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Snowden A Hero? Gates Says No, Woz Says Yes

Soulskill posted about 7 months ago | from the time-for-a-cage-match dept.

Privacy 335

hcs_$reboot writes "In a lengthy interview from Rolling Stone, Bill Gates, was asked: 'Do you consider [Snowden] a hero or a traitor?' The Microsoft founder responded, 'I certainly wouldn't characterize him as a hero. ... You won't find much admiration from me'. What about government surveillance? 'The government has such ability to do these things. ... But the specific techniques they use become unavailable if they're discussed in detail. Rolling Stone retorts that privacy can be an issue: 'We want safety, but we also want privacy,' says the journalist. Bill Gates tells his main priority focuses on stopping the bad guys: 'Let's say you knew nothing was going on. How would you feel? I mean, seriously. I would be very worried. Technology arms the bad guys with orders of magnitude more [power]. Not just bad guys. Crazy guys.' Meanwhile, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak expressed the opposite opinion about Snowden at a tech conference in Germany. 'He is a hero to me, but he may be a traitor to other people and I understand the reasons for them to think that way. I believe that Snowden believed, like I do, that the U.S. has a right to freedom. '"

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Snowden = Traitor (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492393)

Heroes do not run and take refuge with our enemies. Snowden is a traitor and should be executed.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (5, Insightful)

Travis Mansbridge (830557) | about 7 months ago | (#46492411)

Good thing they executed Einstein... oh wait...

Re:Snowden = Traitor (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492533)

Good thing they executed Einstein... oh wait...

Completely irrelevant analogy. He was visiting the US when Hitler came to power and decided not to go back due to the anti-semitism. It's not like he gave away secret documents from the German High Command. Analogies need to be relevant to work.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492637)

you mean apart for the fact the germany was working on their own atomic bomb project, http://www.vanderbilt.edu/AnS/physics/brau/H182/Term%20papers%20'02/Matt%20E.htm

Quote: The policies of Hitler’s Nazi Germany alienated not only the Jewish community but also many others who feared the rise of fascism in both Germany and Italy. Just a few examples of those who fled include such notable scientists as Nobel Laureates Albert Einstein, Niels Bohr, and Enrico Fermi. What this obviously meant is that many leading scientists contributed not to the German effort but rather to the American effort to develop the bomb. Germany was now not only missing many brilliant minds who could have worked on the project, but also many other scientists who could have conducted experiments to contribute information.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (1)

kthreadd (1558445) | about 7 months ago | (#46492815)

Maybe I'm missing the point, but I still can't see how Mr. Einstein was supposedly working for the nazis with their atomic bomb, copied all their documents and gave them to the U.S. Especially since this should have happened as early as in 1933, the year Einstein moved to there.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (5, Insightful)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | about 7 months ago | (#46492657)

OK, then, how about Fermi? Emigrated in 1938 to escape fascism and helped the U.S. (the "enemy") develop the atomic bomb.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (5, Insightful)

cheesybagel (670288) | about 7 months ago | (#46492697)

History is written by the victors and all that.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46493043)

History is written by the victors and all that.

doesn't the same apply to Snowden? History/victors; media/government.

If you're going to start saying "yea, but that might be a lie," then it get a whole lot harder to say anything about anything. Including Snowden.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 7 months ago | (#46493135)

History is written by the victors and all that.

Yes, I guess it would be going too far to condemn Italian and German fascism as an enemy of mankind.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 7 months ago | (#46493121)

OK, then, how about Fermi? Emigrated in 1938 to escape fascism and helped the U.S. (the "enemy") develop the atomic bomb.

Italy made itself his enemy with its racial laws, so his family left to become citizens in another country, the US.

Italy was the enemy, fascism was the enemy.

Are you suggesting that Snowden changed his loyalty to Russia? That would fit.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (0)

cold fjord (826450) | about 7 months ago | (#46493071)

Good thing they executed Einstein... oh wait...

The Germans would have if they could have. Maybe you've heard about their plan to exterminate the Jews? I would think that genocide trumps loyalty to a state.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 7 months ago | (#46492435)

oh, are we at war with Russia?

last I checked we were sticking our noses into Crimea situation (majority of populace ethnic Russian) but do tell what constitutes "enemies"

Re:Snowden = Traitor (1, Insightful)

rubycodez (864176) | about 7 months ago | (#46492473)

I seem to recall Russia calling our Homeland protectors and warning us about a particular guy. they didn't have to bother to do that, and it's an extraordinary thing that they did. Our Protectors of Der Fatherland ignored the warning. being busy courting punks and filling their heads with violent thoughts and then fake weapons so they could make headlines. And so the Boston Marathon bombings happened. So, who is the enemy of We the People?

Re:Snowden = Traitor (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46493075)

I seem to recall Russia calling our Homeland protectors and warning us about a particular guy. they didn't have to bother to do that, and it's an extraordinary thing that they did. Our Protectors of Der Fatherland ignored the warning. being busy courting punks and filling their heads with violent thoughts and then fake weapons so they could make headlines. And so the Boston Marathon bombings happened. So, who is the enemy of We the People?

Answer: The Government.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492699)

As far as I can tell, we don't want anything to do with the Crimea situation, but unfortunately the Ukraine signed an agreement that they would disarm their nuclear stockpile with the agreement that the west would protect their borders. And as such, we are now forced to intervene if we want to push forward any other nuclear disarmament agreements and not risking making other such agreements null and void.

Like it or not, the world is usually more complex than just giving one group of people what they want.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (4, Insightful)

RazorSharp (1418697) | about 7 months ago | (#46492847)

but unfortunately the Ukraine signed an agreement that they would disarm their nuclear stockpile with the agreement that the west would protect their borders.

Treaties like that caused WWI.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (4, Insightful)

cold fjord (826450) | about 7 months ago | (#46493081)

Russia failing to honor its part of the treaty may cause WW III.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492735)

oh, are we at war with Russia?

last I checked we were sticking our noses into Crimea situation (majority of populace ethnic Russian) but do tell what constitutes "enemies"

The blacks. It's their fault.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (4, Informative)

jedidiah (1196) | about 7 months ago | (#46493001)

> last I checked we were sticking our noses into Crimea situation

You mean the situation where we are a party to a treaty that says that Ukraine keeps it's borders intact in return for NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT?

You mean THAT situation?

Re:Snowden = Traitor (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492487)

in this case the enemy is our government. Are you taking refuge with them ?

Re:Snowden = Traitor (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492581)

Ha, the russian haven't been an enemy of the US for a long time, Was their another safe place for him to go? The US would have indefinitely detained snowden or executed him after a great show trial.

Snowden is a hero, he had the conviction to stand up and say no to an organisation that would take his life for simply telling the truth.

Re:Snowden = Traitor (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492789)

It's so weird that he chose not to get thrown into a padded jail cell forever! Everyone knows that's the true sign of a hero anyway. /s

Re:Snowden = Traitor (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492955)

Heroes do not run and take refuge with our enemies. Snowden is a traitor and should be executed.

The Founding Fathers were all traitors/terrorists to their motherland.
No one gave himself up to the Crown just to express their dissent about how the colonies were being governed.

Trolling Sockpuppetry 100% (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46493055)

n/t

said the bad guy (4, Funny)

rubycodez (864176) | about 7 months ago | (#46492395)

yes, technology has certainly armed you, Bill Gates, you twisted evil fuck

Who would characterize Gates as a hero? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492417)

Nobody. Absolutely NOBODY.

Re:Who would characterize Gates as a hero? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492531)

Well, there are those who admire his ability to use the "invisible hand" to make himself so big.

Re:Who would characterize Gates as a hero? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492799)

A few years ago a local Seattle TV station voted him an "Unsung Hero." Maybe that's where it comes from.

Re: Who would characterize Gates as a hero? (1)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | about 7 months ago | (#46493165)

The bizarre irony is that most would characterize B. Gates as an over sung antihero.

Fortunately, Melinda is there to spend the stolen/cheated money on good causes, so maybe karma will one day even out.

not a hero, not a villain (0)

globaljustin (574257) | about 7 months ago | (#46492445)

Gates is an evil sociopath.

Snowden was a dupe. He was blackmailed...and manipulated/handled by journalist Glenn Greenwald (who was **supposed** to protect his source, even from himself if necessary). As for now we can only guess at his original motivations, but I tend to think he had a sort of condescending desire to show people "how they are sheeple"...so theoretically we could round up to "whistleblower"....**maybe**

Right now, Snowden is essentially in prison in Russia.

Behave accordingly.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (2, Insightful)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | about 7 months ago | (#46492525)

Gates is an evil sociopath.

If 'evil sociopaths' have the eradication of malaria, the delivery of clean drinking water and readily available birth control to all as objectives, I say bring 'em on.

Certainly a bigger impact than all these so-called "Christians" blathering away on TV while doing nothing to follow Jesus's preachings.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (5, Insightful)

fredprado (2569351) | about 7 months ago | (#46492563)

Sorry, but for every good deed he accomplished he did at least two dirty deals and bribed a couple of politicians to get richer..

Re:not a hero, not a villain (1)

Shaman (1148) | about 7 months ago | (#46492677)

Exactly this.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492769)

Nobody is going to claim Gates was a saint as a business man. He was notoriously ruthless. But I think you need to remember, the bad isn't undone by the good, nor is the good undone by the bad. If he did bribe politicians to get richer, remember that he's also dedicated his entire wealth to helping the poor. And doing it a hell of a lot more efficiently than any government has done so far.

I'm not going to stand up for him, but I'm also certainly not going damn him either. I'll damn portions of him, and I'll stand up for portions on him, but I won't represent his entire being as one small portion of his behavior.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (4, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | about 7 months ago | (#46493069)

Much like many men in his position, charity is just a public relations whitewash. This is expecially obvious when all of this occurs in their "retirement". Of course Gates didn't invent this idea, he swiped it from someone else.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (1)

blackbeak (1227080) | about 7 months ago | (#46493139)

Please see Slashdot comment #45746307 (Attached to: Bill Gates Plays Secret Santa To Reddit User). It pretty much explains Gates. Spoiler: He's better than you!

Re:not a hero, not a villain (5, Funny)

Narcocide (102829) | about 7 months ago | (#46492585)

Even evil sociopaths have to answer to their wives.

Re: not a hero, not a villain (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492595)

Do YOU follow Jesus' teachings, oh perfect one? Jackass.

Re: not a hero, not a villain (1)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | about 7 months ago | (#46492661)

Do YOU follow Jesus' teachings, oh perfect one? Jackass.

Where I can, yeah. But I'm not perfect.

...but I also don't go on TV claiming to be a 'christian,' then cut food stamps for poor kids and cheer executions.

money is your hero then (1, Insightful)

globaljustin (574257) | about 7 months ago | (#46492639)

eradication of malaria, the delivery of clean drinking water and readily available birth control to all as objectives

Sociopaths can donate money to charity when it helps their tax burden.

Bill Gates didn't himself do any work except public appearances...he's a **Billionaire** you don't get points for making charities to solve well-known problems that also promote your company's products

Gates **should** give his money to charity...the fact that he does **the bare minimum** to charties that spread his products to new markets...and gets a **tax write off** doesn't make him not a sociopath

Re:money is your hero then (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492937)

I'm sorry, but this stupidity in this if effing insane! I'm glad you hate Gates, I really am. But you just said, and I wish I was making this up, people shouldn't make charities in areas where they have expertise.

He isn't involved directly for very good reasons. Next time there's a massive disaster, go over there, find the red cross, and say you're ready to start helping out. You know what they'll say? It'll be something along the lines of "we appreciate what you're trying to do, but giving us money would be more helpful". Why? Because you're an inexperienced fool, and you don't know what you're doing. You'll get in the way and cause more harm than good. Donate money, so they can hire people who are actually skilled at that sort of thing.

And as for tax write off? WTF are you talking about?!?! He's promised his ENTIRE fortune to charity. If he gets a tax write off, so be it! More money goes to charity. And then beyond that, there's a charity I support that gives ceramic water filters to Africa. Should I stop supporting that because the company that makes them is making money off it? If that's you're honest opinion, I'm sorry, but I'm going to say it. You're a fucking idiot, a fool, and a moron. The people supplying goods for the betterment of anything still need to eat.

Re:money is your hero then (1)

RazorSharp (1418697) | about 7 months ago | (#46492963)

It's not just a tax write off. By keeping his money in the foundation and the investments of the foundation, its a tax shelter.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492651)

All of your above statements are inaccurate, misleadingly potrayed, or require citation. Malaria is a third world problem that does not actually "require" a drug to eradicate. But Gates and his Pig Pharma buddies would certainly like to make billions from the attempt. Thrid World problem, does not require "EyePee" to solve. None of his damn business. Gates is a robber baron plain and simple. His company stands right up there with Standard Oil. A putrid waste that has cost the world untold billions.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492745)

As someone who has had malaria, I disagree.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46493029)

As someone who knows the difference between "treat" and "eradicate", I think you should sit back down.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (1, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 7 months ago | (#46492693)

If 'evil sociopaths' have the eradication of malaria, the delivery of clean drinking water and readily available birth control to all as objectives, I say bring 'em on.

Those things are only being delivered as a means of exerting control over those countries for the next eternity. They're the foot in the door for Big Pharma, in which both the foundation and Gates are heavily invested.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492851)

So let me get this right. In your mind, you shouldn't try to help people with disease or getting them clean water because that helps big pharma?

Riiiiiiight

You are aware that even if that is the case, for it to be profitable in any way, shape or form, you first need to turn 3rd world countries into countries which can afford any of that stuff, which probably means greatly improving living and economic conditions. This is bad how?

Re:not a hero, not a villain (0)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 7 months ago | (#46492989)

So let me get this right. In your mind, you shouldn't try to help people with disease or getting them clean water because that helps big pharma?

So let me get this right. You're an idiot, or an asshole. All I'm saying is that Bill Gates is still a shitheel.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46493073)

You are aware that even if that is the case, for it to be profitable in any way, shape or form...

Perhaps you should look up the definition of "charity". Hint: If it's for-profit, then it sure as shit ain't a charity.

The "bad" is when they're selling a product to relieve the problems of poor countries. What they *should* be doing is developing solutions which those poor countries can implement and be in charge of themselves, without having to indefinitely buy goods or services from a small number of foreign suppliers.

Give a man a fish, and he becomes reliant on your supply of fish.
Teach a man to fish, and you've lost a valuable market for fish exports.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (1)

ISoldat53 (977164) | about 7 months ago | (#46492809)

Nobody likes a poor thief.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (2)

RazorSharp (1418697) | about 7 months ago | (#46492949)

He's no more altruistic than the big pharmaceutical companies. It's not really altruism when you stand to make a large profit. Gates just figured out that the charity business can be an extremely successful one -- it gives one the ability to strong-arm entire nations all while immune to criticism under the protection of "philanthropy." The Gates Foundation, like similar foundations, exists so those of his lineage will all be filthy rich no matter what and no individual will be able to screw it all up for the rest of the family. It's like a trust fund designed to last centuries rather than decades.

Your attack on televangelists is irrelevant. They're much more an analog to Gates than a dichotomy.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46493025)

You're either trying to whitewash away the last two decades, or you're too young to remember how Gates was in his 30s and 40s. He was WAY worse than Steve Jobs.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | about 7 months ago | (#46493099)

Gates is a sociopath in the same way lex luthor is a sociopath, he is someone who does do many good things but is still evil.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (1, Insightful)

garyisabusyguy (732330) | about 7 months ago | (#46492617)

I think that most successful corporate heads these days could be called sociopaths

Gates-wise, certainly evil in the eyes of microsoft's competitors for the better part of three decades, but he has really put forward a Carnegie-esque effort to 'do good' with his accrued wealth

Snowden-wise I think that you are pretty much spot on with the whole manipulation by greenwald angle. Maybe even the idea that Snowden has a latent superiority complex that greenwald fed into and used to manipulate him,

Where does Snowden's redemption lie? Can he attempt to buy his reputation like Gates or Carnegie? Are public events like SXSW that currency that he will spend on it? If that is it, then I am not buying it. It is one thing to buy into the idea that Gates bringing clean water to Africa is a good thing, it is quite another thing to label Snowden's one-sided fear mongering as 'good'

not prison (1)

globaljustin (574257) | about 7 months ago | (#46493161)

Where does Snowden's redemption lie?

hmm idk busygary...I've thought about this & i hope he's in a position where he can exchange information for some kind of reduction of charges to misdemeanors here in the USA...does the federal government even have misdemeanors? like some kind of "misuse of government property" and get a suspended sentence & the crime is gone in 5 years kind of thing. That's what I'd hope could happen.

Can he attempt to buy his reputation like Gates or Carnegie?

b/c of how I view this, he's really fighting for his personal freedom right now

Are public events like SXSW that currency that he will spend on it?

i think this was a PR/propaganda tactic (a new, evil but not illegal combination of the two: PRpoganda)...basically whoever is manipulating him scheduled the SXSW thing b/c they thought it would help somenow...idk...anything to get him free & not in prison

I really don't want him in prison *unless he's done stuff we dont know* of course...too many potentially good people in prison

Re:not a hero, not a villain (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492727)

Snowden intended to reveal his identity, and he initiated contact with Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras. He also outed his own location. Or do you suggest Greenwald pushed him to out himself? As for his motivations, he hardly came off as condescending. He was polite, reasonable, and he didn't just dump the documents on the "sheeple" (which is an actual point of contention, though John Young (Cryptome) is extremist [cryptome.org] ). He delivered the goods, and even Obama has been forced to agree that "it's good we're having a debate".

On his stay in Russia... Putin hardly wants Snowden around. They don't share the same values, and the "fuck the U.S." novelty will wear off eventually. And since he's been communicating regularly with the outside world, someone would notice if he was muzzled.

Re:not a hero, not a villain (2)

gIobaljustin (3526197) | about 7 months ago | (#46492749)

"Bill Gates tells his main priority focuses on stopping the bad guys"

And yet he lives in a country that's supposed to be the land of the free and the home of the brave. You're not free if you give away your freedoms for security, and you're not brave, either. Amazing how people think the government is composed of perfect angels, even though minimal knowledge of government abuses throughout history will tell you that governments ('even' the US government) cannot be trusted with such powers.

Wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492485)

One could think that an operating system maker would appreciate more the privacy of the customers' data going through the pipes.

Obvious response from Gates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492495)

Bill Gates is a scumbag who lets NSA have a backdoor in Windows.

He's also very keen on Malthusian population reduction... sending tainted vaccines to cull the undesirables in third world countries is his (and Melinda's) idea of 'charity'.

Re:Obvious response from Gates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492509)

Not a fan of the NSA part, but anything that reduces the worldwide birth rate is good in my opinion.

Re:Obvious response from Gates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492555)

Not a fan of the NSA part, but anything that reduces the worldwide birth rate is good in my opinion.

The earth is capable of sustaining everyone one of us.
The problem are not the resources, the problem is the inequal distribution of those resources to the world population.
Of course fucktards like Gates and company would like us belive that overpopulation is the problem. It is not.
A system where one person is allowed to have a personal wealth that is worth more than the GDP of certain states is a fucked up system for everyone except those at the very top. And Gates is at the very top. Just like Harry Lime looking down at all those ants from the height of the Vienna ferris wheel.

Re:Obvious response from Gates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492605)

The problem is people living in unsustainable areas. You shouldn't need food trucked in from 1000mi away to live. Less people=more for everyone.

In other news (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492499)

Man that is most certainly part of the NSA dragnet says Snowden isn't a hero. Mean while other slowly becoming irrlevant has been tech leader/media whore that hasn't been part of an OS development team in nearly 30 years says YAY FOR SNOWDEN.

wat (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492517)

What about government surveillance? 'The government has such ability to do these things. ... But the specific techniques they use become unavailable if they're discussed in detail.

That's kind of the fucking point. The government is doing some really bad shit and we want them to stop. Or are you under the impression that repressing peoples' freedoms is a good thing, especially in a country that is supposed to pride itself in being free?

Re:wat (1)

gIobaljustin (3526197) | about 7 months ago | (#46492805)

He seems to be of the opinion that security is more important than freedom, even though he's living in a country that is called "the land of the free." The whole notion of it being better for numerous guilty people to get away than for one innocent person to be wrongly convicted is probably equally as disgusting to him.

Not everyone likes freedom, especially those who haven't had to live without it, or those without principles.

Gates is a 1%er He wants us oppressed. (5, Insightful)

Hey_Jude_Jesus (3442653) | about 7 months ago | (#46492521)

The wealthy want to keep people under the control of the government, so they can increase their wealth and power over us.

Re:Gates is a 1%er He wants us oppressed. (1)

smg5266 (2440940) | about 7 months ago | (#46492917)

No he's a 1.4285714e-10 percenter

And Jobs says, "I believe I'm the real hero" (1)

slagell (959298) | about 7 months ago | (#46492541)

And where's my limelight?!?

Hang sNOwden (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492551)

He acted on his own. He puts an entire nation in jeopardy. He deserves to Hang Fast and High. Send him over to my house.

Re:Hang sNOwden (1)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | about 7 months ago | (#46492709)

"He puts an entire nation in jeopardy."

Actually, he put an entire nation on the alert to very real abuses by our government.

I've heard the NSA complain that a journalist is not qualified to determine what is and what is not too sensitive for publication. However, I would like to submit that the NSA and like institutions are not qualified to determine what is in the best interests of a democracy.

Gates has changed... (2)

bigbbri (265021) | about 7 months ago | (#46492577)

Yes, you would think an OS owner would champion privacy but he is not an OS owner any longer. Gates has learned the complexity of wealth and power and an alliance with his government to protect his interests is what he now champions. Anyone that lives in the US and isn't concerned about what the NSA has done is ignorant or helping them make in roads into our privacy. Snowden has done the right thing and I am grateful for his sacrifice!
I want safety but this is power hungry people with not enough safeguards to protect us from them. I don't want the technology removed, I want it governed by our people!
   

Re:Gates has changed... (1)

garyisabusyguy (732330) | about 7 months ago | (#46492811)

... Anyone that lives in the US and isn't concerned about what the NSA has done is ignorant or helping them make in roads into our privacy...

 

Well, I think that anybody who was shocked and surprised by the revelations is pretty much ignorant.

The NSA has gone from a never-mentioned no-such-agency to a recognized public entity in the past 40 years.
The use of meta data has been the subject of court cases going back to the 70's with a SCOTUS ruling in the '80s that pretty much ruled the data as the property of the phone companies and that their customers had no expectation of privacy
The heads of TLA's have appeared at security conferences and stated that nobody should underestimate their capabilities
Then there was the wholesale shock that they did not identify and stop the 911 attacks, followed by the wholesale funding of data collection, analysis and sharing between agencies

oh wow, Snowden 'discovered' the Patriot Act... and fyi, it is governed by the people, and the US hasn't fallen into a fascist death-camp filled, modernized killing fields of constant disappearances and suppression oh WOW!

Re:Gates has changed... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492893)

Well, I think that anybody who was shocked and surprised by the revelations is pretty much ignorant.

I was neither shocked nor surprised, and yes, I would have to say that anyone who was was ignorant. However, everyone should be opposed to this disgusting abuse of power, and now is a perfect time to be discussing it.

oh wow, Snowden 'discovered' the Patriot Act... and fyi, it is governed by the people, and the US hasn't fallen into a fascist death-camp filled, modernized killing fields of constant disappearances and suppression oh WOW!

What are you even talking about? If you're suggesting that this power won't be abused, then I encourage you to read up on some history, and I feel that I should remind you that the US is supposed to be "the land of the free and the home of the brave." Hundreds of millions were abused and/or murdered by governments (including the US government, if you consider women, blacks, the Japanese, the Indians, and other individuals who crossed its path) throughout history. Free and/or brave people would not sacrifice freedom for security, as that would mean they're not free.

To trust the government with this power is the same as making the ridiculous claim that the government is made up of perfect angels who would never make a mistake or abuse their power, and that that will always be true. In other words, you would have to have an unwavering and unwarranted degree of trust in this government and all future governments, which would make you a god damn idiot.

A hero isn't someone who runs away (-1)

mark-t (151149) | about 7 months ago | (#46492619)

This may be an unpopular sentiment, but I think he should have stuck around to face the consequences of what he did.

And I'm not saying that every hero necessarily needs to be a martyr, of course... but feeling the country just doesn't sound particularly heroic.

Like I said, this might be an unpopular notion, but I believe that if one isn't prepared to face whatever the consequences are for the choices that they make, then they probably shouldn't be doing that in the first place.... if it's really important enough to do, then it's important enough to own up to and take full responsibility for.... whatever the consequences, even if those consequences may be unjust.

Re:A hero isn't someone who runs away (4, Insightful)

king neckbeard (1801738) | about 7 months ago | (#46492687)

What about someone fleeing from China to the US to whistleblow on genocide within the country? Would you think someone not a hero for going somewhere his story would be heard and that he wouldn't be in mortal danger?

Re:A hero isn't someone who runs away (4, Insightful)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | about 7 months ago | (#46492711)

He's stuck in Russia, away from friends and family, probably not exactly having the best time of his life.

Sure, it's probably a cakewalk compared to what the intelligence community would put him through and where he would end up once they're 'done' - but I think he's feeling quite a few consequences of his actions and revelations, and I tend to think those consequences are plenty unjust as they are.

By your statement regarding facing consequences, I would think that you believe there should be no such thing as witness protection programs.

Though I think the basic issue with the premise of the question is that it's a false dichotomy. I don't think Snowden is a hero. I also don't think he's a traitor. At least not wholly on either. Getting people to label him as one or the other is populist journalism. Of course, this is Rolling Stone.. while held in higher regard than the usual tabloids, it is what it is.

Re:A hero isn't someone who runs away (3, Informative)

gIobaljustin (3526197) | about 7 months ago | (#46492827)

Sure, it's probably a cakewalk compared to what the intelligence community would put him through and where he would end up once they're 'done' - but I think he's feeling quite a few consequences of his actions and revelations, and I tend to think those consequences are plenty unjust as they are.

I think people are wrong in saying that you have to be suicidal, a martyr, or masochistic to be a hero.

Re:A hero isn't someone who runs away (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492721)

He is owning up to the consequences of his actions. His action was to leave the country, and thus he has accepted the consequence of not being tortured, dragged through a kangaroo court, and eventually killed one way or the other. If an intelligent person with some political foresight cannot be a hero to you by definition, then you might want to rethink how you define that term.

Re:A hero isn't someone who runs away (1)

mark-t (151149) | about 7 months ago | (#46493147)

A hero, in my view, isn't somebody who runs away from a fight they don't think they can win.... if it was important enough to start, then it's important enough to finish. Like I said above... it's probably not a popular sentiment.

Torturing Snowden or otherwise subjecting him to unjustified treatment in the USA wouldn't change anything that's already happened, and because particularly controversial treatment, such as violating any of his constitutional or inalienable rights, would not dare ever become public knowledge (the public outcry would be enormous if it were, and probably reach all the way to the whitehouse), it wouldn't practically serve to deter other people from doing the same thing in the future. In fact, regardless of what happened, it might even do exactly the opposite.

Re:A hero isn't someone who runs away (4, Insightful)

RazorSharp (1418697) | about 7 months ago | (#46493087)

Sticking around hasn't helped Manning any.

I think you're looking at "consequences" as a very black and white thing. Snowden is facing the consequences for his actions -- he's exiled from his country and may never be able to return. He's already sacrificed so much to do the right thing. Sticking around to be persecuted wouldn't help out any. He took the risk of being tortured, imprisoned, and even executed. Isn't that enough? That's the most we ask of our soldiers and then we declare them heroes -- we ask that they risk their lives. We ask that they risk sacrifice, not that they do sacrifice. Kamikaze pilots and suicide bombers have no place in the defense of our country. Why should the whistleblower be so self-sacrificial? Why is he not a hero for risking his life when that's the standard of valor we place upon ourselves?

Woz vs Gates (1)

gmpassos (1193401) | about 7 months ago | (#46492625)

Apple I, alone, in a garage? Well, Woz is a Hero. Gates was only about money, Woz was about changing the world, like Snowden.

Neutrality (5, Insightful)

king neckbeard (1801738) | about 7 months ago | (#46492633)

Gates isn't exactly neutral on this matter. Companies as big as Microsoft don't happen without close friendships with the government, and those relationships get even closer when the company is let off easy in an anti-trust case. Even if he did support Snowden, he wouldn't be able to publicly state that.

Re:Neutrality (1)

Atmchicago (555403) | about 7 months ago | (#46492909)

Point taken. However, if he was less self-centered and money-grubbing then yes he could. Bill Gates just took a big hit to his reputation (in my book), and if it weren't for his support of anti-malarial and other research he wouldn't have much to show for.

Re:Neutrality (1)

misexistentialist (1537887) | about 7 months ago | (#46493021)

If you RTFA, he's a true believer who supports big government, high taxes, and mass surveillance

Snowden is a Whistleblower (1, Insightful)

fermion (181285) | about 7 months ago | (#46492683)

Whistleblowers are not heroes or villains, They are meddlesome do gooders who are willing to destroy society and the status quo just to make a name for themselves. Sometimes, as with Snowden, they reveal practices that many would consider at least unethical and force change. They are seldom thanked for their contribution. What is always the case is that the people who have to change because of the revelations are annoyed. Changing means they lose money, power, or both.

Re:Snowden is a Whistleblower (2)

Luthair (847766) | about 7 months ago | (#46492885)

I'd say he's sacrificed more than most whistleblowers as he no longer has the opportunity to live a normal life.

Re:Snowden is a Whistleblower (1)

Luthair (847766) | about 7 months ago | (#46492905)

Meant to say... this is why the hero moniker isn't completely out of place.

Re:Snowden is a Whistleblower (2, Insightful)

gIobaljustin (3526197) | about 7 months ago | (#46492903)

They are meddlesome do gooders who are willing to destroy society and the status quo just to make a name for themselves.

Don't decide what other people's intentions are for them.

Hero (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492779)

Snowden exposed the USA for the hell hole of a dictatorship that it really is.

The more time passes (4, Insightful)

mx_mx_mx (1625481) | about 7 months ago | (#46492791)

The more I admire Steve Wozniak. He is a true hero.

Snowden only revealed abuse (2)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492821)

To my knowledge, Snowden did not reveal how the NSA lawfully conducts its business within the mandates of the law. What Showden revealed were only the abusive and illegal activities that the NSA engages in. I'll go along with the notion that sometimes the government breaks the law for the greater good, but... spying on lawyers representing a foreign government in a legal case over shrimp imports? Spying on US-to-US emails if the routes inadvertently go overseas? Collaborating with intelligence agencies in the UK and Australia so they can spy on US domestic activities and the US spies on the UK/Australia domestic activities, then they all share everything?

What Snowden did was show that the NSA is running amok. The agency is out of control, and that is the reason why Snowden did what he did. Not for money, not for fun, but out of a sense of patriotism and duty to his country.

Re:Snowden only revealed abuse (1)

gIobaljustin (3526197) | about 7 months ago | (#46492965)

I'll go along with the notion that sometimes the government breaks the law for the greater good

Why? The government, of all things, must follow the law (which obviously includes the constitution). I don't want a government that feels it can break the law and infringe upon people's individual liberties "for the greater good."

Why only Gates and Wozniak? (3, Insightful)

FunkyLich (2533348) | about 7 months ago | (#46492825)

I can see the different viewpoints of those who say Snowden is a hero, and the others who say he is a villain. It is also a good thing to know that either group does agree that whatever the act of Snowden is labeled, it is a flagrant violation of the Constitution. This is still without getting out of the US worldview of things. If we suddenly 'retreat' a bit more to get into this 'field of view' not only the US, but the World as an entity, the US worldview should learn how to queue.

But my main curiosity is this: We have two computer technology worldwide-known persons, who have expressed different opinions about the Snowden Saga. I wonder, why stop at them alone and not ask any further, how would other world-wide known computer technology persons see this matter? We could ask Larry Wall, Brian Kernighan, Bjarne Stroustrup, Larry Ellison... the more the better.

THEN, we could mine this data set and maybe we could even find that there is some mysterious connection between beeing a famous computer guy AND success of wealth AND which of these have thick trade-pipes with governmental contracts which in turn loopback towards their welth.

This way we would have way more accurate conclusions and much more credible ones. And with a much lower margin of error as the sampling set would be richer, supposing that the sampling set would not be cherry-picked.

The full sentence (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492829)

The summary didn't include the full sentence by Gates. Just for completeness, he said: "I think he broke the law, so I certainly wouldn't characterize him as a hero."

Re:The full sentence (2)

LVSlushdat (854194) | about 7 months ago | (#46493119)

Yes, Snowden broke the "law", a "law" that ANYone with half a brain could see violated the Constitution, DESPITE what the paid-off Congress and Judiciary say.. He stood up for the Constitution, and is a hero in my book, like many of the heroes from the first American Revolution.. I say "first revolution" because I'm damn sure we're well into the 2nd Revolution... I fear this one is gonna be MUCH bloodier than the first...

Difference between rights and priveliges (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492839)

Time to get rid of this idea of rights .Everybody expects their rights but forgets to take responsibility.You have privileges and sometimes you have to pay for these privileges as soldiers fought in the first and second world wars and died for the idea of democracy which we have pissed away in all civilized countries.Letting political correctness take it's place,letting religion make demands without holding it to it's responsibility of religious tolerance and the most important responsibility to your freedom is standing up for your freedom when you see your country pissing on your privileges ,not rights,even if it makes you unpopular

Gates is a traitor to the Constitution (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492985)

His philanthropy had me thinking for a while that maybe he was okay.

Now? Now I'm sure he's a scuzbucket.

The opinion of a convicted monopolist... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46492991)

... matters?

Woz is absolutely right... (1)

LVSlushdat (854194) | about 7 months ago | (#46493093)

Always knew there was something about the Woz I really admired...

Or he's both (0)

J'raxis (248192) | about 7 months ago | (#46493107)

"Traitor" is a legal term. "Hero" is a value judgment. Snowden is probably both. The government he turned against, having long turned against their own people, deserved it.

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