Friday, June 9, 2017

Leakers Are Liars. Sometimes That's OK.; Bloomberg, June 9, 2017

Stephen L. Carter, Bloomberg; Leakers Are Liars. Sometimes That's OK.

"One important lesson from former FBI Director James Comey’s congressional testimony on Thursday is that leaking needs an ethical structure. Other human activities have ethical structures. Leaking should too...

I have been discussing here what is ethical, not what is legal. I take it for granted that many leakers may be breaking the law, and some few may even be prosecuted8  That is a separate issue, one that I have addressed elsewhere. But ethics matter too. In some ways they matter more, for they guide us in the shadowy spaces where few are likely to discover what we have done. 
In a time when government keeps far too many secrets, leaks are often the only way we find out about what public servants are doing. But the leaker’s motives and timing matter. What Comey said in his testimony was reasonable. Now that Muller [sic] is busily investigating, perhaps it’s time the flood of leaks slowed to a trickle."

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