Archives for posts with tag: Snowden

If you see Mr. Blunt and Cranky on stage playing some old chestnut like “Freebird”, you can tell why he’s playing it by who’s paying him (some bar owner, corporate type or FOTB). Once you know who is laying out the green and folding, you can understand why the band is playing a song we’ve grown heartily sick of over the decades. But hey, he who has the gold makes the rules: so in order to get the gold, the players follow the rules. The dude with the bucks wants to hear Skynyrd, so he gets Skynyrd.

If you encounter this writer in a corporate context, you might wonder why he puts on a tie, when his aversion to such ornamental ligatures is well-established. So you ask who is putting up the cash. Once you know who is writing the checks, the wearing of a suit and tie makes sense. Because he who has the gold makes the rules: so in order to get the gold, the suits follow the rules. The man with the cash wants us to wear ties, so we wear ‘em.

Now let us apply the same analytical (and yes, cynical) process to Edward Snowden. He took a pay cut in order to be able to steal government secrets and spread them around the globe, so he wasn’t likely saving a ton of bucks. He then flew on some not-too-cheap flights from Hawaii to Hong Kong, and then to Russia, where he’s been holed up for weeks in a pretty darned expensive and heavily secured hotel. He’s also been accompanied and been given legal advice on occasion by Wikileaks at least since he fled the USA (and for all we know, before that). He’s divulged secrets and rattled cages, and acted in a sometimes inexplicable manner. And we wonder: “Why?”

The answer, my friend, can be found when we identify Snowden’s paymaster. Putin sure as hell ain’t comping Edward’s room, meals and drinks for nothing. So either he is getting “paid” with Snowden’s stolen information, or somebody else is paying the bills for the airport hotel and whatever other costs he may be incurring.
Wikileaks is also not giving legal advice away for free. So either they are getting “paid” with Snowden’s stolen information, or somebody else is paying the bills for the legal beagles.

When we know who is bankrolling the man, we’ll understand why he is doing such things. Whoever has the gold makes the rules, and if Ed wants the gold, he’s following their rules. Somebody with money wants to stick it to the USA, and so Eddie is sticking it to us.

So, who’s the “somebody”, and what do they want for their money? Snowden sure as Hell isn’t telling: he wants to get paid, like everybody else. So who among you, out there in the Cranky Nation, can track down man with the cash?

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

P.S. This writer was able to find any number of crowd-funded “legal defense” funds set up for the man: but no way to actually tie those funds to his current financial situation. Send in some documentation, and if it’s verifiable we will publish it here.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky has friends who do card tricks and carnival magic, and he knows the techniques they use: misdirection, sleight of hand, and so on. He also knows that our “representatives” and “news media” do much the same whenever they want to put one over on us. So it has been with the Snowden “scandal”.

While you were all aghast and agog at the NSA/PRISM/Verizon/Greenwald imbroglio, the following events also occurred, but you probably missed them:

The Supreme Court made it easier to deny your right to vote.

The Supreme Court also took away your right to remain silent and made it easier for your boss to abuse you on the job.

In Michigan, one unelected man is about to steal the pensions and other retirement bennies from retirees, and will also steal from investors .

In Ohio, extreme anti-woman legislation is being advanced along with a tax hike on everyone but the rich, who will get a tax cut. And these are just a few of the events that were being downplayed by the media while they hyped a series of BS scandals, each of which turned out to be nothing when they were looked at closely.

Get the picture, Cranky Nation? We. Are. Being. Conned. A load of cheap carnies and tricksters are getting us to “look over there” at these successive faux scandals while they screw the lot of us with their other hands. It’s time to stop paying attention to these con jobs, at least until we know if there is any fire beneath the smoke.

ALWAYS pay attention to the man behind the curtain. He’s hiding back there for a reason, after all. And if he asks you to look at something amazing, you’d be well advised to look at anything BUT what he’s trying to distract you with.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

First off: this writer considers both men (if tried and convicted, of course) to be stinking scum buckets who violated the terms of their employment and many other laws as well. Having said that, Manning seems a more genuine, if misguided, character than Snowden. Here’s why:

Number A: Bradley Manning stole a load of sensitive and secret documents and handed them off to others to publish. After committing said theft, he stayed on the job until the cops came to arrest him. He has since followed the legal process and from all reports considers himself to be a whistleblower who acted with patriotic intent. And if he has to go to prison, he’ll go to prison, because he believes in what he did and why he did it.

Letter 2: Edward Snowden stole a load of sensitive and secret documents and ran away after working with a publicist to make this as big a deal as possible. He went to a territory controlled by a nation with a much more intrusive domestic security apparat than America’s to tell us all how bad America is. He then fled to another nation with a hideously intrusive domestic security apparat on his way to another such country. While doing so, he has carefully leaked selected material at such times as to cause damage to his birth country. He has been inconsistent in his story and is going to great lengths to avoid stating under oath what he did and why. Much about the man is shady, to say the least.

Your friendly neighborhood blogger doesn’t find either of them to be particurlarly admirable, but Manning at least acts like a man who believes in his cause.

Snowden just acts like a crook.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

Remember the 90’s? That was when a Dem got elected President, and the Repubs spent years manufacturing “scandals” so as to stop him from getting his agenda accomplished. Bulls*** allegation after bulls*** allegation, and finally one stuck to the wall: a stain on a gullible young lady’s dress, put there by our horndog Prexy Bubba. Finally, after years of effort, the “Republicans” had a scandal with which to distract the public and derail the administration’s efforts and policies. Oh, and to use to take the White House in 2000. Dirty politics, but effective. Even today, “Lewinsky” is a punch line.

Now we have another Democrat at 1600, and the Repubs have been working from the same playbook for his entire term. BS “scandal” after BS “scandal” has been thrown at Obama, and none has stuck. Not until Ron Paul supporter Edward Snowden decided to derail the administration. And he (or whoever he really works for) has upped the game considerably. Not just a stain or an “is” leaked at random moments: no, these releases of national security information are being timed to lead the media and the more gullible members of the public around by the nose:
* The initial “revelation” happened just after another attempted scandal was fizzling out,
* The “revelation” about spying on China came out right before Obama met with China’s leader,
*The “revelation” about spying on Russia came out right before Obama met with Russia’s leader, and then
*Right on cue, the son of the man Snowden supported in 2012 denounced Obama over the NSA “scandal”.

A well-coordinated and effective but of dirty politics, you’ll agree. And it will continue, because it seems to be working. Note that this writer is neither excusing Clinton’s pre-adolescent behavior with Ms. Lewinsky, nor is he standing up for the appalling breaches of privacy that the Bushies and their Patriot Act handed down to the present regime.

But, Gentle Reader, he IS saying that the “revelations” and “scandals” are part of a pattern of behavior that we have seen from the “Republican” party for many years now. Far too many of We The People are forgetting this, and allowing ourselves to be jerked around on the strings of various puppeteers, who are not doing this for the good of the country: no, they are doing this to stop Obama from getting anything done, so the Elephants can kick the Donkeys out of power once again. And it’s working, because far too many of us aren’t paying attention.

And if this disgraceful campaign of character assassination succeeds, you’ll have this latter-day Lewinsky to thank (or blame). Yes, the new and improved edition of a young naïf who hit their knees in order to “service” someone in a position of power. A punchline-in-waiting is he, aided and abetted by our national failure to pay attention when we are being manipulated.

The only question left is what sort of “stain” will be left on Mr. Snowden, and whether he can ever wash it away.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

Let’s start by saying that the Patriot Act (along with all of its bastard children) needs repealed ASAP, and the infrastructure that supports its aims needs trundled off to the scrap heap immediately afterwards. The notion that we are guilty until proven innocent is so diametrically opposed to everything America stands for is what makes all of these post-911 laws so dangerous.

But beyond the fact that the government is treating each and every one of us as if we are criminals and/or terrorists that they haven’t caught yet is the bigger problem: the secrecy with which these operations are carried out. “Trust us”, say the NSA, Congress, President et.al. “This is for your own protection”, they say. “We’d never abuse our authority”, they say. “We can’t show you how it works, what we do, why we do it or to whom we are doing it”, they say. “It has to be secret”, they say.

The problem with secrecy is the same problem we have with most human inventions: a little might perhaps enhance our safety, but too much can hurt us, weaken our nation, and perhaps lead to its dissolution. This whole domestic surveillance mess is made even messier by the fact that the government hid even the broad brush strokes of what they were (and still are) doing. And such information that does leak out seems to indicate that our government is acting in ways that would make Hoover blush.

This makes it very hard indeed to trust them: not only do they suspect each and every one of us of being potential Bin Ladens, but they themselves aren’t acting like honest, upstanding citizens whom we would be inclined to trust. (Remember Nixon and his “trust me” schtick, and how that turned out?)

On top of that, the degree of secrecy being employed here makes it possible for glory-hound “journalists”, “experts”, and “representatives” to make outlandish claims (e.g. Snowden, Greenwald, Issa) because we cannot verify anything they are saying. By acting thus they sow even MORE distrust among our society. The secrecy is making it impossible to trust our government, our institutions, the businesses with whom we deal, or even each other.

Secrecy kills trust. And without trust, we cannot be united. So if we can’t trust the government, we might as well just pull the plug on our country, because it can’t be a truly “United States of America”: there is no unity without trust.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

Mr. Blunt and Cranky cannot believe how stupid and gullible his fellow Americans have gotten to be. Really, he should go into used car sales or something, because the lot of you have evidently lost your critical faculties of late. Let us review:

Act One: Benghazi. It was spun by the “news” media and certain politicos as a breathtaking scandal that could doom Obama’s chances of re-election, and lots of hysterical stories were written and accusations were leveled. As time passed, we learned that a lot of the initial stories were false, wrong, or at the very least inaccurate. In the end, it turned out that the cries of “Wolf” were hysterical, manipulative crap. The truth of the matter is, people had f***ed up, heads rolled and changes had to be made, but the Prexy had nothing to do with it. The media retracted very little of what they had said, and the politicos retracted nothing. So lots of stupid people STILL think there is a Benghazi scandal, even though the wolf-criers have been proven to be liars.

Act Two: the latest IRS dustup. It too was spun by the “news” media and certain politicos as a breathtaking scandal that could doom Obama’s chances of accomplishing anything in his second term, and lots of hysterical stories were written and accusations were leveled. As time passed, we learned that a lot of the initial stories were false, wrong, or at the very least inaccurate. In the end, it turned out that the cries of “Wolf” were hysterical, manipulative crap. The truth of the matter is, people had f***ed up, heads rolled and changes had to be made, but the Prexy had nothing to do with it. The media retracted very little of what they had said, and the politicos retracted nothing. So lots of stupid people STILL think there is an IRS scandal, even though the wolf-criers have been proven to be liars.

Act Three: The NSA Scandal. Just like before, it is being spun as the scandal of the century, hysterical bulls*** is plentiful,and people want to throw our President our of office. Never mind that the quote Journalism end quote is a load of sloppy garbage and just as in our two previous examples,falls apart like a cheap nose wipe in the rain when subjected to scrutiny.

And what are Americans doing? Do they say “Gee whiz, they cried “Wolf” before, maybe we better wait and see what the facts are”? Oh, don’t be silly. No, just like puppets on strings they are jumping up and down, getting outraged, freaking out, and acting as if this scandal du jour is somehow different than all the other times the boys in the media and Congress have cried “Wolf” in the past. Wake the f***ing f*** up, peeps: just like before, we’ll find out that people f***ed up, and heads will roll and changes will be made. But none of this means that Obama is some sort of evil Lupine creature. No matter how many times the wolf criers may call him one.

So, why for the love of GOD, do so many of you keep believing those little f***ers when they cry wolf? Really, people, you should have learned by now to wait for proof before believing the lying wolf criers.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky