New rules for spying on journalists

By Christopher B. Daly 

No surprise. The government has decided that it does not want to completely retreat from the field of spying on, investigating, and prosecuting journalists who seek and report the truth about our government’s operations. The Justice Dept is willing to make a few concessions, in acknowledgement that it recently got caught over-reaching in a number of cases. But it is nowhere near saying that the First Amendment’s guarantee of press freedom means what it says.

That’s my understanding of what AG Eric Holder announced yesterday in compliance with a demand from his boss, President Obama.

–Here’s coverage by the Times and the Post. (Complete with lots of comments that should not be missed.)

–Here’s the text of the Justice Dept report. (I am posting this in good faith; I hope the Justice Dept is doing the same and is not hiding some classified, redacted version in which they take it all back.)

Essentially, it amounts to this: Trust us. In the future, the attorney general will continue to make judgment calls and do all the balancing of press freedom and national security. If you don’t like it, tough. There’s no appeal, no remedy, no oversight.

If in the future, we have more secrecy and less transparency, this will be part of the reason.

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1 Comment

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One response to “New rules for spying on journalists

  1. David

    I am amazed the media is shocked by what they see as Holder’s secret, unethical behavior.

    While Deputy AG under Clinton, Holder approved the Marc Rich pardon without discussing it with the US Attorney’s office handling the case (in violation of DOJ rules and triggering criticism from now FBI director Comey), but after a private meeting with the lawyer who was both representing Rich and and who was a close advisor to Presidential Candidate Gore, whose AG Holder wanted to be. There was also, of course, the very large donation by Mrs. Rich to the Clinton library.

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