Whether or not NSA employees themselves are "interested" in reading text messages does not change the fact that they can, and the checks and balances that should in principle limit their ability to do so have failed to work.
The vice president of the European Commission explained Lars Mensel why she wasn't shocked by the NSA revelations, how Europe can profit from its currency crisis and why we shouldn't worry too much about Euroskeptics.
Since Edward Snowden's disclosures about widespread NSA surveillance, Americans and people everywhere have been presented with a digital variation on an old analog threat: the erosion of freedoms and privacy in exchange, presumably, for safety and security.
Mind you, if we do not push back against the growing menace of the police state now, future Thanksgivings may find us giving thanks for creature comforts that serve only to lessen the pain of having lost our most basic freedoms.
We're all well aware of the millions of randomly situated video cameras all across the country capturing what we do 24/7. But what you may not realize is the extent to which other types of taxpayer-funded surveillance capabilities have been put in place.
Within view of the U.S. Capitol and just a little more than a mile from the White House, hundreds of of anti-drone proliferation activists, academics, lawyers and concerned citizens from all over the world gathered this weekend for the second annual drone summit.
Good old George can stop spinning in his grave. Yes, our most heroic general and inspiring president, who warned us in his farewell address "to guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism." It's an alert that's been ignored in the nation's hysterical reaction to the attacks of 9/11.
If Francis can deal with the fact that his followers are not sheep but humans able to think for themselves, those with no hereditary hotline to heaven can learn from his humility. None of us has all the answers.
We have seen examples, both in fiction and real life, of what happens when transparency is expected from one class (or the mass) of people while those who expect, and enforce that transparency, reserve for themselves the right to be opaque.