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WIKILEAKS AND THE SECRETS THAT DECEIVE US

Danny Schechter - In the days of Stalin's Russia, not only would dissidents "disappear" but also even in the pre-digital era, photographs of officials at May Day reviewing stands would be erased from photographs when their political stars fell. Our own "Kremlinologists" would know who was in, and who was out by comparing last year's pictures with this years.

That's one way of concealing information.

Just last week, Republicans on the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission pushed to have certain words removed from the report they were writing because they posed a conflict to their view that only the government was to blame for the financial collapse

Explained economist Paul Krugman, "Last week, reports Shahien Nasiripour of The Huffington Post, all four Republicans on the commission voted to exclude the following terms from the report: "deregulation," "shadow banking," "interconnection," and, yes, "Wall Street."

When Democratic members refused to go along with this insistence that the story of Hamlet be told without the prince, the Republicans went ahead and issued their own report, which did, indeed, avoid using any of the banned terms."

In our media today, omission of images and ideas is as key to sanitizing the news as is commission, What is not reported or perhaps even known is often more important than stories that are twisted by bias.

Enter Wikileaks and an age-old battle between our right to know and their right to keep us from knowing. Its critics make a fetish about keeping secrets as if it is a holy duty and not a system of keeping the public uninformed about what their government is doing in its name.

The public has a right to know if officials are saying one thing in private and another in public, if they are concealing information or just plain lying. Read more.

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