Friday, December 3, 2010

Now this is funny.

Hat tip to Karl Denninger.

WikiLeaks is, plain and simple, one of the most important happenings in modern history.  You can tell just by observing the ridiculous things that governments and their apologists do, to try and make it go away.*

The latest is that the US Department of State has apparently issued a threat to anyone who actually reads the documents, because, see, they're still classified.

From Democracy Now:

The U.S. State Department has imposed an order barring employees from reading the leaked WikiLeaks cables. State Department staffers have been told not to read cables because they were classified and subject to security clearances. The State Department’s WikiLeaks censorship has even been extended to university students. An email to students at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs says: "The documents released during the past few months through Wikileaks are still considered classified documents. [The State Department] recommends that you DO NOT post links to these documents nor make comments on social media sites such as Facebook or through Twitter. Engaging in these activities would call into question your ability to deal with confidential information, which is part of most positions with the federal government."

Now that's funny.  The FedGov lecturing anyone about the importance of honesty, good character and fidelity to a solemn promise is always good for a larf.  And how about the simple, brilliant absurdity of documents now in the public domain still being classified

Snarky semanticists might point out that Master, here, is ostensibly only addressing its "employees" with the threat.  Presumably this is on the basis of, you know, all of its employees making a promise not to partake of the double-secret, Drogan's Decoder Ring, X-K-Red-27-technique, classified information in the Wikileaks documents.  But as the above notes, this also applies to prospective "employees" in the form of students, and hey, let's not kid ourselves:  who here wants to suggest that Uncle Sam would hesitate to come after any one of us if, in its sole discretion, it decides that we know too much?

(It's also not lost on some of us that the threat specifically mentions social networking, as the implied means of snooping and sniffing to produce evidence of...not respecting information that doesn't belong to you.)

In the end, though, the beauty of Wikileaks is that it exposes the state for what it is:  coercion and violence, and nothing else.  The massive attempts to shut down access to the documents.  The open calls for the murder of those who have done nothing but deliver on the empty promise of state transparency.  (Anyone here think that WikiLeaks would ever have happened in a world where the state did not lie about...well, everything?)  The mendacious attempts to shift all moral culpability from the perpetrator to the messenger.  And here, the threats against "its own" in a pointless attempt to shut the barn door after all the horses have got out.

It'll be something else, tomorrow.

Because they're still classified.  What an effin' hoot

* It's not a new story.  Zeus was pretty pissed at Prometheus for doing the same thing, and likewise handled it in an entirely authoritarian way.  (For any authoritarians reading this:  note that although Zeus certainly gave Prometheus the business in punishment, what he could not do was undo what had been done.  Also, on the "legacy" topic which seems to occupy you folks so much:  remember that Prometheus is usually heralded as a great champion of all mankind, and has been ever since all this happened.  Have a nice day! :-)

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