as Venezuela or Cuba, that hardly makes him less of a traitor, or less likely to have been involved with a foreign intelligence all along.

He has admitted that his plan to steal and release American secrets was long premeditated before he worked for the NSA. That is highly suspicious.
posted by knoyers at 4:50 PM on May 29


"I don't know either way if Snowden was involved with or influenced by Russia (or another foreign government or organization) prior to his flight. I think it's definitely very possible. It's not like either side would admit that if true. Now he seems to be aiding Russia. He also offered to work for the Brazilian government. I think it's very likely that the Chinese government had everything Snowden possessed before allowing him to leave Hong Kong. Who knows who has what now. Neither Snowden himself nor the U.S. government is in a position to know. And that represents the height of callousness on Snowden's part.

Effectively, Snowden has worked to benefit all enemies and rivals of the U.S. government, including terrorist organizations."

Note: "I don't know", "I think it's possible", "He seems to be", "I think it's likely", "Who knows who".

All speculation, and without a shred of evidence to support your claims.
posted by whyareyouatriangle at 4:58 PM on May 29 [3 favorites]


Snowden could have done a limited leak that prevented a government denial

I don't think he could have, not while actually communicating what was happening. It's too easy for the government to do a, "It's not what it sounds like," dissembling when you don't see the big picture.

*Senators have proven they would not reveal the confidential information.*

Rightly so


So that's where this always ends up with the most vocal critics. You open by complaining Snowden didn't do something precisely just right, but in the end you don't seem open to the idea that even a United States Senator could have found a way to meet your standards for doing it right.

If you believe in a government where the executive branch lies freely under oath to the people and the Congress without any consequence, you don't believe in American constitutional government so why get so bent out of shape about someone being a traitor to it?
posted by Drinky Die at 5:02 PM on May 29 [5 favorites]


Pump the brakes.

This isn't an open Snowden discussion forum. Did everyone actually listen to the talks or read the transcripts? Nearly 4 hours worth. Perhaps we should have a discussion regarding those. His points are presented eloquently and the parallels he draws are fascinating regardless of your opinion of Snowden.
posted by straight_razor at 5:13 PM on May 29 [4 favorites]


So how long do YOU believe Ellsberg should've gone to jail for the Pentagon Papers?

Speaking of Daniel Ellsberg, he has a new piece in the Guardian: Snowden would not get a fair trial – and Kerry is wrong
posted by homunculus at 7:25 PM on June 1 [1 favorite]


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