Part 1 – What is an Authoritarian Information State?

Part 1 - Authoritarian information state

Authoritarian information states are information gluttons and information misers.(138) Like gluttons they grab as much information as possible because this helps maximize their power.(139) Authoritarian states are information misers because they try to keep the information they collect – and their own operations secret from the public.(140) They try to treat everything that might embarrass them or undermine their authority as state secrets, and they multiply secret rules and regulations, which lets them claim to obey the law without having to account for what they do.(141) In this way they avoid accountability for violating people’s rights and for their own policy failures.(142) Thus, information gluttony and information miserliness are two sides of the same coin: both secure governments’ power by using information to control their populations, to prevent inquiry into their own operations, to limit avenues of political accountability, and to facilitate self serving propaganda.(143)

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