Unwarranted Isolation

As I read the stories about the NSA and its various problems with both disclosures and lawsuits, then read the blogs of paranoid bloggers, who understand that governments are inherently evil but that the governments (and non-governments) that the NSA is targeting are magnitudes worse than ours.

Somehow, these people — have you noticed what happens when you see “man on the street ” interviews of most Americans — live in some bubble where they think OUR government is evil.

O.K. — all governments are inherently evil because they use force, but life is a bit more nuanced that that. Not all governments are created equal — it’s sort of like atomic weapons. The world is a dangerous place, made much more dangerous because North Korea has, and would be if Iran  got such a weapon, but would ANYONE get overly excited if Switzerland announced they had an atomic weapon?

Who would care?

I fear that, much like the 1930s  the nation will retreat to its roots. This nation has always been basically isolationist, a valid philosophy when we had a couple of enormous oceans and a powerful fleet — neither of which can have a salutary impact on a nuclear-tipped missile or even a cargo container with a nuclear weapon.

Secrecy is the coin of the realm of governments — “good” and bad governments alike. I spent a decade “spying” on other governments — what do you think Submarines do? (Many of the missions have NSA personnel aboard, and while they were almost uniformly horses-asses, they knew their job.)

I have read extensively — and written extensively — about spying, particularly in World War II. Make no mistake, the Allies could not have defeated the Axis without spies on our side, and defeating the Axis spy network.

Did the NSA exceed peacetime standards?

Probably — but ONLY if you believe we live in a peaceful world!

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