Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Coleen Rowley: "Reversing the Erosion of Civil Liberties"

Coleen Rowley:
The PCLOB ( "Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board") should obtain reporting of problems through Civil Liberties-Privacy Officers in each agency like the system used by the Office of Government Ethics. Allow PCLOB to directly hear and evaluate whistleblower complaints relating to information about abuses.

--Not only abuses but also intelligence failures are enabled through massive (irrelevant) data collections that only add hay to the haystack and thus make it even harder to find the useful needles.

Abuses and failures are enabled through excessive over-classification — see “WikiLeaks and 9-11: What If?”, through the use of “State Secrets” privilege to keep cases out of the courts and through lack of government whistleblower protection.

The English historian Lord Acton, who figured out that power corrupts, also realized that, “Everything secret degenerates, even the administration of justice; nothing is safe that does not show how it can bear discussion and publicity.” MORE...

Howie P.S.: Coleen Rowley, a FBI special agent for almost 24 years, was legal counsel to the FBI Field Office in Minneapolis from 1990 to 2003.

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