I recently took the time to read Edward Snowden’s latest interview in The Washington Post. My hope in doing so was I would find something inspiring in Mr. Snowden’s words. While certainly informative, I found the interview to be largely nothing more than a rehash and timeline of the effects of Mr. Snowden’s actions. The revelations that Mr. Snowden did reveal were quite inspiring indeed, but not in a way he or his supporters would like to believe.
It seems to me based on Mr. Snowden’s own words that he fancies himself quite the savior of the people! Naturally, the pious individual that he is, he’d never admit or agree to such a label. In fact, he goes out of his way to remind us that he “didn’t want to change society.” Wow…how inspiring is that?! Indeed, Mr. Snowden conveys a sense of selflessness, a sense of duty to the people, as a means to justify his actions.
Yet it seemed the harder he attempted to convey his piousness, the more magnanimous he sounded. No, Mr. Snowden didn’t want to change society, he simply “wanted to give society a chance to determine if it should change itself.” Ever so humbly, Mr. Snowden explained that for him, “the mission’s already accomplished.” He went on to explain selflessly that “I already won” and “everything that I had been trying to do was validated.” When asked later on what entitled him to take the actions that he took, Mr. Snowden explained it was “they” and “the overseers”…”It wasn’t that they put it on me as an individual – that I’m uniquely qualified, an angel descending from the heavens – as that they put it on someone, somewhere.”
Mr. Snowden would like us to believe, while denying it, that he is that “angel descending from the heavens.” He would like us to believe, without saying it, that he is a hero of the people for giving “society a chance to determine if it should change itself.” However, real angels do not have to have their actions “validated”. Real heroes do not refer to their actions “in terms of personal satisfaction.” True saviors would never blame “they” or an “overseer” for the position in life they find themselves in.
The reality is Mr. Snowden is no angel, hero, or savior. He is a traitor that did what he did not for the good of the people, but rather to satisfy his own egocentric goals and motivations. In perceiving he has accomplished his mission and won, he has only succeeded in endangering the lives of others. In believing in the validity of his actions, Mr. Snowden has served only to erroneously validate his over-inflated self-worth and ego. Mr. Snowden is not a savior of the people. He is a savior of himself.
Sadly, there are those that truly believe Mr. Snowden is a savior. They truly believe he has saved the people from an overzealous government hell bent on robbing them of their most sacred right to privacy. What I find most ironic about this is so many of us distrust our government for collecting too much data. Yet, every time we search Google, our personal data is collected. Every time we peruse Amazon, our personal data is collected. Every time we update, upload, or game on Facebook, our personal data is collected. The Capitalist collects our personal information and uses that information against us for their personal economic gain. Yet no one is up in arms over this invasion of privacy! In fact, we often willing contribute our personal information to this cause. What makes data collection by the Corporate Master any different than the NSA’s data collection efforts?
Ironically, Mr. Snowden addresses this very question in his interview. “The difference with the NSA’s possession of the data,” Snowden said, “is that government has the power to take away life or freedom.” At the NSA, he said, “there are people in the office who joke about, ‘We put warheads on foreheads.’ Twitter doesn’t put warheads on foreheads.” While certainly witty, Mr. Snowden’s explanation falls short in adequately differentiating and justifying the data collection methods of the Capitalist. The Corporate Masters may not have “the power to take away life” literally. However, through the use of personal information, the Capitalist degrades our quality of life through the use of subversive advertising meant to maliciously tempt and play on our psyche. This purposeful use of psychology, meant to entice us to spend more money, takes away our freedom to think critically. While Twitter may not “put warheads on foreheads” literally, it does so figuratively.
At the end of the day, there really is no difference between the data collection efforts of the Corporate Masters and the NSA. When personal information is collected with the intent to use it as a means to violate the privacy of the people, it is wrong. It doesn’t matter who is doing it. As for Mr. Snowden himself, he is nothing more than a narcissistic, ego-centric traitor. Those that support him are nothing more than hypocrites. It’s sad that there are people in this country that blindly trust the Capitalist over their Government. It is a decision that they will eventually come to regret.