Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Archives? What archives?

Bush E-mail Records Could Be Lost to History
from the Lost in Translation blog of the National Journal

This makes me so angry. We KNEW this was happening, now seems a little late (but better than never, if only in terms of precedent for the future) to be suing people about it.

Here's a little gem from the article:
There's a couple of issues relating specifically to Vice President Cheney and the office of the vice president. It's our understanding that the vice president's office came up with stamps that said "treat record as classified." Or as "secured compartmentalized information." Now, classification is not sort of just a generic term, it's actually a term of art that refers to classification according to the standards that have been established by the president in an executive order. The executive order is 12958. Things that do not meet the standards of the executive order should not be labeled as classified. So it was improper to label some of those things, at least, as classified. And the problem is that once you label it as classified, it makes it far more unlikely it's ever going to be released, because it's going to require significant additional significant review to determine if it's really classified or not....

Now we'll just have to wait and see if Obama's administration does better...

The first thing is, we would like the new president to state up front and clearly that he is committed to preserving the historical record, the documents, presidential decision-making. That's something that we feel like the Bush administration has not wanted to do.

It seems like the sort of thing we could count on him for, but after all this mess, I am feeling far from certain.

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