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Privacy Government Democrats Politics

US Democrats Accidentally Publish Whistleblowers' Email Addresses 352

iluvcapra writes "The US House Judiciary Committee recently emailed all of its potential whistleblowers information about how it was restructuring its whistleblower program. Unfortunately for its sources, it emailed them this information with their addresses in the "To:" field (and not the Bcc: field) It also cc:'d this email to the Vice President. I'd like to think think this is some sort of ingenious subterfuge, but I'm doubtful."
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US Democrats Accidentally Publish Whistleblowers' Email Addresses

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  • by GaryOlson ( 737642 ) <(slashdot) (at) (> on Saturday October 27, 2007 @10:17AM (#21140179) Journal
    No, Rumsfeld should be charged with treason. Or be given the option of having the whistleblower work in Rumsfeld's office as a liaison for other military whistleblowers.
  • Shift the blame (Score:5, Informative)

    by GaryOlson ( 737642 ) <(slashdot) (at) (> on Saturday October 27, 2007 @10:30AM (#21140241) Journal
    "A technological error in a recent communication inadvertently disclosed certain email addresses."

    I call bullshit on the source of the error. By implicating the technology as the source of the error, the Justice Department is failing to address the real cause -- human error and incompetence in the Justice Department. This single statement alone reinforces the point of the original investigation -- the politicizing of the Justice Department.

  • Re:Could be worse (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 27, 2007 @10:32AM (#21140249)
    I noticed that your post had been modded as "troll", but you actually are closer to the truth than some of these liberal slashdotters may realize. Several people near the Clintons have mysteriously died or were killed. I hope I don't have to say, "I told you so." after Shrillary is elected. I fear that I may not be able to say much of anything anti-Clinton. Want to be audited? Want her holding your FBI file in her dirty little paws? Wanta go for a walk in a park? The Sopranos have nothing on this bitch and her minions. You want socialism? Boy, are you going to get it in spades!
  • by je ne sais quoi ( 987177 ) on Saturday October 27, 2007 @10:54AM (#21140397)
    They did.... and they STILL used the "To:" field. Astounding.


    Compounding the mistake, the committee later sent out a second email attempting to recall the original email; it, too, included all recipients in the "to:" field, according to a recipient of the emails.
  • by cmacb ( 547347 ) on Saturday October 27, 2007 @12:14PM (#21140889) Homepage Journal
    Since there may be people (no there most certainly are people) reading this who don't know any better than what you are suggesting, could you provide some data to support your claims above?

    Now if you are considering all of the federal agencies (Labor, HHS, State and so on) simply extensions of the White House staff your assertion would be correct, but that is hardly an accurate representation of how our government works.

    Congressional staffs as a whole are huge with respect to the White House. I think the average staff size for the Senate is in the hundreds (per Senator).

    What you fail to mention is that in addition to the staff that each politician brings with them, people, in other words, dedicated to that politicians well-being, there are hired hourly employees that are provided by "beltway bandits" that bid for and win multi-year contracts to provide such services. They work in ALL of government, at the White House, in Congress, and in all of the Federal agencies. Maybe one of these people made this error, and I can assure you that if that is the case, they are much more concerned about losing their job over it than they are about which party benefited.

    I don't have the numbers at my fingertips (but I can find them.. show me yours first) but if you want to be really impressed at how fast the federal bureaucracy has grown, compare White House and congressional staff sizes now with what they were a hundred, or even fifty years ago. Our government hasn't benefited AT ALL from automation, in fact from parts of it I have studied first-hand automation seems to have served as an excuse to hire even more people (not being subject to having successfully make and sell a product for income) and the public only hears about a tiny fraction of the "Doh" moments that go on in the process.
  • Re:Shift the blame (Score:5, Informative)

    by MillionthMonkey ( 240664 ) on Saturday October 27, 2007 @02:04PM (#21141769)
    Someone gave you a Funny but I'm not sure I get it:

    "A technological error in a recent communication inadvertently disclosed certain email addresses."
    I call bullshit on the source of the error. By implicating the technology as the source of the error, the Justice Department is failing to address the real cause -- human error and incompetence in the Justice Department. This single statement alone reinforces the point of the original investigation -- the politicizing of the Justice Department.
    Is this is a joke? Learn who the players are: The House Judiciary Committee (legislative branch) is in the process of investigating the Department of Justice (executive branch). Someone in the HJC, not the DOJ, made the email screwup here, when emailing whistleblower recipients within the DOJ, about how the HJC was going to do such a swell job of keeping the whistleblowers' identities hidden from the DOJ. This excuse that you are mocking came from a spokesman for the HJC, not the partisans running the DOJ- who were the beneficients, and not the perpetrators, of this particular email gaffe. The DOJ would have the political interest in their whistleblowers' email addresses being exposed, not the HJC. Maybe there is a rogue low level Democratic staffer with secret Republican sympathies who "pretended" to make the mistake in order to sabotage the HJC investigation, but there is no reason to think that, because people do this all the time, especially when they use a stupid program like Outlook that doesn't want to confuse you with a BCC field and hides BCC in a dropdown somewhere.

    And since some retard went to the HJC page and registered as a whistleblower using Dick Cheney's public email address at, which the HJC did not notice and remove, he got included in the CC.

    "The politicization of the Justice Department" refers to all the maneuvering to get political partisans in top DOJ positions who are willing to influence elections with carefully timed prosecutions and selective prosecutions at least partially based on party affiliation. Things like that are true hallmarks of fascism in a way that simple human error and technical incompetence are not.
  • by StopKoolaidPoliticsT ( 1010439 ) on Saturday October 27, 2007 @04:41PM (#21143041)
    Bad form to reply to myself, but I just got out of the shower and that's the best place to think.

    I find it funny that the U generation (those who fought in WWII) were enabled by the V generation (hippies) to create this debt. The U generation aged and the V generation took over power and the V generation is still doing everything it can to throw even more money at the U generation (Medicare Part D, refusal to change Social Security for younger generations, etc). Part of that is probably the greed of knowing the first V generation people are filing for their Social Security benefits, so the rest of them will start cashing in soon too. We have an $8 trillion debt right now and in a few years, it's going to take that amount yearly to pay for the tens of millions of boomers collecting money every year. Still not satisfied, they want to socialize the entire health industry.

    They can criticize GWB's spending (and I will too), but $1799 billion of the $2592 budget is already going to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and interest on the debt. The last thing anyone on the left has the right to complain about is government spending, much less on Unconstitutional (read, government stealing your rights) programs created by them, especially as they try to create more programs, spending and debt.

    Generations X and Y are royally screwed thanks to the policies of our parents and grandparents... the last thing we should be doing is pandering to them and defending and promoting their ideology that got us here.
  • by ajs ( 35943 ) <> on Saturday October 27, 2007 @05:26PM (#21143405) Homepage Journal

    Please try to stop letting your idealogical position getting in the way of facts.

      From the ACLU:

    This program is commonly known as "extraordinary rendition."

    The current policy traces its roots to the administration of former President Bill Clinton.
    I'd suggest that you do the same. Re-read what you quoted. The phrase, "traces its roots" is key here.

    Rendition was the practice of extraditing non-U.S. citizens to their countries of origin for interrogation. It was a questionable policy and one of Clinton's gravest policy mistakes IMHO, but nothing like extraordinary rendition which expands the program to exporting anyone we feel like to any destination country we think will torture them sufficiently.

    The controversy arose when it became clear that we were exporting prisoners of war to Syria, Egypt and anyone else that was willing to wield a cattle-prod in our name. As someone who grew up liberal but has become increasingly conservative as I grow older, I find the defense of this practice by Republicans who don't want to break ranks with the President to be abhorrent. This is a violation of what the Republican party used to stand for, and Bush et al. should be jettisoned from the party for it. Not everything that a Republican administration does should be beyond the reproach of the party.

You can tune a piano, but you can't tuna fish. You can tune a filesystem, but you can't tuna fish. -- from the tunefs(8) man page