Beltway bureaucrats are powerful. How powerful are they? They are so powerful that they can create their own reality.
Some foreigners applying for asylum in the United States have attached [Wikleaks] diplomatic cables printed from the Internet that describe repression in their native countries — requiring the Department of Homeland Security to store their applications in special safes and to apply cumbersome security rules.
So anyone with an Internet connection can look up these documents, read them, forward them, print them, and discuss them.
U.S. government workers, on the other hand, are not only prohibited from doing the same; in their chimerical la-la land, they must actively, knowingly, and at great pains keep treating the materials as if the Wiki data dump never happened.
The absurdity at DHS and other government agencies is in their DNA. It’s what they do.
Rogier is a Dutch-born, New-England-dwelling multi-media maven (OK, a writer and photographer) whose dead-tree publishing credits include the New York Times, Wired, Rolling Stone, Playboy, and Reason.