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Oppenheimer Quote Regarding Government Secrecy and Public Policy

Rather liked this quote regarding the development of the super in the 1950s.

J. Robert Oppenheimer, "Atomic Weapons and American Policy," Foreign
Affairs, Vol. 31, No. 4, July 1953, p. 525.

 [We must have] candor on the part of the officials of the United States
Government to the officials, the representatives, the people of their
country.  We do not operate well when the important facts, the essential
conditions, which limit and determine our choices are unknown.  We do not
operate well when they are known, in secrecy and in fear, only to a few men.
        The political vitality of our country largely derives form two
sources.  One is the interplay, the conflict of opinion and debate, in may
diverse and complex agencies, legislative and executive, which contribute to
the making of policy.  The other is a public opinion which is based on
confidence that it knows the truth.
        Today public opinion cannot exist in this field.  No responsible
person will hazard and opinion in a field where he believes that there is
somebody else who knows the true, and where he believes that he does not
know it.

Regards,                 I hate people when they aren't polite - Talking Heads
Joseph M. Reagle Jr.     http://farnsworth.mit.edu/~reagle/home.html
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