[ExI] openness on the internet, was RE: Destructive uploading.

David Lubkin lubkin at unreasonable.com
Tue Sep 6 19:48:26 UTC 2011

Spike wrote:

>Interesting aside: when a person goes through the security clearance
>process, they investigate everything about a person's life, in ways far more
>intimate than a proctology examination.

I debated whether to take the job at Livermore over this, because I'd need
a DOE Q clearance. I decided that with a father who was a defense contractor
for both DOD and the IDF, scientific advisor to the Likud, and a colonel
attached to the DIA, there was already a file about me. And what little
more investigating me would add to the file was less significant than the
interesting things I'd learn on the job.

(Many other family members had or have clearances, too. I just found
my grandfather's security paperwork from WW II. It was interesting comparing
with mine and seeing all the addresses he'd ever lived at, every job he'd
ever had, etc.)

>Here is what I find interesting.  They can clear people who have done
>illegal stuff to some very limited degree, such as the last three presidents
>who all admitted to doing drugs but not inhaling.  The commander in chief
>kinda needs top level clearances, BUT!  ...the wrongdoing must be public
>domain knowledge.  What they really work to find is anything for which a
>person can be blackmailed.  That they take very seriously as they should.
>If a person has done illegal drugs and admits to it, so that no one can hold
>them hostage with the info, then the clearance process can continue.

And the issue is (usually) not whether the activity is illegal or society
at large approves of it but whether *you* fear disclosure. It doesn't
matter whether it's having mainlined heroin, voted for Dukakis, or worn
white after Labor Day, as long as *you* can be blackmailed over it.

>The commander in chief kinda needs top level clearances, BUT!  ...the
>wrongdoing must be public domain knowledge.

DOD and DOE can refuse to clear presidential staff -- as they reportedly
did for the Clintons -- but I don't see how they can constitutionally refuse
to clear POTUS, not matter how much of a security risk he is.

-- David.

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