Once again, things are getting weird at the "Intercept" where, from its launch in February, the hype is not matched by the content and the comments generally provide more actual news -- even if only aggregates from other outlets -- than the rare published items.
John Cook, who claims to be "editor-in-chief", whatever that means, has been on vacation according to reports and cannot be bothered. He's had nothing to say for months about his editorial obligations, assuming there are any.
One doesn't know.
Greenwald made an apparently ill-advised announcement that the long-awaited story he was (he said) "working on" would be published at midnight one day. It wasn't. Instead, there was a breathless announcement that the story would be held until a new government objection was investigated.
OK. So the WaPo publishes an extensive story that doesn't name names but does reveal the kinds of "inadvertent" collections of information the NSA deals with all the time, pretty much stealing Greenwald's thunder in any case. If he ever does publish his grand finale fireworks show -- looking less and less likely by the day -- will anyone care?
Greenwald continues to defend himself and hurl insults and invective via Twitter -- so at least we know he's alive. And according to reports, he's still on book tour and doing teevee appearances, so there is that.
As for the other staff at the "Intercept," with the exception of Ryan Gallagher, they have been mighty quiet since they nestled under the Omidyar wing. They have been remarkably quiet given their prolific output prior to becoming "Intercept" staff. It's almost as if shutting them up was part of the deal. The only one who hasn't been shut up is Marcy Wheeler, who just keeps cranking stories out like sausages, though she's been mighty quiet about why she left the cozy confines of OmidyarLand back in May.
Turns out Omidyar's people have been busy bees at the White House, however.
No surprise there, I suppose, given the Omidyar penchant for global power plays.
It's been my pet theory that someone at the WH called Pierre, just as the missing Jeremy Scahill teasingly suggested might happen, and asked politely that Greenwald's story -- naming names -- be held for the time being. Pierre, being the power player he is, said "Sure, why not?" and had one of his lieutenants convey the message that there might be a "problem" with one or more of the names so... would Glenn kindly look into it? 'Kthnxbai.
Greenwald's defense has largely been one of "protecting the innocent." So he can't name names without revealing the names of innocents, and that would be wrong. Unless they want their names to be named. And then it would be right. So in order to name the names all 10,000 or 100,000 names he has have to be contacted one by one, and that's ever-so-hard, and it takes a long time, and many of them may be indisposed or otherwise unable or unwilling to respond, so what are you going to do? It's such a terrific responsibility, after all. So maybe the best thing is not to name the names, just remark on the categories of those swept up in NSA collections, but we're already pretty certain of what those categories are, so is there even a story here? One that could qualify as fireworks? Maybe so, maybe not. Well, the WaPo thought there was a story, and they managed to get one out, but Greenwald's story is so much better....
It is Summer Shark and Missing White Woman season once again, and the Missing Greenwald Story fits right in with the season. The Absent Story is a Summer Story its own self, with dozens of mentions over the last week or so. Google it. And then there's Cryptome's cryptic non-announcement that the whole Snowden trove will be revealed by the end of the month. Or not.