I grew up with parents who took risks like those taken by the Raines' and yet I worry that I could be sheltering my own kids too much like the parents described in All Joy and No Fun.
Unfortunately, with so much of the public attention focused on the NSA's misdeeds, there is a tendency to forget that the NSA is merely one of a growing number of clandestine intelligence agencies tasked with spying on the American people.
Time to find out how badly you rip off students and taxpayers.
This was a historic burglary, to put it mildly. It was also the first time modern newspapers were faced with the ethical question of whether to publish news stories which had as their sole source stolen government documents that arrived anonymously in the mail.
The quest to profile for either monetary or political gain is here forever. Many consumer products, from handheld smart devices to cars and smart homes have enhanced capabilities to turn our inner world over to the metadata highway.
Forty-three years ago this month, an obscure branch office of the Federal Bureau of Investigations located in a Philadelphia suburb was burgled. All their files were stolen (being 1971, these files were all on paper) and whisked away to a secret hideout, then they were sorted and sent to the media.
Should we punish whistleblowers when their best efforts are directed toward ensuring that our own government acts within the Constitution? Must we sacrifice liberty for safety? These questions lie at the heart of the argument at the center of the web.
This level of dangerous blowback is exactly the harm Snowden blew the whistle on! But isn't it also what Senator Obama campaigned he would change, if elected to the presidency, before further damage could occur to our Constitutional rule of law?
To the extent that the movie implies that this relatively small time hustler was Wall Street's biggest, worst, most notorious or even a representative wolf of Wall Street, Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorcese are howling up the wrong tree.
What we learned in 1971 is essentially the same thing we learned from the Snowden documents. The federal government is conducting illegal surveillance on Americans. Edward Snowden is a whistleblower. He is a patriot.
The details of Obama's most recent speech about "changes" to the NSA's surveillance practices reveal that sadly little of substance will change.
I bet if you made these sorts of statements to the average American-on-the-street in 1964, they would have wholeheartedly agreed. Because the public simply had no idea of what was going on, back then. Those of us who know our history, however, just don't have that excuse today.
Most of those making the case that Snowden should "return to the United States and face the music in a court of law" regularly offer up (as an example for how whistleblowers should act) the story of Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers. But a better parallel exists.
Setting aside for the moment the issues surrounding Edward Snowden's legal dilemma, more focus needs to be placed on the issue of NSA surveillance. Specifically, now that we have the information provided by Snowden, what are we going to do about it?
One of the great mysteries of the Vietnam War era has been solved. On March 8, 1971, a group of activists -- including a cabdriver, a day care direc...