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Freedom of Disinformation

You might have missed this item last week. But the Justice Department has proposed new regulations to interpret the Freedom of Information Act that are logic-bending.

In cases involving national security or law enforcement, some agencies now are allowed to respond to a FOIA request by stating they “can neither confirm nor deny the existence of records.”

Under the new Justice regulations (provided here by Pro Publica, an public-interest journalism outfit), the government agency would “respond to the request as if the excluded records did not exist.”

In other words, this regs would direct the government employee to lie. Falsehood would be the official policy.

Open-government and journalist groups, needless to say, objected loudly. But the comment period allowed by Justice closed Oct. 19. Stay turned.

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