Republican Congressman Darrell Issa (CA), Chairman of the House Committee on Government Oversight and Reform, penned a column for tech news blog TechCrunch on Wednesday, in which he alternatively extols the virtues of open government, praises himself for leading the charge against the sunken Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) late last year and early 2012, and slams Attorney General Eric Holder for "stonewalling" Issa's investigation in the "Fast and Furious" gun tracking operation that went awry and resulted in the death of border patrol agent Brian Terry in 2010. Here are a few select passages:
My job as Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee is to innovate government and hold it accountable to taxpayers. Reform is inherently disruptive, and often demands speaking unpleasant truths to the powerful in Washington. That’s why, just before taking the stage at the PDF [Personal Democracy Forum], I announced contempt charges against Attorney General Eric Holder for stonewalling the investigation of Operation Fast and Furious. A shocking contrast? To some in the crowd, probably. But since joining the fight to stop SOPA in Congress, I’ve had many head-spinning days like this.
Far from foreshadowing the Mayan apocalypse, my seemingly strange partnerships – and countless others forged in the fight to keep the web open – mean something else. Internet users can fundamentally disrupt government. You already have. And if a conservative congressman like me can join with geeks of all political persuasions to rewrite the special interest Hollywood script, we can forge an alliance to protect an open Internet, support economic freedom and secure smarter self-governance.