Yesterday's post was written out of a sincere effort to observe that deciding whether or not Edward Snowden is an asset or a liability is no easy matter. It is clear from a BBC News report, updated most recently early this morning, that there are many voices in Germany, in both the government and the press institutions, that have come to recognize him as an asset. Whether or not that trend is simply blow-back from the goring of a precious German ox (Angela Merkel's cell phone), it should provide our own government with issues worth considering.
Unfortunately, the current state of play seems to indicate that the prevailing view in Washington is that Snowden is a serious liability, if not a downright traitor. This has been declared explicitly by White House spokesman Dan Pfeiffer. Meanwhile, both the Democratic and Republican sides of Congress got their licks in during yesterday morning's weekly "Sabbath-Day gasbags" (as Calvin Trillin liked to call it) circuit. Unfortunately, the voice of the Democrats was Dianne Feinstein, whom, in spite of my general voting preferences, has become one of my favorite targets when it comes to any form what amounts to legislation over information. I heard clips of Republican Mike Rogers on Al Jazeera America yesterday. He was no less rabid; but I am not sure that he represented any significant form of authority, informed or otherwise. Is this circling the wagons for protection? It could also be surrounding Snowden with "men with guns" all pointed at him but just as likely to hit someone standing on the opposite side of the circle.