Details came out last week about PRISM, the national intelligence project that can gather every bit of internet information available from on every American.
And now we know the person responsible for spilling the cyber beans is a 29-year-old high-school and community-college dropout, who was pulling down 200-grand a year as an employee of the giant government contractor Booz Allen Hamilton.
Snowden and his girlfriend had been living a pretty cushy life in Hawaii. And then, a few months into his new job, he decided he didn’t like what he was seeing and doing, “I, sitting at my desk, I certainly had the authorities (sic) to wiretap anyone, from your or your accountant, to a federal judge, or even the President if I had a personal e-mail.”
Daniel Ellsberg, a former military analyst, is the first American prosecuted under the 1917 Espionage Act after he leaked ‘the pentagon papers’ in 1971, a secret Department of Defense study on the relationship between the U.S. and South Vietnam.
It’s not surprising that Ellsberg thinks Snowden is a hero, “I think he’s done an enormous service, incalculable service. Can’t be overestimated to this democracy.”
But not everyone agrees.
“Maybe Americans think this is okay, but I think the line has been drawn too far towards that we’re going to invade your privacy versus we’re going to respect your privacy,” said Sen. Mark Udall, (D) Colorado
Snowden left Hawaii to hide out in Hong Kong, but now he’s off the grid, apparently he found out Hong Kong has an extradition treaty with Uncle Sam.
Maybe the Far East wasn’t far enough.