The Edward Snowden Affair: A PR Disaster
by Meg Curtis, PhD
Why does the US bother pursuing Edward Snowden? Do American officials really expect any country besides the UK to turn him over for providing proof of their nightmares? He's even causing paranoia in the states for verifying that it isn't enough for the IRS to grab all US citizens' medical data under Obamacare. Now, the NSA won't be satisfied unless it has access to all our communications, too.
Is it clear at last why the US Congress gets absolutely nothing done? Maybe they just can't wait to consult with security agents about our calling patterns? Were we calling democrats or republicans? Did we buy products from democrats or republicans? Did our children ever contact Tea Party members to complain about Mom and Dad's nonconformist ideas? Worse yet, did we ever invite Tea Party members over for Tea and Sympathy?
If you could catch Edward right now for raising these concerns to public attention, would you incarcerate him forever? Well, consider China's and Russia's dilemma. Are they likely to turn Edward in either for revealing that while Obama sat there with heads of state, expecting them to apologize for intruding upon US security, all along his administration had the drop on all of them? And maybe the UK would like to explain why it's so hot to catch the boy, too?
In the current environment of Snooping and Subterfuge, the only reason that comes to mind for the UK's enthusiasm for this game of Catch and Carry is that they must have more to lose than gain, too, from exposure. Do we wish that this embarrassment had never happened? From the point of view of respect for the US, sure. But what is left of respect when the only thing that American citizens can do without government intrusion is to confess: I swear, I had nothing to do with this.
If they make this confession on Facebook, of course it will be recorded, for future reference. If they make this confession in an email, will The Watchers feel obliged to report that somebody's showing unpatriotic leanings? How do we serve a government that's more concerned with our business than its own? And how does any country ally with the US when the US insists on knowing more about it than its own government does? It's hard being friends with anyone who doesn't trust YOU.