- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 4, 2000


Just when Uncle Sam got a grip on millions of pages of top-secret material declassifying 720 million pages in the last four years along comes otherwise invisible e-mail.
The Information Security Oversight Office, which under the guidance of the White House National Security Council oversees the government's security-classification program, has just released its latest report to President Clinton.
In his transmittal letter, ISOO Director Steven Garfinkel says the executive branch once again recorded significant achievements in the security-classification program, implemented four years ago by executive order.
"Although legislation enacted in 1999 caused a decrease in declassification activity within the executive branch, the program continued to add significantly to the unprecedented number of pages declassified," Mr. Garfinkel writes.
Government agencies last year alone declassified almost 127 million pages of records. Combined with figures reported for the previous three years, the declassification total comes to almost 720 million pages since the order's implementation.
Still, the ISOO is "concerned about the continuing increase in classification activity," Mr. Garfinkel tells the president, which "appears to be a function of the reporting of electronic transmissions like e-mail."

Rule the universe

The Extraterrestrial Phenomena Political Action Committee (X-PPAC) says although Vice President Al Gore and Texas Gov. George W. Bush have declined its invitations to appear at the first-ever UFO/Disclosure presidential town-hall meeting on Friday the 13th of October at the Santa Clara (Calif.) Convention Center, negotiation with the Pat Buchanan Reform Party campaign continues.

Safe bet

Discussing presidential politics and our national debt with James Carter, senior economist with the Joint Economic Committee, and Tevi Troy, policy director for Sen. John Ashcroft, Missouri Republican, it was noted that Vice President Al Gore boasts he's "set an ambitious goal: to repay the entire federal debt by 2012."
"That sounds impressive," Mr. Carter points out, "until you realize that, under current law, the Congressional Budget Office estimates the federal debt will be fully repaid by 2009 three years earlier than Gore proposes."

Novak to college

Ernest W. Lefever, senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, says fellow Washington denizen and American Enterprise Institute political philosopher Michael Novak has become the first Ernest W. Lefever Visiting Fellow in Ethics and Culture at Mr. Lefever's alma mater, Elizabethtown College, in Elizabethtown, Pa.

Babes and girls

Two Texas groupies in particular tuned in to watch Texas Gov. George W. Bush go head-to-head with Vice President Al Gore in last night's opening presidential debate.
Karen Henry and Page Windham are founders of the "Babes for Bush" movement, which has been busy distributing "Babes for Bush" buttons to women all over the country. The women also are behind the popular Web site, www.conservativebabes.com.
"Babes take care of themselves," says Mrs. Henry, who heads a public relations firm in Houston. "We are active in the community, interested in the issues. We're not just robots. We're mothers, married with kids, the prototype of the American suburban housewife."
E.D. Donahey, host of "Fox & Friends" on the Fox News Channel, says she's anxious to wear her "Babes for Bush" button on TV, but for balance "can't unless I've got a 'Girls for Gore' button to counter it. Heard of any?"

Criticizing Christie

Good grief. Can't a guy interview an attractive gal every once in a while and not get dragged to the woodshed?
"You probably thought she was cute," Linda Mathis complains of our interview this week with supermodel Christie Brinkley, a staunch supporter of Vice President Al Gore and delegate to this year's Democratic National Convention.
Speaking of cute, R. Grimm of Houston, Texas, writes: "Doesn't it seem rather odd that [Ms. Brinkley] would find fault with women being for George W. because he is 'cute'? Why does she think anyone would be interested in her opinion? Because of her intellectual attributes?"
And to close our brief but controversial chapter with Christie, Mrs. Peter C. Appelbaump, a children's opera chorus administrator in Harrisburg, Pa., concedes: "I'm nobody special, but … since when does an idiot like Christie Brinkley speak for me, or any other mom who 'are so busy adjusting to their hectic lives, getting their kids to school, being a good wife, a good mother.'
"Are we all so stupid that we are 'only seeing the periphery of this race now, looking at personalities instead of the issues?' I can assure you that I have taken a look at the issues, and the men who espouse them."

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