Friday, September 20, 2013

Edward Snowden just revealed the tip. Here's the Real Iceberg:

I just watched an interview with Glenn Greenwald (broke Ed Snowden story) and was struck by one point in particular.  He was being asked about accusations of not practicing journalism, with the implication of being a traitor. He had a sound response/defense, but I had a different reaction.  The question brought up a broader philosophical issue.

I have 4 and 6 year old children.  One of the consistent themes/values  I am trying to teach them is that "If you have to keep something a secret, you probably shouldn't do it."  Granted there are exceptions, like surprise birthdays and such - but even those are eventually revealed.

Secrets are driven by fear. Fear of the results that may come to pass in the event a certain party or group, or the public becomes aware of the information in question.  I can see how in combative situations, a weaker combatant might employ secrecy due to their certain defeat should their opposition to the stronger party be revealed.  But I am still wary of the wisdom of such fear driven tactics.  On the contrary, the stronger party, be it physically or intellectually (in the broadest sense) lacks grounds for secrecy.  For by commission of a covert act, they have claimed inferiority in the relevant area. They have assimilated fear into their infrastructure.

How this translates to the national level is quite unnerving for most, but entirely valid.  A valid philosophical assertion or ethic needn't be altered on account of scale.  Given the United State's global dominance, more so than any other nation, our government and military should function with complete transparency.  Ironically, the exact opposite is true, which I posit is the root of our challenges in foreign policy and relations.

The immediate response is, "But what about..."  My answer is unwavering.  Complete Transparency.  If you want to be right, you have to act right.  Sorry, CIA, NSA, FBI, Congress, Military, White House, etc.  Time to pull down your drawers if you want long term survival.  Do you have the guts to survive? I do.

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