: Dan Gillmor tries to draw a parallel between what’s happening in Iran — where they arrested blogger Sina Motallebi — and here:

Jailing political opponents isn’t our style in the U.S., but just about every policy our current government favors would make it harder for average people to get news that’s contrary to the conventional wisdom — and the Bush administration, the most secretive in decades, is no friend of untrammeled speech in any event.

Huh? Sorry, friend, but that makes no sense. What is happening here that has the slightest resemblance to arresting a man for what he says online? What’s happening in Iran is serious and dangerous. What was happening in Iraq (pre-war) was serious and deadly. What’s happening here? Nothing.

  • Myles

    Maybe not, but American constitutional rights do seem to be under threat. The draft “Domestic Security Enhancement Act” looks like its going to take it all one step further!

  • John Irving

    Ok, now I am concerned. Myles, please provide a link, or cite the source, so I can see which part of these laws provides for prior restraint or other stifling of free speech.
    I thought the argument against the so-called Patriot Acts was due to their anti-privacy nature, not due to any chilling effect on speech.

  • Myles

    The American Civil Liberties Union point out that political spying subverts political freedom. It chills those who disagree with the status quo. Your Constitution allows everyone to have a voice, whether or not they agree with the majority.

  • Kelly Setzer

    It’s not just the Patriot act:
    1) Witness the noise made when there were rumors of a Patriot Act II. That went as far as congressional hearings in which John Ashcroft was chastised.
    2) Witness the extension of hold-back times for presidential/executive branch documents that would, incidentally, keep George Bush, Sr.’s administration out of the public eye for a little while longer.
    3) DMCA
    I won’t claim that this is anything like IRAN, but our constitution and bill of rights are both under legislative assault.