Moral Low Ground

US Government

Obama’s Hypocrisy (Part I): Touting Internet Freedom while Targeting Wikileaks & Twitter

February 16, 2011 by Brett Wilkins in American Government with 1 Comment

Obama & Clinton: freedom for some, not for others.

Barack Obama, hypocrite-in-chief, is at it again. His administration, while recognizing the role the internet and social media play in spreading freedom around the world, is attacking those very same forces here at home.

According to Democracy Now!, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has unveiled a new policy the State Department says will help protesters circumvent restrictions on internet freedom. Said Clinton: “We believe that governments who have erected barriers to internet freedom, whether they’re technical filters or censorship regimes or attacks on those who exercise their rights to expression and assembly online, will eventually find themselves boxed in. They will face a dictator’s dilemma and will have to choose between letting the walls fall or paying the price to keep them standing. Governments that arrest bloggers, pry into the peaceful activities of their citizens, and limit their access to the internet, may claim to be seeking security. In fact, they may even mean it as they define it. But they are taking the wrong path.”

At the same time, the US Justice Department subpoenaed the social media company Twitter for personal information pertaining to Wikileaks founder Julian Assange and others linked to the Nobel-nominated whistleblowing website. Among these people are Icelandic parliamentarian Birgitta Jónsdóttir. According to Democracy Now!, “the subpoena asks Twitter for all records and correspondence relating to their accounts, including apparently private direct messages sent through Twitter.” Civil rights groups are calling the subpoena illegal.

The irony of promoting greater internet freedom abroad while battling to restrict those same freedoms here at home seems to have been lost on the Obama administration. But it’s really perfectly in keeping with the more dubious traditions of the US government. Whether Democrat or Republican is in charge matters not. Neither party has an edge when it comes to the double standards that characterize so much of American policy, whether at home or abroad. If there was one word that the whole world would most agree upon to define the United States, it would surely be hypocrisy.

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One Comment

  1. BrownhawkFebruary 16, 2011 at 5:16 pmReply

    Well said!

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