Thursday, June 27, 2013

wozniak: snowden is a hero


dailybeast | The Apple co-founder tells Lloyd Grove why he supports the NSA leaker, how the agency hasn’t ‘done one thing valuable for us’ in regard to Prism—and why the Internet wasn’t supposed to be this way.

Computer whiz Steve Wozniak is more than a little distressed that the technology he helped develop nearly four decades ago is being used on a massive scale to invade people’s privacy.

He’s especially troubled by the secret intrusions into the private emails of American citizens by the National Security Agency—secret, that is, until the recent detailed revelations of the NSA’s Prism program of electronic surveillance by a 29-year-old NSA contractor turned fugitive named Edward Snowden.

“I think he’s a hero,” said the 62-year-old Wozniak, who co-founded Apple Computer with Steve Jobs and invented the Apple I and Apple II personal computers that launched a technological revolution. “He’s a hero to my beliefs about how the Constitution should work. I don’t think the NSA has done one thing valuable for us, in this whole ‘Prism’ regard, that couldn’t have been done by following the Constitution and doing it the old way.”

Sitting down with me on Tuesday at the Ford Motor Co. campus in Dearborn, Michigan, during the “Go Further With Ford” 2013 Trend Conference, Wozniak added: “I don’t think terrorism is war. I think terrorism is a crime. And by using the word ‘war’ we’ve managed to use all these weird ways to say the Constitution doesn’t apply in the case of a war. And I think Edward Snowden is a hero because this came from his heart. And I really believe he was giving up his whole life because he just felt so deeply about honesty, about spying on Americans, and he wanted to tell us.”