- BitsBlog - http://bitsblog.theconservativereader.com -

Telephone, Telegraph, Tell Congress.

There has long been discussion about why Congress is generally speaking not the best place to be leaving secretive information, particularly when democrats are in charge.  This is a primary aim sample of why, from TPM [1]:

This summer the House Judiciary Committee launched an effort [2] to collect tips from would-be whistleblowers in the Justice Department. The U.S. attorney firings scandal had shown that much was amiss in the Department, and with the danger of retaliation very real, the committee had set up a form [3] on the committee’s website for people to blow the whistle privately about abuses there. Although the panel said it would not accept anonymous tips, it assured those who came forward that their identity would be held in the “strictest confidence.”

But in an email sent out today, the committee inadvertently sent the email addresses of all the would-be whistleblowers to everyone who had written in to the tipline. The committee email was sent to tipsters who had used the website form, including presumably whistleblowers themselves, and all of the recipients of the email were accidentally included in the “to:” field — instead of concealing those addresses with a so-called blind carbon copy or “bcc:”.

Only the email addresses were exposed; none of the names or other identifying information of the whistleblowers was revealed. The blunder, however, was noticed by a number of people who had used the website form and received today’s email. One disgruntled recipient replied to the entire list of whistleblowers angrily complaining about the snafu; two others forwarded the committee email to TPMmuckraker with similar complaints.

Compounding the mistake, the committee later sent out a second email attempting to recall the original email; it, too, included all recipients in the “to:” field, according to a recipient of the emails.

Even when the reasons behind such leaks are not malevolent… (and whether or not malevolence is involved is often hard to prove) …putting such information in the hands of Congress is invariably the best way to get it leaked. Whether it’s political gamesmanship, or simply technological stupidity, the effect is the same.

In this case, the damage is relatively limited, in that only involves the one whistle- blower.  As bad as that is, however, it pales in comparison to the kind of damage that we’ve seen caused in the war on terror.

At some point, also, the question must be raised about health care.  The government, wants to take over health care.  At least, the party currently in power in Congress does.  And, of course, we know about Hillary Clinton.  The trouble is, health care is an area where there is an awful lot of private information floating around.   I think about that, the next time the subject of Hillary care comes up.