How Public Should Public Information Be?

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Just how public should public information be? That’s a trickier question than you might think, and it’s one that we should have addressed a long time ago. Here’s today’s example: should California publish on the web the names and monthly pension payments of all state retirees? It’s public information, after all. But just how public?

Michael Hiltzik has a good rundown of this issue here. It’s worth a read.

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We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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