6,000 watching in main room
Notes below the line.
– Importance of privacy and security technology now appreciated by millions more — this is the under-reported aspect of the Snowden story
– Major national security journalists now understanding that their own work needs to be protected by encryption and privacy technologies
– Vitrolic damnation of the FISA Court and Congressional oversight committees as worthless — “servile loyalists”
– Created in 1970’s after that scandal, now that process being repeated, will intensity rather than remediate abuses
– More likely reforms will come from public adoption of encryption protections combined with countries creating their own protection regimes, and corporations paying the economic price for having been complicit with NSA
– Greatest hope lies with the public and with skilled communications such as the Chaos Computer Club
– Singles out Keith Alexander and Palantir as recruiters for destroying privacy.
– One of the most pressing questions is whether the most skilled will succumb to those temptations, or instead focus on defending human beings and protecting them from technical invasions of privacy.
– Another cause of optimism is found in the pro-privacy alliance, which is rapidly growing.
– Without Laura none of this would have happened. And of course Edward Snowden (prolonged applause)
– Snowden has inspired millions of people who have seen what good can be done by a single individual (prolonged applause)
– None of us did what we did in a vacuum. We have all been inspired by others such as Chelsea (sic) Manning. She Chelsea Manning was no doubt inspired by those who came before her, and they in turn were inspired by one of my personal heros, Daniel Elsberg, who did this 40 years ago.
– Wikileaks pioneered the template and is due a huge amount of appreciation (prolonged applause)
– Sarah Harrison credited with rescuing Snowden from Hong Kong.
– There is a huge network of individuals around the world devoted to this cause of privacy protection.
– Citing Laura, the fate of so many heros — most in prison — is a sign of how sick our political culture has become.
– US regimen of secrecy protecting corrupt acts is being confronted by growing numbers of activists (prolonged applause).
– Prison and death (e.g. Aaron Schwrtz) are effective in discouraging rational people from confronting the regime but the paradox is that such measures are embolding others.
– Current posture of USG is clear – pursuing one outcome, the life imprisonment of Edward Snowden. The reason they are so intent on this is not the protection of society from Edward Snowden but rather to petrify all others once they reduce Snowden to a life long prisoner.
– What I (GG) find distressing is how so many governments world-wide are willing to stand by and watch the USG pursue Snowden.
– Realize there is a cost to defying the USG, but there is a greater cost, once bourne by Snowden, in coming forward.
– Writing a book about all this
– We have known from day one that this is about journalism and the future of journalism, not just about privacy and personal security.
– We have known one of our most formidable adversaries would be the US and British media, as they are so servile to US secret intelligence interests.
– The journalistic status quo is the second status quo we seek to overturn, not just the pervasive surveillance status quo.
– One root of this scourge is the propensity of generals and other senior public officials to make false claims to the public.
– First document GG ever saw showed DNI James Clapper to be a liar, proving beyond doubt that all records were ordered by the FISA Court to be turned over to NSA, this in direct contradiction to Clapper’s testimony on the Hill.
– Every document seen has documented that NSA is not engaged in protecting anyone, but rather in spying on everyone including Brazilian companies and German politicians.
– US and UK media are worthless — loyal servile backers of government lies, in no way functioning in an oversight capacity.
– These journalists call for Snowden to be imprisoned, but when Clapper and others lies to Congress, not a single one of these journalists dares to suggest that the DNI should be subject to the rule of law, prosecuted, and imprisoned.
– Begins to discuss the new media organization, to be a true adversarial organization and a check on government power.
– Closing with one last point. There is only one overarching point that all these stories have revealed — no hyperbole. The goal of NSA is to eliminate privacy globally. To ensure that no electronic communications are able to evade NSA surveillance. They are obsessed. Example: onboard Internet access while flying is the latest obsession. NSA and GCHQ cannot stand any individual being out of sight or hearing for even a few hours.
– Privacy is what lets us explore boundaries, it nurtures dissent. A surveillance state breeds conformity.
QUESTION: What do you think is the motivation beyond wanting to spy on everyone.
ANSWER: Some obvious motivations — economic, political, diplomatic. Ultimately there is only one goal: power. Combining powerful knowing everything while also building an ever larger wall of secrecy around themselves, is the opposite of public sector, public service.
10 more minutes of questions not noted.