Monday, July 1, 2013

Three Whistleblowers

Three data points are enough for a rudimentary analysis, so let us compare Manning, Assange and Snowden. They are alike in that they all have Uncle Sam on their cases. They differ in planning and outcomes.

Manning was naive; he confided in a fellow officer, and now he is in custody and under court-martial. Assange knew better than to blab to a man in uniform, but he thought he could manage on his own wits. He is now in an improvised prison cell of his own choosing. Snowden knew from the first that he was in for a world of trouble; so he planned ahead. He flew to Moscow, and planned to go from there to Havana, and from there to parts unknown.

The message is clear:

* If you diss the Man, then do not trust the Man.
* Plan your parry to their counter-attack before they know you exist.
* You can't rebel alone. Seek rich friends, powerful allies and independent sanctuaries.
Snowden’s subsequent troubles suggest also:
* There is no such thing as a free lunch, a fair fight or an unmixed motive.

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