Matt Towery

Case closed -- focus on the lone "leaker."

Of course, we recently witnessed the complete dismantling of advanced airport body scanners because too many people believed that some anonymous person in another area of the airport might see some brief glimpse of a naked body whose name they did not know. But we were supposed to believe the Pew poll.

The better read on this are the many polls in recent days that suggest most Americans are fine with tracking phone calls and examining emails of suspected terrorists, but not of average Americans. But the first poll out often validates what the most powerful want us to believe.

In reality most Americans don't approve of the snooping. Even President Obama, as a U.S. senator, bemoaned intrusion into the private lives of average citizens in the name of national security and anti-terrorism.

Now, however, the president is singing a newer and more "establishment" oriented tune. And the column inches and time on television newscasts devoted to this young man coupled with the condemnation of Snowden by many, including Republican House Speaker John Boehner, will dominate and start to squeeze from the public dialogue the implications of wholesale data mining by the government. And it might just take our eyes off of the IRS targeting, as well.

This isn't really a story of liberal versus conservative, and shouldn't be one of Republican versus Democrat. Most of us are shocked to learn what many suspected -- that Big Brother government with its capabilities via drones and ultra-sophisticated intelligence gathering capabilities is truly omnipotent. And most don't like it one bit.

Ironically, in 1963 there were not enough sources of news to alter an easily led public's attention away from the lone gunman fixation. Now there are so many sources of information that we don't know who to trust -- so most turn to the same mainstream sources of information, or their modern day counterparts, that folks looked to when the name Oswald was first uttered.

Whether it is the "lone gunman" or the "lone leaker," some things never change. The crime of one man potentially covers the acts and deeds of many -- or at least diverts attention.


Matt Towery

Matt Towery is a former National Republican legislator of the year and author of Powerchicks: How Women Will Dominate America.
 
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