Thank you Edward Snowden

SUBHEAD: Snowden's effort to unmask the secret surveillance of Americans by unaccountable agencies will reverberate. 

By Juan Wilson on 18 June 2013 for Island Breath -

Image above: Graphic of Edward Snowden by Jonanthan Jay.

It may not seem obvious at first, but Obama is finished. He may totter on as "leader" of the apparatus of imperial government in Washington, but it will be a ghost walk through a landscape of dissolving bureaucracies. And don't mistake this for a Shakespearian tragedy.

This guy may be amiable with plenty of people skills; he may be athletic and telegenic; he may have a quick wit with a humorous delivery - but down deep he's a smarmy authoritarian. Obama's actions reveal the angst and fearfulness of the suburban elitist in an underwater McMansion. That someone who will do anything - ANYTHING - to delay foreclosure and keep the illegal immigrants tending the kitchen, garden and pool.

What is ANYTHING? In the case of Obama it was to sell us down the river as slaves for the sake of his 1% handlers. They promised him a plantation in either Paraguay or Columbia when the shit hits the fan… that is IF he can keep a lid on it until they bleed the system dry. Poor guy. He can hardly keep the wheels on the buggy as it careens down the back slope of Peak Everything.

Well screw Obama! That's exactly what Edward Snowden did when he revealed that NSA has been given the means and permission to spy on all the telephone, email and web traffic they can access - which turns out to be basically all of it. Obama may be able to extradite Snowden from Hong Kong by pressuring the Chinese, but that won't matter.

A mortal blow has been delivered to "American Exceptionalism". Namely, we find America wasn't exceptional - just another corrupt authoritarian empire that sank into mistrusting not only the world but its own people.  Snowden seems content to be "the brave martyr". One suspects he'll play the role well. We wish him well.

The Real Trouble Makers
It comes down to a very simple question. Why are there terrorists anywhere who want to destroy America? The typical answer our leaders give us is because the terrorists are filled with insane religious fervor - they are wild-eyed Islamists. They hate our freedom. The Islamist terrorists are so irrational that we have to take extraordinary efforts to thwart them. America seems willing to trade off its freedom for security. Many will tell you that they feel safer with the TSA at our airports and the NSA in our iPhones.

But another take is that we are worried that after screwing the Middle East for their cheap oil for the last 50 years those people are fed up. We have substituted "Muslim" for "Commie" in our geopolitical game. The people of the Middle East don't look at America as a beacon of freedom but as the boot of oppression.

Wouldn't you want to destroy America if you lived in Pakistan (an ally) and America flew a robot plane over your daughter's backyard wedding party and killed all the guests present with a missile? Shouldn't Americans be fearful? The world is sick of American economic manipulation and continuous war.

Who are the cowards?
It's odd that we see the pilot of the drone as a warrior - one who sits in an air-conditioned trailer on an American base near a Pizza Hut and his home; while we characterize the girl that walks into an American controlled Afghan police station and blows herself up as a coward.

We are the cowards. I agree with the old saw - if you trade freedom for safety you don't deserve either.

But is security from insane terrorists really the root of why we need a worldwide surveillance network to spy on every electronic communication in the world? I don't think so.

The reason we need the TSA and NSA peering into our most private parts is because we are frightened of the consequences of what we do in the world. People around the world resent cliches about American exceptionalism while we bully them and kill those that resist.

World powers are now lining on either side of the Shia/Sunni schism in the Middle East. As more force is applied the chances of a loss of control increases. Obama should receive no support for entering the war in Syria. It is laughable that he would bring out the old Weapons of Mass Destruction excuse. We won't fall for that crapola.

Snowden's effort to unmask the secret surveillance of Americans (as well as the rest of the world) by unaccountable agencies will reverberate.  That genie won't go back in the bottle. What is clear is that the US government sees it own citizenry as the next enemy. Instead of leading us away from the cliff, they are taking us over it while cooing in our ear. As we awake to our peril they know we'll react badly and they will have to be ready.

At least some of us may wake up in time.