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United States Privacy

US Lawmakers Want Sanctions On Any Country Taking In Snowden 650

Posted by samzenpus
from the come-on-home dept.
An anonymous reader points out this story about the latest effort by the U.S. to get Edward Snowden back in the country. "A U.S. Senate panel voted unanimously on Thursday to seek trade or other sanctions against Russia or any other country that offers asylum to former spy agency contractor Edward Snowden, who has been holed up for weeks at a Moscow airport. The 30-member Senate Appropriations Committee adopted by consensus an amendment to a spending bill that would direct Secretary of State John Kerry to meet with congressional committees to come up with sanctions against any country that takes Snowden in."
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US Lawmakers Want Sanctions On Any Country Taking In Snowden

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  • Hey US... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by slashmydots (2189826) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:16PM (#44386061)
    You mad, bro? You seem mad, bro. (I'm from the US by the way)
    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:22PM (#44386117)

      Maybe Snowden should go to China. Now, if the US places sanctions on China, that would be funny.

      • Re:Hey US... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Beardo the Bearded (321478) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:46PM (#44386367)

        And when think about it, a guy who knows lots of stuff about the way the NSA spies on its citizens would be pretty useful to the PRC.

        Everyone will win, except a few senators who'll end up with egg on their faces.

        • Naming Names (Score:5, Informative)

          by Frobnicator (565869) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:05PM (#44386541) Journal

          The specific names are hard to come by right now.

          Let's fix that. It was a unanimous voice vote. Here are the names. Contact them and tell them what you will:

          RICHARD C. SHELBY (R), Alabama
          LISA MURKOWSKI (R), Alaska
          MARK BEGICH (D), Alaska
          JOHN BOOZMAN (R), Arkansas
          MARK PRYOR (D), Arkansas
          DIANNE FEINSTEIN (D), California
          CHRIS COONS (D), Delaware
          MARK KIRK (R), Illinois
          RICHARD DURBIN (D), Illinois
          DAN COATS(R), Indiana
          TOM HARKIN (D), Iowa
          JERRY MORAN(R), Kansas
          MITCH MCCONNELL (R), Kentucky
          MARY L. LANDRIEU (D), Louisiana
          SUSAN COLLINS (R), Maine
          BARBARA MIKULSKI (D), Maryland
          THAD COCHRAN (R), Mississippi
          ROY BLUNT(R), Missouri
          JON TESTER (D), Montana
          MIKE JOHANNS (R), Nebraska
          JEANNE SHAHEEN (D), New Hampshire
          TOM UDALL (D), New Mexico
          JOHN HOEVEN(R), North Dakota
          JEFF MERKLEY (D), Oregon
          JACK REED (D), Rhode Island
          LINDSEY GRAHAM(R), South Carolina
          TIM JOHNSON (D), South Dakota
          LAMAR ALEXANDER (R), Tennessee
          PATRICK LEAHY (D), Vermont
          PATTY MURRAY (D), Washington

          • Re:Naming Names (Score:4, Interesting)

            by jcr (53032) <jcr@NOsPAM.mac.com> on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:19PM (#44386671) Journal

            Someone needs to remind these assholes that economic sanctions are an act of war.

            -jcr

            • Re:Naming Names (Score:4, Insightful)

              by dicobalt (1536225) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @08:14PM (#44387077)
              Didn't you know? Everyone is a terrorist these days. We can declare a war on COUNTRY_NAME anytime we want.
            • Re:Naming Names (Score:4, Informative)

              by kiwimate (458274) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @08:52PM (#44387283) Journal

              What on earth are you talking about and however did you get modded up to +5? Economic sanctions may come about in times of war, granted. But to claim they're an act of war is to cheapen and trivialize the horror that is such a conflict as to be named a war.

              Economic sanctions can be as minor a thing as import tariffs. They're a part of everyday international business.

              People here are getting way too emotional and need to grow up.

              • Re:Naming Names (Score:5, Insightful)

                by xQx (5744) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @09:25PM (#44387467)

                America has been waging a "War on Drugs" for many years, and now is waging a "War on Terror" (by sending an army of robotic birds out to kill foreign nationals in their homes, no less).

                But slashdot is "cheapening and trivializing" war.

              • Re:Naming Names (Score:5, Insightful)

                by Dunbal (464142) * on Thursday July 25, 2013 @11:10PM (#44387977)
                War has already been cheapened and trivialized by America. Drone strikes. Intervening in sovereign countries (Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya) to topple their governments without so much as a declaration of war. Without even bothering to cover it in the news. Et cetera.
          • by Aighearach (97333)

            I just want to point out that Senator Merkley (D-OR) has been really clear about being against broad and secret surveillance. http://www.opb.org/news/article/sen-merkley-wants-debate-patriot-act-rules-extension/ [opb.org]
            This committee action is NOT about the NSA program. It is about threatening Russia, who finds itself once again positioning itself as an anti-US power with their support of Assad, and weapons they gave Syria having been transferred to Hezbollah.

            • Yes because using the name 'Snowden' explicitly has clear links to the Syrian conflict.

          • Re:Naming Names (Score:5, Insightful)

            by maugle (1369813) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:32PM (#44386763)
            Ugh, Mikulski. She supported letting the phone companies get away with warrantless wiretapping, but God forbid anyone get away with exposing government wrongdoing. She makes me ashamed to be from Maryland, and it'll be a happy day when she's finally given the boot. Doubly so if she's replaced by someone who actually cares about personal liberty and privacy.
        • Re:Hey US... (Score:4, Interesting)

          by dbIII (701233) on Friday July 26, 2013 @12:35AM (#44388337)
          I think you are making the mistake of not thinking the PRC already owns some of those companies that the NSA is outsourcing to. Think about it. If the NSA had the headcount to check out them out properly they wouldn't have needed to outsource!
          With Snowdon we're just seeing a failure due to a very stupid way of funnelling money out of the taxpayers hands into the pockets of friends of the powerful. Doing it that way instead of in-house means an almost total lack of oversight over tens of thousands of people that could have leaked like Snowdon. I wonder how many of those are already on the payroll of foreign powers? There used to be rumours of US agencies asking Mossad to tell them what other US agencies wouldn't tell them, I wonder if the sprawl has got so bad that the Russians or Chinese could be asked as well?
      • Re:Hey US... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Nemesisghost (1720424) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:56PM (#44386455)
        While I might not support Snowden, I don't see putting sanctions on random countries as ending well for us. I personally want my government to just let it be. He stole some super secret documents that is going to embarrass our government. Try to catch the guy, but otherwise, just drop it already. Only going to piss somebody off.
        • Re:Hey US... (Score:5, Insightful)

          by amiga3D (567632) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:17PM (#44386647)

          I'm thinking that Snowden really must know way too much. I wouldn't be surprised if he had an accident if he does get asylum. Maybe hit by a bus, fall down some stairs. He could also have a heart attack. For a bunch of Dems and Repubs to agree unanimously to try to get his ass back means he's screwed. When both political mafias agree on anything that means the real rulers of the government are speaking.

          • Re:Hey US... (Score:5, Interesting)

            by zidium (2550286) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:33PM (#44386769) Homepage

            Except he sent encrypted thumb drives to undisclosed number of journalists by personal courier all over the world.

            If he dies or gets disabled or locked up and can't convincingly communicate with any number of other undisclosed fail safes, these people will all contact the journalists or otherwise publicly publish the encryption keys.

            Then all hell breaks loose.

          • Re:Hey US... (Score:4, Insightful)

            by Hairy1 (180056) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @08:43PM (#44387227) Homepage

            When you say "both" you appear to be suffering under the misaprehension that you have two political parties and a functioning democracy. Do don't. You have one party with two brands, and they all are given their marching orders by their funders. There is no more freedom in the United States than in China. The only difference is the mechanism by which the people are controlled. Tomorrow I protest against the corrupting influence of the United States in my own country.

      • by fahrbot-bot (874524) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:36PM (#44386789)

        Maybe Snowden should go to China. Now, if the US places sanctions on China, that would be funny.

        The sanctions law will probably be so hastily/poorly written that if Snowden ever returns to the US, the US will have to sanction itself :-)

        [ If we could ever harness the power of all our politicians' knees jerking, all our energy problems would be solved... ]

      • Re:Hey US... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Dunbal (464142) * on Thursday July 25, 2013 @11:06PM (#44387949)
        Yeah talk about cutting your own throat to spite your face. AFAIK Snowden has done nothing wrong. A government cannot be allowed to get away with breaking the law by swearing its workers to secrecy and then accusing them of being spies when they point out that the law is being broken. That's what tyrants do.
    • Re:Hey US... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Xicor (2738029) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:31PM (#44386749)
      i think most americans would agree with you that the US government is retarded... in our declaration of independence, it stated we had a DUTY to rebel against a government that strips us of our rights. and here they are trying to punish someone who was fulfilling his DUTY as an american.
    • It's as the US is trying *really really* hard to isolate itself from the world. Sadly, I'm getting closer to the point of saying "good riddance" in response :/

      • by AK Marc (707885) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @11:33PM (#44388103)
        I'm a few months away from a second citizenship. Then I'll be "free" of the US, should I so choose. I'll stay far far away until after the collapse. It's bad and getting worse. The US is declaring war on citizens. They know where he is. Serve him, and try him in absentia if he doesn't return. It's not that hard. Either they can prove their case or not. And once convicted, the issue is closed. Exile was generally seen as worse the prison (used when prisons were few, you'd just kill them, prisons were slave work camps), and he's in exile. So what's the problem. He's punished by exile, and that's "worse" then prison, and would have been illegal to sentence him to because it's so bad as to be against international treaty. So, unless you are sentencing him to death, he's already under a "worse" punishment than prison.

        Ow wait, the US prisons are worse now. You are more likely to die by murder in a US prison than in the worst crime ridden slums in the US. And that's under 24-hour supervision. We joke about 3rd world prisons, but ours are worse now. Though as long as the meals are not bad, we'll ignore the rapes and beatings.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:19PM (#44386083)

    Papers please! Here's a nice star for your chest. Cattle car number 13 please. This won't hurt a bit.

  • by rwven (663186) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:19PM (#44386087)

    Are these imbeciles serious? Do they think for one second about the repercussions of an action like this? If I were Russia, I'd grant him asylum just to watch the US government look like even bigger morons than they already do.

    1) US enacts sanctions against Russia
    2) Russia, and half the world return the favor.
    3) ...
    4) No profit.

    It's time for the people of this country to stop voting mainstream and replace the complete morons running this circus. There are just no words.....

  • Ugggh. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:20PM (#44386091)

    It's like watching a 5-year old having a temper tantrum.

    These clowns don't have anything more important to work on?

    • Re:Ugggh. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Fluffeh (1273756) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:31PM (#44386235)

      These clowns don't have anything more important to work on?

      Yeah, they do, that's why they are doing this. Classic misdirection 101. Can't fix the economy? Can't do your job properly? Do something loud, big that gets noticed and likely eaten right up by the average Joe-Shmo living in Nowheresville, Mediocrity. Get into the news for being the "Good guys" after the "dangerous treason-ous US-hating, communist/socialist/terrorist". Then when (and in the unlikely case of IF) people ask why you didn't do what you were supposed to do, you can cheerfully say that you were too busy keeping the US safe.

      • Re:Ugggh. (Score:5, Interesting)

        by OhANameWhatName (2688401) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:26PM (#44386721)

        that's why they are doing this. Classic misdirection 101

        I'd go as far as to suspect that Snowden is actually a plant and the whole debacle has been staged as a distraction. But it also brings secret information out into the public without the CIA / NSA / ??? having to own up to it. What's had me wondering since this whole Snowden thing blew up is .. why is he getting so much attention? There are hundreds upon hundreds of whistleblowers (search youtube for 'CIA whistleblower') out there .. but ONLY Snowden gets publicity.

        Snowden works for the CIA, he comes out publically as a 'whistleblower' with information that is already public, the media promotes him, it takes attention away from the failing government and their clandestine manipulation of the populace. And what happens? OH Russia gives him 'Asylum' where he is of course trusted and bam! He's in Russia, talking with the secret police groups over there and once again, Russia is the big bad enemy which the US HAS to beat! The red enemy rises again!

        Always remember .. the NEOCON's philosophy is to unite a people by pointing out a common enemy (real or ficticious) around which to rally. And never forget that these NEOCON's don't respect your intelligence .. they expect you to be blind, obedient and well programmed by the media. What happens when Russia falls? Generate a new 'threat' ... invisible terrorism! If that fails? Invisible cyber war! If that fails? Setup a circumstance for Russia to be the big bad enemy again!

        It worked before, it's bound to work again ... right???

    • Re:Ugggh. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by UnknownSoldier (67820) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:35PM (#44386265)

      Exactly! How about government being

      a) accountable
      b) honest
      c) transparent

      So this bullshit about government over stepping its Constitutional Authority doesn't happen in the first place.

      /sarcasm Nah, that would involve work. Better to keep lying to the people like ... censored by bullshit National Security Theater...

    • Re:Ugggh. (Score:5, Informative)

      by reboot246 (623534) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:07PM (#44386553) Homepage
      Do you mean the same clowns who wouldn't vote against the NSA the other night? They don't represent us. Hell, they don't even think about us.
    • These clowns don't have anything more important to work on?

      Of course. No doubt right now someone is drafting directions to rename the "Black Russian" to the "Black Freedom" at all congressional events.

  • Insanity (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jonfr (888673) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:20PM (#44386093) Homepage

    This is completely insane, made by people who are also completely insane. This is calling burning bridges and not looking back, one day in the not so distant future U.S it self might find it self on the other end of a sanction (after U.N headquarters are moved, or U.N itself is disbanded).

    In any case, this is both stupid and insane by the U.S congress doing this. I wonder what threats NSA did bring to the table to get this through.

    • I wonder what threats NSA did bring to the table to get this through.

      Never doubt that the NSA / CIA has coercive data on any politician they need to threaten to get insane crap done. They're tapping phones, using cameras to record citizen's actions and monitoring internet activity. Do you think the politicians are excluded from that targetting?

      Politicians are prime candidates for total monitoring. If John Kerry farts, the NSA knows the time, smell and cause.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:23PM (#44386123)

    This "United Spies of America" with their OWN legal system and their OWN courts and Constitution...
    THIS is essentially why the Revolutionary War was fought, freedom from this kind of authoritarian nonsense.

  • by maliqua (1316471) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:23PM (#44386127)

    before the rest of the world decides to put trade sanctions on them. Few countries are as reliant on imports as the united states, the world would get along just fine, your people however would starve to death or die of dehydration

    keep pushing assholes the world doesn't give a fuck about your pathetic ultimatums

    • It's all posturing (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Overzeetop (214511) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:39PM (#44386301) Journal

      Few countries provide the kind of consumers with disposable income/available credit and an insatiable desire to buy shit like the US. You don't close the door on your biggest client. This posturing is aimed at the central and south American countries, not at Russia.

      And it's unlikely that Russia will decide to take in Snowden. Remember - they have leakers and political refugees, too. We (the US and Russia) are fare more similar than dissimilar. Like flirting with the waiter/waitress at a restaurant in front of your significant other, it's being done for amusement, and everybody gets their jollies out of it. Getting the phone number of your server and then shacking up isn't on the menu for either side in this dysfunctional but stable relationship.

    • by OhANameWhatName (2688401) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:34PM (#44386771)

      your people however would starve to death or die of dehydration

      These politicians don't care about the people. They're only in it for their self interests. If imports fail, who gives a fuck .. the wealthy elite will be fine, only the people dependent upon them will starve to death. And there's nothing the people can do .. the people are even shouting for citizen disarmament while the politicians build up more and more armed power for the state.

      What was once a fine example of shining freedom has devolved into a plutocratic dictatorship. Fine citizens of the USA .. wake the fuck up.

    • by Livius (318358) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:48PM (#44386895)

      Without imported manufactured goods, the US would be forced to return to full employment. They are not certainly not going to let that happen.

  • Let them (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Reliable Windmill (2932227) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:24PM (#44386143)

    Let this terrorist government burn their bridges. They need the world more than the world needs them. They deserve nothing more than having to crawl on their knees to get back with Europe, Russia and in particular China.

  • by cphilo (768807) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:26PM (#44386169)
    All Snowden did was let the us, (ya know...We the People of these United States) know that the secret courts, and secret spying was running amuck. As we employ these people, we should have a say as to what is funded. How would an employer feel if he had a secret project in his company that had an unlimited budget. Ya think he might want to know details? You think the head of the project should tell him that he did not need to know, security and all that. And that he had no right to know what was going on? This is beyond bizarre
    • by Samantha Wright (1324923) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:13PM (#44386617) Homepage Journal
      Snowden knows a lot more than he's told the general public. I'm pretty sure when they say they're afraid he'll tell them everything else, that's their genuine worry. Remember Setec Astronomy.
    • by shadowofwind (1209890) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @09:34PM (#44387527)

      Ironically, when I managed a drone surveillance related research project, and about a quarter of my budget disappeared, my company blocked my ability to see where it went. My government customer didn't seem to care very much either.

      A reason there's less outrage in congress about the NSA spying, is they've grown so accustomed their own corruption that they don't recognize it anymore. They diss Snowden's integrity as moral preening because that's the only explanation for his behavior they can understand.

  • A better idea (Score:5, Insightful)

    by kwiqsilver (585008) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:26PM (#44386171)
    Can we send these Senators, the NSA/CIA/DHS/DOD/DOiJ fascists, and anybody who opposed Justin Amash's NSA-limiting amendment (like Barack "greater government transparency and protection for whistle blowers" Obama) to Russia and get Snowden back?
    • by c (8461)

      Can we send these Senators, the NSA/CIA/DHS/DOD/DOiJ fascists, and anybody who opposed Justin Amash's NSA-limiting amendment ... to Russia and get Snowden back?

      What kind of idiot would agree to a deal like that? It'd be like trading a blurry Polaroid of a garden gnome for an original Picasso.

  • by youngatheart (1922394) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:28PM (#44386197)

    So we know that the NSA lied to Congress and about half of the representatives want to stop the spying that Snowden told us about. That would seem to make the implication that Congress has realized that the few people who actually seem to care are in the majority against it. So Snowden shouldn't be that big a fish. We have federal laws against illegal immigration but the feds have decided not to put any effort into enforcement since it isn't popular. We have federal laws against marajuana, but with states making it legal, the feds have decided not to put any effort into enforcement. Now we have one guy and enforcement isn't popular, but yet they're making a big deal of enforcement?

    On the one hand, I kinda get it, you have to enforce the laws to keep your secrets safe. On the other hand they're doing that already and have made it impossible for Snowden to return to the US without likely imprisonment. Isn't that more than enough? I'm surprised they'd do something to harm international relations over it.

    Is it possible that Snowden has more information they're afraid that he'll turn over to another government? If he does, what could it be to be worth this witchhunt? It reminds me of Assuange which became a much bigger witchhunt than it seemed to warrant. I'm beginning to think that there must be some really ugly skeletons in the closet if Congress is this worried about people spilling secrets.

    • by Nidi62 (1525137) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:14PM (#44386627)

      Is it possible that Snowden has more information they're afraid that he'll turn over to another government? If he does, what could it be to be worth this witchhunt? It reminds me of Assuange which became a much bigger witchhunt than it seemed to warrant. I'm beginning to think that there must be some really ugly skeletons in the closet if Congress is this worried about people spilling secrets.

      The answer is simple actually: Snowden makes them look bad. They had their hearings with the NSA, the NSA lied to their faces (probably with the blessing of Congress) and they went along with the lie. By doing so it allowed Congress to appear to be protecting peoples' privacy and listening to their constituents, which helps get them reelected. And that is the key. Congress has no longer become about leading; it is about getting re-elected. At one point politics was a sacrifice: it was something you did not to make yourself rich (granted early politicians in the US tended to be on the wealthy side anyway), you did it because you cared about your neighbors, your state, your country. Politicians held real jobs, as merchants or teachers or lawyers-politician was a side job. But now you have people who are professional politicians. They like the power, the influence, the money. Their goal is not to serve people, or to lead; their goal is simply to get reelected. The best way to get reelected in the US is to do nothing while looking like you are doing something. That is why you have all these sub committees and hearings on everything from steroid use in baseball to whether or not women really need birth control. Ever notice how, in hearings, the person being questioned rarely actually gets asked a question? They aren't about getting answers, they act as a soapbox for the committee members to get soundbites and to allow them to say that they got tough on "current issue or outrage of the month".

  • Priorities (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cervesaebraciator (2352888) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:29PM (#44386203)

    First, let me say that I think Snowden has done us all a service. Setting that aside, however, the Senate has some seriously skewed priorities. One of the real foreign policy accomplishments of the President's first term was the 'reset' with Russia, which helped improve relations after the mistakes made during the Bush era. Among other things, this allowed the supply of our troops in Afghanistan over Russian territory when it hit the fan in Pakistan. I'm certainly not a fan of that war, but if we're going to have soldiers over there it's much better that they be supplied.

    Is the Senate really willing to sacrifice the gains made with Russia "to get a 29-year-old hacker" (as he's been termed) who likely has already given away all the information he possesses? Is it worth the strength of our relationship with one of the world's great powers to get at one guy whom Lindsey Graham regards as a traitor? What exactly are the Senate's priorities anyway?

  • As per usual (Score:5, Insightful)

    by msobkow (48369) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:30PM (#44386219) Homepage Journal

    As per usual the narcissistic US government thinks it runs the world. Fuck you all.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:30PM (#44386221)

    I plan to enact sanctions against any US "lawmaker" who pledges to enact sanctions against an entire nation -- purely because that nation is considering a valid request for humanitarian asylum. The United States has tortured and indefinitely held prisoners, and continues to do so. Hell, I'm a US citizen and I'm scared of the raw psychopathy my country's government has displayed these past twelve or so years. Until there are trials and those who tortured are held accountable, the reputation of the United States will continue to suffer worldwide, full stop.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:33PM (#44386243)

    Predictable as it was, this is about the worst US could do in this case. For the first, it indirectly validates many of Snowdens claims about what the US is doing. For the second, it lends support to any request for asylum - after this there can be no doubt that he can not expect a fair trial in the US, when the whole system is so clearly out to get him. It plays directly in Snowderns favor - what he needs now is more publicity and escalation of the matter. Before he was an international incident, Snowden could have quietly disappeared after the noise settled down. Now his disappearance will be noticed, and be front page news, even many years from now.

  • by WindBourne (631190) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @06:38PM (#44386297) Journal
    the dems have joined them.

    Snowden is gone. We should just SHUT UP and allow him to run around for a while. At some point, he will want to come back to the west. We can capture him then. However, if we act this nuts threatening all other nations, then at some point, a Russian or Chinese will run and they will want him back.
    This is about as insane as the issue with assanage. The guy is NOT an American, nor did he swear allegience to our nation or to not reveal secrets. As such, we have NO rights to Assanage. To go after him like this is just plain foolish.
  • by Sloppy (14984) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:00PM (#44386479) Homepage Journal

    The Senate Appropriations Committee [senate.gov] supposedly did this unanimously so not a single one of these people can claim it's not their fault:

    BARBARA A. MIKULSKI - Maryland
    CHRIS COONS - Delaware
    DAN COATS - Indiana
    DIANNE FEINSTEIN - California
    JACK REED - Rhode Island
    JEANNE SHAHEEN - New Hampshire
    JEFF MERKLEY - Oregon
    JERRY MORAN - Jerry Moran
    JOHN BOOZMAN - Arkansas
    JOHN HOEVEN - North Dakota
    JON TESTER - Montana
    LAMAR ALEXANDER - Tennessee
    LINDSEY GRAHAM - South Carolina
    LISA MURKOWSKI - Alaska
    MARK BEGICH - Alaska
    MARK KIRK - Illinois
    MARK PRYOR - Arkansas
    MARY L. LANDRIEU - Louisiana
    MIKE JOHANNS - Nebraska
    MITCH MCCONNELL - Kentucky
    PATRICK J. LEAHY - Vermont
    PATTY MURRAY - Washington
    RICHARD C. SHELBY - Alabama
    RICHARD J. DURBIN - Illinois
    ROY BLUNT - Missouri
    SUSAN COLLINS - Maine
    THAD COCHRAN - Mississippi
    TIM JOHNSON - South Dakota
    TOM HARKIN - Iowa
    TOM UDALL - New Mexico

    But maybe this was one of those "voice votes" where it wasn't really unanimous. It's being reported as unanimous, though, so the disgraced need to issue press releases disclaiming responsibility immediately, if they want to squirm out of this. I live in NM so I blame you, Tom Udall. Explain yourself.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:10PM (#44386595)

    I remember a few years ago this Democratic senator making impassioned speeches for protection for whistleblowers [techdirt.com] and against Bush's wars in the middle-east, gitmo prison and NSA spying on Americans.

    I wish I could remember his name.

    Yeah that's sarcasm, mod me down.

  • I'm confused (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Ziest (143204) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:18PM (#44386657) Homepage

    Let me see if I've got this right. An agency of the federal government, with almost no oversight, has been spending billions of dollars spying on US citizens without a warrant or probable cause in violation of the 4th amendment to the US Constitution, the founding document of this republic, as well many other laws and congress is OK with this. However, some low-level contractor tells the American people they are being spied on and congress want everyone to drop what they are doing and use everything they have to go after this guy. This includes forcing an airplane with diplomatic ammunity to land so it can be searched in violation of G*D know how many treaties.

    Have I got this right? Well! I'm glad I live in a free country! USA! USA!

  • by slashmydots (2189826) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @07:50PM (#44386901)
    Maybe he should sneak into the US. Then they'd have to sanction themselves, which would be the ultimate troll.
  • by sandbagger (654585) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @08:15PM (#44387085)
    After the Battle of Trafalgar, Napoleon decided that Great Britain should be blockaded. Any country that did business with the British would be his enemy. Well, um, it was the largest seagoing power at the time. Countries HAD to do business with the British. So, Napoleon dragged his empire into a death of 1,000 cuts by getting involved in needless conflicts. Snowdon basically has to go to China, France, Russia or someone who prefers to have an arm's length relationship with the US now. Whoever does house him may end up making a lot of political hay from this.
  • by coldsalmon (946941) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @09:41PM (#44387579)

    That sounds like an unconstitutional bill of attainder to me: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_of_attainder [wikipedia.org]
    It is "an act of a legislature declaring a person or group of persons guilty of some crime and punishing them without privilege of a judicial trial." This is prohibited by Article I, Section 9 of the US Constitution.

  • by ravyne (858869) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @11:22PM (#44388033)
    Wake up and smell the roses -- Just a day after your congress failed to amend a bill with an article to de-fund the domestic spy net exposed by Edward Snowden, they made sure to unanimously amend another bill with a different article to sanction an entire country--site unseen-- for harboring him from prosecution for what is essentially whistle-blowing. They are employing historic pressure already, having called on allies to ground a diplomat's plane he was rumored to be aboard.

    Anyone who doubts the authenticity of Snowden's information, or the level of access he had in his position, need only look at the effort being expended by this government to reel him in to cast all doubt aside.

    I would at least applaud them for being internally-consistent, if it weren't for the fact that they're only consistent against the ideals this country is supposed to hold dear.
  • by Entropius (188861) on Friday July 26, 2013 @12:06AM (#44388247)

    An American citizen told the rest of the American citizens (and, by extension) the world what their government was up to.

    Suppose he goes to (say) Ecuador. So now the American government wants to use force against any American who wants to engage in mutually-beneficial trade with an Ecuadorian, to the mutual harm of both? Neither of them has anything to do with geopolitics -- they just want to trade bananas for tractors, or whatever it is, and really wish their governments would fuck right off and let them do it.

    We have governments because they're supposed to make our lives better, but how is this wankery good for anyone?

The first Rotarian was the first man to call John the Baptist "Jack." -- H.L. Mencken

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