Sunday, April 03, 2005

Silence, perfect silence, always silence, only silence

On the meaninglessness of publication bans as they relate to high-profile, politicized trials, I think a good comparison would be those of the Hells' Angels'. I was still working at the airport bookstore when The Road to Hell, a semi-notoriously explosive report on the subject, was initially released. There was a provincial publication ban in Nova Scotia then, as one of the related trials was still an ongoing matter. Nova Scotians, of course, gleefully snapped up the book on their way home, probably more eagerly than they might have otherwise; forbidden fruit has that effect, even when the revelations aren't that stunning. (I mean, really; everything regarding the current imbroglio that's come out over the weekend, I've assumed for years. Unless there actually turns out to be either drugs or murder involved in whatever new bombshell may be dropped on Monday, I'm not holding out hope for genuine public outcry.) Even a provincial publication ban is practically unsustainable, just due to the normal course of domestic traffic, never mind the instantaneous spread of the banned material online from outside the country. (Do you think this sort of thing might be what the UN would want to have the last word in control of the internet for, maybe?) Outside of a police state, even the pretense of forbidding the free spread information is laughable; even inside one, the samizdat phenomenon manages to cope covertly. In a free country, why even make the effort?

1 Comments:

Blogger Nathan said...

"Unless there actually turns out to be either drugs or murder involved in whatever new bombshell may be dropped on Monday,"--of course, allegations of drug trafficking and death threats against those testifying are reportedly in the not-released documents. Glenn Reynolds linked to a blog outside Canada that repeated these claims.

4/04/2005 04:27:00 AM  

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