I love the idea of Wikileaks.
Now while I will admit I find Julian Assange Fascinating, and I’ve yet to see any problems with the operation of the website in general, I will note that you can hate him and the things they have leaked. However it would not only be foolish but be dangerous for people to hate the idea.
The first thing to understand is that no government should have secrets. It doesn’t matter that they do already, it is not acceptable to say “Well let them keep the current ones and move on.” When a government begins to compile secrets things will just get worse, it may move slowly or it may move quickly, but it is going to move in the direction of negativity. People will get hurt, or vanish, families will be broken up. You may not know these people, I sure as hell don’t, but their lives are shattered for, what is 100% of the time, petty bullshit.
Governments never do things secretly that are actually important. Because most of our lives is spent roleplaying, acting more important than we actually are. The nature of politics is much like the nature of a sports team. The differences between the people on the teams is pretty much impossible to parse if you take off their uniforms. The same can be said about different nations. There are differences in language, but we all still use language, differences in skin tone, or food choices, or master faith. But all these things exist. Merely different nouns fill each space in the mad lib.
There is nothing to gain from secrecy, there is merely one planet for us to live on currently. With this in mind it is entirely unacceptable for any government in any section of the Earth to act in secrecy. Because those actors are not alone and their actions can potentially end a biological history that is 14 billion years long. A chain of events that lead to us is highly unlikely to occur again in exactly the same fashion.
So these secrets fail us, they lead to no positives and they help none of the population outside of those who the secrets are about. Even then it inevitably hurts those people when the secrets are revealed.
All governments must know that every secret they have can and will be exposed with ease. They cannot feel that they have any chance of hiding anything and there should not be a punishment for revealing those secrets. We cannot decide which secrets to release because then we become the dictators of right and wrong, that is why they are merely released.
Who knows, Assange could be an asshole, he could have a vendetta against the US, but for me that doesn’t matter. If his vendetta results in the entirety of the US knowing truly how their government works, and us changing it, that would be enough for me. The US speaks as if it is the harbringer of truth and justice, yet acts in a manner most unbecoming of any organization. Speaking of Jesus yet abandoning the poor. Speaking of justice, yet abandoning those who suffer forever for heroism.
The US deserves to be a nation without secrets. I do not say this because I feel it makes me better, but merely as an example, I can’t think of anything about my own life that my Wife does not know. A life without secrets is necessary. If you make a mistake, admit it and grow from it, don’t hide it to fester to something much greater and much darker.
This is why I love the idea of Wikileaks. And, again for open honesty, why I find Julian Assange truly fascinating.