I’ve been following the wikileaks story pretty closely, but I’m less interested in what they’re releasing and more interested in what wikileaks means for the future of free speech here and elsewhere.
I don’t think it is an understatement to say that wikileaks will shake the American foundation of “free speech” and “freedom of the press”.
When you have potential a presidential candidate, Mike Huckabee, saying that Assange should be tried for treason and executed, you know we’ve got a problem. (Can’t be tried for treason, not an American citizen. But I guess you can’t give Huckabee too much credit for being an idiot, since a recent poll suggests 51% of Americans (and Glenn Beck) want leakers tried for treason, but I digress)
How many of those tea partiers are standing up for Assange? Not many.
You can’t have it both ways. You can’t fight corruption by fighting to hide corruption. You can’t fight government intrusion by not allowing the light to shine on government oversteps.
You can’t be for the free markets if you aren’t for free information.
And I guess I now agree with Ron Paul on something…
“‘In a free society we’re supposed to know the truth,’ Paul said. ‘In a society where truth becomes treason, then we’re in big trouble. And now, people who are revealing the truth are getting into trouble for it.’”
The tech community, which should be for open and free access to information, has failed us, says Dave Winer.
“We now understand that we can’t look to the tech industry or even the Library of Congress. The tech industry more or less failed the neutrality test, and the LOC has failed the unwritten code of librarians everywhere.”
And if you want to hear from the man himself, Julian Assange, I suggest the following interview. It is pretty comprehensive.
In a rare, two-hour interview conducted in London on November 11, Assange said that he’s still sitting on a trove of secret documents, about half of which relate to the private sector. And WikiLeaks’ next target will be a major American bank. “It will give a true and representative insight into how banks behave at the executive level in a way that will stimulate investigations and reforms, I presume,” he said, adding: “For this, there’s only one similar example. It’s like the Enron emails.”
also, on being a “computer hacker”
“There’s a deliberate attempt to redefine what we’re doing not as publishing, which is protected in many countries, or the journalist activities, which is protected in other ways, as something which doesn’t have a protection, like computer hacking, and to therefore split us off from the rest of the press and from these legal protections. It’s done quite deliberately by some of our opponents. It’s also done because of fear, from publishers likeThe New York Times that they’ll be regulated and investigated if they include our activities in publishing and journalism.”
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