Glenn Greenwald


Glenn Greenwald, former constitutional lawyer and current blogger, discusses the support among Leftists for criminalizing political “hate speech,” Attorney General Eric Holder’s preliminary investigation of detainee torture, the potentially unlimited scope of the “executive assassination ring” continued under Obama, why the word “terrorism” is too politicized to be usefully descriptive and how the recent US/Israel row has prompted many Americans to rethink their support for Israel.

MP3 here. (23:30)

Glenn Greenwald was a constitutional lawyer in New York City, first at the Manhattan firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, and then at the litigation firm he founded, Greenwald, Christoph. Greenwald litigated numerous high-profile and significant constitutional cases in federal and state courts around the country, including multiple First Amendment challenges. He has a J.D. from New York University School of Law (1994) and a B.A. from George Washington University (1990). In October of 2005, Greenwald started a political and legal blog, Unclaimed Territory, which quickly became one of the most popular and highest-trafficked in the blogosphere.

Upon disclosure by the New York Times in December 2005 of President Bush’s warrantless eavesdropping program, Greenwald became one of the leading and most cited experts on that controversy. In early 2006, he broke a story on his blog regarding the NSA scandal that served as the basis for front-page articles in the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times and other newspapers, all of which credited his blog for the story. Several months later, Sen. Russ Feingold read from one of Greenwald’s posts during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Feingold’s resolution to censure the president for violating FISA. In 2008, Sen. Chris Dodd read from Greenwald’s Salon blog during floor debate over FISA. Greenwald’s blog was also cited as one of the sources for the comprehensive report issued by Rep. John Conyers titled “The Constitution in Crisis.” In 2006, he won the Koufax Award for best new blog.

Greenwald is the author of A Tragic Legacy: How a Good vs. Evil Mentality Destroyed the Bush Presidency, How Would a Patriot Act? Defending American Values from a President Run Amok and Great American Hypocrites: Toppling the Big Myths of Republican Politics.

39 thoughts on “Glenn Greenwald”

  1. Glenn, you should know better than trying to be intellectually honest in US mainstream society…keep up the great work.

  2. I think Glenn needs to grasp an important distinction: it's possible for the US/Israeli fake 'rift' to be political theater AND for it to be an opening through which a more honest public discourse CAN be driven.

    One reason for this theater might be to support plausible deniability for the US when Israel attacks Iran, to help the US look a little bit less like Israel's stooge when it comes into the war to back Israel up.

  3. I'd like to point out to Mr. Greenwald that while sticks and stones etc., free speech can and does kill. The Canadian position that he finds so appalling is designed to prevent radio broadcasts of the sort that in Rwanda called on Hutus to take out machetes, go to their Tutsi neighbours' houses, and hack them to pieces. Speech is a necessary stage in the implementation of genocide. Every genocide has included a step in which a population is incited to commit the act of genocide. Shall we allow it?

    1. I would love to see Canadians hacking each other to death. Whatever law it is that'll make that happen, I'm for it!

      1. You're a slimeball, you know that, don't you? I'm sure loads of people have told you that, your mother, your prospective girl friends, your prospective foster parents….

    2. it's always an interesting argument, but aren't there already laws that would cover incitement to murder or violence? I live in Australia, and we don't have any right to free speech. In some countries one would go jail for holocaust denial, which is not necessarily "hate". I think I'll shut up now!

      1. Isn't that the amazing thing. A foreign country has made it "illegal" in your own land to raise questions, no matter how unseemly they may be, and have you tossed in jail. Now THATS totalitarianism on a global scale.

    3. And the 19 year long US genocide of Iraqi's ?
      How does that fit in ?
      What speech should have been allowed? disallowed?

  4. Without a doubt, Glenn Greenwald is one of the very best columnist/writers in the USA. I do not know how he does it, but day in and day out, Glenn Greenwald produces the best articles.

  5. Personally, I think "hate speech" laws are bullshit. They're favored by politically correct types, or by people who want to be exempt from criticism.

    The U.S. Government is a lawless government, so don't expect Holder's "investigations" to "investigate" anything. There's one set of rules for the District of Corruption Establishment, and another for Joe & Jane Sixpack.

    Agent 007 Obama claims he has "license to kill," so look out. . . .

    Cut Israel from America's apron strings.

    1. I agree, Orville. That's why I want to get politicians out of government by getting rid of elections. Instead, pick people at random to serve in Congress similar to jury duty. I'm still formulating my ideas, but each district would select people at random it found someone willing and able to serve. Half the districts would select a representative every two years. The president would be selected by the Congress from among its members who have served for at least two years or at the end of his/her 4-year term. The president would oversee the military and bureaucracy, but would be subservient to the Congress.

      The benefits of this would be the absence of partisanship. We'd have a greater diversity of experience. The intelligence of those serving would be about the same as it is now, but you'd have greater character and loyalty to the national interest rather than to foreign lobbies. Politicians are warped. They're prostitutes. They are megalomaniacs. They need to go.

  6. Greenwald is probably as critical of Zionism as you can find on the 'left'.

    And yet, he is a self-proclaimed Zionist.

    Wake up! Greenwald is just learning that 'terrorist' is a loaded term. Give me a break.

    The sponsor of all hate speech laws all over the world is the Jewish Anti-Defamation-League. The ONLY support for those laws is the Zionists and their stooges on the 'left'. Did Greenwald mention that?

    And the only thing protecting the vestiges of free speech on the internet, e.g. with luck this comment will not be deleted, is the First Amendment, which the ADL is constantly trying to subvert.

  7. Duglarri (above) makes the point that speech does kill since killing is often preceded by speech. This view overthrows the moral fact of free will. The fact that one tells another to go kill does not cause killing. The killing is caused by the decision in the mind of the killer. Leftists, in general, often imply a loss of free will in others in order to justifiy taking control of the world. They will imply that consumers have no choice when faced with advertising, so they can control advertising – etc. The key intellectual trait of leftists is condescension – contempt for the minds and choices of others. Implying that others lack free will is the ultimate condescension and, at the same time, the ultimate fantasy of the power-lusters who desire to manipulate all those free-will lacking subjects.

    1. Statist totalitarians always whip out arguments in support of controlling speech just so long as THEIR speech isn't affected. Which reminds me of the Bolshevik intellectuals and how they were caught unawares during the Stalinist purges. The term "useful idiots" indeed! They're always happy to put the noose about their enemies necks never noticing that the hangman had one for them all along.

    2. The way I see it Duglarri doesn't make the point that killing is preceded by speech therefore people kill, he or she is making the argument that propaganda can poison the atmosphere to a point that people start to kill other people, usually minorities. No one as far as I can see would make the argument that people who do the actually killing should be absolved or shouldn't be held responsible because they were exposed to freedom of speech. That is a laughably transparent straw man. What the argument simply implies and what I think you fail to acknowledge is that people are influenced by their social environment and that propaganda plays upon common held beliefs, normative rules, values and such and goes out of it's way to avoid creating cognitive dissonance in the targeted audience along the way. We even see it demonstrated by some of the reactions to this very uniquely American absolutist understanding of free speech in this very thread. Almost like there is only absolute free speech or there is none at all, like the distinction between Pakistan and Canada doesn't even register and anybody who doesn't exactly subscribe to this understanding is viewed with utter suspicion. This is normal social behaviour, commonly seen as befitting any good American, but that is exactly the point.

    3. John Howard,

      You make a good point, but I also think you're incorrect for directing this criticism solely at "leftists". Contempt for the choices of others is endemic to all forms of statism (that includes "rightists").

      The "left" may have "contempt for the minds and choices of others" when it comes to advertising and speech (to name a few), but how is that different from the general statist claim that without a coercive monopoly to provide protection, arbitration, and defense, people would be incapable of freely seeking those services on a competitive, open market? That instead of order being the natural, spontaneously generated product of self-interested human actors, it must be imposed by a criminal gang, under the pretense of legitimacy?

      The fact is, only the true libertarian (that is "anarchist"/anti-statist) position refrains from the condescension and contempt for others you rightly criticize. A contempt fundamental to both the "right" and the "left", just simply expressed in different outlets.

    4. Leftists control advertising? When did that happen?

      The First Amendment was never intended to protect fraudulent commercial claims. The FTC is run by the government, not by leftists.

      Maybe I don't understand your point regarding advertising, but I also think terms like "leftists" are vague and have multiple meanings. I consider myself a liberal, not a leftist, and I support free will, free speech and the decentralization of power.

      1. You surprise me HM. Your definition of yourself doesn't fit into what has metastisized into modern day liberalism. Heck! You sound more like a LIbertarian than you might want to admit. Your other points are spot on.

  8. The political tribalism amazes me. What is it that attaches people to the major parties? How can they hate one another when they essentially have the same views? It's more of an image that they identify with not an ideology.

  9. remember Hirshima, Nagasaki, and Dresden…

    There is no depth of depravity to which the Israeli-controlled douche bags in the USA will stoop to.

  10. Obama is a RAT. He's the poster boy for "race traitor" – even fucking Mahatma Ghandi would be inclined to pump his empty bobble head with hollow-point lead. Here's hoping some patriot takes this fucking motherfucker OUT. Salud!

    1. Did you feel the same way about George W. Bush?

      I don't like Obama for the same reasons I didn't like Bush, but we take people out through elections. How is Obama such an imminent threat that you want someone else to assassinate him?

  11. Glenn consistantly hits the nail on the head, doesn't miss much. In order to understand the claims that are being made in the media , whether it be print, internet, audio, etc. you have to pay attention to the words that are used. He seems pretty clairvoyant and consistent, no hypocrisy. Good work!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.