Obama’s Muddy Transparency Record

From Politico:

President Barack Obama set a high bar for open government, and he set it quickly. A minute after he took office, the White House website declared his administration would become “the most open and transparent in history.” By the end of his first full day on the job, Obama had issued high-profile orders pledging “a new era” and “an unprecedented level of openness” across the massive federal government.


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NFOIC’s FOI Friday for March 2, 2012

A few open government and FOIA news items selected from many of interest that we might or might not have drawn attention to earlier:

NFOIC debuts #OpenGovVideos with interviews featuring Ken Bunting and Emily Ramshaw

The National Freedom of Information Coalition (NFOIC) announced it has introduced #OpenGovVideos, an online video project that will help tell the story of why open government is important to all citizens.


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Defensive Standards Hinder FOIA Openness

From The FOIA Project:

When the Obama administration came to office in January 2009, it promised openness and transparency in government. On his first full day in office, President Barack Obama issued a memorandum concerning his administration’s beliefs on the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), ordering federal officials to err on the side of openness.


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Congress left in dark on DOJ wiretaps

From Wired:

A Senate staffer was tasked two years ago with compiling reports for a subcommittee about the number of times annually the Justice Department employed a covert internet and telephone surveillance method known as pen register and trap-and-trace capturing.

But the records, which the Justice Department is required to forward to Congress annually, were nowhere in sight.


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Nonprofit watchdog group says FBI snoops on WikiLeaks supporters

From Courthouse News Service:

WASHINGTON (CN) – A nonprofit government watchdog claims the FBI refuses to release information on "the government's identification and surveillance of individuals who have demonstrated support for or interest in WikiLeaks."

The Electronic Privacy Information Center sued the Department of Justice's Criminal Division and National Security Division, and the FBI, in a FOIA complaint in Federal Court.


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