If he needs a place to stay...
If he needs a place to stay during those cold Russian winters, I'm sure the U.S. Government will be happy to give him room and board, and three square meals a day for the next 30 years.
Russia has apparently given super-leaker and former NSA sysadmin Edward Snowden de facto permanent residence. State-owned newswire TASS on Thursday reported that Snowden’s lawyer, a chap named Anatoly Kucherena, dropped in to tell it that Snowden has been granted an “open-ended residence permit”. Snowden was granted a three- …
With obvious caveats on other aspects, Russia has some stunning landscape and winter sports including climbing and skiing are great - if that is your thing. As someone who lives in Scotland and will be transplanting myself up from my Borders base to the far North in the next two weeks just for that, I can appreciate some of the benefits. Remote working can be wonderful.
I have always seen Ed Snowden as Tech Saint Snowden - his "crime" was telling everyone that the US was breaking its own laws, whereupon the US tried to tie him to a post and shot arrows at him.
Just think what the world would look like if Snowden had just hidden everything, or if Peter had been paid by Pontius Pilate to act like the US today.
Agreed. My in-laws houses are too hot in winter when it's -20°C outside. The good thing though is that they are also air conditioned during summer when it's +35°C.
The Russian know how to deal with the extremes of temperature well and they dress appropriately. Unlike us Brits who wear shorts and t-shirts all winter!
"Nothing wrong with shorts and t-shirts all winter! "
That's my goal with the solar heating installation upgrades this winter. On sunny days I hope to delete the shorts and t-shirts all together. The other part of the goal is to once again reduce the use of gas/electric to heat the house. I'm not sure if I'll be able to get the thermal batteries perfected this season. I need a welder to make the containment vessels and I don't know anybody where I can go and use theirs. Paying somebody isn't in the budget.
My Finnish girl stayed in my unheated 'eco' house on snowy Skye one January, and refused to get out of bed. I said I thought she'd be used to the cold as she was Finnish. She replied angrily, "In Finland it is only cold outdoors."
She also got annoyed when Scots described very cold weather as 'Baltic'. "The Baltic is actually warm in summer."
A German visitor saw a queue of skimpily dressed girls outside an Edinburgh nightclub in the snow. She said, "We have girls like that in Dresden too - they're Russians."
This will break the hearts of many Democrats and the Yank Mass Media. They were longing for the day when he, like Julian Assange, and Donald Trump, and Dread Vlad himself, and everyone else who thwarted their plans, are all transported to the bowels of the American Gulag with gyves on their wrists in orange jumpsuits forever, and the keys swallowed by a person nominated by the DNC. Since the entire world is subject to America's Law.
>Yes, I imagine he feels his travel options are limited.
A US passport is probably less use for international travel than a Russian one at the moment.
All Snowden did was tell everyone what most of us on this site suspected anyway. The US had been indulging in wholesale compromise of both national and international communications, often in violation of US law. They tried to get away with it by just not telling us but the signs were there for all to read.
Snowden also did the US a favor. Our intelligence agencies were so sure of themselves that they didn't seem to conceive that anyone would know what they're doing. Anyone who was following Kaspersky could read between the lines -- the Russians (yes I know that K.'s an international company....) certainly had a very good idea what was we were up to, they just weren't making any noise about it because it gives them a major edge. Snowden pricked that bubble for us -- sure, it hurt, but its nothing like as bad as finding out years later that your super-secret program wasn't anything like as secret as you thought it was.
Just to keep you all informed -- as a US citizen he still has to file Federal taxes every year regardless of where he lives or where he earns his money. He should be able to deduct any Russian taxes paid though.
(UK readers thinking of working in the US....... Owing to a quirk in US law once you become a permanent resident of the US you will owe taxes on your global income for life, or at least until you formally revoke your residency and/or citizenship. Because of the way that the US regulates international banking just moving back home and ignoring the Feds won't work.)
A fundamental question here is whether a government in a liberal democracy is permitted to keep certain things secret. My view is that not all operations of government agencies can be completely open. For example, we cannot expect our Army to disclose all of its plans and capabilities to potential enemies. But there is a potential for this necessary secrecy to be abused, which I suppose Snowden was exposing. From what I know about this case, Snowden was not just revealing abuses of power, which would have some moral justification. I understand he revealed a great deal more than that, which could have been damaging to legitimate covert operations, possibly endangering lives.
From what I know about this case, Snowden was not just revealing abuses of power, which would have some moral justification. I understand he revealed a great deal more than that, which could have been damaging to legitimate covert operations, possibly endangering lives.
I think that was more an issue with some of the stuff Assange leaked, and Snowden's dump was more about capabilities. I think there would have been more justification for whistleblowing, if they were more selective. So here's the law, here's how it's being broken. And that perhaps revealed problems with oversight, or legislation than the actions of the intelligence services.
But that's the moral dilemma. Intelligence agencies gather intelligence. That should not have been a suprise, it's their job. The agencies are tasked with preventing crimes, or threats, so how best they should do that? And I think it also showed wider problems. The NSA spied on American people, and intercepted their communications.. But then so do Google, Facebook etc. One to try and ensure national security, the others to profile you & push ads. So a strange situation where intelligence agencies are allowed to do less than largely unsupervised, unregulated data hoovers.
The criticism of Snowden isn't about what he revealed, but that he took a solemn oath to keep quiet, and broke it. He may have felt justified and perhaps he was (or is) willing to risk the penalties, but at the end of the day he broke his oath and can't complain when he's called to account for it. Let him away with it and you make everyone else's oaths worthless.
That is more definitely NOT what I said.
I said that if he thinks a situation makes it worthwhile breaking a solemn oath then he has to be prepared to take the consequences. If he isn't, he shouldn't have sworn the oath in the first place.
Public interest is a tricky justification, if the public were truly interested wouldn't there have been mass demonstrations insisting that he be pardoned, demands for resignations, etc?
So you're saying that people with any ethical standards shouldn't take jobs where they might be asked to keep secrets?
You've also misunderstood the term "public interest". It's not what the public is interested in. It's what's in the best interests of the public.
According to Ed, Russia isn't asking him for anything. They are probably laughing just from his being there as a thorn in the side of the US spy complex. The US lost somebody with important information and Russia acquired a talented computer expert. It's not worth the effort for Russia to "dispose" of him and really no need.
"talented computer expert"
I thought he was basically a contract SharePoint admin who happened to have access to the systems storing the classified data, and he got it by tricking people into giving out their passwords. So I doubt he's a "l33t hax0r" type. Still, Russia must be very happy just having him as a trophy to wave in front of the NSA once in a while!
> Why is it that I think Snowden is a decent human being that did the right thing, whereas I think Assange is a complete arsehole that deserves everything he’s got coming to him?
I think it's your ear tricking your brain: the first syllable in Snowden's name is 'snow' and your subconscious links it with whiteness and purity.
Snowden revealed all the dirty NSA tricks, many of which were outside limits of US law. They were embarrassed because all their genitalia were exposed.
Had the NSA not broken the law, Snowden would have nothing to leak.
One of the dirtiest Echelon members ís GCHQ right there in Cheltenham.
Wikipedia has a great opening line for the GCHQ page: "Not to be confused with Her Majesty's Government Communications Centre or Conservative Campaign Headquarters." Poetic.
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