Edward Snowden seems a mild mannered geek not to dissimilar to myself and many other techies that I know. So what makes him a man who has rattled many of the largest political institutions in the world and become the target for a world-wide manhunt, while I merely sun myself on my holibobs?
Knowledge & Action.
Knowledge is power as the age old adage goes, due what’s done with the knowledge one has garnered.
Has Snowden used his garnered knowledge wisely? I think this is the most important issue, and also the most subjective. To answer it, we should really answer it from a very broad perspective, that is, not from some small tribal perspective, but from the largest human perspective possible.
Of course many subsets of humanity will not be pleased by Snowden’s revelations, be those subsets nations; political groups; etc, and many subsets of humanity will be very pleased by Snowden’s revelations, but overall, is *humanity* better or worse off for Snowden’s actions?
I think humanity is better off with Snowdens revelations. Humanity is better off being aware of reality, and the reality is that we are not living in a world as free as we would like to think & are told by those in authority we are.
We are often controlled, cajoled, and manipulated for others’ ends, and while some of this has a positive outcome for humanity (the rule of sensible, adhered-to-by-all law, for example), much of it only serves the interests of a small subset of humanity; a group; a single nation; etc.
So, to bastardize a common phrase, ask not you can do for your country or group at the expense of very many other countries & groups, but what you can do for humanity.