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Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Transparency update

Opponents of government secrecy might be interested to read "SECRECY IN THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION," dated September 14, 2004. The report was prepared by the Special Investigations Division of the House Government Reform Committee. Need I add that it is a Minority Staff document, prepared at the request of Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-CA)?

It is an interesting (and somewhat scary) compilation of data, explaining how the Bush administration has restricted access to presidential documents (including 10s of thousands of pages from the Reagan era...when his Dad was Veep), found ways to limit compliance with the Freedom of Information Act, created new standards to limit a great deal of previously available government information, and pursued secret detention, deportation hearings and trials (of "enemy combatants"). Here's the conclusion:
the Administration’s actions represent an unparalleled assault on the principle of open and accountable government.
Are you surprised?

Transparency has long been an area of professional interest to me, but I've been doing a bit of new work on transparency and found some other useful websites as well: including the Project on Government Secrecy by the Federation of American Scientists and by Public Citizen.

Note: Waxman also previously sponsored the Iraq on the Record website, which includes a searchable database of quotes about Iraq.

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