Leave Glenn Greenwald alone

So now the powers that be who don’t like Glenn Greenwald, and presumably don’t like Glenn’s reporting on NSA-leaker Edward Snowden, have decided to smear Glenn by leaking details of his past.  Details that aren’t in fact terribly leak-worthy.

For example…

Glenn was kind of a dicky lawyer…

Glenn owes some back taxes that he’s negotiating with the IRS over…

And Glenn, who is himself gay, once held an interest in a gay porn studio. (Sorry, but that last one simply makes him cool.)

Glenn details the charges in a new story over at the Guardian.

Could it have been the government leaking these things to try to make Glenn look bad?  Sure.  It also could have been liberals, or even conservatives, who are ticked at Glenn for [insert issue here] and want to hurt him for doing what Glenn does best, taking on the powers that be.

While it’s tempting to think it’s the government, don’t underestimate the venom that’s out there in both parties.  I get far more personal attacks – not disagreements, personal attacks – from fellow liberals than I ever do from conservatives, and most of what I write targets Republicans.  And while Glenn is loved by many, me included (even though I’m starting to really dislike his friend Edward),  he’s viscerally hated by some folks on both sides of aisle.

And we do live in an era when to disagree, to utter the words “I think you’re wrong,” is the equivalent of an act of war.  Every issue now has its own endless number of litmus tests, and if you aren’t quite 100% on the same page as everyone else – or if you enunciate your accordance with the wrong noun, verb, pronoun or adjective – you are evil, have always been evil, will always be evil, and simply must be destroyed.


Glenn Greenwald

People like to say that this is what goes with the territory of being a public figure, but I don’t quite buy that. While I suppose one should just expect that some people will be asses, the Internet does empower the mindless haters in both parties in a way that’s unprecedented and unfortunate for the very issues they espouse (if everything is racist, sexist, and homophobic, then nothing is), and for all of us.

Having said that, Glenn does seem to relish a fight, even (especially?) with the folks I refer to as Outrage Inc., so these latest revelations will probably roll off his back as they must with anyone who does great things (like my other sometimes embattled friend, and another gay civil liberties hero, Dan Savage).

Jessica Testa over at Buzzfeed has a new profile out about Glenn, and I have to admit I was a bit nervous clicking on the link.  After Buzzfeed though it wise to pen a piece, in the wee initial hours after the Supreme Court had struck down DOMA, about how thrilled polygamists were with the decision, I was leery about what they might do to Greenwald.  But in fact, it’s a wonderful piece.

Perhaps my favorite part of Testa’s profile of Glenn is something she didn’t even write.  It’s the transcript of some lawsuit Glenn was involved in (when he wasn’t litigating in court, Glenn was litigating against people who ticked him off).  Glenn was being deposed, and the commentary is priceless:

Greenwald [speaking to opposing counsel Andrew Bernstein after coming back from a recess]: Before we continue, I’d just like to note for the record that this is the third time that you’ve returned to the deposition significantly later than the time that you said the deposition would resume. The first time that this occurred was yesterday when the deposition was scheduled to begin at 9:30. I arrived punctually at 9:30 and waited 20 minutes for you to arrive. The second time was yesterday during a break at approximately the same time in the morning when you arrived ten minutes late after the time that you had indicated the deposition would resume. The third time was just now when you’ve arrived again about ten minutes late for the deposition to resume, which means that approximately 45 minutes of deposition time has been squandered as a result of your inability to resume the deposition or to commence the deposition on time. And I would just like to note for the record that in the event that you need an additional day in addition to today, which was an unplanned and unnecessary additional day for deposition, for time to depose me, that the fact that you’ve wasted 45 minutes by being late compounded by the fact that you’ve spent most of the deposition time asking questions which are patently irrelevant, will certainly be a substantial reason why you are not entitled to any more deposition time of my time for the purpose of deposing me.

Bernstein: Let me first start off and note for the record, Mr. Greenwald, that you have this wonderful flare of making broad sweeping generalizations without any attention to detail … You have been completely obstructionist and unwilling to answer questions; that has necessitated this deposition taking a lot longer than need be … Just because you view a certain issue one way does not make it the be all and end all.

Greenwald: Mr. Bernstein, I’ll just note that if you would like to have a court decide whether or not I ought to be compelled to answer questions that you’ve asked, such as whether or not I’ve been romantically involved with a roommate that I had for three months six years ago in Atlanta, Georgia, or questions pertaining to the sexual orientation of individuals who have absolutely nothing to do with this litigation, or what clubs I was in eight years ago in college, feel free to go to the court and explain to the court why you believe that questions, such as that, which are intrusive and vexatious, have relevance to this litigation and I ought to be compelled.

Bernstein: I think we’ve had enough colloquy. Quite frankly, I’m bored with it.

Glenn is what I like to call an “A**hole for Justice.”  I consider Dan Savage one too.  As are lots of the friends and colleagues I most admire, like Robin McGehee who formed the LGBT-rights group GetEqual, and gay-rights veteran Robin Tyler, an old StopDrLaura.com cohort who’s a royal pain in the ass, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

The world would be a better place if we had more A**holes for Justice.  And fewer a**holes.

Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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101 Responses to “Leave Glenn Greenwald alone”

  1. dude says:

    I think it’s the cult of personality around O that motivates this crowd in the same way Bush did for most of the right. You get authoritarian types that just love power, like that littlegreenfootballs guy; huge Bush cheerleader, now he is on Team O. Reading the paranoid islamophobe police-state shit that guy wrote during the Bush years and now seeing that same kind of tribalist ‘defend the status quo’ attitude at supposedly ‘liberal and progressive’ blogs makes my stomach turn.

    That is what they consider ‘pragmatic centrism’. Central for who? Central like Pelosi and Boehner cheerfully holding hands in bipartisan power grabs? Then sorry, to hell with the center.

  2. Bill_Perdue says:

    Buzzfeed smears = CIA or DNC disinformation campaigns.

  3. hidflect says:

    The Daily Banter is one blog (I’ve erased from my bookmarks) that has had a GG Hatred Derangement Syndrome reporting for some time now. Almost bi-weekly they would launch some bizarre evisceration of whatever column article he wrote, hammering away at the most spurious points of tangential irrelevance… while other articles they wrote seemed perfectly reasonable. I am still mystified as to what was going on. But whatever it was, it was very, very personal.

  4. Not impressed with Ed Snowden says:

    Uh, no, I’m not trying to move anyone along. And obviously, if I were, nobody would pay any attention anyway; who in hell am I, Barney Fife?

    Just pointing out that most of the world has already moved along, and that Glenn Greenwald needn’t be peering over his shoulder for the men in black. If the feds aren’t all that concerned with apprehending Snowden, they sure as hell aren’t worrying about GG.

  5. DGT says:

    Translation: “Nothing to see here, move along.”

  6. DGT says:

    I will post again Glenn’s response to the “pro-Iraq war” charge


    And his “apologetics” for Ron Paul were pointing out that on many issues, Paul’s views aligned with those of progressives, while on other issues, they are anathema to progressives. One of Glenn’s best traits (and the one that has earned him scorn on both sides) is his unwillingness to get into the my-team-versus-your-team mindset that afflicts most political debates. He expects that if a pundit was opposed to warrantless spying by Bush, he must also oppose the same behavior by Obama — and Glenn will call them out on it if they don’t. Similarly, he is perfectly willing to praise “crackpot” Ron Paul for taking stands on drone bombings and militarism, while not endorsing his other views on the social safety net or taxes. It doesn’t make Glenn a “Paul fan.”

  7. Indigo says:

    Thank you. I’m an MLA professor emeritus now but during Reagan’s second term (which I then loudly labeled “la dictadura”) when I was writing and publishing and grading classroom papers, it seemed that the term “political correctness” floated around in a way that made sense, possibly as a reproach to the RayGun. Then, suddenly, it was being used as an ironic inference from the right that suggested the term was straight-jacketing libertarian freedom of speech. It strikes me that the insult potential is all that’s left of the expression. I wonder what Noam Chomsky has to say about “political correctness.” I don’t recall ever seeing a comment on that topic from him.

  8. DGT says:

    Read Glenn’s response to “that pro-Iraq war thing” in his list of Frequently Told Lies (FTLs) about him:


  9. DGT says:

    I think “political correctness” once had an actual meaning.

    I used to work in a newsroom, and we would constantly receive letters from advocacy groups asking us to use ridiculously awkward wording to describe groups. For example, I remember on letter suggesting that we were never supposed to say “disabled people”, but rather “people with disabilities” to emphasize that they were “people” first. And, once I joined academia, I read some article from a professor of women’s studies who said we should never use the term “seminal article” (which is routinely used to describe important journal articles that generated a research stream), because it was male-centric, coming from the root word “semen.” These types of absurdities were what used to be called political correctness.

    Today, “political correctness” is an amorphous term used by people (usually on the right) who say offensive things that they don’t think are offensive. (Example: “It’s not politically correct to say this, but I think we should deport all Muslims.” or “I see the political correctness police on the left are criticizing me just because I said all gay people are pedophiles with AIDS.”)

  10. HelenRainier says:

    She is what she is (paraphrasing Ms. Deen). Personally I’ve never cared much for or against her. She’s one of those “celebrities” I can’t take and will leave.

  11. Not impressed with Ed Snowden says:

    If I ever reached that level of “internet celebrity,” I might be inclined to sell my computer and forget the internet ever existed. Ever seen this classic nugget of cringeworthy? …


  12. Not impressed with Ed Snowden says:

    Glenn Greenwald’s troubles around Ed Snowden, if there ever really were any, are probably at least all dried up by now if they haven’t blown away completely. Even the President seems bored with the Snowden story. (Maybe it’s that damned only-one-picture of the guy, as somebody pointed out on an earlier thread. The whole world’s probably tired of looking at that big mole on his neck.)

    Anyway, as it stands, ES will be probably be putzing around the Moscow airport for…some number of days I can’t remember. He’s been gone so long now that any Previously! Unreleased! Secrets! have probably outlived their shelf life. Cat out of bag, damage all done, so kind of, nobody cares anymore. Shoot down his plane? Why? That would involve anyone at the White House or the DOJ coming up with a single reason why the guy’s worth any more of anybody’s time. If he wants to be in Russia, easiest thing is to just let him stay there, or go to Ecuador, or take a flying fistula to the moon.

    I think this story jumped the shark when Rusty the Panda took off from the zoo. All of a sudden, the whole country remembered what it felt like to REALLY care about tracking somebody down and bringing him back home. Ed Snowden? Feh. Not so much.

    So GG has little to fear; he can pretty much look forward to a whole lot of back to normal.

  13. Not impressed with Ed Snowden says:

    No, it’s not all about any n-word. That’s just one of all the many gross details that’s emerged from an ongoing employee lawsuit against PD and her creepy brother, “Uncle Bubba.”

    When her sponsors and investors started reading what’s alleged to have been going on behind the scenes in her restaurant business, it’s little wonder they started distancing themselves like she’s poison. PD herself is obviously wanting to make the language issue the central problem, as in, “I’m so sorry…but please kill me with a rock if you must, for I am but a poor Southern lady raised in ignorance, blah blah, so long ago, blah blah.” Neat trick, huh? In the space of one tear-choked breath, she goes from apologizing to crying victim. Anyway, all that loud mea culpa is probably her way of trying to keep all these other disturbing details out of the news:


    (It’s a court copy of the plaintiff’s complaints against Ms. Paula and Uncle Bubba. Very ugly stuff, in case anyone’s really interested in the background of all her recent drama.)

  14. Richard_thunderbay says:

    One can’t criticize Greenwald unless you’ve attained the same level of internet celebrity? Idiocy.

  15. Roman Berry says:

    Greenwald admits to being a civil libertarian. Whatever the hell that means.

    LOL! You just called yourself dumb.

  16. Butch1 says:

    It sounds as though someone dug up J. Edgar Hoover and he is leaking all of this to smear Greenwald as much as the government can. Do they really think this is going to work? Turn about is fair play if they don’t watch out.

  17. ezpz says:

    I also had never heard of her until all this.

  18. tsuki says:

    I took some license.

  19. ronbo says:

    You are quite a freedom-lover. Freedom to spy on everyone…for fun and profit.

  20. ronbo says:

    More people die from lightning strikes than terrorism. The new Ligntning Is Protected Service suggest carrying two lightning rods when going outside.

  21. RepackRider says:

    I do not care about the personal life of my postman. If he delivers the mail, that’s all I ask.

    Same with Greenwald. He delivered the mail, and I thank him for it.

    The people who insist that the NSA operate in secrecy are cowards whose fear is being exploited to build a megalithic bureaucracy called Homeland Security. If anything the ATF should be ten times the size of the Homeland Security, since alcohol, tobacco and firearms kill a thousand Americans for any that die from terrorism.

    Of course, I’m one of those hyper-patriotic military veterans with more than a passing regard for the First and Fourth Amendments, which I surrendered temporarily during my service. I’ll leave the cowardice to the NSA’s defenders.

  22. karmanot says:

    Go away Rosetroll, you are a bore.

  23. karmanot says:

    Keep up Rosey, that’s old news.

  24. karmanot says:

    If the characterization fits wear it rosey.

  25. karmanot says:

    “as leakers of secrets” maybe some double Depends will contain that rosewater.

  26. karmanot says:

    Well, perhaps you are right, ‘ loose effluvia’ might be more accurate. As for the hard left—-much preferable over the impotent right.

  27. karmanot says:

    Even then pisswater.

  28. karmanot says:

    Those can’t do, criticize those who can. When you reach Greenwald’s level. Then speak up.

  29. karmanot says:

    pppppffffftttt so what? You don’t enjoy porn?

  30. tsuki says:

    I don’t need to wanna have a beer with…I want to look at the evidence.

  31. MeMyself&I says:

    all valid. But why did he LIE about not producing gay porn when he clearly did. This only hurts everything he is doing. You can clearly hear his voice on this video directing. http://gay.theater.aebn.net/dispatcher/movieDetail?movieId=43962&locale=en&theaterId=14077&genreId=102

  32. JoeJMO says:

    I completely agree with you. Glenn Greenwald is an egomaniac and intellectually dishonest. One can just look at Glen Greenwald’s recent and reprehensible attacks on atheist Sam Harris to see the kind of self-promoting fool that Greenwald is.

  33. KingCranky says:

    Perfect description of your spam masquerading as replies.

    Good job, “mission accomplished” indeed.

  34. PeteWa says:

    is that the best you can do, Rose?

  35. BeccaM says:

    Me too.

  36. Rosewater says:

    What good libertarian doesn’t?

  37. Rosewater says:

    Well, that’s a stretch. Currently Grayson is fighting his good battles on American soil. Where in the world is Snowden? And Greenwald, for that matter? Neither seems quite as tough or as heroic when sharing our national secrets in China and Russia.

  38. Rosewater says:

    Not a fan of Gregory, but what part of hero-worshipping Greensnow covers the I-can-dish-it-out-and-call-it-investigative-journalism-but-don’t-ask-ME-a-tough-question?

  39. Rosewater says:

    Yes, especially since the “messenger” is currently hiding with the anti-democracy crowd in Russia — or is it China?

  40. Rosewater says:

    Reduced to personal attacks, eh, Karmanot? How lame.

  41. Rosewater says:

    Except for that pro-Iraq war thing. Right, Karmanot?

  42. Rosewater says:


  43. Rosewater says:

    Especially when that anger is self-serving with an overblown sense of self-righteous indignation.

  44. Rosewater says:

    Well, unless the pan is made of compromised material. And in this case, it looks like it was.

  45. Zorba says:

    Civil libertarian means someone who is concerned with and firmly believes in preserving the rights that are enshrined in the Bill of Rights. You know, in the Constitution of the United States of America?
    I recommend that you mosey on over to the website of the American Civil Liberties Union. You may start here, if you wish to educate yourself:

  46. Richard_thunderbay says:

    I have very little admiration for Greenwald. In an introduction to a book he he wrote, he wrote of his initial approval of the Iraq war attributing to his naivete in political affairs. I might buy that if he was was a very young man, but was 36 when war was declared. During the 2012 primaries, he wrote apologetics for Ron Paul, painting the crackpot as a progressive. I guess one shouldn’t be very surprised that Snowden is evidently a Paul fan. I suspect that’s why Snowden picked Greenwald as a contact.

    With regards to the Snowden story, after dropping the initial bomb, few weeks later, Greenwald basically debunked himself after releasing documents that we should have seen in the first place..


  47. Rosewater says:

    I just loves me some smart ass Greensnow fans. They will go down with this sinking ship spouting about polished turds and paradise, concertos and kazoos.

    I’ll say it again, Greensnow should’ve stopped at spying on Americans. Now they come across as leakers of secrets to countries known for being democracy-averse. What a couple of dickhead tools.

  48. Rosewater says:

    Sure, right…right. Whatever you say, dula. The fact is, Greenwald admits to being a civil libertarian. Whatever the hell that means.

  49. Rosewater says:

    Oh, don’t the pitchfork bearers just love you – angry, righteous protector-of-rights that you are! Greenwald did us a great service, and helped collaborate a huge DISservice, all within a week’s time – AND he’s a dick. The fact that you and your “polished turd” prose can’t accept that fact is just another reason why flacks on the hard left are useless.

  50. karmanot says:

    When someone says, “It scared the pudding outta me.” Run——-

  51. karmanot says:

    If some organization, legal and/or financial lines up to protect Greenwald I’ll be the first to sign up.

  52. karmanot says:

    The term ‘politically correct’ has no meaning whatsoever. It is akin to the word, ‘nice’ or ‘Godwin’s Law.’ These are modalities of the Society of the Spectacle.

  53. karmanot says:


  54. karmanot says:

    I didn’t realize rosewater leaves a yellow trail in the snow.

  55. Monoceros Forth says:

    And Paul Krugman has been called “shrill”. Do you have a point other than the one atop your head?

  56. karmanot says:

    Yep, said the Vichy to the Nazis.

  57. karmanot says:

    Badgerite can play a whole concerto on the world’s smallest kazoo. ” No maybe on that.”

  58. Monoceros Forth says:

    The proof is in the eating, not in the pudding.

  59. karmanot says:

    “and instead collaborated with Libertarian and Obama-hating Greenwald.” The minute I read that I realized you were dropping carefully polished turds at the end of the parade.

  60. karmanot says:


  61. ckg1 says:

    Hey, sometimes using The Rock as your muse helps….;)

  62. karmanot says:

    Thanks, that works! :-)

  63. karmanot says:

    Based on all your right wing talking points B’rite I guess you could say I don’t like you, nobody likes youuuuu, because you must be a bad person. Ever since that little fat kid bullied you in third grade you have been in a twist.

  64. ckg1 says:

    I’ve got a better rejoinder to Badgerite….


  65. karmanot says:

    That Indigo can zing em sometimes!

  66. Sweetie says:

    As far as I know, Grayson is so rich he can afford to “fight”. Greenwald, by contrast, owes back taxes.

  67. karmanot says:

    True Indigo, Paula Deen gets that rock longside her fat head for say’un ‘nigra’ ,well not forty years ago—-maybe two days ago ( cuz she thinks it). That Wal*Mart dumped her is sign enough that the reign of white trash is fading fast. What next?—-Wal*Mart gets a deal on Ralph Lauren towels.? I guess ole’ Paula will be reduce to hawking double fried chocolate covered dogs at some Georgia backwater county fair.—–Karma!

  68. karmanot says:

    “it should be apparent that Glenn holds iron clad admirable core values that propel him to do what he does.: Exactly! He is a hero, who deserves and will get my full support.

  69. karmanot says:

    To paraphrase Nancy Pelosi, “Who gives a rat’s ass what you think.”

  70. karmanot says:

    “they’re clutching their pearls over Snowden and Greenwald.” And their matching sweater sets a flame, turning their ankles in those, pastel colored alligator dinner pumps, while DuPont Circle revises its cocktail circuit.

  71. Number Six says:

    My sweetie loves sugar, salt, and butter — maybe that’s why she was defending Dean to me the other day?

  72. dula says:

    Yeah, and Goddamned those Founding Fathers for being so miserably earnest and angry at England. I bet they weren’t any fun to hang out with.

  73. PeteWa says:

    I love that Rosewater took your last paragraph as a personal challenge.

  74. jixter says:

    “humans evolve, trolls do not”

    You’ve made my day, Indigo. Thank you.

  75. tsuki says:

    I don’t understand why anyone has to like or dislike the journalist and/or whistle blower. The proof is in the pudding, not the pan.

    Look at the evidence. That’s what we did 40 years ago with CoIntellPro.

  76. benb says:

    Frankly, I’m not interested in Greenwald’s life story…well, I would like to here more about the Porn Studio thing and, yeah, I wonder what he looks like naked.

  77. okojo says:

    I wouldn’t compare Dan Savage to Glenn Greenwald.

  78. Indigo says:

    That’s the one the media foreground. I don’t really know, I didn’t who she was until that blew up. As for southern cooking, I prefer my own.

  79. nicho says:

    Anything to move the spotlight from the real story to a phony story. People should be marching in the streets demanding an end to government abuse, murder, and secrecy. Instead, they’re clutching their pearls over Snowden and Greenwald.

  80. nicho says:

    Was that her only “sin?” Something she said 30 years ago? I know that’s what people keep talking about, but there’s got to be something more recent than that. I admit I haven’t been following this too closely. I did read somewhere that when her son got married, she had considered a “slave-themed” wedding — with black people doing all the serving. I don’t know if that’s true.

    My complaint with Dean was that her food was crap — sugar, salt, and butter — and was an affront to real southern cooking.

  81. Badgerite says:

    When I think of Glen Greenwald, Billy Joel’s song, The Angry Young Man comes to mind. That is pretty much what I think of him.

  82. quax says:

    Maybe it takes a ‘dick’ lawyer to show America what journalism is supposed to look like. Glen loves to argue and he is very opinionated, back in the day when he just ran his own unaffiliated blog I twice got into a comment spat with him (once over how Germany regulates hate speech, the other time over his odd libertarian notion that there shouldn’t be prescriptions required for any drug).

    So I am not surprised he made liberal enemies along the way, but the vitriol directed at his person over at the TPM comment threads still surprised me. No matter where you stand on the Snowden case, it should be apparent that Glenn holds iron clad admirable core values that propel him to do what he does. That some people can’t even muster a modicum of respect for this is a pretty sad spectacle.

    Fortunately there is no doubt in my mind that Glenn is the kind of person who strives on adversity.

  83. Monoceros Forth says:

    Ah, yes, the time-honored excuse that as long as there’s some government that’s worse, whatever happens here is OK.

  84. dula says:

    I bet Bradley Manning could make a compelling exhibit exploring his experience in captivity too.

  85. BeccaM says:

    I suggest you read the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights to the Constitution, as well as any one of the hundreds of books that expound upon the essential role of a free press in any healthy democracy or democratic republic.

    That’s my definition.

  86. dula says:

    Greenwald is for great oversight/regulation on abusive corporate behavior. That hardly qualifies him as “Libertarian.”

  87. Indigo says:

    Meanwhile, WalMart dumped Paula Dean because she got caught for using the n-word 30 years ago. That smells like a vendetta over burnt butter or some other tangent similar to the troll attacks on Glenn Greenwald. The bottom line in this situation, almost a meme in its own right, is that humans evolve, trolls do not.

  88. Rosewater says:

    I’d like a good definition of you regarding the media “doing their job”. What job is that? Collaborate as Greenwald did with a guy who once valued invasion of privacy and the false ‘security’ wrought by the Patriot Act, at least until Obama took office? Snowden challenged whistleblowers and leakers of national secrets with a shot to the balls for their crimes, but that was 5 years ago. Hmmm….what changed since then, what changed……..oh YEAH. Obama took office.

  89. Badgerite says:

    Oh, and that military unit that was unarmed and mowed down by Mr. Hassan ( following the religious counsel of the American citizen ‘spokesman’ for Al Qaeda ) at Fort Hood in Texas was from Madison, Wisconsin. I guess you could say I don’t like him.

  90. Rosewater says:

    There’s no doubt a reason that Snowden didn’t go to a progressive journalist like Amy Goodman at Democracy Now, and instead collaborated with Libertarian and Obama-hating Greenwald. First of all, Goodman is unlikely the type of journalist who would have conspired – yes, conspired – with Snowden to get that job with the intent to blow the whistle. And doesn’t it look like that is precisely what they did? Forget that Snowden himself found leakers of national secrets a disgrace worthy of a kick in the balls 5 years ago – what changed besides the man who’s now in office? The Patriot Act derailing our rights didn’t *suddenly* appear when Obama took office.

    Granted, if Snowden had stopped at the whistleblowing of spying on Americans, and stayed here in the country to face the music – he’d be in a better place right now. So would Greenwald. We DO need to refocus ire on the Patriot Act and it’s civil rights-crushing provisions and this issue initially did just that. But obviously [to me, anyway], Snowwald wanted Obama’s head on this one and they are now passing secrets to our opponents, telling them what they already know while undermining our standing in the world regarding these powers. And doing so while in the ‘safe haven’ of known oppressors of human rights!

    UnEFFINGbelievable, if you ask me. And unacceptable from the likes of Greenwald. Total disclosure: I stopped reading that asshole’s work back in the Bush administration when it was obvious he was a libertarian malcontent with a big mouth.

  91. Badgerite says:

    I don’t care particularly about any of that other stuff, but I’ll tell you what he did that I do care about. He put out in piecemeal and slipshod fashion, a story that should have been told in detail and in its entirety right off the bat. What was reported that first week of that ‘spy’ story was utter bullshit and the truth came out only after the hysteria level had reached fevered pitch and significant players (Google, Yahoo, etc) denied the truth of his allegations. And then, the details were dribbled out to heighten and maintain interest only after people started asking questions. . That’s not journalism, that’s propaganda. Having said that, I was glad to know of the NSA programs and to know of the checks and balances in place. I actually found that reassuring. Michael Hayden and James Clapper may not think I need to know all of that, but I think I need to know all of that. Also, he basically made a name for himself by collaborating with someone who committed espionage. No maybe on that. And probably damaged United States security interests. I’m sure that the US can adapt. And if you want to see what a real security state looks like, check out Aei WeiWei;s recent exhibit in Venice. It consists of long metal boxes with windows where you can look in and see various scenes that he experienced during his 81 days of captivity by the police in China, never knowing if he would ever see freedom again.

  92. BeccaM says:

    Whenever journalists and the news media are doing their jobs, the Powers That Be would very much rather they didn’t, and the degree to which the Powers will object is in direct proportion to how much their collective noses are being tweaked.

    I’ve noticed that once again, this particular story is following a very familiar trajectory whenever information is leaked to the Press.

    First the gov’t denies that anything serious happened or was revealed. Then they claim the revelations are incredibly damaging to national security and has/is/will cost lives. Then they attack the motivations of the leaker and do everything in their power to destroy the leaker’s reputation.

    Now we’ve moved on to the phase where those who reported on what the leaker said are attacked in a similar way.

  93. chris10858 says:

    I wish Greenwald would do some investigative journalism on David Gregory of Meet the Press. I’m sure in Gregory’s career, he has covered a story whereby he received and exposed some government information that was classified or at least considered secret.

  94. chris10858 says:

    Mr. Greenwald seems to be somewhat in alignment with the style of Congressmen Alan Grayson – never back down from a good fight… and I love them both for it! We progressives/liberals need more A***oles for Justice if we are going to win fights against the A***oles for Injustice: Conservatives.

  95. cole3244 says:

    free press is an oxymoron to the gop & the dems, that’s what right of center looks & acts like.

  96. John, Thanks for putting this out there. This is the canary to the people that if you divulge their secret criminal behavior you will be dealt with. And people think we still live in a democracy???

    Just recently at CounterPunch:

    “His message was clear, and remains clear from the recent statements by James, the Happy Clapper, the director of US national intelligence who lied to the Senate about spying on American citizens and then told the world that he gave the “least untruthful” answer to Senate questions because, of course, the end justifies the means. He knows that the intelligence industry will never be held accountable for breaking the law and spying on allies and fellow citizens — because the intelligence industry gets its orders from government.

    As an anti-Obama placard had it in Berlin the other day : “Democracy: Citizens watch government. Tyranny: Government watches citizens.” We now realize that tyranny is approaching, in Britain and America. So be afraid; Be very afraid — because many of the people in power in our very own democracies intend that their fellow citizens should believe, in the words of Orwell, that “War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength.” And they’re getting there.” -Brian Cloughley


  97. tamarz says:

    There are times when I think Greenwald just goes too far — in the sense of not letting up or overstating. But I am extremely glad for his very existence.

    While nowhere near as good a person (in fact, not particularly good at all) and much more of the A part (with less of the J), I feel somewhat the same way about Julian Assange. And now about Snowden also.

    There’s a tension between transparency and security (obviously), but we need both sides keeping it taut. Government without the correction of leakers and disseminators of leaks is well on its way to tyranny. But sometimes there is good reason for secrecy so the government needs to have things in place to protect needed secrets.

    Bottom line — I’m with you on Greenwald (and on Dan Savage, for that matter — though he seems kinder & gentler lately). But I think Assange & Snowden deserve a little of the same tolerance.

  98. YesMan3 says:

    My thoughts exactly, the Buzzfeed piece was excellent.

  99. Indigo says:

    Criminalizing the reporter is currently a growth industry. It helps the public understand who does and who does not follow the correct propaganda line. We’re in for a whole lot more of that and, possibly, some courtroom success at criminalizing reporters who do not stay inside the unspoken guidelines. The thought police aren’t all that well organized yet but as long as the Patriot Act is left standing, they’ll be working on it.

    While I’m on the topic of thought police, does anybody recall whether the expression “politically correct” was ever used in any context other than the conservative right wing where it is clearly an expression of contempt for human rights?

  100. Buford2k11 says:

    There are some mighty powerful forces lining up against ol’ Glenn…some legal, and some maybe extra legal…He knew it was coming…and yet he still continued to put his ass on the line…Motivations are hard to prove, and Glenn is no exception…but I think I trust Glenn before I would trust the wingers, and even dems on this…

  101. peter_principle says:

    I wouldn’t downplay or trivialize the attacks on Greenwald as just a personal vendetta or another right wing freak out.

    Lot of people could have handed the Daily News their dossier on Glenn, but it almost certainly originated here: http://t.co/Mpi3cYNFZV

    This is not just some Internet feud.

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