16 August 2013

Thomas Drake On Government Overreach, Obsessive Secrecy, and Constitutional Abuses

I was not familiar with this person or his case, but I found his speech to the National Press Club to be interesting, informative, and well articulated.

I recommend that you listen to it. I am a little surprised that he has not received more exposure in the media given the subjects that are being discussed these days. But I am often underinformed about current political affairs that do not involve finance so it could just be my own deficiency and over-concentration in certain areas.

What he reveals starting around minute 49 until almost the end is very eloquent, and quite disturbing.

Thomas Andrews Drake is a former senior executive of the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA), a decorated United States Air Force and United States Navy veteran, and a whistleblower.

In 2010 the government alleged that Drake 'mishandled' documents, one of the few such Espionage Act cases in U.S. history. Drake's defenders claim that he was instead being persecuted for challenging the Trailblazer Project. He is the 2011 recipient of the Ridenhour Prize for Truth-Telling and co-recipient of the Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence award.

On June 9, 2011, all 10 original charges against him were dropped. Drake rejected several deals because he refused to "plea bargain with the truth". He eventually pled to one misdemeanor count for exceeding authorized use of a computer.