Monday, December 24, 2012
#358 / Supersizing Secrecy
I subscribe to the TomDispatch.com news service. You can, too. It's free. Written by Tom Engelhardt, these periodic bulletins are advertised as "a regular antidote to the mainstream media."
The TomDispatch that came my way on December 16th was headlined as follows: ""Supersizing Secrecy: The Visible Government." A number of references were made to a book I remember reading long ago, The Invisible Government, by David Wise and Thomas B. Ross. That book, published in 1964, was shocking, as it brought into public knowledge the existence of a secret "security apparatus" that had been created between the end of World War II and the time of the book's publication.
Engelhardt's point is that the "intelligence community," and the nation's "security" agencies, which were formerly truly "invisible" to ordinary citizens, now show themselves in public. Before, the public didn't really know that they even existed. Now, we know!
So, the "Invisible Government" is now "visible," at least insofar as we all know that these covert and secret agencies exist, and that they are acting in our name. But we don't know what they do.
Unless we know what our government is doing, we can't control it. Governmental secrecy is intolerable in a free society. So where does that leave us?
I think we all know the answer. The real question is, are we going to do anything about it?
Image Credit: http://www.amazon.com/dp/1608461548/ref=nosim/?tag=tomdispatch-20