Patterico's Pontifications

6/25/2013

Snowden Took the Consultant Job to Gain Access to Classified Intelligence

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:37 am



That seems like it should be relevant to whether he is viewed as a hero or a traitor.

My pal Ken at Popehat says Snowden is being prosecuted for revealing secrets to “We the People.”

Trouble is, he’s revealing them to our enemies too.

Wonder if Rick Ellensburg knew what Snowden was going to do before he did it.

67 Responses to “Snowden Took the Consultant Job to Gain Access to Classified Intelligence”

  1. Funny how this has polarized into Snowdon’s a hero and the NSA are swine vs Snowdon’s a creep and the NSA are Boy Scouts. No room for Snowdon’s a jerk, the NSA are creeps, and they should be thrown into the same cell, and the door bricked up?

    C. S. P. Schofield (adb9dd)

  2. “our” enemies lol our biggest enemies are whores in congress

    corrupt apparatchiks

    that sleazy food stamp slut in the white house

    and fascist propaganda whores such as the cnn one and the ones on national soros radio

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  3. If arrested he will be viewed as a political prisoner along the lines of George Zimmerman. His arrest and subsequent prosecution was simply to satisfy the race baiters.

    Snowden’s arrest and prosecution will be to satisfy the napolitano’s, sabielius’ and holders of this regime.

    Jim (823b10)

  4. He was in contact with Greenwald for nearly that long, that should have been in the piece.

    narciso (3fec35)

  5. Does this begin to smell like Rick Ellensburg had a hand in setting this up?

    Bill M (e0a4e5)

  6. Who or what Snowden is hardly matters.

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  7. Sounds like a pre-planned Wikileaks op. With GG as the media arm.

    Patricia (be0117)

  8. There must be some angle that is causing hedging on keeping focus on NSA, FISA courts and so forth.

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  9. ==Wonder if Rick Ellensburg knew what Snowden was going to do before he did it.==

    People should probably also wonder if someone very high up in our government knew what Snowden was going to do before he did it.

    With respect to our foreign enemies, the “hole” in our spy system that allowed Snowden all this unfettered access to what apparently are our deepest secrets, and to secure a top security clearance, has not received nearly enough attention. That is the scandal.

    There was a book titled Spycatcher, written by Peter Wright, former Assistant director of MI5, about his true experiences in espionage and counter- espionage while rooting out domestic spies at the highest levels of British Intelligence who were working for another country. Ever read it?

    elissa (c2c614)

  10. What could that angle be? Let’s see. They have unlimited access to congresses phone calls, emails, correspondences, financial records, and their close personal friends. They have a list of those.

    What else do you need really?

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  11. If Mr Snowden released classified information, he both broke the law and violated a oath to protect those secrets; he is scum. The secrets that he released tell us that the Obama Administration are scum as well, and that some are perjurers.

    Edward Snowden, Julian Assange, Bradley Manning, Nidal Hasan and Eric Holder ought to have to share a cell.

    The Dana who thinks that both sides are wrong (3e4784)

  12. leaking the secrets of a fascist whorestate is cool

    more please

    be the edward

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  13. Snowden deserves to be in the same cell-block as Manning, Pollard, and Walker.
    They all should be on death-row, but LWOP is a good consolation.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  14. elissa wrote:

    With respect to our foreign enemies, the “hole” in our spy system that allowed Snowden all this unfettered access to what apparently are our deepest secrets, and to secure a top security clearance, has not received nearly enough attention. That is the scandal.

    That “hole” has existed for decades. To obtain a security clearance, you have to have a clean criminal record, have nothing blackmailable in your past, pass the polygraph test, and not have too many “waivers” for things like past drug use. What is never really tested is loyalty!

    My (very limited) experience with this was in the early 1980s: the security services were looking for people from the right schools — which just happened to be schools in which the graduates were more likely to be politically liberal, eastern establishment schools rather than colleges in the midwest — with the right degrees and a clean record. They liked foreign travel, because the assumption was that such provided the applicant with some experience, but that led to a bias toward the children of the well-to-do.

    A Yalie who spent a summer in Europe, copulating with Italian girls (and boys)? You were gold, man, gold!

    It was a system which filled the CIA with liberals, and President Reagan didn’t really do much to change that. The far out whacko libs didn’t make it in, but a progressive clique who were a bit too . . . understanding . . . when it came to other countries, including our enemies, existed. Not enough attention was paid to patriotism and loyalty.

    Mr Snowden was, of course, no Yalie, but an experienced technician. He had a clean record, and had nothing disqualifying, so his political views were almost certainly never inquired about.

    It ought to be an absolute requirement: if you have ever been registered as a Democrat, you are ineligible for a security clearance. That’s the first way to weed out the liberals, the sympathetic and the disloyal.

    The Dana who was not a double-nought spy (3e4784)

  15. It doesn’t make sense.

    Consultants aren’t normally told ahead of time what information they’re going to get access to. In fact, most (especially run of the mill types as Snowden) may not even be told the specific projects they’re going to be working on.

    He also wouldn’t have known what security measures were or weren’t in place that would impact his ability to copy classified data (getting access is one thing, it’s a different matter to be able to make a copy so you can prove your claims).

    Me thinks he was simply an opportunistic chump who is now making claims to bolster his standing among the Wikileaks crowd.

    steve (369bc6)

  16. Isn’t getting hold of government secrets by subterfuge with the premeditated plan of sharing them with outsiders (and then doing so) pretty much the definition of espionage? Isn’t that exactly what spies do?

    He can only claim he was spying for “the People”, and that might work with a jury, but he cannot claim to be a whistle-blower what that intent.

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  17. I could not believe my eyes when I read this statement by Dana:

    It ought to be an absolute requirement: if you have ever been registered as a Democrat, you are ineligible for a security clearance. That’s the first way to weed out the liberals, the sympathetic and the disloyal.

    Do I sniff McCarthyism resurfacing?

    Gramps2 (a1a5e7)

  18. Did he seek out that job, or was he (mysteriously?) offered it?

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  19. Perry – we get a whiff of your asshattery resurfacing.

    JD (716d3b)

  20. “Do I sniff McCarthyism resurfacing?”

    Gramps2 – Yes, you’ve been hearing it in Obama’s divisive speeches for at least six years.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  21. McCarthyism smells a lot like machaca wraps

    happyfeet (c60db2)

  22. “Consultants aren’t normally told ahead of time what information they’re going to get access to.”

    steve – Not necessarily true. These days consulting firms post jobs by city and skill set. How tough is it to ferret out who the largest client(s) of an office are during an interview process?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  23. JD, it gets to be a bit more humorous than that. “Rebus,” whom you have told me previously that you believe to be a sock-puppet for Perry, as well as being Gramps2, posted on my site:

    Consistent with his rant above, Dana has posted this on Patterico’s Pontifications:

    It ought to be an absolute requirement: if you have ever been registered as a Democrat, you are ineligible for a security clearance. That’s the first way to weed out the liberals, the sympathetic and the disloyal.

    I’ll simply let the readers draw their own conclusions about this statement. I’ve already drawn mine.

    Perry was not — at least to my knowledge — ever banned from Patterico, but after the light at the end of his rope informed our host of Perry’s shenanigans, our host put Perry into the automatic moderation filter. Assuming that Gramps2 is a sock puppet for Perry, why would he take such a measure to escape the moderation filter here, if he had not been banned, when Patteriso’s comments policy specifically states that “Commenters who do not use a consistent name, and/or who use a proxy to post, are subject to banning.”

    Of course, it’s true that my adjective-laden names don’t quite meet the “consistent name” criterion, but they do always include a link back to my site, and nobody has any doubts as to whom wrote my comments.

    And yes, I confess: I am The Limerick Avenger! :)

    The Dana who is laughing out loud! (3e4784)

  24. Well, there is the whole thing about contacting Laura Poitras before he took the job. Apparently he told her what he was planning to do in a general sense. But she has a history. It is possible she knew of an ambush of US troops in Iraq and positioned herself ahead of time to photograph it. When questioned at the time, she denied it was her but later confessed in her book that it actually was.

    The problem with this story is first of all, it’s The Guardian. Secondly, it is reported by individuals who have shown a desire over the years to do harm to the US all the while pretending they are champions of justice or some such crap.

    crosspatch (6adcc9)

  25. The Avenger thinks that our Perry
    Is too clever by half? Not very!
    He can change his cites
    But not how he writes
    And now we are starting to query!

    The Limerick Avenger (3e4784)

  26. 1. …No room for Snowdon’s a jerk, the NSA are creeps, and they should be thrown into the same cell, and the door bricked up?

    Comment by C. S. P. Schofield (adb9dd) — 6/25/2013 @ 7:48 am

    I’d qualify this and say the people at NSA doing the domestic spying are creeps (actually I’d say they’re traitors on par with Snowden but none of those in that category will ever be charged with treason). Not everything the NSA is doing is remotely wrong. We want people doing most of the things NSA is doing.

    On the other thread I voted for government as the largest threat, much higher than terrorism. But if I had to rank multiple choices I would have rated Chinese espionage as a greater threat than terrorism. I don’t think people understand just how huge a threat China’s espionage against us is.

    The national defense and economic implications overlap to a great degree since so much is dual use. The key areas they focus on telecommunications, aerospace, energy, and defense technologies. But nothing is out of bounds; they target consumer goods. They target contracts, merger and acquisitions plans, technology, and industrial secrets. They use government agents under official and non-official cover, businessmen, researchers, and students to gather this information for economic and foreign intelligence purposes. One knowledgeable estimate I’ve heard is that there are approximately two million people around the world working indirectly or directly for Chinese intelligence services. The US has to be the largest target.

    Naturally cyber-espionage is a huge part of their effort. It can be done from the safety of China and one successful cyber attack can steal all of a company’s data.

    Unlike terrorism Chinese espionage has an impact on individuals in America every day in two ways. The first is the economic impact. The theft is enormous. Whatever China steals it can build cheaper than we can, and that puts people out of work. The second is the impact on Chinese dissidents who’ve escaped and are living here.

    China puts unrelenting pressure on dissidents abroad; they’re a primary target in their cyber attacks. They try to make their lives as difficult as possible. That, for instance, is why China required NYU to expel Chen Guangcheng from his visiting fellowship as a condition to open a Shanghai campus. If you’ll recall, he’s the blind human rights attorney who escaped house arrest to the US embassy in Beijing last year.

    Naturally, being a bastion of rabid leftism, NYU was both eager to comply and publicly denied any such thing happened at the same time.

    In addition to trying to make life as difficult as possible for dissidents abroad, they also terrorize the dissident’s family back in the PRC and they want the dissident to know that. Cyber espionage is the main way they can track these dissidents down in order to accomplish those tasks.

    And Eddie Snowden helped the PRC accomplish all the above goals enormously with his leaks.

    On the flip side the people at NSA who are countering Chinese cyber espionage are doing this country an great service and are most definitely not creeps.

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  27. … Anyone else wondering why the NSA wouldn’t just check the emails and all the data they have for potential employees? Obviously no one would have stopped them.

    Ghost (2d8874)

  28. Reuters tagteaming with John Hinderacker causes great pain to the Obama administration. Ouch.

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2013/06/how-could-a-goofy-techie-expose-our-governments-incompetence.php

    elissa (c2c614)

  29. 27. … Anyone else wondering why the NSA wouldn’t just check the emails and all the data they have for potential employees? Obviously no one would have stopped them.

    Comment by Ghost (2d8874) — 6/25/2013 @ 10:40 am

    One of the few specific exceptions under the law that allows intelligence entities to collect, retain, and disseminate information on US persons are for administrative purposes concerning its own employees.

    I’ve commented before that corporate HR departments do a better job of checking out prospective hires’ online activities to help determine if the individual is the type of person they want than the NSA or CIA has been doing.

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  30. oh that reminders me I saw last night The Avengers is on netflix

    i haven’t seen it yet no spoilers

    happyfeet (c60db2)

  31. Edward Snowden took a pay cut to take his last job. Or is that not correct?

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  32. 31. Edward Snowden took a pay cut to take his last job. Or is that not correct?

    Comment by Sammy Finkelman (d22d64) — 6/25/2013 @ 11:37 am

    Who knows. That’s what Eddie says. It’s impossible to know when to believe a word Eddie says.

    Which doesn’t mean we ignore what Eddie says. I never haven’t believed Eddie’s claim to be a noble whistleblower with America’s public interests at heart ever since he started spilling his guts about legitimate NSA programs aimed at the PRC and Russia. The admission that he took the NSA to find out all their targets “worldwide” explains a lot.

    He might be exaggerating there as well, but I doubt anyone would publicly crow that they took a job with the intent to commit felonies under the Espionage Act of 1917 if it weren’t true. Either way that along with his other public statements will make it pretty easy to convict him of those felonies.

    That’s assuming we ever get a competent administration again. This klown kar katastrophe of an administration’s first public act in its attempt to recover Snowden was to s*** the bed and then things went downhill from there.

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  33. I don’t believe what the South China Morning Post says. It’s owned by a Communist kleptocratic pro-Beijing family, and its editor in chief is also a Chinese government official in a second tier legislative(?) body. I believe it even less filtered by CNN which calls Wikileaks an anti-secrecy group.

    nk (875f57)

  34. “Do I sniff McCarthyism resurfacing?”

    Joe McCarthy was the greatest gift Providence every gave to the Liberal Left. If he hadn’t existed, they would have had to invent him. Without his ham-handed ‘investigation” (read; headline grabbing) about communists in various places, the Liberal might long ago have had to admit any or all of the following;

    1) Alger Hiss as a guilty as a cat in a goldfish bowl.

    2) So were the Rosenbergs who were, incidentally, spying for Stalin.

    3) The American Communist Party was founded and funded by the USSR, as an integral part of their espionage operation. Those who belonged to it were therefore divided into two groups; traitors and patsies.

    4) It is not ‘witch Hunting’ to look for connections to Communism where such connections exist. There were no witches in Puritan New England. There were and are plenty of morons on the political Left who from delusion, stupidity, or what-have-you have been willing to provide sympathy and support to groups of brutal barbarians who had a nice line in Revolutionary patter.

    C. S. P. Schofield (adb9dd)

  35. Go easy on him, C.S.P. He often gets Joe McCarthy and Jenny McCarthy and Melissa McCarthy all mixed up. Who knows which one of them he was babbling about. And I’m pretty sure none of us even want to know what he was sniffing.

    elissa (c6f8c4)

  36. Funny how this has polarized into Snowdon’s a hero and the NSA are swine vs Snowdon’s a creep and the NSA are Boy Scouts. No room for Snowdon’s a jerk, the NSA are creeps, and they should be thrown into the same cell, and the door bricked up?

    I’ve made this point a few times. Hot Air even specifically used my language in a post today (they didn’t get it from me, of course, but the same thought) and said Snowden could be both traitor and hero.

    Whatever Snowden’s intentions were, he exposed something superlatively important and frightening.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  37. nk, here it is unfiltered by CNN:

    http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/article/1268209/snowden-sought-booz-allen-job-gather-evidence-nsa-surveillance

    They quote Snowden directly. The fact that Snowden contacted The Guardian before getting hired by Booze, Allen, & Hamilton lends credence to the fact that in this case the SCMP is correct.

    Snowden has never repudiated any of the statements he’s made to The Guardian, in case you’re inclined (as I am) not to trust The Guardian either.

    I’m not inclined to trust anyone working on Snowden’s behalf including Snowden. But some things do check out.

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  38. 36. Whatever Snowden’s intentions were, he exposed something superlatively important and frightening.

    Comment by Former Conservative (6e026c) — 6/25/2013 @ 12:44 pm

    Regarding what you find “superlatively important and frightening” he exposed nothing.

    Why do you persist in making such a patently false and easily disproved assertion?

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  39. Do I sniff McCarthyism resurfacing?

    As far as the State Dept. is concerned,
    Tail-gunner Joe, was On-Time – On-Target!

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  40. Mr Schofield tells the truth:

    There were and are plenty of morons on the political Left who from delusion, stupidity, or what-have-you have been willing to provide sympathy and support to groups of brutal barbarians who had a nice line in Revolutionary patter.

    That was always a huge part of the problem: the Communists were just so good at spouting exactly the things the oh-so-sympathetic left wanted to hear, that the left were unwilling or unable to look beyond their words to see the ugly truth.

    If one generation of the left had learned from the mistakes of their predecessors, it wouldn’t have been so bad, but they didn’t, and even after the horrors of Communism had been exposed, the left were more than willing to fall for the same claptrap from the next generation of Communists, from Fidel Castro to Daniel Ortega to Hugo Chavez; all that they had to do was utter the same proclamations that they were doing it all for the poor and downtrodden, and, oh, by the way, they hated capitalism and the US, and the left fell dutifully in line.

    In the meantime, that wicked capitalism, that heartless system which allowed people to fail and be poor just as much as it allowed people to work hard and be successful and get rich, created the only economies in which more than a small percentage of the people — the people with guns — lived above the subsistence level.

    Capitalism thrives on dissent and disagreement and competition, and that means freedom of speech; Communism requires absolute conformity, and can tolerate neither dissent nor freedom. Nevertheless, the left will happily embrace socialism and Communist, just because a few thugs say the words they want to hear.

    When Nikita Sergeievich Khrushchev said that the capitalists would happily sell them the rope to hang themselves, he meant the utterly naïve left. He may have been right.

    The anti-Communist Dana (3e4784)

  41. Galileo was not punished because he said the earth was a round ball that traveled around the sun. Everybody with half a brain knew the earth was a round ball that traveled around the sun since the time of Ptolemy of Alexandria. Galileo was punished because he could prove it with a telescope. Hmm?

    nk (875f57)

  42. Very VERY well pointed out, nk.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  43. There must bne another South China Morning Post article, because the New York Post says:

    “My position with Booz Allen Hamilton granted me access to lists of machines all over the world the NSA hacked,” Snowden told the South China Morning Post in a June 12 interview published yesterday.

    “That is why I accepted that position about three months ago.”

    Asked again if he went to Booz Allen specifically to gather evidence of surveillance, Snowden readily owned up to his premeditated plan: “Correct on Booz.”

    Snopden seems to be saying only Booz, yet the SCMP article linked in this thread seems to imply many places. Apparently maybe they were pushing the idea he got his jobs to spy and Snowden was denying that was true for his other jobs.

    And I have a question:

    DID HE SEEK THE JOB OR WAS HE OFFERED IT?

    There could be other spies. It could be there was master spy guiding his career even wiothout his knowledge. Snowden says he went to Hong Kong because he met someone on his last trip, and that friend found him accomodations.

    Maybe Snowden belives all that. Maybe Russia wants to keep him away from the press because he might talk too much and we’d understand what happened..

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  44. 15. Comment by steve (369bc6) — 6/25/2013 @ 9:19 am

    It doesn’t make sense….

    …He also wouldn’t have known what security measures were or weren’t in place that would impact his ability to copy classified data (getting access is one thing, it’s a different matter to be able to make a copy so you can prove your claims).

    Well, it could be that somebody or some organization was managing his career.

    It could be that not all of the information Snowden released, both publicly and privately, might originate with him, but maybe some or much of it could be somebody else’s. Or dumped in his lap(top)

    HE MIGHT NOT BE THE ONLY, OR THE MAIN, POINT OF PENETRATION OF U.S. INTELLIGENCE.

    That would be a reason to burn him. He wasn’t the real source.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  45. All this public release could be to hide a private release of information.

    And he might not understand entirely.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  46. If he’s a tool, planted by Wikileaks, f**k him. Pay somebody to f**k him. It still does not mitigate the NSA’s wrongdoing, but he is now the seeping sewage that shows the rupture in the soil pipe.

    nk (875f57)

  47. Our enemies knew we were looking at them, this program is aimed at the American people. Of course, the American People are the commies/progressives biggest enemies.

    Smarty (273307)

  48. wednesday’s edward is patient and kind and very very prudent

    happyfeet (4bf7c2)

  49. I have been informed that this is in fact tuesday

    happyfeet (4bf7c2)

  50. the aliens lose, after trashing NYC

    narciso (3fec35)

  51. Comment by narciso (3fec35) — 6/25/2013 @ 3:25 pm

    He’s borsht. Yeah, Putin’s gonna let him go now. How do you say “We call this place Lubyanka” in Russian?

    nk (875f57)

  52. If this is a preplanned Wikileaks operation, what’s in it for Wikileaks other than publicity? In other words, is it another Wikileaks’ plot to reveal national secrets (especially of western nations), an effort to somehow get Julian Assange out of exile, or something else?

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  53. Alright, this made me laugh. http://i.imgur.com/6flXLV1.jpg

    Sarahw (b0e533)

  54. We may be missing a bet by not getting the British to allow Assange to transit from the Ecuadorian embassy in London to Ecuador. Doesn’t the CIA have relations with the Colombian cocaine cartels anymore?

    the jingoistic nk (875f57)

  55. 53. If this is a preplanned Wikileaks operation, what’s in it for Wikileaks other than publicity? In other words, is it another Wikileaks’ plot to reveal national secrets (especially of western nations), an effort to somehow get Julian Assange out of exile, or something else?

    Comment by DRJ (a83b8b) — 6/25/2013 @ 3:48 pm

    Well…

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704554104575436231926853198.html

    …the “anti-secrecy” organization Wikileaks keeps the sources of its funding secret.

    But it’s odd that the former KGB officer running Russia and who throws people like the members of Pussy Riot into prison for dissenting is such a fan of Julian Assange and free speech.

    http://abcnews.go.com/International/putin-slams-west-wikileaks-arrest/story?id=12364345#.UcolipygwzQ

    The arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange for sexual misconduct illustrates the hypocrisy of the West about democracy, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin says.

    And that Julian Assange is a fan of the former KGB officer.

    http://www.news.com.au/technology/julian-assange-to-edward-snowden-russia-may-help/story-e6frfro0-1226662839455

    Julian Assange to Edward Snowden: ‘Russia may help’

    …WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at a window of Ecuadorian Embassy says Russia may grant Edward Snowden asylum.

    …Assange has been holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London for nearly a year after claiming asylum. RT used to air a talk show hosted by Assange from his previous house arrest in London.

    “Latin America has a real personal interest in what is going on and of course Russia understands this game and Putin understands this game for a long time now, and I’m sure that once honour was on the table in such an offer, that it would not be rescinded.”

    Read more: http://www.news.com.au/technology/julian-assange-to-edward-snowden-russia-may-help/story-e6frfro0-1226662839455#ixzz2XH1hYCTM

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  56. The Pussy Rioters who went to prison “dissented” by pussy rioting in the sanctuary (on top of the altar?) of a church during services. I have enough Orthodoxy left to want them flogged and beheaded, personally.

    the jingoistic nk (875f57)

  57. speaking truth to power, is tricky over there;

    http://en.rsf.org/russia-developments-in-safronov-and-13-09-2007,23644.html

    narciso (3fec35)

  58. oh that reminders me I saw last night The Avengers is on netflix
    i haven’t seen it yet no spoilers
    Comment by happyfeet (c60db2) — 6/25/2013 @ 11:22 am

    — SPOILER ALERT: Hulk smash!

    Icy (3cd8e3)

  59. That seems like it should be relevant to whether he is viewed as a hero or a traitor.
    — The question of ‘is he a hero or a traitor?’ is about as relevant as the Cheers & Jeers section in TV Guide.

    My pal Ken at Popehat says Snowden is being prosecuted for revealing secrets to “We the People.”
    Trouble is, he’s revealing them to our enemies too.

    — Ya know, I heard that some our enemies had finally gotten cable, and NOW (because of OUR news channels) they know that we’re spying on them. Hmm, I wonder if we’re spying on them thru the cable(?)

    Icy (3cd8e3)

  60. 61. “Relevance”

    When your government is completely off the rails and the mob’s payday is becoming problematic its only a matter of time, a few years maybe, before we’re all traitors by someone’s accounting.

    The storm’s that hit Friday have taught us the next need is a generator. I’m beginning to feel real sorry for city folk.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  61. 57. The Pussy Rioters who went to prison “dissented” by pussy rioting in the sanctuary (on top of the altar?) of a church during services. I have enough Orthodoxy left to want them flogged and beheaded, personally.

    Comment by the jingoistic nk (875f57) — 6/25/2013 @ 5:16 pm

    No, they didn’t interrupt a service. There were in fact very few people in the cathedral at the time. And I’ve never seen anything to indicate they were ever on top of the altar.

    It’s very clear that had they done this in any western country (except if they did it in a mosque in a country like the UK or Holland which enforce Sharia blasphemy laws) it would have been protected political speech. I suggest you read the post at the link in its entirety, but Andrew Stuttaford quotes one of the Pussy Rioters:

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/350522/not-so-much-riot-andrew-stuttaford

    In her closing statement, one of the defendants, Yekaterina Samutsevich, had this to say about the way that the Putin regime has coopted not only the modern Russian Orthodox Church but also its historical reputation as a victim of the Soviet state. It’s a subtle point, carefully made.

    It may be that the tough, failed policies of Putin’s government, the incident with the submarine Kursk, the bombings of civilians in broad daylight, and other unpleasant moments in his political career forced him to ponder the fact that it was high time to resign; otherwise, the citizens of Russia would help him do this. Apparently, it was then that he felt the need for more convincing, transcendental guarantees of his long tenure at the helm. It was here that the need arose to make use of the aesthetics of the Orthodox religion, historically associated with the heyday of Imperial Russia, where power came not from earthly manifestations such as democratic elections and civil society, but from God Himself.

    How did he succeed in doing this? After all, we still have a secular state, and shouldn’t any intersection of the religious and political spheres be dealt with severely by our vigilant and critically minded society? Here, apparently, the authorities took advantage of a certain deficit of Orthodox aesthetics in Soviet times, when the Orthodox religion had the aura of a lost history, of something crushed and damaged by the Soviet totalitarian regime, and was thus an opposition culture. The authorities decided to appropriate this historical effect of loss and present their new political project to restore Russia’s lost spiritual values, a project which has little to do with a genuine concern for preservation of Russian Orthodoxy’s history and culture.

    It was also fairly logical that the Russian Orthodox Church, which has long had a mystical connection with power, emerged as this project’s principal executor in the media…

    Unlike a Madonna performance, Pussy Riot put some thought into this. Not that I agree with what they did, but it certainly didn’t warrant a two year prison term let alone a flogging or beheading.

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  62. I want to emphasize that I consider the members of Pussy Riot’s collective thinking behind what they did extremely juvenile, nk. But it seems to me that in some immature way they were trying to protest against the way Putin is trying to coopt the Russian Orthodox Church and how the church is apparently going along with it.

    I just don’t believe that warrants a prison term. They weren’t engaging in hooliganism due to religious hatred, which is what they were convicted of.

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  63. Time, place and manner. Here’s the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lPDkJbTQRCY It was the soleas, not the sanctuary, I did put a question mark by “on top of the altar”, and you’re right it was not during liturgy. The soleas is still reserved for the priest to perform the service and communicants to receive the sacraments. Ok, no beheading. Flogging for profaning the church, heads shaved, paraded through the streets naked.

    the jingoistic nk (875f57)

  64. I have been informed that this is in fact tuesday

    Comment by happyfeet (4bf7c2) — 6/25/2013 @ 3:32 pm

    Yeah it is, and once again you forgot to repay me the money that I loaned you yesterday for that hamburger!

    peedoffamerican (ee1de0)

  65. Speaking of information access, Legal Insurrection says the Army is restricting access to the Guardian’s NSA coverage. The Army claims it’s just automatic filters, but who set the filters?

    Anyway, some soldiers are less than impressed.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)


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