June 14, 2007 12:19 PM PDT

Bush administration attacks 'shield' for bloggers

WASHINGTON--The Bush administration on Thursday blasted a congressional proposal that would shield a broad swath of news gatherers, including some bloggers, from revealing their confidential sources.

The latest draft of the Free Flow of Information Act would pose a grave threat to national security and federal criminal investigations by protecting far too large a segment of the population, a U.S. Department of Justice official told Congress.

A correction was made to this story. Read below for details.

"The definition is just so broad that it really includes anyone who wants to post something to the Web," Rachel Brand, assistant attorney general in the Justice Department's Office of Legal Policy, said at a House Judiciary Committee hearing here. She also argued it would protect "a terrorist operative who videotaped a message from a terrorist leader threatening attacks on Americans."

Justice Department opposition has bedeviled Congress throughout its numerous attempts in recent years to enact federal shield laws. Supporters say such legislation is needed in light of high-profile cases involving New York Times reporter Judith Miller and what free-press advocacy groups characterize as a sharp rise in subpoenas to reporters in recent years.

Laws recognizing some form of "reporter's privilege" already exist in 49 states and the District of Columbia--but, crucially, do not shield journalists from federal prosecutors. The Bush Administration claims there's no evidence that source-related subpoenas to reporters are on the rise and argues that it already has robust internal guidelines, including a requirement that the attorney general personally approve such subpoenas and provide an appropriate balance between press freedom and investigative needs.

"I'd say anyone who didn't want to face legal action would immediately try to put up a blog and try to get journalistic protection."
--Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.)

This year's Free Flow of Information Act, which has been introduced in both the House and Senate, proposes a protection for a broader swath of people than earlier versions. It covers anyone engaged in journalism, which is defined as "gathering, preparing, collecting, photographing, recording, writing, editing, reporting or publishing of news or information that concerns local, national or international events or other matters of public interest for dissemination to the public."

Even those covered individuals could be forced to give up their sources under certain circumstances, including when it's clear that crimes have been committed, when "imminent and actual harm" to national security could occur, or when trade secrets, nonpublic personal information or health records are compromised in violation of existing laws.

The hearing, which lasted about three hours, highlighted again the tensions that have arisen as the traditional mainstream media continues to overlap and collide with Internet-based upstarts.

On several occasions, politicians from both parties questioned whether the bill should be so expansive as to include bloggers. Some bristled at the notion that the ease of publishing online could provide cover for those who want to leak sensitive information and get away with it.

"I'd say anyone who didn't want to face legal action would immediately try to put up a blog and try to get journalistic protection," said Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.), adding that he hoped to work with his colleagues to refine that definition.

But even one of the bill's opponents, George Washington University Law School professor Randall Eliason, said, "anything narrower is going to run into severe First Amendment problems."

William Safire, a longtime New York Times columnist and former Nixon administration speech writer, praised the bill's current definition because he said it focuses on the actions characteristic of journalists, not their affiliations.

"Whether you're a blogger or whether you're The New York Times or CBS or The Wall Street Journal, if what you are doing is aimed at informing the public, then you're a journalist, whether you get paid for it or not," he said. (The New York Times, the National Association of Broadcasters and other journalism groups have endorsed the latest bill, according to its sponsors.)

At Thursday's hearing, the bill's chief sponsors, Reps. Rick Boucher (D-Va.) and Mike Pence (R-Ind.), never directly addressed the issue of the journalist definition they crafted. Boucher told CNET News.com in an interview earlier this year that they intended to include bloggers "who are regularly involved in newsgathering and reporting." Any refinement of that definition would be left up to the courts.

Instead, the bill's sponsors continued to tout the necessity of passing their measure as soon as possible. The measure, Pence said, "is not about protecting reporters, it's about protecting the public's right to know."

Some Republicans said they opposed the bill more broadly because they believed it would give undue protection to anyone who publishes false or irresponsible information. Former Judiciary Committee chairman Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) cited a New York Times story last year about a government computer system to track money laundering by terrorists as an example of a situation in which a news outlet harmed American national security interests.

"I don't see very much responsibility there," he said. "It seems to me the burden of proof in showing a press shield will be used responsibly should be on the news media."

 
Correction: Due to an editing error, this story misstated the day of the week the Bush administration criticized a congressional proposal that could let bloggers protect sources in some cases. The day is Thursday.

See more CNET content tagged:
Brad Sherman, subpoena, blogger, national security, Bush Administration

74 comments

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The only national security issue is...
that drunk is still in the Whitehouse.
Posted by asdf (241 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Tired excuse..
Every time the Administration doesn't get its way it always falls back on this old chestnut.

"Give us what we want or the terrorists will get you".

And it's complete BS every time they use it.

They've walked all over the Constitution, pretty much committed treason on a number of occasions, broken innumerable laws - and every time they get called on it, it's because "the terrorists will win" if they don't, or "the terrorists will get ya" if they can't.

They've even used Star Trek 'red alerts' to win elections.

Oh don't get me wrong, the Democrats are as spineless as the Republicans are liars. They refuse to challenge any of these lies, refuse to put up any sort of fight in case some mean right winger commentator calls them soft of terror.

Get over it - if this Congress wimps out on this, just as they did on funding the Iraq debacle, every one of them deserves to lose their seat in the next congressional election.

There is a reason why Congress only has a 23% approval rating, in fact there are two. The first is that people quite rightly believe Congress is still open for business, willing to sell itself to the highest bidder - and the other is that people quite rightly believe they are spineless to challenge the President.

If they back down on this bill they will have proven themselves to be weak once again.
Posted by ajbright (447 comments )
Link Flag
Did we vote in a King or did we vote in a President?
When are we going to get back to the constitution? When are we going to stop fear mongering from ruling the country? Rather then stopping terrorism in our country the government is seemingly creating more and more of it in order to find ways to enforce their some few poweful lobbiest and corporations agenda, that is wrong.

We have the 1st amendment to the constitution for a reason, now the President wants to walk all over it some more right? To me that is wrong!

Here is the 1st Amendment: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people to peaceably assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. This can be found at this website: <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://home.earthlink.net/~people-of-courage/lawsandrights/id3.html" target="_newWindow">http://home.earthlink.net/~people-of-courage/lawsandrights/id3.html</a>

Isn't our President smart enough to get this or what? He is going out of the office this term because he has to, luckily they only get two terms. The legacy he leaves can only be one of him not making any attempt to undo the damage he has already done or that he made some honest attempt to limit the damage he has already caused.

I did not vote for him, if it were not for Republicans like him I might consider becoming one myself? So he can either try to undo some of the damage he has done or he can enforce a legacy of not only willingly lying to the American people in a public way on National TV and getting us into a religious war, getting more and more people addicted to mind altering addictive psychoactive drugs and destroying their bodies at government demand, and not doing a thing to help the economy of our country, or he can try to turn it around by doing some real things to help the poor, stop pushing the mind altering drugs, stop the fear mongering and coercion and force tactics, and think about doing soemthing to change his own mind and turn it around.

So this is the way that I see it and I am a blogger, website owner, writer, alternative media, and I am asking him not to take away my right to write as freely as I need to in order to stop the bull and make a real difference in our world.

I realize that some people may be afraid of the people like me that tell the truth with fairness, balance, timeliness, and integrity, but we are not terrorist just writers getting the truth out. That is the only real reason I could see for anyone to want to limit this constitutional freedom.

Vote for Ron Paul for President, he is the best choice I know of at this time. Perhaps I will change my mind in the future as I read more real and truthful comments on other people's real and truthful blogs and not only my own? Thanks!
Posted by mixed-feelings (18 comments )
Reply Link Flag
"just a damned piece of paper"
As far as Baby Bush is concerned, the Constitution is "just a damned piece of paper".

I used to defend him in arguments with democrats for his tough stance towards terrorism, but after 5 years of nothing but repeated tramplings over our rights as citizens and *STILL NOT BIN LADEN CAPTURE*, I see no other choice at this point to turn my back on the present administration and condemn what he's turned America into: Home of the over-reacting politically-correct police state.
Posted by Weezuldk (6 comments )
Link Flag
AND the Bush Administration is Right!
Would result in "journalistic" anarchy! It was tough enough to prove Dan Rather a liar with his bogus Bush national guard stories!
Headline also exposes the authors bias! You couldn't even work for CNN your so obvious!
Posted by jmoran (36 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Is that jmoran or amoron?
Go watch Fox for the best in bogus news!
Posted by dahnb (49 comments )
Link Flag
Bloggers are the new press
...and as such, are entitled to first amendment protection. This includes protection of sources.

Keep in mind that the Bush Administration is making an "executive privilege" argument that basically says that aides need to be able to give the president honest advice without fear of reprisal. If Congress is able to subpoena them and make them testify, that will make most people limit what they say.

The same argument goes for the sources reporters use. Sources need to be able to be free to talk to reporters without fear that they are going to be outed.
Posted by rdean (119 comments )
Link Flag
Afraid of Free Speech?
Bush has gone off line along with a lot of other Beltway mental midgets. It seems Bush and his pals see boogie men lurking in every shadow.

Our nation was built on public knowledge. The public has a right to know what our government and usually everyone else is doing. This is called free speech. The truth can be shared only if all of us don't need a lawyer in our back pocket editing our words every time we speak or write.

Free speech is stifled when it becomes a trial in court every time we say something someone doesn't like or they want our privileged source. The chilling effect kills two birds with one court trial. The source is scared to death to share with anyone and the reporter (blogger) is scared to death to repeat the information.

Who wants to repeat the government is buying two dollar hammers but paying a thousand dollars for each hammer if they are going to be pulled into court to reveal their source?

On the flip side who wants to repeat a source who heard two men threatening to hit the White House with dozens of RPG? Right or wrong, the reporter and the source could be in deep trouble as they are pulled into court for trial.

The legal fees of fighting the government each time one is pulled into court can and has stopped many who have run up against lawyers and judges. A one time learning experience is usually enough to stop most free speech advocates from repeating news not already published.

Free speech is the only thing that keeps our corrupt government from being worse than it already is. Don't ever forget government is not an entity. It is comprised of people who thirst for power. "Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely."
always,
Barb
Posted by BarbieLee (12 comments )
Reply Link Flag
This is what I'm afraid of....
giving pajama experts, sitting behind their computers who are Bush/America haters a license to use, be used as national security leakers!
Posted by jmoran (36 comments )
Link Flag
Censorship
Don't forget that the McCain/Feingold act was a bipartisan censorship act. The danger is real, but it is NOT just from the Republicans. The Democrats are every bit as bad. <P> Remember, Hillary was wanting controls on the net long before the blogs started building as a force.
Posted by Phillep_H (497 comments )
Link Flag
SHIELD FOR BLOGGERS STORY
I was always taught that bad people were not the problem, but that good people who turn bad were the problem. I don't believe that a fully operational global investigator bot will ever be the true answer for protecting oneself from terrorists. Once Bush leaves office, no one will adhere to his decisions and policies, as if people do that now, and, as if any president ever had the power to lead a rebellious nation into a better direction. ROBBY ROBOT TASERS GRANDMA, FIFTEEN YARDS!
Posted by jack1260 (19 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Oh, Lordy, another "Bush Admin" story...
that isn't...certainly at least as far as the "Bush Administration" alone being opposed to the bill as it is written goes. Gee, a Democrat is even quoted in the story as opposing the bill as it is written, and--golly gee--a Republican *shudder, gasp*--is actually a co-sponsor of the this bill. I guess CNET brilliantly concludes that the Dems who oppose the bill are a part of the "Bush Administration" and that the Republican who co-sponsored the bill isn't.

Chalk up another warped piece of journalism for CNET. Heh...;) It's almost become predictable. I mean, if one "Bush Administration" figure goes on record as opposed to something, but 12,000 Democrats also oppose it--hey, that won't stop CNET from "blaming" the "Bush Administration"--drum roll and violins, please.

Here's a tip for CNET: "freedom of speech" doesn't simply mean "freedom to tow the National Democratic Party Line," uh, whatever that may be on any given day of the week, it also means the freedom to disagree, doesn't it? CNET often forgets about that niggling little aspect about freedoms like speech, doesn't it? Often the biggest critics of free speech are only concerned with the issue as it concerns somebody else--and that usually means they don't want that "somebody else" to enjoy the same freedoms of speech they believe they are themselves entitled to.

Unreal.
Posted by Walt Connery (89 comments )
Reply Link Flag
It used to be the Clinton Administration
if you can't stand the sound of the words "the Bush Administration" and they sound , golly, positively prejudicial to you, well, that says something.

See, the Bush Administration is the Administration in power. WHen Clinton was there, it was "the Clinton Administration"... see how that works?

The truth is, even Republicans can't stand the sound of those words -the Bush Administration" . That's because his administration is the worst administration in the history of our country. Second only to Nixon's assault on democracy.

It's like listening to someone shout "I RESEMBLE THAT REMARK" when you call them by name.

It's hilarious.

The Bush Administration.
The Bush Administration.
The Bush Administration.

Yeah, that makes my skin crawl too.....
Posted by asdf (241 comments )
Link Flag
correction
Ah, I see you're unfamiliar with the way congressional testimony from the Department of Justice works. It is crafted in advance, cleared with the White House's Office of Management and Budget if necessary, and in final form represents the official view of the administration.

It is true that there are some Dems and some Repubs who both oppose and support this bill.

But the administration's support is, properly, the headline for two reasons. First, politicians of both major parties tend to listen closely to the Justice Department when it talks about what will imperil criminal investigations, and adjust legislation accordingly. Second, Bush still has the veto power.

Still, as some posts in this thread including the parent demonstrate, it's easier to take potshots at articles without actually taking the time to understand what's actually going on. Why am I not surprised?
Posted by declan00 (848 comments )
Link Flag
We need to be careful...
We need to be careful of who we call a journalist. Maybe in the Internet age it is time that independent journalists and organizations like news papers and TV Stations should have to register and be certified as such before they are given these important protections.

With the focus of this being independent journalists needing to be qualification requirements and for organizations like newspapers and TV Stations the organization themselves has to be certified and licensed with most of the focus going towards the independent ones who must prove they are actually journalists and not just playing house like one.

Just because you post on a blog on other space on the Internet doesn't make your a journalist. If it did then this post of mine right here makes me a journalist and that is bull.

I have no love for the Bush administration but I feel this time their concerns are very well justified. We don't need every Tom, Dick or Harry with Internet access being classified and protected as if they were a journalist. They aren't.

Robert
Posted by Heebee Jeebies (632 comments )
Reply Link Flag
All is relative ...
Some bloggers are journalists, some aren't.

Trouble is, these days, most journalists aren't journalists. And yeah, Robert, maybe they should be certified ... not in the sense you intend.

The live-blogging of the Libby trial by the Firedoglake crowd was an excellent example of on-the-spot journalism. And I'm not even in their partisan camp.
Posted by NoVista (274 comments )
Link Flag
Let me get this straight...
...You feel that Americans should have to get permission to exercise their Constitutional Rights..? You think that someone must be required to "register", and be "certified" to report what they have seen, or learned..?

Next, I suppose "reporters" should be required to submit their work to the Government-bureau of "Truth and Information"... before the "public" can be informed of Government mistakes, and corruption..?

Perhaps you just dont understand the most basic principles of "Free-Speech", or... "The Peoples Right to Know". Or, perhaps you are simply GROTESQUELY IGNORANT of virtually ALL American History, The Constitution, and the Law. Or, maybe, you are simply lacking in any common-sense, what-so-ever.

For your information... YES, ANYONE that makes information available to the "public" IS a "journalist" (That WAS our Founding-Fathers clearly-stated position). Any other interpretation absolutely GUTS the protection of "Free Speech", upon which, ALL other American-Freedoms depend. And, the detrimental consequences, to ANY free-society, of such RHETORICAL, HYPOCRITICAL, WORD-GAMES, has ALWAYS, ultimately, been utter repression and enslavement.

NO ONE, can be allowed to decide who should be allowed to provide information to the "public". Any attempt to do so, while talking about a "free society" is, at best, delusional. At worst, it is INTENTIONAL-TYRANNY.

As the story points out, no one is protected from the legal-ramifications of being part of a criminal activity. And, all "journalists" are still subject to slander, libel, and military-secret, restrictions and prosecutions.

Frankly, those officials that scream the most about state-secrets, and "responsible journalism" are, most often, the very ones desperately trying to use their power to cover-up their-own abuses, and scandals.

What is going on right now, in this country, is a good case in point. The current administration, is the most secretive, and controlling in generations. They also have had the worst record of lying, corruption, and criminal-activities in decades. It is no small wonder that they want to pull the cloak of fear, and obfuscation, over the American People.

Honestly, I dont give a DAMN about your PERSONAL-OPINIONS regarding who is, or is not, "...a journalist". You are free to express that opinion. But, I am just as free to point-out just how asinine, foolish, and absolutely OFFENSIVELY un-American, your ridiculous assertions, are.

And, I dont have to ask anyones -permission-, to do so...
Posted by Had_to_be_said (384 comments )
Link Flag
Here is where you are wrong, some of us are journalist!
A peice of paper does not make you a writer or a reporter, a degree doesn't either, that is just something so that people like you the Kings and Queens servants think that you can control the world, but those like you can't win! Let me tell you why, because it is the little person that basically built this country, people all had to be pretty much equal when this country first started, they all had to survive. Read John Gatto's book The Underground History of Education and see just how important you are as part of the higherarchy or beuracracy. A journalist is one that writes news and events, brings historical accounts and details out, and uses truth, balance, fairness, and timeliness, but for a change in the degree program I would have an actual Bachelors degree in Journalism. Most of our most important and relevant historical news was not written by anyone with any degrees in this field at all and they were protected by the constitution. Study beyond your nose and look at old history books where you can find more then propaganda. Does it make me less then a journalist because the university decided to change their requirements in the middle of my Bachelor degree program? I don't think so?
Posted by mixed-feelings (18 comments )
Link Flag
in your right wing DREAMS
"Maybe in the Internet age it is time that independent journalists and organizations like news papers and TV Stations should have to register and be certified as such before they are given these important protections."


IN YOUR DREAMS we'll let the STATE decide who's a journalist. In your wildest most right-wing corporate-fascist every-liberal-dead dreams.

THAT is PURE fascism...that is the DEATH of every civil liberty and freedom of speech itself. The STATE decides you who can and cannot be a journalist. The State revokes your license. The State regulates journaists. That is the old Soviet Empire that Bushies are chomping to recreate here in America.

After you kill me and hundreds of millions of others, maybe then you'll get away with that, but not before.

Our Founding Fathers didn't ASK the Crown if they could put pen to paper and tell the truth. We need MORE of that spirit and LESS of Robert-the-corporate-shill who was told to float this idea to see how people would react. Take this back to your corporate masters, ********. This country is going into civil war the day the politicians and State think they can tell us who SHALL be a journalist and who SHALL NOT. This country is going into civil war the day the corporations TRY to muzzle me or anyone else by overthrowing the Constitution. That's when YOU establish yourselves as the traitorous, seditious CRIMINALS that you ARE and We the People, under the authority given to us by the Constitution of the United States of America TAKE our country back and HANG THE CRIMINALS IN THE CORPORATIONS BY THEIR NECKS UNTIL DEAD.



People, the CRIMINALS are in power. This is a criminal state.
Posted by asdf (241 comments )
Link Flag
The last time they tried that...
...we got Jeff Gannon...
Posted by jmludwig99 (15 comments )
Link Flag
First amendment quagmire
The Bush administration is walking into first amendment trouble on this one. Bloggers are the new press, and as such, are protected by the prohibition on laws curtailing the freedom of the press. The same principle that underlies the "Executive Privilege" argument underlies the freedom of the press -- sources need to feel that they can speak to reporters without fear of reprisal.
Posted by rdean (119 comments )
Reply Link Flag
If I was a blogger with breaking news....
You can bet I would keep my sources with me secret to the grave.


News Breakers
Whistle Blowers

All should be protected.
What is Bush afraid of? Neocons?
Posted by inachu (963 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Does this apply to Bush?
Does this mean President Bush is willing to reveal all of the sources he uses to get us into his wars? I would like to know who really produced the forged "yellow cake" papers from Nigeria. It would also be nice to know who is feeding all of the new info about Syria and Iran. Fool us once, shame on you. Fool us twice, shame on us.
Posted by For Ron Paul (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Forged papers
You mean the ones he did not even hear of until after Congress voted in support of ending the truce? <P> No, Bush can no longer show the documents used to restart the Gulf War. Sandy Berger stole them.
Posted by Phillep_H (497 comments )
Link Flag
If it makes the Administration mad, it must be good!
Heck of a note - but with the Administration's long litany of laws disregarded via "signing statements", Constitutional rights overridden via the "Patriot" Act and other legislation, the corruption of the Justice Department, General Service Administration, the Department of the Interior, etc. etc. etc. via the installation of political appointees who are willing to ignore the law (i.e., they are "loyal Bushies"), their censoring of government scientific data if it does not agree with their positions, and their constant claim of "executive privilege" as an excuse to hide what they do, my instinctive reaction to anything the Administration doesn't like is to assume it will be good for the "average" American.
Posted by missingamerica (6147 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Constitution
The "historic" (what is written) interpretation of Constitution has not been valid for 14 years. It is now a "living document", it means whatever the people in charge want it to mean.
Posted by Phillep_H (497 comments )
Link Flag
Democratic Motto??
missingamerica writes:
"my instinctive reaction to anything the Administration doesn't like is to assume it will be good for the "average" American."

Isn't this the current philosophy for the Democratic Party these days?
Posted by Kings X Rocks! (89 comments )
Link Flag
Another 'attack' story...
Curious how CNet (normally a good tech site) is choosing to use words like 'blast' and attempting to tag the Bush Administration with criticism for any bill before Congress.
I happened to catch some of the House hearings on this matter last night on CSPAN. There was a gentleman from Columbia university who's name I don't recall who criticized the bill as being 'unnecessary' in that its unlikely, given long term usage of privileged sources, that such a source would be called to testify. This gentleman was highly regarded by Rep Conyers (D-MI), chairman of the committee holding the hearing. Conyers gave a rather glowing intro I thought.
Yet CNET chooses (I use that word specifically) to criticize the "Bush Administration" for speaking out against the bill. Granted the author only looked at it from the 'blogger' angle to this bill, but it's still not a fair view of the bill, or any arguments for or against. Not even a link to the text of the bill. Here is one:
<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.opencongress.org/bill/110-h2102/show" target="_newWindow">http://www.opencongress.org/bill/110-h2102/show</a>
Posted by mwargel (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Link is in article after all..
my mistake. link was in article...
Posted by mwargel (2 comments )
Link Flag
Beware... Pandora's Box
&gt;&gt;&gt;George Washington University Law School professor Randall Eliason, said, "anything narrower is going to run into severe First Amendment problems."&lt;&lt;&lt;

With the First Amendment... comes responsibility!

I'm shocked that a University professor would not understand that!!!

What I want to know is what is his ulterior motive for saying such?

Walt
Posted by wbenton (522 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Dan Rather vs. Fox News
It will be interesting to see where reporting in Blogs leads to....

Dan Rather was guilty of not verifying his source. Fox "news" is entertainment. Dan Rather has a career built on honest and solid reporting. With a few mistakes. Some worse than others. The basic story of Bush and his service in the reserve is public now. He was busy doing other things, busy partying and busy politically, He was not at all interested in being in service to his country. He was a failure in college, a cheerleader for christs sake, a failure in every one of the businesses he started. He "stole" the football stadium. Traded the best players off. He failed as govenor of Texas and now.... He's failed at being president.

Fox news is purely entertainment. Not even close to journalism. It is obvious they use their protections to promote some of the most terrible reporting.

My heart aches.
Posted by Hilotc (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
What have I done
I agree 100%
I've finally got off my ass and joined a couple groups that promote american values and take action. Moveon.org and Democrats.com (not the democrat party) I've given more money in the last election cycle than I have in my whole life. (sad I know, but true)I don't think I'm alone. I think there are many, many other people that are "waking up and smelling the coffee" from what a terrible mess our current administration has made. God help us. Our democracy is fragile.
Posted by Hilotc (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Sources
Did you hear this from Rush Limbaugh or Fox News?
Posted by Hilotc (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
A point to make
A very, very good point!
Posted by Hilotc (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Service vs. Agenda
Thank you for being so honest. I used to "sit on the fence" however, since 9-11 and the miserable way our current administration too action just makes me, quite honestly, very ill sometimes. The argument for Iraq was based on lies. No matter how you slice it. When you look just a little deeper you see the horrible lies and manipulations. I read the PNAC document and honestly made me sick to my stomache. God bless you, God bless America.
Posted by Hilotc (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Equality???
What's new? Both sides do it so why care?
Posted by trapper1964 (14 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Add on..
If Bush does to bloggers what Reno/Clinton did to the civilians at Waco, then you've got a complaint (though Bush would get by as did Reno &#38; Clinton).
Posted by trapper1964 (14 comments )
Link Flag
Bush Administration Greatest Threat to American Freedom Today
The problem with the Bush Administration is that they seem to think the citizens of America exist to serve them. If I remember correctly, the last time somebody named George did that, we started an armed insurrection and formed our own country.

People can't be free if they don't know what's going on. Government control, aka censorship, prevents people from knowing what's going on and effectively controls their actions, including how they vote. Which is why they government shouldn't be allowed to censor anything.
Posted by Dr_Zinj (727 comments )
Reply Link Flag
That sucks
I believe that a person has a right to some secrets. I think that if a blogger wants to reveal where they got the story from they can, but if they want to protect their sources they should be allowed to do it.
Posted by ralahinn1 (52 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I dont want to be protect from terrorism...
If it means I lose my right to free speech and other liberties.
Posted by umbrae (1073 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Angry liberals mischaracterize as a tactic
Liberals are always trying to mischaracterize to score points in a debate. They throw out words like "torture" and "spying" so that their weak-minded followers can just latch on to a codeword and ignore the facts. C|Net is actively participating in this as part of the liberal media.
Posted by gerhard_schroeder (311 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Obviously you can't find a hole in their argument
There is a legitimat concern that bloggers may be pushed
around by the government if this law isn't passed - a clause in
the bill states that if safety is at risk then they must give up their
sources so why is this law hindering anything but tyranny?

Stop delivering personal attacks and saying "oh liberals are just
stupid" and argue a real point!!!!!!
Posted by sethwr (24 comments )
Link Flag
More Info on Free Flow of Information Act
Additionally, <a href="http://aclunc.org/issues/technology/bytes_and_pieces/aclu_supports_new_reporters_shield_law_that_would_protect_bloggers.shtml">here?s the ACLU's take</a>, as presented by Nicole Ozer (an attorney specializing in technology) with a lot of good links in support of the legislation.
Posted by ACLUnorcal (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
Beautifully put!
I completely argree - how can a democracy function if the
people aren't free to be informed and to inform each other on
the issues without being harassed by the gov
Posted by sethwr (24 comments )
Reply Link Flag
 

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