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Voices from the past

From an op-ed in the Chron, overlooked by me but spotted by the permalinkless Blah3 (it’s the first entry for November 26, scroll down a bit) and written by a member of that notorious liberal cabal the Heritage Foundation:

There was a time when at least one senior Bush administration official thought the [Freedom of Information Act] essential because “no matter what party has held the political power of government, there have been attempts to cover up mistakes and errors.” That same official added that “disclosure of government information is particularly important today because government is becoming involved in more and more aspects of every citizen’s personal and business life, and so access to information about how government is exercising its trust becomes increasingly important.”

So spoke a young Illinois Republican congressman named Donald Rumsfeld, in a floor speech on June 20, 1966, advocating passage of the FOIA, of which he was a co-sponsor.

And then there’s this gem, written by Senator John Ashcroft and spotted by Tom Tomorrow:

There is a concern that the Internet could be used to commit crimes and that advanced encryption could disguise such activity. However, we do not provide the government with phone jacks outside our homes for unlimited wiretaps. Why, then, should we grant government the Orwellian capability to listen at will and in real time to our communications across the Web?

The protections of the Fourth Amendment are clear. The right to protection from unlawful searches is an indivisible American value. Two hundred years of court decisions have stood in defense of this fundamental right. The state’s interest in effective crime-fighting should never vitiate the citizens’ Bill of Rights.

Boy, those were the days, weren’t they?

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One Comment

  1. Aaron says:

    They were lying then, they’re lying now.

    So maybe things weren’t so different.