Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

What a Day for an Insult

Freedom of Information

Much of politics is timing. When you release information is key.

One favorite “statesman” trick is to bury unflattering information by “releasing” it on a Friday, right before the weekend.

This gives politicians a respite. Surely world events will have spewed up some worse (that is, more interesting!) story over the weekend, so on Monday, when journalism and its followers are back into the work week, coverage will be distracted and lessened.

I guess that’s why the White House waited till last Friday to explain it was officially removing Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests from the burdens on its Office of Administration.

Barack Obama, when he was running for office, proclaimed that his administration would be “the most transparent in history.” But he’s been following President Bush in keeping the administrative side of the White House as opaque as possible.

White House flunkies say this “cleanup” of FOIA regulations is “consistent with court rulings that hold that the office is not subject to the transparency law.”

Accept that, arguendo, and it still looks bad for the “most transparent” prez of all. He didn’t have to do this. He just wanted to.

Adding insult to injury, as noted by Gregory Korte in USA Today, “the timing of the move raised eyebrows among transparency advocates, coming on National Freedom of Information Day.”

This all relates to the current Hillary email scandal, too. It just so happens that the White House office now unencumbered by FOIA requirements is in charge of filing . . . old emails.


Perhaps that’s why they risked announcing this on Freedom of Information Day. The irony was lost over the weekend.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

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1 Comment

  1. Paul Jacob says:

    And this Administration’s attacks on government transparency go a WHOLE LOT deeper than this particular case (thanks to reader Michael Morrison for sending me this link):–politics.html

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