Gov. William Donald Schaefer's gag order on state agencies is silly and self-defeating. The spectacle of a governor having to read every press announcement from a government with 70,000 workers -- even with the help of a public relations staff -- is ludicrous.
This is not the first time Mr. Schaefer has tried to put a lid on the flow of information to the public. One of his minions gave a similar order in 1987. It didn't last then and it won't last now.
For democracy to work effectively, the people have to know what their servants are doing. Without the free flow of information, representative government is a sham. What's more, government works best in public view, because the quick flow of information through the media from one agency to another often helps them function more efficiently. For the governor to orchestrate every announcement of consequence may be great for his ego but it is bad for the welfare of the state.