Wednesday, November 26

Steven Aftergood is my Hero

[Steven Aftergood is my Hero]

According to this article at the Washington Post:
Aftergood, director of the Federation of American Scientists' Project on Government Secrecy, is an army of one, the David in an era of Goliath-strength government stealth.

Armed with a pocket-size copy of the Constitution, the Freedom of Information Act and an investigator's patience for source-building, Aftergood is out to slay what he sees as the arbitrariness of the U.S. system for classifying documents to keep them secret.

To do that, he asks foundations and donors for $150,000 a year ("in a good year") to keep his online newsletter, Secrecy News, and staff of one — himself — going. He often scoops the national media with anecdotes about government attempts to keep information secret.

In fact, the government's classification chief, J. William Leonard, has bookmarked Aftergood's Web site because it is usually easier to find critical national security documents there than on government Web sites. As director of the Information Security Oversight Office, Leonard has one goal for enhancing his office's Web offerings: "I want my information to be posted on my Web site before it's posted on Steve's. It's a matrix we have yet to meet."
Mr Atgood's newsletter will now be on my list of regular reads.

[Note: I'd like to ask the editor, the writer, or perhaps Mr Leonard himself about the use of matrix in the last quote: "Did y'all mean metric?"]