Defending Wikileaks: Assange abuse non-uniformity of jurisdictions.


I am going to start a series highlighting criticism of Wikileaks and respond to it.
Wikileaks and their other supporters will probably do a better job of defending against some of the most ridiculous and anti-freedom criticism, but i want to speak out too.
I know that speaking publicly in support of Wikileaks will probably hurt my chances of getting into establishment corporations, but i believe supporting freedom of information is more important.

Criticism:
why cant Assange just stick with one jurisdiction, says The Economist.

My gripe against Mr Assange is that he takes advantage of the protections of liberal democracies, but refuses to submit himself to them. If he wants to use the libel protections guaranteed by New York State, then he should live in New York, and commit himself to all of the safety and consequences of America’s constitution. If he wants to use Sweden’s whistleblower laws, then he should return to Sweden and let its justice system take its course. This, as we’ve written in the paper, is what distinguishes Mr Assange from Daniel Ellsberg. Mr Ellsberg did not flee America after releasing the Pentagon Papers; he stayed here and stood trial. Regardless of what you think about Mr Ellsberg’s motives, he followed the basic tenets of civil disobedience: break a law, then publicly accept the consequences. Mr Assange just protects himself.

Response:
First of all, stop tying to make this about a person. Assange is a founding member of Wikileaks, and probabbly its leader, but Wikileaks is a lot more than just Assange.
Second, I am sure Assange is more than happy to submit him self to the legal system of whichever liberal democracy he happens to be in. But, to say that the leader of an global media organization should submit him self too all the laws of the country that organization writes about its just absurd. Should the president of Sky News go live in United States whenever they break a news about United States? Or Should all news organization only report on domestic news? And how about applying this principle to business and corporations in general? Multi-national corporations has for decades design their operation and shifted their revenue and profit via various jurisdiction to take advantage of the cheapest labor, least stakeholder protective laws and other legal goodies if The Economist oppose to this too?
Third, the analogy between Assange and Daniel Ellsberg is just stupid. Wikileaks is not the insider leaker, Wikileaks is analogous to the New York Times as they are the media outlets who published leaks. The insider leaker in this case is Manning, the alleged leaker of diplomatic cables is under custody of the United States. Daniel Ellsberg by-the-way supports Bradley Manning.

gg, the economist. gg.

other posts on Wikileaks

Advertisements

In the U.S. 16.56% accepts execution of innocents?!


According to The Economist/YouGov poll, apparently 16.56% of the people surveyed believe that at least an innocent has been executed in the last 5 year, and still supports death penalty.

innocent persons have been executed in the U.S.

From the same survey, 62% of respondents answered in favor to the question “28. Do you favor the death penalty for serious crimes such as murder and rape?” It is possible that some of the respondents may only favor death penalty who is proven in a infallible criminal justice system. So theoretically they are not favoring the chance of killing innocents. but still… people have to understand that an infallible system is near impossible in reality. Incidentally 76% of these proponents of death penalty think death penalty is not imposed enough. Wow talk about blood thirsty.

People at the Innocence Project, are you reading this?

All of the data can be found here.

Economist got hit hard by a letter to the editor


SIR – When questioning the qualifications of Barack Obama (“But could he deliver?”, February 16th) please remember your endorsement of George Bush in 2000 when Americans were deciding the direction of our nation. It turns out you endorsed a man who is, and will be remembered as, one of the worst presidents our nation has ever had.

This remined me of another bad call: in 2003 Economist editorial board were for the Iraq war.

Economist is one of my most frequent read, its usually excellent, but it has it occasional bad calls.
Come on, prediction is hard, we have all made bad calls in the past.

Here is some other predictions made before the Iraq invasion.

Notice the Yale economist had the closest prediction amount them, and sadly current reality is worse than his worse case senario.
In fact, Nobel prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz has conservatively estimate the war to cost America $3 trillion.