I might add three points that were not included in the piece I wrote for FAZ in Germany and also published by Edge, roughly:
1) The Corona program was of such immense historical and strategic importance because the intelligence it produced showed that the USSR did not have nearly as many missiles and launchers as we feared they did. Corona served as a much-needed damper on the Cold War arms race (pushed vigorously by that military-industrial complex that Eisenhower warned about) which might have been even worse without reliable intelligence.
2) PRISM etc. could well produce the same result--if we capture all the e-mails in the world, and break all the encryption, we may discover that the world is not nearly as full of terrorists actually threatening the homeland as certain factions are warning us to be afraid of. It may really turn out to just be mostly cat videos (and normal criminal activity). The question is, will the security-industrial complex inform us of that?
3) The current security hysteria has all the indicators of an autoimmune disease--when the organism starts reacting against itself.