Amid all the drama over Edward Snowden‘s flight from "justice" – the media stakeout at a Moscow airport, the smear campaign aimed not only at Snowden but at Glenn Greenwald, the reporter who broke the PRISM/eavesdropping story, and the obsessive media focus on Snowden as a personality – the really interesting aspect of all this is how it will impact our politics.
This is what made the Sunday talk shows illuminating, for a change – aside from the fact that neither John McCain nor Lindsey Graham was to be seen or heard that morning. While Greenwald’s appearance on "Meet the Press," and his priceless smackdown of regimist spokesman David Gregory, has gotten all the attention, that same day over at ABC, George Stephanopoulos was giving the neocons their turn at bat in the person of Dan Senor, former spokesman for George W. Bush and now a big wazoo over a the Foreign Policy Initiative, successor to Bill Kristol’s infamous Project for a New American Century.
It was a cozy little Sunday morning coffee klatch, with ABC foreign affairs correspondent Martha Raddazt – she who was so helpful to then-candidate Biden during the last vice presidential debates – commiserating with Council on Foreign Relations mandarin Richard Hass and Senor over the alleged damage done to the US by the revelations. While Haas was furious over what he characterized as Beijing’s grasping of a "short-term gain" at the expense of China’s longterm developing relationship with the US, Senor’s focus was on the domestic political consequences of the Snowden affair, and he was decidedly more optimistic about the benefits accrued to the Regimist cause:
"Snowden’s, you know, interviews that he gave, and documents he released to the Chinese press, obviously puts us in a very uncomfortable position. But I think domestically, the U.S., I think this further strengthens the center on national security. I think there was a real risk over the last couple weeks that there would be this left/right coalition that would backlash against the United States government, sort of libertarian uprising. And I think Snowden just traveling around the world, flying to these anti-American capitals, behaving the way he’s doing further strengthens–I think the center is holding right now in the US, and I think that’s a positive development."
A "libertarian uprising" is the neocons’ worst nightmare because it would put an end to their empire-building project and the Surveillance State they’ve been advocating all along. It would also put an end to their control of the GOP – their only route to power. Their paranoia in this regard is justified: many conservatives, faced with the imminent bankruptcy of the country they love, are in open rebellion against the horrifically costly foreign policy of global intervention. The neocons’ worst case scenario: Sen. Rand Paul captures the GOP presidential nomination in 2016 by fusing a rising libertarian Republican movement with independent and younger voters – and then going on to duplicate his victory in November.
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