Esquire's profile of Glenn Greenwald, the American-born, Brazilian-based journalist at the center of the Snowden leaks, is a terrific, insightful piece that lets Greenwald's own reflections on power, bravery, secrecy and justice speak for themselves: "I think the real Obama reveres institutional authority. He believes that it might need to be a little more efficient, but he has zero interest in undermining the powerful, permanent factions that have run Washington."
If you work for MSNBC or for CNN or whatever, you’re basically nothing more than an employee of a large corporation, and in order to thrive in large corporations, the attitude you need is somebody who gives power what it wants rather than looking to subvert it or to be antiauthoritarian. Antiauthoritarians don’t succeed in large corporations. They get expelled by them.
I think the real Obama reveres institutional authority. He believes that it might need to be a little more efficient, but he has zero interest in undermining the powerful, permanent factions that have run Washington...
...We’re social beings, we need interaction with other human beings, but we also crave privacy. It’s why we put locks on our bedroom and bathroom doors or why we use passwords on our e-mail accounts or use anonymity on the Internet. So I think we have an instinctive understanding about why privacy is so crucial to us, but it takes some work to really ingest in a visceral way why it is as important as anything else.
Even if we’re not doing anything wrong, there are certain things we want to do that we don’t think can withstand the scrutinizing eye of other people. And those are often the most important things that we do. The things we do when other people are watching are things that are conformist, obedient, normal, and unnotable.
Glenn Greenwald: What I've Learned [Tom Junod/Esquire]