J. D. Heyes
June 16, 2013
I’ve never been much of a fan of the USA Patriot Act. I thought it
was passed too hastily in the wake of the 9/11 attacks without much real
debate or consideration among Congress and their voting constituents. I
thought it created a bureaucracy (The Department of Homeland Security)
that would become far too large and far too powerful (it has). I
thought its provisions were onerous (they are) and extremely subjective
and, therefore, lent themselves to abuse (as has happened). Worse, I
knew once this massive new piece of legislation was signed into law the
huge new security bureaucracy it created would forever haunt and torment
Americans. That day, too, has come.
One person who agrees is Glenn Greenwald, the U.S. bureau chief for Britain’s The Guardian newspaper, which broke the NSA spy scandal story in early June after being contacted by agency whistleblower Edward Snowden.
Say what you will about his overall political bent – I’m not so much a
fan of it – he at least has been consistent in his criticism of the
Patriot Act and U.S. government spying in general. He didn’t much care
for it when it was occurring during President George W. Bush’s tenure
and he is just as upset about it now that it is occurring – albeit on a
much larger scale – now, under Obama.
Looking the other way, in the name of rank partisanship
That’s more than you can say for most of the rest of the mainstream
media, and their ideological soul mates in the Democrat Party, and that
is something Greenwald is taking note of among his traditionally
left-wing media pals, according to Breitbart News‘ John Nolte.
Per the Business Insider, which interviewed Greenwald after his NSA story broke:
Greenwald told Business Insider late Tuesday night that he thinks some left-leaning members of the media – such as Time magazine’s Joe Klein and The New Yorker‘s
Jeffrey Toobin – have shifted stances on surveillance and civil
liberties for “principle-free, hackish, and opportunistic” reasons.