Why Should the State Tourism Department Records be Secret?

Cronyism and Corruption Thrive in Darkness


By Deborah Fisher

An often quoted phrase related to open government is one by Louis Brandeis, an attorney and associate justice on the Supreme Court whose work and writings spanned the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

“Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants; electric lights the most efficient policemen,” Brandeis wrote in a Harper’s Weekly article in 1913, one of his many writings on the topic.

Brandeis (1856-1941) believed that “sunlight” on government activities could expose wrongdoing, corruption and inefficiency. It could bring cronyism to light and equip citizens to fight aga...

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