As a member, long ago, of the U.S. Armed Forces, I took an oath to preserve and protect the Constitution of the United States. Every judge, political office holder, governor, member of Congress and president of the United States also took the same oath.
So did Edward Snowden.
Anyone advocating Snowden "go up the chain of command" to John Clapper, head of the NSA, or Eric Holder, attorney general, both of whom intentionally lied to Congress, has to have rocks in their head. No one in the NSA, the CIA, the administration or those on either the House or Senate Intelligence (oxymoron here) Committees believes that they're doing anything wrong, simply because they passed law(s) that are in conflict with the Constitution. Snowden had no choice but to go to the American people.
The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government — lest it come to dominate our lives and interests (Patrick Henry).
The recent IRS illegal abuses to intentionally target anyone that openly supports the Constitution or calls themselves a patriot or supports the Tea Party clearly illustrates the point. The illegal viewing of the Republican presidential candidate's tax records without his permission by Harry Reid is another example.
The Bill of Rights' Fourth Amendment states:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
The Fourth Amendment is very clear — there shall be no blanket warrant but only one issued on "probable cause." The NSA violated the Fourth Amendment. It was the duty of anyone aware to inform the American people. Senator Udall (member of the Senate Intelligence Committee) was aware, but failed to inform his constituents of this gross violation, that is until Snowden spilled the beans. As President Obama said, "Trust us" not to use the NSA for political purposes. He lost that trust by the actions of the IRS and by lying about Benghazi being about a B-grade movie instead of the pre-planned terrorist attack he knew it to be. The wholesale NSA spying on the American people in violation of the Fourth Amendment requires that it be dissolved as an illegitimate misuse of government power. Someone needs to go to jail but it isn't Snowden. Clapper, Holder, Obama and Hillary would be a good start.
The Declaration of Independence states
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.
Clearly stating the purpose of government is to secure our inalienable rights, something the present government seems hell-bent on destroying. It is now clear what Obama meant by transforming the country: changing government from one of liberty and freedom as defined in the Constitution into one of tyranny and runaway unrestrained government. I oppose his goals and the shared goals of the Democratic Party with every fiber of my being. Edward Snowden, in revealing just the latest trampling of the Constitution, has shown his bravery and loyalty to his oath and to the Constitution he swore to uphold. He is a true patriot. I will and would hope you, too, will support (send money) to his legal defense fund if and when he is ever tried for espionage. A robust defense based on the Constitution would be a further education for all.