Investigative journalism is a key indicator of a healthy liberal democracy, and that includes inducing people to spill secrets.
I don't think Heidi Cruz's group chat leaker wanted to control her soul. She wanted Cruz's husband, a US Senator, to stop lying about abandoning his state in a crisis.
Few leakers or journalists want to dissolve the entire boundary between public and private, as Sullivan claims. That boundary has always been porous.
You can be a defender of privacy rights in general without believing that the right to privacy is absolute and inviolable.
The ethics of leaking from a group chat that isn't even explicitly secret are different from the ethics of leaking a patient's medical records or a taxpayer's returns.
I have no idea whether Heidi Cruz's chat was explicitly secret, but a lot of group chats aren't that different from face-to-face conversations. Private by happenstance, but not confidential.

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More from @beyerstein

18 Feb
So, what's the deal with QAnon and pedophilia? Find out in my latest column:
Of all the problems facing our society (racism, global warming, income inequality...) QAnon decides to focus on pedophilia (at least for public consumption), why is that?
In the column, I argue QAnon's preoccupation with pedophilia partially reflects the obsessions of 4chan from which it sprang. But there were a lot of anons like Q telling tall tales on 4chan, but only Qanon became a household word. Why?
Read 7 tweets
18 Feb
Ted Cruz wasn’t trying very hard to hide his trip to Cancun, but if he were really being upfront about it, he would have had a statement prepared for his comms staff. “Preplanned trip, working the phones, God Bless Texas, etc, etc.”
Which raises my index of suspicion that Ted Cruz was on PriceLine on Tuesday night making an impulse decision to get the hell out of his freezing cold, dark state while his constituents suffered.
Cruz should not only be asked when he booked his trip, he should be asked to show literal receipts to verify whatever timeline he comes up with.
Read 6 tweets
15 Feb
One of the charming things about 17-year-olds is that they haven’t learned to be overawed by grouchy New York Times columnists.
All these people harumphing about “How Dare a 17-year-old tell an older person that their language is outdated?” McNeil would still be employed today if he’d taken the note.
And not just because this girl is some kind of Andover Machiavelli. She was right about what’s acceptable nowadays. She was more in tune with the sensibilities of McNeil’s colleagues than he was.
Read 7 tweets
3 Feb
It’s great to acknowledge that neurodiversity, including ADHD, confers strengths. But that doesn’t erase the ways in which people with ADHD can also need and deserve accommodations in order to flourish in the neurotypical world.
The fact that ADHD can be an unmitigated blessing for one person doesn’t mean that for other people, or under different circumstances, it can also affect people in ways that need acomodations and therefore can be a disability.
That’s the great thing about the social model of disability. It’s not about whether your mind or body is broken or imperfect, it’s about what you need to live your best life.
Read 4 tweets
3 Feb
Let her be the most powerful third party candidate in the United States. Who cares? The only real power in US politics flows through the major parties. Forcing MTG out of the GOP will end her. (Or launch a right wing 3rd party that ends the GOP.)
The most likely outcome of banning MTG from the GOP is simply that she becomes an independent from her highly conservative GA district. Big deal.
Knowing Marjorie Taylor Greene, there’s a good chance she flames out in internal right wing drama. Or ends up in serious legal trouble. Hers is not likely to be a long game. Which is not a brief for complacency. She’s dangerous.
Read 4 tweets
2 Feb
But most people who use that analogy go on to offer an analysis of why the speech they’re objecting to is like falsely shouting fire in a crowded theater.
Those analyses are often wrong. People have a pretty warped view of what the First Amendment protects and what exceptions exist.
The Justice who brought the “falsely shouting fire” analogy to the US Supreme Court didn’t invent it. And it doesn’t really matter that the case in which he deployed it is no longer good law—unless they falsely claim the Supreme Court decreed that you can’t shout that.
Read 5 tweets

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