This isn't an attempt to improve the Free Flow of Information Act, it's an attempt to kill it. As appealing as it might seem to cover absolutely everyone in the United States as a potential "journalist," the result is clear. A privilege held by everyone can be held by no one.
The term "spring offensive" may be out of favor in the media, but more than 50 organizations endorsed a forum this past Friday with some of the media's best known editorial heavyweights, to discuss the most serious crisis journalistic freedom has faced in decades.
As a nation at peace becomes a fading memory, so does privacy. Commitments to idealism -- seeking real alternatives to war and upholding democratic values -- are under constant assault from the peaks of power.
Journalists who can be compelled to violate the confidentiality of their sources, or otherwise go to prison, are reduced to doing little more than providing stenographic services to pass along the official story. That's what the White House wants.
Last Saturday -- the same day the United States and Iran were having "constructive and useful" discussions on Iran's nuclear program in Istanbul -- the New York Times published a piece titled, "Seeking Nuclear Insight in Fog of the Ayatollah's Utterances."
Bolton can hardly be said to have learned the error of his ways. For instance, according to a recent report in the Jerusalem Post, Bolton advised Tory delegates in Britain to press for a "pre-emptive strike" on Iran.
The world over, repressive governments censor or blackout the press and the Internet to shield itself from the forces of social change. Disturbing then to see the same thing happening in the United States.
How unseemly for New York Times executive editor Bill Keller to look down so disdainfully at WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, with a nasty ad hominem portrayal in last Sunday's New York Times Magazine.