Glenn Greenwald – One Journalist holding those in power to account

I have highlighted the work of Glenn Greenwald before. A former New York attorney he now writes for a number of online and traditional news organisations, most prominently The Guardian newspaper in Britain. He has been at the forefront of the Edward Snowden/NSA revelations, one of the few to interview Snowden in person and responsible for the release of information about the NSA’s activities in his Guardian articles. Like American academics Noam Chomsky, Cornel West and the late Howard Zinn, Greenwald believes the US political system is a plutocracy rather than a democracy, with an unaccountable financial and bipartisan political elite who maintain the status quo at all costs. All US administrations ignore the transgressions of those before, and know in turn their successors will overlook theirs. Thus no prosecutions for blatantly illegal activities like torture, spying on US citizens, the role of senior bankers in the GFC and impeachable scandals like Iran Contra. Obama knows he will face no action for his abuse of civil liberties, privacy, or drone attacks. The favoured phrase is we don’t want to dwell on the past, we want to move forward, a euphemism for sweeping everything under the rug. What is remarkable is that the same language is now used here in New Zealand with John Key a serial offender. The elites here, like those in the US and elsewhere, often find history extremely inconvenient.

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