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February 6, 2016

Glenn Greenwald on the Effectiveness of Public Response


“The problem with public outrage is that you have two political parties that compete for power that almost never diverge in any meaningful way on these questions,” journalist Glenn Greenwald says about NSA surveillance issues, in a Cato Institute interview. “And so, public outrage can’t find any vehicle for expressing itself in terms of forcing meaningful change.”

“But I think the tech sector can actually make a difference,” he says, noting that U.S. tech companies “exert enormous influence in Washington.”

He also says: “This is one of the few, few issues that has caused an enormous amount of controversy” that isn’t predictable “in terms of how opinion breaks down by either partisan or ideological division.”

“I would say that in fact it’s almost 50-50,” he says.

To the extent there’s a predictable “metric of reaction,” more than anything else, it’s likely by age group, “where younger people tend to be extremely supportive of the disclosures whereas older people tend to be more wary of them, probably because of the views of the role of the Internet and its importance in our lives,” he says.

Greenwald’s new book “No Place to Hide,” about Edward Snowden’s NSA leaks will be made into a movie, Sony Pictures Entertainment announced yesterday.

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