Obama’s unprecedented war on whistleblowers – Salon.com

9 Feb

Why are government bureaucrats so eager to operate in secrecy?

Government bureaucrats know that this sort of slow-drip intimidation keeps people in line. It may, in the end, be less about disciplining a troublemaker than offering visible warning to other employees. They are meant to see what’s happening and say, “Not me, not my mortgage, not my family!” — and remain silent. Of course, creative, thoughtful people also see this and simply avoid government service.

In this way, such a system can become a self-fulfilling mechanism in which ever more of the “right kind” of people chose government service, while future “troublemakers” self-select out — a system in which the punishment of leakers becomes the pre-censorship of potential leakers.

Looks like Obama is making Bush/Cheney look like stewards of transparency:

The Obama administration, which arrived in Washington promoting “sunshine” in government, turned out to be committed to silence and the censoring of less-than-positive news about its workings. While it has pursued no prosecutions against CIA torturers, senior leaders responsible for Abu Ghraib or other war crimes, or anyone connected with the illegal surveillance of American citizens, it has gone after whistleblowers and leakers with ever increasing fierceness, both in court and inside the halls of various government agencies.

There is a barely visible but still significant war raging between a government obsessed with secrecy and whistleblowers seeking to expose waste, fraud and wrongdoing. Right now, it is a largely one-sided struggle and the jobs of those of us who are experiencing retaliation are the least of what’s at stake.

via Obama’s unprecedented war on whistleblowers – WikiLeaks – Salon.com.

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