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Soros: Obama Improves Gov’t Openness

A fine bit of stenography from the always compliant Associated Press:

Report: Obama administration improves openness

By Pete Yost, Associated Press Writer Tue Sep 8

WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama’s policies on secrecy get higher grades for openness than those of President George W. Bush, yet there’s still room for improvement, says a coalition of public interest groups.

In a report issued Tuesday, the coalition says the new administration has made major strides toward more disclosure, including the recent release of Justice Department memos on Bush administration interrogation policies and Obama’s embrace of greater openness under the Freedom of Information Act.

The report noted, however, that the government has resisted release of photos from Army interrogation investigations; has not backed away from occasional use of the state secrets privilege; and has argued in court for secrecy regarding the role of former Vice President Dick Cheney in the Valerie Plame affair.

The country elected a president who promises the most open, transparent and accountable executive branch in history and "the record to date is mixed," says the report by OpenTheGovernment.org, a group of 75 public interest groups

The report was written before Friday’s news that the administration will start posting the names of White House visitors, widely hailed by supporters of full disclosure as a significant step. It was a policy reversal from the Bush administration, which had gone to court to keep the names secret.

Obama’s action concerning visitors is "a key transparency test," Patrice McDermott, director of OpenTheGovernment.org, said Monday. McDermott said the White House should reach back to inauguration day and post the names of all visitors since then. Obama’s plan calls for the release of names of visitors beginning Sept. 15.

For example, the Environmental Protection Agency reversed a decision by the Bush administration that had reduced reporting of toxic pollution for more than 3,500 facilities nationwide.

Among the positions the coalition thinks the Obama administration needs to change are:

Its argument, citing the state secrets privilege, that the government has sovereign immunity in seeking dismissal of a lawsuit against the government for warrantless wiretapping. Under the state secrets privilege, the executive branch claims that the disclosure of certain evidence in court may damage national security.

Its position that a transcript of a federal prosecutor’s interview of Cheney in the release of Plame’s CIA identity should remain secret for as long as 10 more years to limit the use of the transcript to historical purposes

Wouldn’t it be nice to know who is in this wonderful Open The Government organization whose press release the Associated Press was so eager to publish?

It’s odd, but the AP doesn’t seem to believe you should know. They don’t even provide their readers with a link to these noble worthies.

(Though the AP does manage to fit in the lie that Mr. Obama is going to release the White House visitor logs.)

But, as a public service, here is a list of their ‘Coalition Partners,’ according to their own website:

Coalition Partners

American Association of Law Libraries

American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression

American Library Association*

American Society of Newspaper Editors

Association of American Publishers

Association For Community Networking

Association of Research Libraries

Bill of Rights Defense Committee*

Black Box Voting

Californians Aware

Center for American Progress*

Center for Democracy and Technology

Center for National Security Studies

Center for Progressive Reform

The Center for Public Integrity

Center for Responsive Politics

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington*

Citizens for Sunshine

Common Cause

Defending Dissent Foundation

DownsizeDC.org, Inc.

Electronic Frontier Foundation

Electronic Privacy Information Center*


Environmental Defense

Essential Information

Federation of American Scientists*

Florida First Amendment Foundation

Free Expression Policy Project

Friends Committee on National Legislation

Fund for Constitutional Government

Good Jobs First

Government Accountability Project*

Humanist Society of New Mexico

Human Rights First*

Illinois Community Technology Coalition

Indiana Coalition for Open Government


The James Madison Project

League of Women Voters*

Liberty Coalition

Mine Safety and Health News

Minnesota Coalition on Government Information

National Coalition Against Censorship

National Coalition for History

National Freedom of Information Coalition

National Institute on Money in State Politics

National Security Archive*

National Security Whistleblowers Coalition

New Jersey Work Environment Council

Northern California Association of Law Libraries


OMB Watch*

PEN American Center

Pennsylvania Freedom of Information Coalition

People For the American Way*

Political Research Associates

Positive Financial Advisors, Inc

Progressive Librarians Guild

Project On Government Oversight

Public Citizen*

Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility


Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press

Society of American Archivists

Society of Professional Journalists

Southeastern American Association of Law Libraries

Special Libraries Association

Sunlight Foundation

Taxpayers for Common Sense

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse

U.S. Public Interest Research Group

Virginia Coalition for Open Government

Washington Coalition for Open Government

Working Group on Community Right-to-Know


* George Soros funded organizations

Maybe we are cynical, but we see a lot of the usual suspects.

But it’s always reassuring to hear that Mr. Soros’ groups as well as other the professional American haters believe that Mr. Obama is being open and honest.

Still, wouldn’t it be nice if there were transparency in our media?

And maybe even in such noble operations as Open The Government?

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, September 8th, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

15 Responses to “Soros: Obama Improves Gov’t Openness”

  1. MinnesotaRush says:


    “The country elected a president who promises the most open, transparent and accountable executive branch in history..”

    You’ve got to be kidding!!! ROFLMAO!!!

    And they expect we’ll believe it because they printed it. NOT!!!

  2. JohnMG says:

    A veritable rogues gallery.

  3. proreason says:

    Who needs press oversight when we have the esteemed George Soros performing that function.

    You know, he should merge his media enterprises with the Slimes, Wapro and abcnbccbscnn. That would be a more “open” representation of how the media really operates, wouldn’t it?

  4. texaspsue says:

    Sheesh! Is the man behind the curtain talking again? Why does the MSM still think that we can’t see through this bombardment of pandering and disinformation? They are all clearly out of touch with reality. :-)

  5. sheehanjihad says:

    It looks like we are finding out who the real president of the US is…..Obaba is nothing more than a lap dog.

  6. suek says:

    The League of Women Voters is Soros funded????

    When did _that_ start?? (not the League – the funding)

  7. Liberals Demise says:

    Uh …….. un-frickin’ believable!!
    Openness? Where?

  8. TFMo says:

    Speaking of our wonderful president, kindly check out a cartoon I made at http://www.christmasghost.com please!

  9. Danola says:

    Just because you say it does not make is so! Oh great wizard of oz, we were not born yesterday…….your puppet spoke to the ones who really were born yesterday in his address to the public school children. This is the man on the other end of Obama’s blackberry! If it wasn’t for your control over the old media, you and your minions would be exposed. But now We The People are awakening and your curtain will soon be drawn back. History will be transparent. You are not American and you have made your billions by destroying the human condition. You have proven that people will do anythng for money. You have capitalized on this human fault. If only you had a conscience, you would feel shame for what you have destroyed. It takes a soul to know right from wrong. May God have mercy on you for what you are doing to America.

  10. Enthalpy says:

    It’s Nuts R Us in spades! What is the actual result of their “openness?” Soros is a psychopath; a rich one, but a psychopath nonetheless.

    • TwilightZoned says:

      I’ve always contended the man’s just pure evil. Maybe we should check for the mark of the beast.

  11. catie says:

    Well I want to start with the VA coalition for Open Government. Our idiot governor is the head of the DNC for crisakes. No transparency problems there!

  12. ilzito guacamolito says:

    The words ‘open’ and ‘soros’ in the same sentence gives me the heebie jeebies.

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