Academy Award© - winning director Oliver Stone, who brought Platoon, Born on the Fourth of July, Wall Street and JFK to the big screen, tackles the most important and fascinating true story of the 21st century. Snowden, the politically-charged, pulse-pounding thriller starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Shailene. Woodley, reveals the incredible untold personal story of Edward Snowden, the polarizing figure who exposed shocking illegal surveillance activities by the NSA and became one of the most wanted men in the world. He is considered a hero by some, and a traitor by others. No matter which you believe, the epic story of why he did it, who he left behind, and how he pulled it off makes for one of the most compelling films of the year.
Julian Assange and other whistleblowers including Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden, have revealed much of what we now know about how and why America, Israel, Australia and their allies have waged bloody wars against the peoples of the Middle East, Central Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe. As a result of these wars several millions have died since 1990. If the US-NATO aligned powers can get their way, they intend much of the same for the people of Latin America, Russia and East Asia. On these and related issues, the Wheeler Centre conducted a superb interview with Assange tonight 30 September 2015 and there seems to be a podcast there at http://www.wheelercentre.com/events/julian-assange. Check it out.
To help them plan to overcome domestic opposition to their plans for war, the United States' NSA and other spy agencies have been listening to all of our 'phone conversations and reading all our e-mails, at least since 2007, purportedly to fight 'terrorism'.
Curiously, the 'Islamist' terrorists the intelligence agencies claim to be protecting us from seem strikingly similar to the terrorists, armed and paid for by the United States and its allies, who have, according to our newsmedia, been fighting against the "hated Syrian dictator", President Bashar al-Assad, since March 2011. See Julian Assange’s Wikileaks Files, Chapter 10, “Syria”.
In the face of these lies about the Syrian President, Syrians have, in fact, rallied behind their government since March 2011.
According to Haaretz which can hardly be accused of bias towards the Syrian government, 88.7% of the 73.42% of eligible Syrian voters who voted in the Presidential elections of 4 June 2014, voted for President Bashar al-Assad. 
But for having stood by their government at the ballot box and with the Syrian Army in their neighbourhoods against the terrorists, the Syrian people have paid a terrible price. By one estimate as many as 250,000 have been killed and several millions have been displaced internally and externally.
Now, most conveniently for advocates of dragnet surveillance, the Western world also faces terrorism, if on a vastly smaller scale, from some of the same terrorists who have been fighting the people for Syria.
Those who have waged illegal wars against the people of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Yemen, and in previous generation against the people of Vietnam cannot be trusted with all our personal data. Dragnet Surveillance must be stopped.
Ask your local member of Parliament - or at election time - all candidates seeking your vote - what he/she has done and intends to do to stop the surveillance by the NSA of your emails and your 'phone conversations.
Also, ask your local member of the Federal Parliament or of the Victorian Parliament, how he/she intends to stand up for Julian Assange that courageous whistleblower and native of Victoria, Australia.
Appendix : Internet resources
 See /SyriansVotedForPresidentBasharAlAssad
This article gives a 'good cop bad cop' analysis of Australia's two party history since the fall of the Whitlam Government. It looks at the evolution of economic theory and foreign involvement in wars over this period.
As United States whistleblower Christopher Boyce (aka 'the Falcon') revealed on SBS Dateline on 18 February 2014, after the CIA helped to destroy the Whitlam Labor government in 1975 it attempted to consolidate its victory by buying influence amongst newer leaders of the Labor Party.
Consequently, when Labor finally won office again on 5 March 1983, the reforms of the Whitlam government were abandoned. Instead the Labor government of former ACTU President Bob Hawke helped pioneer in Australia the adoption of neo-liberal 'free market' economic policies that would later be adopted around much of the rest of the world. Australian finance and industry was exposed to globalised international competition, including the removal of government control over the Australian dollar's exchange rate (i.e. the “floating of the dollar”) by then Treasurer Paul Keating in December 1983. Government services and the public servant numbers were reduced. Also publicly owned assets were privatised with no electoral mandate – QANTAS, TAA (the domestic air service), the Australian National Line shipping company and the Commonwealth Bank.
Since 1983, Labor governments have generally played the role of 'good cop' whilst Liberal/National Coalition governments have generally played the role of 'bad cop'. Prior to his defeat in March 1983, 'bad cop' Malcolm Fraser imposed a 12 month wages freeze during which the value of real wages fell 9.1% as a result of cost of living increases not being matched by wage rises. Subsequently the 'good cop' Hawke Labor government with the help of ACTU President Cliff Dolan imposed the Prices and Incomes Accord on the Trade union movement. The accord allowed restricted wage rises and promised increases in social spending.
Labor has also backtracked away from Gough Whitlam's opposition to war. In 1991 the Hawke government sent troops to fight in Operation Desert Storm after Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein had been tricked into believing that the United States would not retaliate should Iraq take action against neighbouring Kuwait for slant-drilling into Iraq's oil fields. Sanctions imposed against Iraq after its 1990 invasion continued until until after Saddam Hussein was overthrown after the 2003 invasion. This continued even after bleeding heart' Paul Keating became PM in December 1991. Many hundreds of thousands of Iraqis died as a result. One estimate puts the death toll at more than 1.5 million including 750,000 children under the age of 5. Other wars, which gained bipartisan support from the Labor Party include the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 and the invasion of Libya in 2011.
Both sides of Australian politics, with a only a few honourable exceptions, are shamefully complicit in the United States' proxy terrorist war against Syria which started in March 2011. In that war, 210,000 Syrians have so far died at the hands of jihadist invaders from nearly every corner of the Muslim world and a number of other countries . Australia expelled the Syrian ambassador under the pretext that the Syrian government had allegedly massacred 108 of its citizens, including 34 women and 49 children at Houla on 25 May. This allegation that the Syrian government had massacred Syrians in a region particularly renowned for its strong support for the Syrian government is contrary to common sense and all credible eyewitness and forensic evidence.
Both sides of parliament have also sided with the neo-Nazi government of Ukraine which came to power in February 2014 as a result of a CIA-orchestrated coup. Both sides have also unquestioningly accepted the lying mainstream newsmedia narrative that the 298 passengers, including 27 Australians, aboard Malaysian Airways Flight MH17 were murdered by East Ukrainian self-defence forces with a BUK surface to air missile on 17 March 2014. This is contrary to all eyewitness and forensic evidence, including the photos of the pilot cockpits apparently riddled with cannon shells on both sides indicate that MH17 was shot down by 2 Ukrainian Sukhoi 17 fighters.
Both Labor and the Coalition have voted in Parliament to support dragnet collection of all our Intenet and telephone communication meta-data by our spy agencies. This is in spite of whistleblower Edward Snowden's warning that this has never prevented even one act of terrorism.
The above are only some examples of how corrupt Australian and global politics has become since 1975. However while there is still a free and open Internet, and a trade union movement with capable leaders we still stand a chance of reversing the damage and re-establish a quality of democracy comparable to what we once enjoyed.
You can help by using the Internet to help tell the truth, and by contributing an to http://candobetter.net and other alternative newsmedia sites and by spreading the word. This article is published at http://candobetter.net/node/4321 .
Speaking via videolink at a Paris conference organised by pressure group Amnesty International, Edward Snowden, who famously exposed the United States' National Security Agency's (NSA) dragnet PRISM surveillance program in June 2013, said he was "deeply saddened and to a great extent angered' by what he read.
Glenn Greenwald has only released 1% of the Snowden documents and those were approved and released after over 100 meetings with US and British intelligence. Some documents are being held back to be released with Greenwald's book. And Greenwald's possession of the documents were the basis of his new $250 million media venture with PayPal's Pierre Omidyar raising ethical questions of checkbook journalism. But even more troubling is the close relationship between the NSA and Omidyar's PayPal.
Whistleblower Sibel Edmonds of BoilingFrogsPost.com has been publicly asking questions of Greenwald and Snowden to determine the ethics and purpose of the Snowden leaks.
In a one hour interview, Edward Snowden, who as a private contractor, worked for the United States' National Security Agency (NSA), reveals all about the NSA's dragnet surveillance program. This program has captured and stored everything we have ever communicated through the Internet or telephone in recent years. He reveals that this program has not stopped one act of terrorism. Near the end, Edward also provides practical suggestions about how you can protect your on-line privacy.
Edward Snowden has received a residence permit in Russia, which is valid for three years, starting on August 1, the former NSA contractor’s lawyer announced. A letter from the US Prosecutor General’s office to the Russian Ministry of Justice has been dismissed as insufficient grounds for handing Snowden over to the US. Article republished from http://rt.com/news/178680-snowden-stay-russia-residence/
“On the first of August he received a three-year residence permit,” lawyer Anatoly Kucherena told reporters.
He added that Snowden had not asked for political asylum.
“He will be able to travel freely within the country and go abroad. He’ll be able to stay abroad for not longer than three months,” Kucherena said.
The lawyer said Snowden will hold a press conference in Russia as soon as it will be possible.
The former NSA contractor will be able to apply for the Russian citizenship in five years.
“A foreign citizen, who got a residence permit, will certainly be able to apply for citizenship,” Kucherena said.
Edward Snowden was granted temporary asylum in Russia a year ago.
He left the US and went to Hong Kong in May 2013, from where he leaked confidential files to mass media concerning the NSA’s overwhelming surveillance.
Snowden then planned to seek refuge in Cuba, but found himself stranded at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport, after his American passport was annulled by US authorities.
Kucherena dismissed a letter from the US Prosecutor General’s office to the Russian Ministry of Justice as insufficient grounds for handing Snowden over to the US.
“There has been no request which complies with international law,” the lawyer said.
Real insider information about the surveillance system in the United States, its history and its vulnerabilities. In this excellent interview, Binney is asked by RT's Sophie Shevardnadze of Sophie Co what he thinks will happen to Edward Snowden if he comes home to "man up" as John Kerry suggested, apparently with a straight face. Binney answers by describing what happened to him when he started asking official questions and how he managed to get the FBI to stop harassing him. Video and full transcript inside.
Bill Binney interviewed by Sophie Co about USA surveillance
It’s a year since Edward Snowden first came out with revelations that turned the world upside down. What once sounded like Orwellian conspiracy theory turned out to be true – we all are being watched over by the Big Brother in Washington. Innumerable questions arise. What now? Has something changed 12 months later? Should we forget about privacy and safety when we are online? Sophie asks NSA veteran and whistleblower, the precursor of Snowden, Bill Binney.
Sophie Shevardnadze: I just want to go a little bit backward – before the program was exposed by Edward Snowden, ‘The Stellar Wind’ , there was something called ‘ThinThread’, which you helped create. But it was overlooked in favor of what the NSA has now. Why so, what was wrong with it?
Bill Binney: I think the main problem was that it didn’t cost enough money. In other words it didn’t support a large operation, a large set of contractors, a larger organization. So if it was cheap and efficient, why wasn’t it the thing they wanted to do? They wanted to build an empire, and build an industrial base.
SS: But it also had something to do with privacy of your citizens?
BB: Oh yes, we built-in privacy and capacity to get privacy, not just for US citizens, but everybody in the world, and that was something, I guess, they didn’t particularly care to have. So in other words it was one of the first things they eliminated from that program when they adapted part of it. What that meant was that they now had the capacity to look into all their political enemies internally, in the country, or anybody in the country that they wanted to. So it’s a very useful program for law enforcement in particular, who would be looking at the entire population and see if everybody is doing anything that was illegal, and they could use that data then to go after them. That’s what they’ve been doing.
SS: Alright, so you are saying the internet’s purpose was to monitor what people are doing and so that would be possible to nip out anybody’s life with all the collected data, and you are one of the creators… now, surely you saw the dangers – did you suspect it could be abused?
BB: Yes, and that’s why I’ve built in those protections to make that impossible to happen, and that was the whole idea for encrypting the information that that would identify individuals, and in fact, filter out any data that wasn’t relevant, any targets that you weren’t interested in. So we had a focus to tack in terms of collecting only information that was relevant to targets of interest, and we let everybody in the world go by. Plus, we encrypted all the information about the individuals so that until we had provable cause on them, we did not know their true identities, so that made it impossible to have, say, NSA analysts go in and do the love intelligence, that they are or have been doing at NSA, which is looking at their wives and girlfriends and seeing if they are cheating on them.
Well, you could do that if didn’t encrypt the information and didn’t collect it, or if you collect it and don’t encrypt it. But if you did what we did, which was filter it out right up front and then encrypt any attributes that came through, you could achieve that, and it would be possible for law enforcement to use that data either.
SS: So once you’ve thought it was something awfully wrong with the whole thing, you went through official channels to fight the NSA, and you failed. Now, could you have done the same thing that Snowden did?
BB: Yes, I suppose, I could have, but that’s not the… I, at the time, thought that if I raise these concerns internally, in the intelligence committees and also in the courts or in the Inspector-General’s Office, the Department of Justice or Department of Defense, that those would be addressed, because it’s an obvious violation of our Constitution and constitutional rights of the citizens, all the citizens of the US. That’s what our laws would cover. We didn’t have laws that would cover intelligence operations against foreigners, but we did when we are talking about looking at domestic intelligence. So I thought that by going to those particular points, that would be a way to turn it around.
SS: But Snowden was also saying that he sent a couple of letters to the senior officers and he didn’t get any reaction – seems like you didn’t get any reaction either, right?
BB: Well, yes, we did get a reaction, they sent the FBI at us to intimidate us and otherwise keep us quiet, and also they’ve blacklisted us and things like that, so the entire system attacked us. He saw that too, and I think that was part of the review that he was doing on what happened to whistleblowers before him, that’s what helped him make his decision.
SS: When Snowden went public with the revelations, what did you feel? Was it a relief for you? What did you think to yourself?
BB: Well, I thought there was another whistleblower who was actually taking documentation of the abuses outside of the government, and releasing them publicly, I already basically knew all this staff happening, and that was basically what I was trying to oppose internally, in government channels initially. So he saw that, he saw what happened to us, he saw what happened to Tom Drake and what happened to Chelsea Manning and also Julian Assange, so I think he said to himself, and I think he said this publicly that what helped him make the decision to take documentation of the allegations he was going to make outside of agency and expose them publicly.
SS: But what did you feel as someone who was fighting the same thing he was fighting – he went public with it, he made this known to the world, that everyone is being surveilled. He changed a world in a way, for better or for worse, I don’t know.
BB: Well I think he has exposed the dangers of this mass surveillance, this is the, if you want to call it ‘The Stasi’ on super-steroids, or J. Edgar Hoover on super-steroids, being able to monitor and have leverage and knowledge about everybody’s life in the world. That’s a very powerful set of knowledge to have and to trust to government, to any government, really.
So his whole concept was to show that documentation, and to me, when he showed that documentation, that simply gave me leverage to say “You see, this is what I’ve been talking about,” and now we can point to it in the public domain as direct evidence, and it’s governments evidence, so it’s direct evidence of what the government was doing.
SS: Like you’ve said, we all remember what happened to Chelsea Manning, Snowden is living in an exile… Now do you feel like the harsh punishments will actually stop future whistleblowers from speaking out?
BB: I think that’s exactly what’s happening now, I mean, even when it comes to reports trying to get information from the intelligence officials, they would usually give things off the record to them, or talk to them off the record, they won’t even do that now – because they are afraid of prosecution and persecution by the government. They’ve build in this tactic of fear into all people working for the government, so that they are now afraid to do this and they are intimidated by the government from the things they’ve with Tom Drake and Bradley [Chelsea] Manning, and Julian Assange and others, so they’re showing what they intend to do to you if you become a whistleblower.
SS:People, I guess, they wonder, how come you got away with it, and Snowden didn’t and neither did Bradley Manning. I mean, you got raided and investigated by the FBI, but its nearly not as much as what happened to Manning or Snowden, who is an exile.
BB: Yes. The reason that happened was because they attempted to indict myself plus others, the other whistleblowers from NSA and what we’re doing was fabricating evidence and trumping up a charge of conspiracy and various other charges that they were going to file against us. As part of that process, I also had that material – they probably thought I didn’t, but I had it, because I’ve shared it with other people and got it back from them after they raided us.
That gave me all of the expiatory data and the data that showed malicious prosecution on the part of the Department of Justice. So I made sure they understood that I had all this evidence and if they wanted to court and trial, I would expose them for this malicious prosecution and do a counter-charge against them. So they dropped all those charges at that point. That’s how I stopped them.
SS: So you got lucky. But in his last interview Snowden said that he really wants to go home, like there’s no other place he would rather be, and John Kerry told him to man up and return. But the best-case scenario would be he goes to jail, right? Do you think Snowden could trust the system of Justice, as Kerry said he should?
BB: If he can get a fair trial, yeah.
SS: Do you think he can trust the system?
BB: I don’t believe he’d ever get a fair trial here, no. He can’t trust the system at all.
SS: Why not?
BB: I think what John Kerry was saying, plus other officials in the in the row, because they manipulate things in the court. Because of national security they make it impossible for you to raise evidence, or they make it impossible for you to say things about certain things they were doing – because they claim “national security” or they claim they don’t have standing or some other reason, to keep it out of the court. So you can’t address the real issues. So you can’t get a real fair trial under those conditions.
I will also point out that John Kerry and all the other people in the US government is talking about the accountability, they need to own up to it too, they need to be accountable for their actions of violating our Constitution and rights and privileges under the Constitution to the citizens of the US. They are hiding behind secrecy and lies, and secret interpretations, and secret courts, to build a secret government with secret laws, to cover themselves. That’s what they are doing, and they need to own up to that, and they’re not doing that.
SS: James Clapper from national intelligence called on Snowden to return and expose documents. Do you think he should?
BB: I don’t believe he can. My understanding is that he turned over all those documents to reporters and no longer has them. So I don’t believe that would be possible for him to return them.
SS: But nobody knows how much exactly he took. Snowden said that himself as well. Why was security so vulnerable at the NSA as to allow this?
BB: There is a story behind that. I’ll tell you what the story is. I, basically, proposed that we - back in early 90s, 1992-93, somewhere in there - that we do a program that would monitor all the activity on the network that NSA had anywhere in the world. So we ended up with two opposing camps when we made that proposal. One was the analysts that said “I don’t want you monitoring me and what I’m doing.” They didn’t want anybody looking over their shoulder – basically what they were saying. The other camp was all of the managers in the NSA, because they didn’t want anybody watching what they were doing with the money, because they are playing a shell game with money. They keep moving money from one program to another, to try to prop up failing programs and things like that. But also they didn’t want anybody giving any kind of assessment on return of investment on any of the programs they were running, because they wanted the freedom to do things the way they wanted without any interference.
So given those two camps of opposition, that meant we were absolutely not going to do that kind of monitoring program. And when you didn’t do that, that meant that Snowden, for example, could go on the network, download anything he wanted to, and nobody really was following him. So he could take anything he wanted, and they are still trying, I guess, to find out what he took, because they don’t really know, because they didn’t monitor that log.
SS: Do you know what I never understood? The NSA collects so much information about everything and everybody – what do you guys do with it there? Surely it is just too much to analyze it all, no?
BB: Yeah, see, that’s one of the major problems they are having at that point; it is that by taking all this data, what they are doing is burying their analysts in the mound of massive amounts of data, so that they can’t figure out real threats or anything of significant intelligence. That’s basically why the White House issued their White House Big Data Initiative – I think in early 2012 – which was soliciting companies and private industry to come up with algorithms that would go through the large datasets to try to figure out what was important in that data for people to look at.
Well, that was primarily what we did with our program ‘Thin Thread’. The point was that that was that focus to tack, and that’s really what they are asking for now, because they are beginning to realize that they are buried in data and their analysts are dysfunctional because of it.
SS: Now the latest Snowden leak suggests that NSA is taking facial recognition tech to a whole new level, sorting out images from personal emails, texts, Facebook, even video conferences. Why does the NSA need a massive photo database of people who are just minding their own business? I mean, millions of people who are not representing any threat to anybody or anything.
BB: Well, again, that’s that idea of taking in this bulk acquisition of information, so you have it in case you need it. That’s the point that they are taking. But the real issue was to use it for law enforcement. So if they use it for law enforcement, then it does become useful. That is especially if they can map a picture of you to your name and all your attributes and all your activity. Then that adds that dimension to your profile for the law enforcement people.
SS: Another interesting thing that Snowden said in the interview was that his former colleagues at the NSA were shocked by the agency’s activities once he actually shared his concern with them. Is that something that you also encountered, do people inside the agency really don’t understand what’s going on?
BB: Yes, I think that’s true of a large number of them. Even Ed Loomis, who was one of our co-whistleblowers here, didn’t realize that this domestic spying was going on until just a few years ago. He didn’t realize that this was happening. He basically also didn’t want to believe that, because he thought we wouldn’t do that as a country. But in fact, we are and that is going on, and now he realizes that’s true. But up until just a few years ago, he didn’t believe it.
SS: Now, just a bit more about Snowden. I don’t know if you watched his last interview, but with all this new attention he is getting right now, there is a feeling that Snowden is no longer seen as an enemy only, and according to recent polls most Americans are actually supportive of his revelations about government’s surveillance programs and everything. Could Snowden become a hero figure?
BB: I think he is probably drifting that way anyway in terms of public opinion over here in this country anyway, because what people are looking at after all this materials coming out is that they are now realizing how invasive the surveillance is that the US government is doing on the population here in the US, as well as around the world.
For us, though, it’s a particular invasion, because it is a violation of our 1st, 4th and 5th and even, to a degree, the 6th Amendment to the Constitution. I guess our people are starting to get concerned in it and irritated by it, simply because it is a clear violation of the foundation of our country and the laws that we have through government, and all of our law enforcement, and all of our government officials. The oath of office that they take is to protect and defend that Constitution and they all violated it. In fact, in the Reuters article, which talked about law-enforcement using this material, they said - one of the Federal officers said - “This is such a great program. I hope we can just keep it secret.” Well, having a secret operation in a secret court, making a secret interpretation of laws and doing all of this in secret is not compatible with a democratic republic. That is not compatible with democracy at all, and that’s what the problem the public here in the US is really seeing.
SS: I want to take this issue and broaden it a little bit to international scale, because NSA spying isn’t only a domestic issue. US relations have been hurt with key allies and also with China, for example. They are very strained over this whole spying allegations. We know that both are snooping at each other, we know that. What now? What do you think is next?
BB: It’s hard to tell. I think a lot of this is for public show, but negotiations are going on in secret, part from one to another one country, they’ll show what the difference is. I mean, if they start raising tariffs and things like that, that can show what’s going on behind the scenes, but what they are saying in public is primarily for public consumption.
SS: But just because you know how it works, really quickly, who do you think is doing a better job of spying at each other, or it is pretty much on the same level?
BB: No, I think the US is much better at it than anybody else, simply because they basically own the fiber optic network of the world, or at least 80 percent of it. So that’s like the home-team advantage, giving you advantage of having the access to all of that fiber around the world. It gives you that extra access to information that others don’t have.
SS: Some of the most recent revelations say that NSA plants bugs in technical equipment shipped overseas. Is there a way for the receiving side to actually detect those bugs?
BB: Yeah, certainly you can have technicians go through and look for extra hardware, you can have people scanning the software – it takes a lot to do that, but it is possible to do. You just have to have smart technical people doing it. Only other alternative, by the way, is to buy your own…
SS: Is to buy all your equipment not in America. Too bad Americans are really good at all the technical stuff, and you guys always have all the advanced technologies, so that’s why people are buying it there. That’s a point of advantage for you, but yeah, we’ll make sure to detect the bugs once we receive it over here.
Another thing is that John Chambers, the head of the tech giant Cisco that produces the equipment, asked Obama to stop NSA’s illegal modifying of the company’s products. Do you think he will be heard?
BB: I think, obviously, it’s an economic decision that has to be made by the countries around the world, but I think that that is stimulating others to start up their own businesses as a counter or a competitor to US industry around the world. So I think they all are getting hurt, and I think it was a bad decision on everybody’s part to do this kind of thing, weakening systems and giving back towards the systems, reducing the security of individuals around the world. That basically was, in my view - even the PRISM program participants, or the Telecoms and their participation in the phone network, exchanging the information – was basically a short-sighted decision, that was made without consideration of being exposed to ramifications of that around the world, in terms of business and business transactions.
SS: I know that you’ve also said that NSA is vital to US security, and many people will agree with you. But, is it possible to reform the NSA so that it serves the greater good, or is spying on citizens something inevitable?
BB: I think, to a certain degree, spying is inevitable, but you can certainly control, there are ways and means to do that. We suggested some ways to make that happen, and make it effective, to the President and to Congress, and also to the EU, and it’s published on the web – the recommendations that we made. We made 21 recommendations to that.
SS: Now Obama appointed a review board that criticized the domestic data collection. In March, the president recommended ending the bulk domestic meta-data collection and last week, the House passed a bill to end it – is that an effective step, in reality? Will the NSA abide by it?
BB: I think the moves that have been made so far, is to basically transfer the storage of the information to the telephone companies or to telecoms, and that to me simply means absolutely nothing, it is simply a distributed storage query– in other words, if you are making a query into the database, instead of going to your local storage inside NSA, you’re going to the one at the Telecom. That’s like a distributed network storage like Google does, when you make your Google queries, that gets distributed across eight different storage places, and they give every response from those eight different places, and you get it listed on your computer to look at. So it’s very similar to that. It’s just like distributed storage network – you’re using the Telecom storage instead of NSA storage. I don’t really see any difference here.