Why Julian Assange is a Clown

I used to have great admiration for Assange and the valuable service that Wikileaks provides to the world. I first became aware of it when Chelsea Manning provided us with the diplomacy cables, and have followed it since. Much like the people at The Pirate Bay, Assange has made himself an enemy of the system by standing up for what he believes in–for standing against tyranny and corruption. I’m having a hard time remembering it, but it really seems like there was someone else who was swept up in Wikileaks around the time who also had sexual assault charges brought against him. Maybe it’s just Assange. It doesn’t matter.

Like I said, I used to have great admiration for Assange.

I don’t now. Why not?

Quite simply, because I’ve been looking at this for months:

assange-the-clownAssange has been tossing out this line for months. Every few weeks, you can find Assange saying, “I’m about to release some more documents that will totally finish off Hillary!”

I’m not criticizing him because he hopes to “finish off” Hillary and consistently fails to. In fact, that’s something worth admiring: he has set his goal as taking down this titan of American politics. His failure to achieve that goal isn’t a mark against him.

What is a mark against him is that he… just… keeps… fucking… saying it.

Every few weeks, it’s all over Facebook, Assange promising that his “next batch” will finish off Hillary for good. Again, it’s not that he fails to do this that bothers me.

It’s that he’s not releasing the documents that will “finish off Hillary.”

If you had documents that could sink Hillary Clinton’s presidency chances, what would you do? Would it ever occur to you to tell the whole world that you had the documents and were going to release them “some time next week” or “in a few days”? Of course not! You’d simply release them. You wouldn’t talk about releasing them; you would release them.

However, Assange has had these documents for months.

So let’s say, for a moment, that he is right, and that he releases the documents and Hillary drops to zero percent in polls. What should we do? Should we pat him on the back? No! We should ask him why he held them for three months instead of releasing them. We should ask him why he knowingly and intentionally withheld documents of such staggering consequence that they would sink a presidential candidate while repeatedly throwing out bait? For months he has been promising that his “next batch” will finish off Hillary.

So what if he finally succeeds?

Then it will mean the he withheld these documents for months while feeding us largely inconsequential bullshit.

“But maybe he was saving the best for last!” people might say.

Perhaps, but, if that’s the case, then who the fuck does he think he is, to decide what the American People should and shouldn’t know, and when they should know it? Assange has fallen prey to what Nietzsche warned of–he has become exactly what he set out to fight. Now we need someone to hack the documents away from Assange and establish a Wikileaks Wikileakds for all the documents that Assange has decided not to share with us.

At this point, Assange is keeping us on a “Need To Know” basis. What if that last batch of documents had defeated Hillary? Would he indefinitely withhold the ones he is set to release? If he moved forward with his plan to release them, wouldn’t people accuse him of being a misogynist and kicking a dead* whore horse?

So let’s assume that Assange has 100 documents. He’s got more than that, but we’re keeping it simple. He says “I’m about to release documents that will sink Hillary!” and then he releases ten of those documents.

Hillary may or may not be damaged, but she certainly isn’t sunk. He says, “The next batch will totally take her down!” and releases ten more.

Hillary may or may not be damaged, but she certainly isn’t sunk. He says, “The next batch will totally take her down!” and releases ten more.

Finally, he succeeds in taking Hillary down. Why did he withhold these evidently critically significant documents for so long? Because of him, and solely him, in this scenario Hillary’s campaign continued on for some time because he withheld information from us. Countless millions of dollars squandered, months of people’s lives wasted. Is he intentionally drawing it the leaks so that Democrats don’t have a prayer of finding and fielding a replacement candidate before Election Day? If so, what in the fuck does he think gives him the right to manipulate American politics to that degree?

If he has information that could actually sink Hillary’s candidacy, then the only moral thing to do is release it immediately. But he didn’t. He has drawn the process out unnecessarily, rationing out our information to us while making false promises and knowingly withholding what he promises is critical information. Does this not sound exactly like the candidate he is trying to take down?

Of course it does. And that is the problem with Assange.

Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.

Assange is trying to take down a candidate who repeatedly lies and withholds information… by repeatedly lying and withholding information.

“But maybe he was hoping the previous stuff would take her down, and that he wouldn’t have go this far!” someone could argue.

Yes. That’s called information control. The very idea is appalling, that Assange and Wikileaks would withhold the Really Bad Stuff because they hoped that the Pretty Bad Stuff would take her down.

I don’t know what Assange’s motives are, or if he’s trying to keep the Extremely Bad Stuff secret because he hopes the Really Bad Stuff will eliminate her from the election, just as he hoped the Pretty Bad Stuff would. But more than anything, it looks like Assange is simply an attention whore.

He says he does it because he doesn’t want critical information to get lost in information overload. I ask again–what gives him the right? Regardless, it is unacceptable that he might withhold for any amount of time information that could actually sink Hillary’s campaign. The only moral thing to do would be to release that information.

“Well, he has to go through the info and determine what is what,” others would suggest.

Why?

It’s not Assange’s job to screen and filter information. It’s Assange’s job to share information. Assange is not the fucking Gatekeeper of critical information that is relevant to who will be the President of the United States. He simply set himself up as that gatekeeper. Why? For the power? For the attention? We can only speculate about his motives.

But regarding a responsibility to not release information that could be damaging to U.S. national security? Fuck that, and fuck that entire mentality. It would be damaging to the security of Texas State Penitentiary to release to the inmates the information that they’re being fed rat meat and drugged and raped in their sleep. Does that mean the inmates shouldn’t be told? That idea, that national security is a justifiable reason to withhold pertinent and critical information, suggests that we do need a gatekeeper of the information, because we’re too stupid or reckless to handle it. I wholly reject that supposition, as should anyone.

“You can’t handle the truth!”

Oh, well. Share the truth anyway.

Because the truth doesn’t change. In plain sight or concealed, the truth is what it is. My sister can’t handle the truth that there is no god–she’ll openly admit that the only reason she believes is that she is terribly afraid of the idea of non-existence. But hiding from it and pretending it isn’t the case doesn’t change it. And then you end up with shit like this because someone somewhere along the way decided that people couldn’t handle the truth, and so they had to be lied to:

Pictured: People who were lied to.

Pictured: People who were lied to.

If the government is doing something that would damage our national security if it got out that our government is doing it, then our national security needs to be damaged because our government shouldn’t be doing whatever it is in the first place. Give people the information and let freedom take its course.

Assange just wants to stay in the spotlight, and wants to stay relevant. It’s not about preventing information overload, not if he is withholding information that could actually sink Hillary’s candidacy. It’s about attention and his desire to have everyone train their eyes on him. “My next batch will sink her! I mean it this time! Like totes 4 real!”

“Please pay attention to me.”

* In the interest of not committing suicide by shooting myself three times in the back of the head, this is figurative, obviously. No one should inflict violence upon anyone else.

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