Saturday, December 4, 2010

And another thing ...

Just to make things nice and sparkling clear, I’m not saying, “The Nanny State knows best” or arguing for a more energetic state security apparatus. By all means, bind that sucker like Gulliver. Citizens and a free press should hold their elected officials accountable. Dig up the dirt! Go for it! I hold to that principle.

I'm not questioning WikiLeaks on principle — for now. I'm asking what's the point? What actual effects will its leaks have on democratic governments?

A few Daniel Ellsbergs keep politicians on their toes. A network of anonymous Daniel Ellsbergs who can leak gigabytes of state secrets with a mouse click will just make them paranoid.

Democratic governments will adapt; the leaks will dry up.

The G.W. Bush White House will remain the gold standard for clamping down on leaks and keeping even internal communications robotically on-message. The screw-ups that result from that kind of secrecy and paranoia will also be there norm.

That's what I'm saying.

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