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Talk:Censorship

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 Definition The act of preventing specifically defined ideals, concepts, images, or messages from being available to a given population. [d] [e]

The Constabulary has removed a conversation here that either in whole or in part did not meet Citizendium's Professionalism policy. Feel free to remove this template and take up the conversation with a fresh start.

I'm sorry, Robert, I was simply an ass. I will endeavor to do better in the future. Yes, even the Editor-in-Chief fails miserably from time to time. --Larry Sanger 21:57, 12 October 2007 (CDT)


Then-Solicitor General Theodore Olson told the Supreme Court in March 2002: "It's easy to imagine an infinite number of situations where the government might legitimately give out false information. It's an unfortunate reality that the issuance of incomplete information and even misinformation by government may sometimes be perceived as necessary to protect vital interests."Jeffrey Scott Bernstein 12:29, 16 October 2007 (CDT)

Can you provide a context for this quote? An article, a book, anything? I don't want to simply add that in there without any reference. --Robert W King 12:32, 16 October 2007 (CDT)
Washington Post - March 21, 2002 - "The Limits of Lying" - p.A35. [1]Full quote is all over the Internet. Olson said it on 17 March 2002.Jeffrey Scott Bernstein 12:36, 16 October 2007 (CDT)

I can find the quote all over indie media opinion pieces but I can't find it at the Supreme Court or Office of the Solicitor General sites.  —Stephen Ewen (Talk) 12:47, 16 October 2007 (CDT)

Here you go. Supreme Court Transcript:[2] (By the way, I found it here: [3]Jeffrey Scott Bernstein 12:52, 16 October 2007 (CDT)
Maybe that Supreme Court transcript was censored (haha), because only the first line is there: "There are lots of different situations where the Government quite legitimately may have reasons to give false information out."Jeffrey Scott Bernstein 13:00, 16 October 2007 (CDT)
Supreme Court transcript is also here: [4]Jeffrey Scott Bernstein 13:05, 16 October 2007 (CDT)
a-ha. Olson said the rest of it in an Amicus Brief, according to The Nation (April 22, 2002)[5] I'll find the Amicus BriefJeffrey Scott Bernstein 13:08, 16 October 2007 (CDT)
Bingo. Page 23 of the Amicus Brief: "“the perhaps unfortunate reality is that the issuance of incomplete information and even misinformation by government may sometimes be perceived as necessary to protect vital interests.” [6]Jeffrey Scott Bernstein 13:11, 16 October 2007 (CDT)
Hence, we can say, Olson addressed the Supreme Court in Oral Argument: "There are lots of different situations where the Government quite legitimately may have reasons to give false information out." (transcript) And then, in print: "The perhaps unfortunate reality is that the issuance of incomplete information and even misinformation by government may sometimes be perceived as necessary to protect vital interests." (Amicus Brief).Jeffrey Scott Bernstein 13:16, 16 October 2007 (CDT)

draft of paragraph: In an Amicus Brief for the Supreme Court (Warren Christopher, Former Secretary of State, Et. Al., v. Jennifer K. Harbury, No. 01-394, January 2002), then Solicitor General of the United States Theodore B. Olson wrote: “The perhaps unfortunate reality is that the issuance of incomplete information and even misinformation by government may sometimes be perceived as necessary to protect vital interests."[1] Two months later, on March 17, 2002, in oral argument for the same case, Olson told the Supreme Court: “There are lots of different situations where the Government quite legitimately may have reasons to give false information out.”[2]

  1. http://supreme.lp.findlaw.com/supreme_court/briefs/01-394/01-394.mer.ami.usa.pdf
  2. http://www.supremecourtus.gov/oral_arguments/argument_transcripts/01-394.pdf

Very odd my targeted Google search did not pick it up! Stephen Ewen 13:38, 16 October 2007 (CDT)
Think this paragraph should go in? It's pretty dramatic, coming from the Solicitor General of the United States. And now it's referenced "to a T".Jeffrey Scott Bernstein 13:40, 16 October 2007 (CDT)

I temporarily commented out this section as I'm going to put it in one of Martin's recommended areas below. --Robert W King 16:02, 16 October 2007 (CDT)

Nature of censorship

I've never heard of NDAs as being tools of censorship. Not all information control is censorship. My medical records are private; that surely doesn't mean they are censored.

Generally, this article badly needs a meaty discussion of what political theorists have had to say about censorship. For instance, see this and this--and notice the important connection between free speech and censorship. --Larry Sanger 12:55, 16 October 2007 (CDT)

For me, there are serious philosophical problems with this article, so far. It needs a clear underpinning distinguishing between:
  • political censorship by governments, for clear political objectives
  • state censorship, sanctioned by society-at-large, for agreed controls on such things as pornography
  • corporate censorship, for commercial reasons
  • self-censorship -- from Foucault, how people/society check their own behaviour in line with internalised conceptions of power and morality

It should also distinguish those from the following:

  • personal privacy protection
  • national security or secrecy provisions [but these can overlap with political censorship, when abused]
  • political propaganda [used in conjunction with censorship, but is not the same thing]
  • pressure group politicking [which may try to erode rights of free speech in open political confrontation]

These lists are not exhaustive, but I hope this gives some ideas on how to improve it.--Martin Baldwin-Edwards 15:00, 16 October 2007 (CDT)

ok. --Robert W King 15:58, 16 October 2007 (CDT)