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The Media

FBI Paid Informant Inside WikiLeaks 458

An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from Wired: "On an August workday in 2011, a cherubic 18-year-old Icelandic man named Sigurdur 'Siggi' Thordarson walked through the stately doors of the U.S. embassy in Reykjavik, his jacket pocket concealing his calling card: a crumpled photocopy of an Australian passport. The passport photo showed a man with a unruly shock of platinum blonde hair and the name Julian Paul Assange. Thordarson was long time volunteer for WikiLeaks with direct access to Assange and a key position as an organizer in the group. With his cold war-style embassy walk-in, he became something else: the first known FBI informant inside WikiLeaks. For the next three months, Thordarson served two masters, working for the secret-spilling website and simultaneously spilling its secrets to the U.S. government in exchange, he says, for a total of about $5,000. The FBI flew him internationally four times for debriefings, including one trip to Washington D.C., and on the last meeting obtained from Thordarson eight hard drives packed with chat logs, video and other data from WikiLeaks."

Comment Re:Wrong by law (Score 1) 601

A little bit spying on own citizens is acceptable if there is a current cause. Not acceptable is the dragnet type of surveillance with all-encompassing records of every citizen. This is a major characteristic trait of totalitarianism.

No, domestic "spying" is never acceptable because domestic spying doesn't have any of the safeguards that either domestic law enforcement or international spying has.

Not acceptable is the dragnet type of surveillance with all-encompassing records of every citizen. This is a major characteristic trait of totalitarianism.

Once you allow any domestic spying, it inevitably deteriorates into that. The only way to avoid that is to subject domestic surveillance to judicial review and hold abusers legally responsible.

Comment Re:Oh Sure. More Supply == More Demand (Score 3, Interesting) 274

"If anything, one recent study suggests, the growth of immigrant workers in American companies helps younger American technical workers"

Not only do I find that claim dubious, it's completely beside the point. At least one recent study discussed here on Slashdot, possibly more, said THEIR IS NO SHORTAGE of qualified technical workers in the United States. Some corporations just want more H1-Bs because they're cheaper.

Comment Re:So much for... (Score 1) 743

And that is entirely different than what the kid did and I would consider what you did a credible threat.

What the kid did was to use hyperbole to point out that he is not, in fact, insane. For this situation to be the same thing you would need to be responding directly to someone suggesting that you were somehow being abusive and you responding with "Oh yeah..." [continue with your post] and then following it up by pointing out that you have no idea where he lives nor care to find out, thus making it obvious that you were using hyperbole.

Comment Re:So much for... (Score 1) 743

Yes, but you are talking about the concept of free will.

The concept of freedom with respect to rights is that exercising those rights don't carry government imposed consequences. As Antipater pointed out, you can freely and properly exercise your rights and still face consequences from friends, spouses, family, etc.

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Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd. - Voltaire