Via TPM: The OMB has sent a Kafkaesque (or perhaps Hellerian) memo to the entire US Federal bureaucracy.
The OMB’s general counsel directed the agencies to immediately tell their employees to “safeguard classified information” by not accessing Wikileaks over the Internet.
Classified information, the OMB notes, “remains classified … until it is declassified by an appropriate U.S. Government authority.”
The flimsy excuse is that ¨doing so risks that material still classified will be placed onto non-classified systems.” How? The risk is Assange´s email.
The usual rule is that confidences hold only so long as the content is not broadcast by a third party; because public is public. (The making of the confidence may well stay one.) An open secret is an oxymoron.
The ludicrous effort also fails to exploit one silver lining of the Wikileaks for the government, as a priceless trove of real and recent case studies for training and analysis. Federal employees should be ordered to study the Wikileaks in their areas of interest.
PS: Commenters please refrain from pointing out that Canute wasn´t an idiot, his seaside throne stunt was a rebuke to his courtiers for their servile flattery. And Grigori Potemkin was an able and effective viceroy. The historically false memes have their own life.