Saturday, July 31, 2004

This is what Democracy looks like

Those Department of Justice publications on forfeiture that the Government Printing Office had ordered destroyed (at the behest of the DOJ) will remain in the public domain.

The Justice Department's decision to order the pamphlets destroyed drew criticism from Patrice McDermott, deputy director of governmental affairs for the American Library Association, and Bernard A. Margolis, president of the Boston Public Library, one of the libraries ordered to destroy the pamphlets.

"I'm thrilled," he said. "I think our concerns have been heard that when material is placed in the depository system for access by citizens that it should stay there."

And so it should. This is the power of the internet. I first saw this story rumbling through the discussion lists but by the next morning, the mainstream media had picked it up and put this directive under the spotlight. It couldn't survive the heat of public scrutiny and the order is now rescinded.

I do so love a happy ending.


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