1) What is your stance on end-to-end encryption for private citizens?
End-to-end encryption should be an Internet standard, just like SSL for financial transactions.
2) What is your stance on Open Source software usage within State and Federal government agencies?
We are in favor of Open Source software usage within State and Federal government agencies, as long as regular audits are performed to protect vital data from being unknowingly transmitted. Using Open Source software is an excellent way for government agencies to save money. Ideally, agencies should contribute any code customizations back to Free/Libre Open Source Software projects.
3) Do you agree with the ACLU and Human Rights Watch that Edward Snowden (and other whistle-blowers) should be pardoned?
Yes. We would pardon Edward Snowden, Chelsea Manning, John Kiriakou, Jeffrey Sterling, Julian Assange and other whistleblowers.
4) What is your stance on the current activities of the NSA in regard to surveillance and data gathering of US citizens?
The ubiquitous surveillance conducted by the NSA erodes fundamental rights to privacy and free association, while furnishing a gigantic surveillance-industrial complex with taxpayer dollars. The warrantless Internet and phone dragnets were ineffective in providing predictive value for anti-terrorist initiatives, as there was simply too much data to filter in any meaningful way, and instead were used as a repository of potential evidence (gathered without a warrant) only after an accusation had been made. We have become the most surveilled population in history, and the potential for abuse is enormous.
The way to stop terrorism is to stop funding and arming terrorists and countries that support terrorism, and to end US wars and foreign policies that create blowback – not through unconstitutional spying that treats every cell phone and computer user as a suspected enemy of the state.
See how Dr. Stein’s answers compare to the other candidates’.