Saturday, June 20, 2015

Behind Door #4 ...


Reason magazine has finally put out its own take on the "Preet Bharara wants to know who's saying mean things" subpoena story (if you're not familiar with it, check out the archives for the last couple of weeks here at KN@PPSTER, or search for "Reason" and "subpoena" at Google News -- you'll find stories with links). The first thing that jumps out at me in Reason's account is this part ...

We had three options: We could 1) abide quietly with the subpoena, 2) attempt to quash it, and/or 3) alert the commenters named in the subpoena.

... and then, at the end, this:

Reason's guiding principle over 47 years has been to expand the legal and cultural space for free expression, as the bedrock value behind human flourishing. As libertarians who believe in "Free Minds and Free Markets," Reason takes seriously an obligation to our audience and to our critics not simply to hold on to what we've got but to increase the rights of everyone to speak openly and without figurative or literal prior restraint.

It seems to me that there is an Option #4 missing from that first list that would answer to the principles laid out in the paragraph on principles. To wit:

4) instruct our attorney to show up at court in response to the subpoena and inform Preet Bharara that Reason (perhaps in the person of its editor or some other selected spokesperson) says he can go fuck himself.

No, I'm not saying that was the only justifiable option to choose. There's nothing wrong with choosing not to go to jail for your principles. But that is a choice.


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