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Snowden Rallies Privacy Advocates In New York City 72

Posted by samzenpus
from the fight-the-power dept.
An anonymous reader writes 'Mass global surveillance "isn't just an American problem, this is a global problem," Edward Snowden told the Personal Democracy Forum (PDF) conference in New York on Thursday. Appearing via video call from Moscow, Snowden spoke with John Perry Barlow, cofounder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, in front of a crowd of hundreds gathered in downtown Manhattan. Barlow announced the launch of the Courage Foundation, an organization dedicated to financially supporting Snowden's considerable legal battles. "I'm afraid we've descended to this point," Barlow said, "But why do animals lick their genitals? Because they can. Why do governments do this? Because they can't lick their own." "They're licking ours," Snowden quipped, "and taking pictures."'
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Snowden Rallies Privacy Advocates In New York City

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  • Southpark has already done plenty of political satire peppered with dick and fart jokes. If Snowden doesn't want to come across as a tinfoil hat loonie, he should probably tone down the juvenile humor a notch. It's frequently said that those who resort to insults do so because they can't hold an intelligent debate.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 06, 2014 @02:40AM (#47177639)

      because they can't hold an intelligent debate.

      There's no intelligent debate to be had, or a debate at all. It's just the government violating the highest law of the land, and people who give a shit trying to stop them. They had no moral high ground since the beginning.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Powercntrl (458442)

        There's no intelligent debate to be had, or a debate at all. It's just the government violating the highest law of the land, and people who give a shit trying to stop them. They had no moral high ground since the beginning.

        The point is, if the situation is dire and serious, the message should be as well. Think about it for a second, if someone on here posted "Don't buy an iPhone because Apple wants to lick your balls!" it would be moderated as troll in the blink of an eye. It works for Southpark because the objective is to get you to laugh. When you're pointing out an injustice being committed by the government, you should be trying to get people to think.

        • by MrKaos (858439) on Friday June 06, 2014 @07:05AM (#47178221) Journal

          There's no intelligent debate to be had, or a debate at all. It's just the government violating the highest law of the land, and people who give a shit trying to stop them. They had no moral high ground since the beginning.

          The point is, if the situation is dire and serious, the message should be as well.

          Whilst that is true, paradoxically, the more dire and serious the message is, the easier for our controlled press outlets to manipulate it into something else, so the less people listen. Perhaps Snowden is just pressing a point in presenting the argument that way to make it, feel, really personal because it is.

          When you're pointing out an injustice being committed by the government, you should be trying to get people to think.

          You are right, I sense they will think 'EWWWW', however it's a mammoth task getting people to do anything until they understand why its in their own self interest. Slowly the legal framework is put in place, the use of such powers concealed and, sometimes not acted on. People never feel the impact and are dumbed down enough to be apathetic enough to allow more freedoms to be stolen. Look at the silly monkey

          The self involved aspects of our own culture works against us as vanity makes so many of us desperately shallow and ignorant. Meanwhile those remaining in our western society who understand what freedoms are being stolen and twisted against us, scream in frustration as democracy is turned into a parody of what was supposed to be. A trapped is only closed when all avenues of escape are.

          It would seem though that even in the intelligence agencies there are people saying 'this is gone far enough', recognised whoever is pushing this agenda as a domestic enemy and have been brave enough to stand up to the systemic corruption that is threatening to collapse Western society the same way the USSR was. They are ejected from the machinery.

          I just hope that democracy doesn't become the experimental blip in history between monarchies and ogliarchies because we were too afraid and lazy to face the responsibilities of living in one.

          • by Guppy06 (410832)

            Perhaps Snowden is just pressing a point in presenting the argument that way to make it, feel, really personal because it is.

            We're now 3+ nested layers deep into an early and highly up-modded conversation about the dick joke. This conversation about the dick joke was the first thing I saw upon scrolling down. The dick joke is dominating the conversation.

            Which is exactly why he shouldn't have used the dick joke.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      It wasn't Snowden making the joke, it was Barlow

      • I should learn to RTFA... Sorry

        • by PsyMan (2702529)
          NOOOO, Never RTFA, in fact it is considered bad form to even read the whole summary before commenting your pearls of elite wisdomism.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        It wasn't Snowden making the joke, it was Barlow

        It was both.

      • "we can share the women,
        we can share the wine;
        we can share what we got of yours
        but you can't see none of mine, mine, MINE!"

        perhaps not from a song barlow helped write, but close enough for government work, I would say.

    • It's frequently said that those who resort to insults do so because they can't hold an intelligent debate.

      Maybe, but you're assuming the opposition want an intelligent debate.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Oh, come on. Next thing would be "Not Safe For Work" or what.

      I actually had a chuckle of that. And BTW:

      > If Snowden doesn't want to come across as a tinfoil hat loonie [...]

      1. It was John Perry Barlow's joke (and it wasn't that bad, but YMMV).

      2. I'd take Sowden seriously independently of what jokes he might tell. I use my judgemeng for that.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Life is so pointlessly brutal and brutally pointless that anything that keeps us from weeping uncontrollably all the time is appreciated. Relax. Snowden has done a serious job himself already and now is paying for consequences so even a fart joke is ok. He is now at the 'BBQ after the job well done' phase only the BBQ sauce and cold tasteless beer are missing.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      If Snowden doesn't want to come across as a tinfoil hat loonie, he should probably tone down the juvenile humor a notch.

      It doesn't matter how Snowden "comes across".

      The facts revealed by Snowden are what matters.

      Your life must be very difficult indeed given your obvious mental handicap.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 06, 2014 @02:49AM (#47177653)

    Let's vote him in and he can pardon himself. Problem solved.

    • by bayankaran (446245) on Friday June 06, 2014 @03:31AM (#47177751) Homepage
      May not be President, but he deserves the Nobel (way more than most, including your current guy holding one for who knows what!)
      • by Opportunist (166417) on Friday June 06, 2014 @03:50AM (#47177791)

        Nobel Prize has gone the way of the Guinness World Record. It used to be for some real accomplishment, now it's mostly a wanking- and popularity contest.

        • Not so much as even that - it's become purely political. Say what you want about Gore and his slideshow, but if you compare him to the other nominees that year, it's embarrassing. And then Obama and the EU? Fonzarelli's Jump was more credible.

      • I wonder how far a White House petition to give Snowden a Presidential Medal of Freedom would get...

        Not that he would actually get one, but to show how many people are pissed off about what the government's been doing.

        • Probably the most accurate statement applicable to Snowden

          Earth President Susanna Luchenko: Well, Captain, you caused quite a stir. Half of EarthForce wants to give you a kiss on the cheek and the Medal of Honor. The other half wants you taken out and shot. As a politician you learn how to compromise. Which by all right means I should give you the Medal of Honor, then have you shot. I confess the idea had a certain appeal when I mentioned it to the Joint Chiefs two hours ago. [] The bitch of it is that you probably did the right thing. But you did it in the wrong way, in the inconvenient way. Now you have to pay the penalty for that. I know it stinks, but that's the way it is.

        • It brings up a troubling question, in this day and age of our surveillance state intelligence angencies - who'd want to sign their name on that list, which would obviously be passed over to the "watchers" as "potential troublemakers".
          • It brings up a troubling question, in this day and age of our surveillance state intelligence angencies - who'd want to sign their name on that list, which would obviously be passed over to the "watchers" as "potential troublemakers".

            I thought of that myself, 2 points:

            1) Anyone who would sign it is probably already on some sort of list
            and
            2) If we're to the point where that is a legitimate concern then it's even more important to do so.

  • Somehow I don't think the government licking my balls really conveys the right idea of the bad things they're doing. That's generally the kind of thing you'd tell someone you don't like to do because it demeans them and pleasures you, not the kind of thing someone oppressing you does to you of their own choice.

    Well, maybe it's different for men and women, their stereotypical experiences and perceptions at least. A bunch of pervs wanting to lick a woman's genitals against her will gets more into the territor

  • Thank you Snowden (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MildlyTangy (3408549) on Friday June 06, 2014 @03:44AM (#47177775)

    Thank you Mr Snowden for everything you have done.

    We always suspected, but never really knew how bad things really are until now.

    Again, I thank you.

  • Anaemic Responses (Score:3, Interesting)

    by jaeztheangel (2644535) on Friday June 06, 2014 @04:23AM (#47177843)
    I woke up this morning and found myself wondering - if I met Snowden what would I ask him?

    Then I realized, he's managed to turn the focus of the world back onto the invasion of our selves, social and personal, by governments.

    So I'd ask: "why then, is the response so anaemic?"

    Who we are used to be about our bodies, our family, our social interactions day to day. Suddenly as technology began to increase our reach - we found all forms of communication first monitored, then censored by governments, and their corporate proxies.

    I don't deny them the right to protect themselves, but it seems to me that 'they' are 'us'. We all want status, and security, so we aim for money (counters printed by them), power (positions, and authority rationed out by them), and I don't know a single business leader or politician who doesn't defend themselves by setting up legal structures to deflect blame or absolve themselves.

    What we need perhaps is to take the tools of the internet and create something new - looking at BitCoin and its resilience in the face of massive corporate and government opposition I think what worries them is they'll first cede control of the coinage, and then cede control of the courts.

    Coins are important - we used to rely on governments to stand by their currency but with BTC and related currencies we can now create unforgeable, and publicly verifiable money. No need for banks, and their associated parasites.

    Courts are also vital - well aware that people are tried in public as much as in private - both the etiquette and the frameworks for legal accountability are shifting towards the individual. I'm heartened by the approach of the EU, and glad that Google is moving forward to implementing privacy carefully and thoughtfully.

    Sorry for writing so much, please let me know what you think privacy will be like in 5-10 years - and critically - if you think we'll be able to be private citizens again, or is it already too late?

    Thank you.

    • by Pieroxy (222434)

      It is already too late. Look at Snowden: he revealed everything to the sunlight, and nobody cares. It's gone. NSA is here to stay with all their crap.

  • With 4.3 million personnel, the federal government licks its genitals pretty much all the time.

  • I'm all for regulation of mass surveillance. After the Snowden incident I started using a password manager and made sure my pgp key was up to snuff. But I wonder how many other more important secrets he had to tell the Russians to get amnesty, how many ships sank because of his lose lips.
  • There will never be true peace in the world as long as there are communist states and religions who are taught to kill non believers by any means necessary. Political correctness keeps us from spying on those who are truly Dangerous. That is IMO and im sticking to it.
  • Given that Snowden's endangered the country in ways not unlike Bergdahl, bringing him to court is the only way to get the truth. That, and overwhelming evidence against him still is a fair trial - while he thinks he's entitled to an unfair trial in his favor.

    For that, I stand with America by standing with the efforts to bring him in. If anything, it should also mean that anyone that meets him (or gains knowledge of exact whereabouts) but does not turn him is fit to be considered aiding a fugitive.

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