by Chris Bodenner
— David Sirota (@davidsirota) August 20, 2013
Greenwald’s point seems to have been that he was determined not to be scared off by intimidation. Greenwald and the Guardian have already been publishing documents outlining surveillance programs in Britain, and Greenwald has long declared his intention to continue publishing documents. By doing so, Greenwald isn’t taking “vengeance.” He’s just doing his job.
I don’t like how the Guardian put Miranda on its payroll, turning him into a courier of sorts and conferring on him the patina of the legal and traditional protections afforded to journalists. That’s sloppy tradecraft and it’s cruel to Miranda.
Doing journalism makes you a journalist. As Joshua Foust points out, the transitive property does not apply. (I am not a corporate strategy consultant, and I would not be one if my spouse’s company suddenly paid for me to fly stolen documents to my husband somewhere.)
Greenwald is doing real journalism. If extra protections are afforded, they are afforded to him. If extra scrutiny is warranted, he should get it. I know the Snowden case is a boundary case, that it is of an echelon that other leak cases are not and that there are real first amendment equities involved. I also know that the government takes leaks of this magnitude — and consider the totality of what’s been leaked and what precedents it sets, not just the stuff we like (the U.S. stuff), but everything — terribly seriously. As all governments do, and have done, and will do. A separation between spouse and source is a foundational principle of how reporters approach complicated stories involving secrets and classified information. IF you do choose to involve your spouse, or you and your spouse work together, then you cannot reasonably complain that your partner was harassed for no reason whatsoever. Decisions have consequences.