Wikileaks QUESTION


A friend of mine who follows my blog asked me about whether I was planning to write about the Wikileaks issue. And I wasn’t. I thought it was because I had been feeling rather sick the past week – missed church and a concert on Sunday, and work on Monday and Tuesday – and I just wasn’t up to formulating an opinion.

Apparently, though, that’s not it. It is that – and I find this difficult to believe myself – I don’t HAVE a strong opinion. It’s this, on one hand, but on the other hand, that. I listened to the 2political podcast, but Arthur and Jason had less than conclusive positions. Likewise, Tegan of Bloggity-Blog-Blog-Blog lays out an ambivalent line.

OK, there are a few things I do know:
1) Whether they needed to be secrets or not, the system that allowed one Pfc to access so much info is desperately flawed, and the chatter about him and Wikileaks Assange sometimes seems like a distraction from that breach in the system.
2) While Assange appears to be a rather unlikable sort, the fact that he’s been charged with a sex crime, doing something (not using a condom) that is not criminalized in most jurisdictions makes him oddly sympathetic.
3) Ann Coulter is an idiot. Specifically, she used the Pfc.’s alleged homosexuality as as reason not to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”, as though that were an even marginally logical line of reasoning.

Thank goodness for SOME opinions! But what do YOU make of this whole situation?
***
As I noted, I blew off church on Sunday morning, with the intention of resting for the afternoon concert. Carol, Lydia and I were going with our friends Carol (yes) and Bonnie. But at 2 pm, I realized that no way was I going to enjoy the music. What to do with the spare ticket for a 3 pm concert? I called my friend Mary, who was just getting home, but she agreed to go.
Mary had never met Bonnie, but they discovered in conversation that, four years ago, Mary bought the house that Bonnie’s aunt used to live in! It was one of those bizarre Smallbany things.
***
I never liked the Dallas Cowboys. And they had a head coach named Tom Landry who I respected, but he just seemed like a cold fish. Which was why I found Don Meredith to be my favorite Cowboys quarterback; he seemed to really annoy Landry, who finally cut him loose. He ended up on Monday Night Football for a number of years, and he was entertaining in a VERY corny sort of way. He died this week.
***
Always loved the name Ron Santo. Great third baseman with the Cubs when I was growing up. I didn’t love the Cubs, but I loved Ron Santo. Later he became an announcer, but more than that, a symbol of man with a lot of heart and courage. Salon did a nice piece on him, and SamuraiFrog associated him with his grandfather, which was very sweet. I’m of the opinion that there are certain people like Santo and Buck O’Neil whose cumulative baseball skills and service as ambassadors to the sport qualify them as Hall of Fame worthy.

0 thoughts on “Wikileaks QUESTION”

  1. I share your ambivalence about Assange. The allegations of his sexual misdemenors have been around for some time and now we have the stories of the pressure put by government on organisations to withdraw funding. All of this smacks of the faceless Big Brother stamping on the little guy.

    Assange aside though, it seems Wikileaks challenges two fundamental right, namely freedom of speech and freedom of information.

    I don’t think that freedom of speech is a defence since what has been published isn’t the opinion of Wikileaks, but the opinions of politicians, diplomats and other public servants.

    Which leaves freedom of information and the right to know what the state is doing in our name. I don’t know what the FOI legislation is in the US, but it seems that the information published was obtained illegally. We’re into the murky waters of what should and shouldn’t be revealed.

    Embarrassing though the information has been for governments around the globe, we didn’t learn much that we didn’t know already. It just wasn’t the official public position.

    The real question is what is Wikileaks hoping to achieve? Is it to make us better informed citizens by making governments transparent and accountable? Or are they anarchists bent on destabilising the concept of government?

    Whatever the motivation, it is a potentially dangerous game that threatens the freedoms of us all, either by creating a state of anarchy or by goading those in power into a draconian response.

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  2. Wikileaks is the topic of the past few weeks! I still don’t understand the commotion about his so-called sexual misdemenors. What did he do wrong? The women wanted this, so why is it called rape? Strange.. Anyway I think that this was an excuse to arrest him, hoping to extradite him to the USA. I think that there should be no secrets for the population of our countries, so Assange has done a great job.
    Thanks for your visit and comment. I should also see the movie about Vincent and his brother Theo. You probably read the book “Lust for Life” as well. I liked it very much.

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  3. In this age of social transparency, we have come to expect it from others (i.e. facebook, blogging). We expect it from businesses. We expect it from government. We now even expect it from our military. I can say, personally, I’m not 100% completely transparent. I’m not sure anyone is…or should be. Sometimes filters are a good thing. In regards to Wikileaks, I’m more upset about why the information was so accessible. Evidently our security measures are not transparency-proof. Do I expect 100% transparency from my government or military? No. I expect them to be honest and conduct themselves with integrity. But I don’t think I have the right to expect them to spill everything about what they do. My gut tells me that Assange and his lot are more interested in anarchy and world destabilization than the pursuit of truth. And then there’s the common sense factor…or lack thereof.

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  4. Looks like Julian Assange will at least be out on bail any minute but what about Bradley Manning? Solitary confinement for seven months so far without being convicted of anything, without a trial, even. That’s wrong!

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  5. If sections of our government and military are as backwards like we see in WikiLeaks; then I personally have NO issue with this being aired out. If you don’t want deceitful doings to be brought to the public’s attention, then do not do them in the first place.

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