Most Transparent White House? No, NYT Exec Editor Says It's The Most Secretive

from the well,-duh dept

We've been among those who have pointed out how laughable the Obama administration's claims to be "the most transparent administration in history" are, when, from nearly every angle, it appears that the Obama administration is ridiculously secretive -- beyond any previous administration. So, it's interesting to see that it's not just us who thinks that. The NYT's executive editor, Jill Abramson, who worked in Washington DC for decades, has noted that the Obama administration is, by far, the most secretive she's ever dealt with.
"I would say it is the most secretive White House that I have ever been involved in covering, and that includes — I spent 22 years of my career in Washington and covered presidents from President Reagan on up through now, and I was Washington bureau chief of the Times during George W. Bush's first term," Abramson told Al Jazeera America in an interview that will air on Sunday.

"I dealt directly with the Bush White House when they had concerns that stories we were about to run put the national security under threat. But, you know, they were not pursuing criminal leak investigations," she continued. "The Obama administration has had seven criminal leak investigations. That is more than twice the number of any previous administration in our history. It's on a scale never seen before. This is the most secretive White House that, at least as a journalist, I have ever dealt with."
I guess that's what happens when you declare that whistleblowers are "aiding the enemy" even as you pretend to support them. Your administration clams up.

Whenever this issue comes up, I keep going back to the speculation from Daniel Ellsberg a few years ago, in which he noted that while President Bush (the younger) abused his power and bulked up the surveillance state in secretive ways, when push came to shove, he believed that Bush was proud of doing that. President Obama, on the other hand, seems to be embarrassed about the way he's abused the power of the Presidency, and goes to tremendous lengths to try to hide those abuses and excesses. It's pure speculation on the part of Ellsberg, but it certainly rings true on multiple levels.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 4:14am

    Regarding snowden, perhaps they are protecting him! If the democrats are saying he's a traitor, then the republicans MUST say he's not that bad. Coz you know, if it ain't partisan it ain't worth talking about. So of those two groups, which is the one with the most gun fanatics?

    Then again, the O has his remote killbots. But even he wouldn't dare to use them in russia. I hope.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 4:33am

    Re:

    You ignore the fact that Democrats are so weak-willed that even when they had Majority in all Houses they didn't undo any of the Bush shit and that many Democrats, are just repugs in disguise, blue dog this, moderate that. The very essence of the JFK ideals are maybe diluted by the 80% of Democrats who vote in lockstep with all the retardations of their repug collegues.

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 4:57am

    Re: Re:

    Didn't they only have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate for something like three months near the end of the 111th Congress?

     

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  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 5:20am

    a) in my opinion, Obama is lying constantly

    b) in my opinion, someone else is pulling the strings

    c) if that is the case, Obama should be embarrassed! he should also do one or both of resigning the presidency and having those who he knows are pulling the strings arrested! they cant be doing so for any reason other than to better themselves and whatever grip they have/want on the world, because it's much more than just the USA at stake here! if he does neither, there can be no credibility in his leadership

     

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  5.  
    icon
    Ninja (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 5:43am

    Somebody said here in the comments and it was marked insightful but I will repeat: It's not about individual corruption, it's systemic corruption. I'm not ready to accept Obama is just a puppet and that his "embarrassment" is honest. However it is not far fetched given the fact that the corruption IS systemic in fact. The first question that came to mind is "why did he go for the second term?" and the conspiracy response would be "because he was coerced into". So the "Yes, we can!" mantra could have been what he truly believed one day. Till he got there and got smashed by the overwhelming system.

    Again, I'm not ready to accept this theory. But it is possible. He may have been unfortunate to be the one at the seat when the powers behind all this rotten shit decided to clamp down on democracy harder in the name of money.

     

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  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 5:45am

    @Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 5:20am
    b) in my opinion, someone else is pulling the strings

    Obama is black... Based on the recent and historical mutterings of the NAACP black folk are not allowed to have an opinion that differs from the NAACP, so of course someone is pulling the strings. The Black Americans just need to ask themselves are their black masters better or worse than the white ones. O wait...

     

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  7.  
    icon
    Feldie47 (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 6:06am

    This keeps going back to the question of what's worse: A president who probably never read the constitution violating it daily, or a president who was a constitutional scholar replicating the actions of the former. There is NO excuse for the latter.

     

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  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 6:39am

    Re:

    d) DubbYa was always telling the truth, as did all da prez

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 6:41am

    Re:

    Bigots of the world, unite!

    Need any crosses?
    How about some white bed sheets

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 6:50am

    Wait you guys are really surprised that politicians lie every time?
    Or you only notice it when foxnews tells you about it?

     

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  11.  
    identicon
    edpo, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 7:08am

    Screw Obama. Biggest regret of my life was giving that jackass two votes.

    Advice to future politicians: Just because I support *some* of your policies doesn't mean I'm going to support you when you go off script and break the Constitution and the social contract in an effort to scoop up as much power as you can.

     

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  12.  
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    nasch (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 7:12am

    Re:

    There is NO excuse for the latter.

    Or the former.

     

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  13.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 7:25am

    Re:

    Drop the color remarks and the racist attitude if you wanna be taken seriously. Otherwise you are contributing to the problem.

    By all means have issues with what the man does. Color has nothing to do with that.

     

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  14.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 7:43am

    Wrong word...

    Obama isn't embarrassed. He just lacks the bravado that Bush has. Without that bravado what you get is someone who is just worried about trying to get away with what he is doing anyway he can. It's not a matter of being embarrassed.

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 8:33am

    Re: Re:

    @Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 6:41am
    Bigots of the world, unite!

    Need any crosses?
    How about some white bed sheets


    Be a pal and tell us which bigots? there are a lot of bigots out there that hate each other and will most likely fight, and not unite. Or are you one of those types that believes bigots only exist in the camp opposite yours?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 9:29am

    Re: Re:

    Because anyone who dares to mention that hes black is a bigot.
    If he were white, he would be executed for treason.
    No other presidents got away with this much bullshit.

    You idiots are the problem, not those "bigots". Because you let black people do whatever they want

     

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  17.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 9:32am

    Re: Wrong word...

    Oh really? After all the things Obama did, he is still there and noone demands him to resign.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    icon
    krolork (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 9:41am

    We need a revolution.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 9:45am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Because anyone who dares to mention that hes black is a bigot."

    Absolutely untrue. It's people who raise race (whatever the race is) when it's not relevant, or as if "race" meant "conspiracy", or as if race is somehow indicative of skill, value, or trustworthiness (or lack thereof) who are bigots.

    "If he were white, he would be executed for treason."

    If you really believe this, then you really should take a few remedial courses on governmental and constitutional law.

    "No other presidents got away with this much bullshit."

    Oh, and a few courses on US history.

    "Because you let black people do whatever they want"

    Spoken like a true bigot.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 10:01am

    Re: Re: Wrong word...

    That might have something to do with who would be President if he left office early.

     

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  21.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 10:10am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I'm pretty sure it's the guy who said "Obama is black... Based on the recent and historical mutterings of the NAACP black folk are not allowed to have an opinion that differs from the NAACP, so of course someone is pulling the strings."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 10:11am

    Why not?

    President Obama, on the other hand, seems to be embarrassed about the way he's abused the power of the Presidency
    And perhaps so he should be. Not only does he appear to have abused his power more than any other president, but his abuses appear more chock-full of fail (for both the US and especially the rest of the world) than previous presidents.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
    icon
    Mason Wheeler (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 10:41am

    Re:

    The first question that came to mind is "why did he go for the second term?" and the conspiracy response would be "because he was coerced into".


    And the more reasonable response would be "because that's politicians do when they are eligible for re-election."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 10:52am

    Re: Re: Wrong word...

    Oh really? After all the things Obama did, he is still there and noone demands him to resign.

    Oh really?

    https://www.google.com/search?q=obama+should+resign

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    rapnel, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 11:25am

    Likely? Probable?

    Might this unparalleled secrecy be due to the apparent disconnect between legalities, constitutional subversion and the brute force will to keep the same from the public?

    You simply can not say that all of this is for my safety. That's simply can not be true, not true at all.

    The greatest security is almost always knowing what to expect and I sure as shit never expect bogeymen and ghosts.

    What I fully expect, at this juncture, is a government hell-bent on fucking us all.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 11:28am

    Re: Re:

    I agree, though i dont put that on any party. Just say that 80% of congress is corrupt 15% partially corrupt 4% slightly corrupt and 1% is........nm 5% slightly corrupt.

     

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  27.  
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    art guerrilla (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 12:31pm

    i agree...

    this whitehouse is so transparent, they're invisible...
    (just like our constitutional rights)

     

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  28.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 12:35pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "The PC Police are comin' to Arrest me, the PC police are comin' to arrest me..."

    Sen. Tim Scott: NAACP Now Practices 'Philosophical Bigotry'

    "While the NAACP once stood for equal rights for minorities, it now has turned to "philosophical bigotry," says Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C.

    The Rev. William Barber, president of the North Carolina NAACP, called Scott a ventriloquist dummy for the tea party in a Martin Luther King Day speech on Monday. Scott is the only black Republican serving in the U.S. Senate."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  29.  
    identicon
    JBDragon, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 12:49pm

    Re: Re:

    AS I say the Republican's are just a Wing of the Democrat party. They're really all for Big Government also, just that they think they can run it better. Most all of them are huge RINO's!!! Democrats bitched about anything and everything BUSH did. You have Code Pink everywhere, but here's Obama doing the Exact same things, but even worse!!!! The Patriot act Act was set to expire. Obama extended and expanded it! The Drone Strikes under Buch, bad, bad, bad, Code Pink all over it. Obama, 20 times or more then Bush ever did, and it's crickets. Guess what, 80% of the American Deaths in Afghanistan have been under OBAMA!!! It doesn't get talked about!!! People now don't seem to care!!! I can go on and on. Trust me, I wasn't a fan of BUSH. A Huge RINO!!! We need term Limits. Being in Congress and Washington D.C. for 5 to 10, 30, 40 years corrupts your mind. The Place is Sucking up money from all the Rest of the country is the Rich and the Rich Areas are all around the Washing D.C. area. Everyone in Congress now is a Millionaire!!!

    If anyone wants to put a stop to it and end this party, they're labeled CRAZY!!!

     

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  30.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 2:43pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    On Tuesday, Reverend William Barber, director of the North Carolina NAACP, described minorities who support conservative causes “mouthpieces.”

    “They frantically seek out people of color to become mouthpieces for their particular agenda,” Barber said on a conference call.

    He also addressed the Scott comments, which he had previously defended. He said his remarks had “nothing to do with color,” because they were intended to apply to anyone who supported Republican platforms, such as South Carolina governor Nikki Haley and North Carolina governor Pat McCrory: “The issue is: Who are you a mouthpiece for when you fight the implementation of the Affordable Care Act?” he said.

    Sen. Scott has dismissed Barber’s comments as “baseless and meaningless rhetoric.” “Reverend Barber will remind me and others of what not to do,” he added.

     

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  31.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 3:10pm

    "This is the most secretive White House that, at least as a journalist, I have ever dealt with.""

    Well, folks did want change.......

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  32.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Feb 6th, 2014 @ 5:46pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    The Patriot act Act was set to expire. Obama extended and expanded it!

    Congress did that, Obama just approved it.

    The Drone Strikes under Buch, bad, bad, bad, Code Pink all over it. Obama, 20 times or more then Bush ever did, and it's crickets.

    Except for all the widespread criticism of them.

    Trust me, I wasn't a fan of BUSH. A Huge RINO!!!

    So Bush was too liberal for you?

    We need term Limits. Being in Congress and Washington D.C. for 5 to 10, 30, 40 years corrupts your mind.

    Term limits would not help with either Bush or Obama.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 6:01pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It is reassuring that people are able to call out bigotry regardless of their own opinions. Bravo.

    Although I must say, being called a mouthpiece is small potatoes compared to some of the other ridiculousness.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  34.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 6:03pm

    Re:

    "Biggest regret of my life"

    I find this difficult to believe.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 6:10pm

    Re: Wrong word...

    "lacks the bravado that Bush has"

    Bravado Accomplished

    Is our children learning bravado?

    Bravado me once, shame on you. Bravado me .. you can't get bravado'd again.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 6:12pm

    Re: Why not?

    "abused his power more than any other president"

    This an interesting accusation. I'd like to see the research, that is .. assuming there was any.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 6:22pm

    Re:

    So Jill Abramson has "dealt with" what, maybe four administrations in her career?

    I'm sure it is easy to then imply it is the most secretive ever ... although this conclusion might be a little lacking in the evidence and corroboration dept.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    identicon
    edpo, Feb 6th, 2014 @ 8:58pm

    Re: Re:

    "I find this difficult to believe."
    ___________________


    And yet life goes on despite your incredulity. What a moment we get to share with you, learning you're not the center of the universe.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
    icon
    Alana (profile), Feb 7th, 2014 @ 1:30am

    Re:

    You say that as if the other options wouldn't have been the same or worse.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 7th, 2014 @ 5:17am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Considering the trials and tribulations most people endure on a daily basis, declaring a simple event such as voting to be the "Biggest regret of my life" is so believable.

    Stating that one doubts such a proclamation, is the same thing as declaring you are the "center of the universe", how profound.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 7th, 2014 @ 11:58am

    Re:

    Obama is black? Why hasn't anyone ever mentioned that before. Seriously, skin color shouldn't matter. I believe anyone who votes (for or against) based on skin color does themselves and the rest of the country a great dis-service. All that should matter is placing the best candidate for the job in the position. True for all jobs/positions.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  42.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 7th, 2014 @ 9:26pm

    Re:

    The thing about b) that supports it the most is how Obama became a Bush Jr. on foreign policy. It could very well be corruption of power, entrenched institutions changing him instead of the other way around, but it is still highly suspicious.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43.  
    icon
    The Wanderer (profile), Feb 24th, 2014 @ 3:28pm

    Re: Re:

    Five, at least, given that she mentions covering Reagan.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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