What's sad about this whole affair? Many people -- of every political stripe -- recognized the Patriot Act for what it was, at the time it passed; a Cheney fantasy become reality, installing Big Brother while the governed were paralyzed with fear and smothered in nationalism. Snowden is just the latest in a long, long line of folks who have been trying to get "everybody else" to listen to those small stories tucked in the middle pages of papers and magazines, telling us that "Homeland Security" was a euphemism for "police state". The 2008 Obama reforms to the Patriot Act helped bring it under control a bit, but Congress didn't care enough to do their job and now, we've got what we've got. You think we're polarized politically? How about the polarity between "the watched" and "the watching"? We ain't seen nothing yet. Snowden is a traitor and he has definitely done harm to our national security, but there is an element of altruism in what he's done, in finally starting a national debate among all those who wanted to pretend or believe it just couldn't be true. Whether or not his altruism was indeed pure? Remains to be seen ... still many, many more unanswered questions than there are answers in his story.