Secrecy, transparency and government whistleblowing
In the first part of the 21 century, the complicated relationship between transparency and security reached a boiling point with revelations of extra-judicial CIA activities, near universal NSA monitoring and unprecedented whistleblowing – and prosecution of whistleblowers under the Espionage Act. This article examines the dual necessities of security (specifically, the Intelligence Community) and transparency (specifically, the Fourth Estate or media) for any democracy, and the manner in which whistleblowers radically saddle this Janus-faced relationship. Then I will move to contemporary examples of whistleblowing, showing how and why some prove more damaging or beneficial than others. I will conclude with some suggestions as to practical reforms which might mitigate the seemingly inevitable pendulum-swinging between Snowden-style vigilantism and a panoptic security state. st
democracy, intelligence ethics, journalism ethics, transparency, whistleblowing
Harwood, William H. "Secrecy, transparency and government whistleblowing." Philosophy & Social Criticism 43, no. 2 (2017): 164-186.
Philosophy and Social Criticism