“Of Interest” Items 2007

 

[Click on the link to go to that section]

ANALYSES/COMMENTARIES
ANNOUNCEMENTS
CONGRESS
NEWS
REPORTS
RESOURCES
OTHER

Intel Agencies to Withhold Contract Info from Public Database
[FAS's Secrecy News, 12.18.07]

U.S. Intelligence Seen "Retreating into Greater Secrecy"
[FAS's Secrecy News, 12.18.07]

NARA Seeks to Speed Processing of Presidential Records
[FAS's Secrecy News, 12.18.07]

Sprehe: Foolish Secrecy
[Federal Computer Week, 12.17.07]

Inside The Clinton Archives: Interview with NARA's Sharon Fawcett
[National Journal, 12.17.07]

Conferees Want Hard Look at Intelligence Contractors
[Washington Post, 12.17.07]

CommitteeCaller: phone an entire Congressional committee with one click
[Boing Boing.net, 12.17.07]

RESOURCE: A Call For Stewardship: Enhancing the Federal Government's Ability to Address Key Fiscal and Other 21st Century Challenges
[GAO, 12.17.07]

RESOURCE: 50-State Agency Database Registry Launches Historical Materials
[Free Government Information, 12.15.07]

Bush Secret Shredding Soars
[Radar Magazine, 12.14.07]

COMMENTARY: Bunning is leading charge to destroy modern history
[Louisville Courier-Journal, 12.14.07]

NEWS: Bill would make CRS reports available
[Free Government Information, 12.12.07]

Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee meeting: E-Government 2.0: Improving Innovation, Collaboration, and Access, 12.11.07 (webcast now available)

COMMENTARY: Only few saw the key FISA court rulings
[The Hill, 12.11.07]

NEWS: DOJ Reiterates to ISOO, Vice President's Office is Not an Agency
[FAS's Secrecy News, 12.11.07]

RESOURCE: Transparency in Congress
[Cox Washington Bureau, 12.11.07]

RESOURCE: CRS Report for Congress: Open Source Intelligence (OSINT): Issues for Congress
[CRS, via OpenCRS 12.5.07]

NEWS: Safe and Secure? In the wake of the Minneapolis bridge collapse, some states have tightened control of inspection records that could foretell the next disaster
[The News Media & The Law, Fall 2007 issue]

NEWS: CIA Bungles Declassification of Official Histories
[FAS's Secrecy News, 12.6.07]

RESOURCE: New book: Who Needs to Know? The State of Public Access to Federal Government Information

COMMENTARY: Rep. Brad Miller: In contempt fight, Congress has options
[The Politico, 12.5.07]

NARA's Center for Legislative Archives conducts a biennial harvest of federal web sites and maintains the archived pages online

PRESS RELEASE: CREW Launches Collaborative Online Government Document Database – GovernmentDocs.org, for documents obtained via FOIA.

RESOURCE: DOJ white paper regarding federal government secrecy defense, "Glomarization" (see related Post story)

ANNOUNCEMENT: Complete Index of DOJ Office of Legal Counsel Opinions Posted (thanks to Michael Ravnitzky)

ANNOUNCEMENT: Get Your Question Asked at a Presidential Debate: On Dec. 4, NPR and Iowa Public Radio will host a Democratic presidential candidates' debate. Share a question of your own, and see what others are asking the candidates. (Note: NPR is working with the leading Republican candidates to schedule a debate for early 2008)

ANNOUNCEMENT: The National Freedom of Information Coalition is accepting nominations for "Heroes of the 50 States" for its State Open Government Hall of Fame.

PRESS RELEASE: Whistleblower Groups Ask President To Fire Special Counsel. See also Head of Special Counsel Office Used Private Company to Delete Files On His Office Computer [WSJonline – subscription req'd 11.28.07]

REPORT: Midwest Democracy Network Releases Results of Presidential Questionnaire: Responses from candidates who completed a survey, sent earlier this fall to presidential nomination candidates, about issues of civic and public interest, such as campaign finance, government ethics, communication policy, and more.

NEWS: FL Governor signs open government bill of rights

REPORT: State Open Government Law and Practice in a Post 9/11 World – The 50-state analysis is available only in book form. An analysis of this data is also contained in OpenTheGovernment.org's Secrecy Report Card.

RESOURCE: NYT Review of Books About Presidential Power

RESOURCE: Elections 2008– Navigate to presidential match sites, political advertising, likely Congressional candidates, campaign finances, public opinion polls, election calendars, and historic Presidential votes by Congressional District. Multi-purpose election web sites are analyzed, and more.

REPORT: The State of State Disclosure– The Corporate Research Project of Good Jobs First evaluates the quantity and quality of state government Web-based disclosure on economic development subsidies, procurement contracts and state lobbying activities; concludes that states have a long way to go to fulfill the potential of the Internet in enhancing the public's right to know.

PRESS RELEASE: Midwest Democracy Network Releases Results of Presidential Questionnaire: Earlier this fall, the Midwest Democracy Network (MDN) asked the Democratic and Republican candidates for president about several issues of civic and public interest, such as campaign finance, government ethics, communication policy, and more. This week, MDN posted responses from candidates who completed the survey. [Midwest Democracy Network, 11.27.07]

REPORT: CRS Report — Electronic Rulemaking in the Federal Government [via OpenCRS]

FDA Announces Steps to Improve Advisory Committee Processes – The measures include proposed new guidance or procedures on advisory committee voting — including announcing the results of the vote immediately and making how each member voted part of the public record — and on disclosing information on conflicts of interest.

Indiana Debate Commission – The commission, or IDC, formally established in the fall of 2007, is a diverse group of 12 state and local affiliates that pledge to promote fair and open-minded consideration of social, political and governmental questions through public forums. The public interest is our primary focus.

RESOURCE: Navigate House Defense Earmarks on Google Earth – Using Google Earth, Sunlight's House Defense file presents a 3-D view of where the recipients of earmarks in the House Defense appropriations bill are located and corresponding links to EarmarkWatch.org — where citizens can further research each earmark and its recipient. Users can search for earmarks by city, state or zip code.

RESOURCE: Pilot Project: Free Access to Federal Court Records at 16 Libraries – Free public access to federal court records is available at 16 libraries in 14 states under a joint pilot project of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts and the Government Printing Office. The project offers free access to the federal judiciary's Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) system.

H.R. 3548: Plain Language in Government Communications Act of 2007: To enhance citizen access to Government information and services by establishing plain language as the standard style for Government documents issued to the public, and for other purposes

ANALYSES/COMMENTARIES

 

 

Is Hillary Responsible for the 'Library Lockdown'? Washington Post's Fact Checker on the delays in the release of Clinton presidential papers.

The war on whistle-blowers
[Salon.com 11.1.07]

COMMENTARY: It's the Secrecy, Stupid: Why the FISA Immunity Debate is Important by Jack Balkin, Balkinization blog [10.14.07]

Transparency in the Election Spotlight [OMB Watcher 10.23.07]

What You Don't Know Might Be More than You Think
[OMB Watcher 10.10.07]

COMMENTARY: Bush's Free-Speech Radical? Comparatively speaking, it's Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates. [Slate 10.1.07]

COMMENTARY: Dangerous Privilege by Aziz Huq [The Nation]

ANALYSIS: Federal Agencies Knew of Diacetyl Dangers and Kept Silent [OMB Watcher 9.11.07]

COMMENTARY: Tomgram: "Ruth Rosen, Shutting Down the Information Society, Bush-Style" and "Soft Crimes Against Democracy: What ever happened to Freedom of Information?" by Ruth Rosen [TomDispatch.com 9.6.07]

COMMENTARY: Democracy Kills
[by Jacob Sullum, Reason Magazine, 9.4.07]

ANALYSIS: Secrecy News on The Protect America Act, CRS Report
[Secrecy News 8.29.07]

ANALYSIS: Recent FOI victories: Judges reject baseless secrecy [in the states]
[By Douglas Lee, First Amendment Center 8.28.07]

COMMENTARY: FOIA Annual Reports: A Diagnostic Tool for Identifying FOIA Administrative Problems
[By Michael Ravnitzky, LLRX.com 8.27.07]

COMMENTARY: Calling All Presidential Candidates: Who Will Stand Up and Be Transparent?
[Reason Magazine 8.24.07]

COMMENTARY: Reclaiming the Right to Know
[Plenty Magazine 8.22.07]

COMMENTARY: Secret Insecurity: Self-serving hush-ups, in Canada and the United States by Bruce Fein
[Slate 8.14.07]

ANALYSIS: Documents, Leaks and the Boundaries of Expression: Government Whistleblowing in an Over-Classified Age
[By Susan Nevelow Mart, LLRX.com, 7.27.07]

ANALYSIS: Presidential candidates & the First Amendment
[First Amendment Center]

ARTICLE: Crashing The System: Are we entering a new era of digital democracy – or just being conned by a bunch of smooth-talking geeks?
[Mother Jones 6.20.07]

ANALYSIS: "I've Got Nothing to Hide" and Other Misunderstandings of Privacy by Daniel J. Solove, San Diego Law Review, Vol. 44, No. #, 2007

Secrecy and the perils of technocracy by Jeffrey Roy, Canada
[InterGovWorld.com]

Executive Nonsense: Bush's assertion of privilege is wildly misplaced – and could lead to another Watergate [Bruce Fein, Slate, 7.11.07]

ANALYSIS:Fusion Centers: Issues and Options for Congress [CRS 7.6.07] Fusion Centers: Overview and Criticism [Hometown Security blog]

COMMENTARY: Mr. Bush, Tear Down That Curtain! by Anthony D. Romero, Executive Director of the ACLU
[7.4.07]

ANALYSIS: Congressional Oversight of National Security Activities: Improving Information Funnels
[by Heidi Kitrosser, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities – School of Law. Thanks to Secrecy News]

ANALYSIS: When Public Records Are Too Public: Open Records Are an Established Tradition, But Does Internet Access Call for a Change?
[Wall Street Journal Opinion 6.25.07]

ANALYSIS: Hill Scrutiny of IC Intensifies – But Is It Oversight? IC Staffing May Get Nod
[The Kimery Report 6.14.07]

ANALYSIS: Data Mining and the Security-Liberty Debate by Daniel J. Solove, University of Chicago Law Review, Vol. 74, 2007-2008

ANALYSIS: Unfulfilled Expectations: An Empirical Analysis of Why Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblowers Rarely Win. Richard Moberly, Wm. & Mary Law Review, Fall 2007

ANALYSIS: FOIA Facts: Are Ombudsman The Answer? [LLRX.com 4.24.07]

ANALYSIS: Daniel Metcalfe Says 'Nothing Compares to the Past Two Years'
[Legal Times 4.16.07]

COMMENTARY: Eschewing email (and accountability)
[The Carpetbagger Report 3.28.07]

COMMENTARY: Secrecy and Freedom [Free Expression Policy Project]

 

COMMENTARY: The State of the Live Web, April 2007 [Sifry's Alerts 4.5.07]

COMMENTARY: Bush's Secret Government Undermines Democracy [John W. Whitehead, The Rutherford Institute, 1.25.07]

COMMENTARY: Talking about public disclosure of information [Paul Blumenthal's blog, Sunlight Foundation, 4.10.07]
Also see: Fixing the misinformation age [Boston Globe Op-Ed 4.10.07]

ANALYSIS: Transparency Makes Early Appearance in the New Congress
[OMB Watcher 1.23.07]

ANNOUNCEMENTS

[Also see our Calendar]

 

How far can a President go to defend the nation? Bill Moyers Journal examines the unprecedented Presidential power that some say is being amassed by our current Administration and kept secret in the name of national security. [PBS 10.26.07]

ANNOUNCEMENT: FairVote's Upgrade Democracy Video Contest: Make a short digital video that answers the question: "If you could change anything about elections, what would our democracy look like?"

ANNOUNCEMENT: "Ask the White House" – an online interactive forum where you can submit questions to Bush administration officials. On Friday, Sept. 28 at 2 pm EDT, join Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services at HHS, Mr. Kerry Weems, to discuss S-CHIP

ANNOUNCEMENT: International Right to Know Day is Sept. 28!

HEARING: Senate Whistleblower Hearing- Open to the Public. "The Mistreatment of Iraq Contracting Whistleblowers", Friday, Sept. 21, 2007, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 226 Dirksen Senate Office Building. Senate Democratic Policy Committee.

ANNOUNCEMENT: National Archives seeks public comment on its digitization plan and proposed changes to FOIA regulations

ANNOUNCEMENT: Help to ensure access to info in Europe: Access Info, a Spain-based organization dedicated to promoting and protecting access to information worldwide, is asking groups and individuals to sign on to a letter urging European officials to ensure official records remain open. [Thanks to the Sunshine Week blog]

New Center on Government Secrecy ("CGS") at American University Washington College of Law

ANNOUNCEMENT: Knight News Challenge: The Knight Foundation is looking for smart, innovative solutions that connect people with the news and information that matters to them most. As much as $5 million will be given away this year. Anyone can apply.

ANNOUNCEMENT: SPJ Convention and National Journalism Conference [Washington, DC, October 4-7]

Fall 2007 Grants now available for state FOI groups. Deadline Oct. 1, 2007

Environmental Advocacy Fellowship at the First Amendment Project. FAP is the only nonprofit organization in the country dedicated to providing free legal services exclusively on free speech and free press issues. More info

ANNOUNCEMENT: Sunshine Week 2007: March 11-17, 2007

ANNOUNCEMENT: Weinstein, Waxman headline FOI Day conference, Friday, March 16, at the National Press Club

MEETING ANNOUNCEMENT: Public Interest Declassification Board (PIDB) to meet on Jan. 19 in Washington, DC. Federal Register notice

LECTURE: "How Electronic Archives have challenged the National Archives"– A series of lectures in February. Free and open to the public. At the University of Maryland's McKeldin Library in College Park

CONGRESS

Secrecy on Animal ID System Challenged, Written Into Farm Bill
[SEJ WatchDog TipSheet 10.31.07]

Congress urged to confront the executive branch's use of the state secrets privilege. A letter to Congressional leaders, organized by the Constitution Project [Thanks to Secrecy News]

Rep. Gillibrand Passes Amendment to Save Taxpayers Money – Shine a Light on the Federal Government's Waste, Fraud and Abuse [Gillibrand Press Release, 10.3.07]

Testimony of POGO's Beth Daley on failures of the Office of Special Counsel (OSC) to represent whistleblowers seeking redress for retaliation [7.12.07]

Testimony of POGO's Danielle Brian about the need to strengthen the Inspector General (IG) program. [7.12.07]

CONGRESS: Hearing on Classification of National Security Information. Read testimony of Steven Aftergood, Meredith Fuchs, and J. William Leonard here. [Secrecy News 7.13.07] Watch the video of the hearing here.

The record of a January 2007 hearing on presidential signing statements that was held by the House Judiciary Committee has now been published [Secrecy News 7.16.07]

CONGRESS: Vice President Exempts His Office from the Requirements for Protecting Classified Information [House Oversight and Government Reform Committee]

CONGRESS: During the week of March 12, five good government initiatives from the Oversight and Government Reform Committee will be considered on the House floor:
H.R. 1309: Freedom of Information Act Amendments
H.R. 1362: Accountability in Contracting Act
H.R. 1255: Presidential Records Act Amendments
H.R. 1254: Presidential Library Donation Reform Act
H.R. 985: Whistleblower Protection Act

CONGRESS: House Oversight and Government Reform Information Policy, Census, and National Archives Subcommittee considers a House report on how citizens can use the Freedom of Information Act and the Privacy Act of 1974 to request government records and marks up draft bills on openness in government and on amendments to presidential records legislation. 2 p.m. Tuesday, 2154 Rayburn

CONGRESS: On March 1, 2007, Rep. Henry A. Waxman along with Reps. Platts, Clay, and Burton introduced H.R. 1255, the Presidential Records Act Amendments of 2007, to nullify a 2001 presidential executive order and restore public access to presidential records. Testimony from the hearing will be available soon.

CONGRESS: Hearing: House Subcommittee on Information Policy, Census, and National Archives hearing on The Presidential Records Act of 1978: A Review of Executive Branch Implementation and Compliance Thursday, March 1, 2007, 2:00 p.m., in 2154 Rayburn House Office Building.

CONGRESS: Hearing: Full Committee hearing on the Executive Branch Reform Act of 2007 and the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2007. Tuesday, February 13, 2007, 10:00 a.m., in 2154 Rayburn House Office Building

CONGRESS: Hearing: Subcommittee on Information Policy, Census, and National Archives hearing on The State of FOIA: Assessing Agency Efforts to Meet FOIA Requirements. Wednesday, February 14, 2007, 2:00 p.m., in 2154 Rayburn House Office Building

CONGRESS: Hearing: The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee will hold a hearing on EPA Library Closings. February 6, 2007, in Room 206 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building, 1st St. and Constitution Ave., Washington, DC. The hearing is scheduled to begin at 10:00 a.m.

CONGRESS: Hearing: Allegations of Political Interference with the Work of Government Climate Change Scientists. Tuesday, January 30, 2007, 10:00am, in 2154 Rayburn House Office Building

CONGRESS: Rep. Waxman Announces Democratic Membership of Oversight Committee

CONGRESS: Statement of Administration Policy: H.R. 1401 – Rail and Public Transportation Security Act of 2007

CONGRESS: Systemic failure at the White House to follow procedures for protecting classified information: Rep. Waxman letter to Andrew Card

NEWS

Secrecy Threatens Historical Record, State Dept is Told [Secrecy News 11.1.07]

PRESS RELEASE: Judiciary Committee Releases Questions To AG Nominee Mukasey : Sen. Leahy's press release provides written questions and correspondence submitted for the record to Mukasey. Consistent with standard committee practice, Senators were given a week to submit written follow-up questions to the nominee. (Sen. Leahy (D-Vt.) also sent a letter to White House Counsel Fred Fielding renewing requests for full disclosure of the Administration's policies on torture and interrogation techniques for detainees.)

NEWS:National Security Archive seeks to discover true extent of missing e-mails at White House [National Security Archive 10.29.07]

NEWS: First Toxic Sediments Leave FERC's Secrect Superfund Site [SEJ WatchDog TipSheet 10.3.07]

NEWS: Federal shield law clears Senate Judiciary Committee [Reporter's Committee for Freedom of the Press, Press Release, 10.4.07] Also see Journalists' Privilege: Overview of the Law and Legislation in the 109th and 110th Congresses [CRS Report 9.28.07]

Declassifying the "Fact of" Satellite Reconnaissance [National Security Archive 10.1.07]

NEWS: Court Rules Delay in Release of Presidential Papers is Illegal [National Security Archive 10.1.07]

NEWS: Trust in Federal Government, On Nearly All Issues, Hits New Low — Even Less Than in Watergate Era [Editor and Publisher] See the survey here [Gallup 9.26.07]

NEWS: State Dept Classifies Report on Iraqi Corruption
[Secrecy News 9.26.07]

PRESS RELEASE: Interior Attorney Placed on Protected Witness List – Secrets Case on Assets Mismanagement Elevated to Presidential Appointee [PEER Press Release 9.17.07]

NEWS: Supreme Court is Asked to Review State Secrets Case [Secrecy News 9.17.07]

NEWS: Court denies FOIA request for 40-year-old CIA briefings [Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press 9.7.07]

PRESS RELEASE: NASA and Internet Archive Team to Digitize Space Imagery
[NASA 8.23.07]

PRESS RELEASE: Anonymous Lawmaker Helps to Build OpenCRS Database
[Center for Democracy & Technology 8.23.07]

NEWS: DOD 'Talon' Database Declawed
[TPMmuckraker 8.21.07]

NEWS: Richardson is only candidate to pledge open government
[Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility]

NEWS: Carl Malamud Takes on WestLaw: Carl Malamud has taken on the SEC, Patents, and Congress and C-Span. Now he's tackling the 5 million or so pages of federal case law. [Free Government Information 8.21.07]

NEWS: ACLU challenges constitutionality of Patriot Act NSL gag orders
[JURIST 8.16.07]

Pentagon orders stronger whistleblower protections
[PEER Press Release 7.31.07]

NEWS: Pilot Project Begins: Two Courts Offer Digital Audio Recordings Online

NEWS: Senator Durbin asks for Unanimous Consent on OPEN Government Act (S. 849) [Congressional Record, Senate – July 26, 2007; Page S10090]

NEWS: House Backs Taxpayer-Funded Research Access
[7.20.07]

NEWS: Energy Task Force Advisors Revealed, Six Years after Meetings
[OMB Watcher 7.24.07]

Public access to EPA library holdings in jeopardy
[PEER 7.17.07]

NEWS: Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Us
[NPR's On The Media 7.6.07]

NEWS: Court unseals redacted portions of Miller opinion
[Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press 7.3.07]

NEWS: Justice Department Launches National Missing And Unidentified Persons Initiative (NAMUS)
[US DOJ 7.2.07]

Press Release: As FOIA Anniversary And July 4th Near, Leahy Presses For Passage Of The Leahy-Cornyn OPEN Government Act To Strengthen Nation's Foremost Right-To-Know Law [Sen. Leahy 6.27.07]

NEWS: Secret Surveillance Evidence Unsealed in AT&T Spying Case: Whistleblower Declaration and Other Key Documents Released to Public [EFF 6.12.07]

NEWS: Judge Orders FBI to Release NSL Abuse Records [EFF 6.15.07]

NEWS: Washington State Enacts Two Open Government Laws [SEJ WatchDog TipSheet 5.2.07]

NEWS: Nation's Largest Single-Subject Declassification Effort Coming to a Close [NARA 4.2.07]

NEWS: Investigation of the National Institutes of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
[SEJ WatchDog TipSheet 4.7.07]

NEWS: Climate and Ocean Scientists Put Under New Speech Restraints
[Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility 4.3.07]

NEWS: NOW on PBS this week: For Your Eyes Only? Allegations that the government is reading your e-mails, with the help of AT&T. A whistleblower speaks out. [Streaming video of this program will be available online after broadcast] [2.16.07]

NEWS: Two U.S. Government reports call for public access to agency-funded research [Alliance for Taxpayer Access Media Advisory 5.3.07]

NEWS: EPA Quietly Resumes Dismantling Library System [PEER 5.2.07]

REPORTS

National Strategy for Information Sharing [The White House, October 2007]

REPORT: Annual Report to Congress on the Information Sharing Environment submitted by Ambassador Thomas E. McNamara, Program Manager for the Information Sharing Environment, September 2007 [thanks to beSpacific]

REPORT: States failing FOI responsiveness – Better Government Association and National Freedom of Information Coalition give 38 out of 50 states "F" grade in overall responses to FOI requests.

REPORT: The Invisible Primary – Invisible No Longer: A First Look at Coverage of the 2008 Presidential Campaign. A study by the Project for Excellence in Journalism and the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy [10.29.07]

REPORT: Presidential Signing Statements: Constitutional and Institutional Implications [CRS via Federation of American Scientists, Updated 9.17.07]

REPORT: Presidential Claims of Executive Privilege: History, Law, Practice and Recent Developments [CRS via Federation of American Scientists, Updated 9.17.07]

U.S. Reconnaissance Satellites: Domestic Targets – Documents Describe Use of Satellites in Support of Civil Agencies [National Security Archive 9.14.07]

Summary of Annual FOIA Reports for Fiscal Year 2006 [Dept. of Justice Office of Information and Privacy]

REPORT: Mediation Without Litigation by Harry Hammitt. Access advocates are turning to state models for examples of how access to information disputes can be resolved short of litigation.

REPORT: Congress and the Internet: Highlights [CRS via Federation of American Scientists 8.29.07]

REPORT: Freedom and Information: Assessing Publicly Available Data Regarding U.S. Transportation Infrastructure Security [RAND]

REPORT: What's in Your Water? The State of Public Notification in 11 U.S. States
[American Rivers 8.16.07]

REPORT: Executive Summary: Office of Inspector General (OIG) Report on CIA Accountability With Respect to the 9/11 Attacks and CIA Director's Statement [8.21.07]
[Thanks to Secrecy News]

REPORT: Privatization v. The Public's Right to Know: A Special Report from the Reporter's Committee for Freedom of the Press

REPORT: Still Waiting After All These Years: An in-depth analysis of FOIA performance from 1998 to 2006 [Coalition of Journalists for Open Government, 8.8.07]

REPORT: Secret in Seattle
Newspapers uncovering sealed cases in Washington and Nevada faced reluctant judges, bureaucratic hurdles and lawsuit threats.
[The News Media & the Law Spring 2007]

REPORT: Still Waiting After All These Years: An in-depth analysis of FOIA performance from 1998 to 2006 [Coalition of Journalists for Open Government, 8.8.07]

REPORT: Reexamining Regulations: Opportunities Exist to Improve Effectiveness and Transparency of Retrospective Reviews [Government Accountability Office, 7.16.07]

REPORT: Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Amendments: 110th Congress
[CRS via Federation of American Scientists Updated 7.10.07]

REPORT: Homeland Security Report
[Homeland Security Group August 2007]

REPORT: How Nonprofits Helped America Vote: 2006
[OMB Watch August 2007]

REPORT: Congress's Contempt Power: Law, History, Practice, and Procedure
[CRS via Federation of American Scientists 7.24.07]

REPORT: State E-Government Strategies: Identifying Best Practices and Applications
[CRS via Center for Democracy and Technology 7.23.07]

REPORT: National Security Letters in Foreign Intelligence Investigations: A Glimpse of the Legal Background and Recent Amendments
[CRS via Center for Democracy and Technology Updated 3.7.07]

REPORT: State and Federal E-Government Report, 2007 [Brown University]

REPORT: Government-Wide Assessment of Citizen Service Activities by USA Services. How and where do federal agencies interact with citizens?
[Thanks to beSpacific.com]

REPORT: Long-term fiscal challenge: Additional Transparency and Controls Are Needed
[Government Accountability Office July 25, 2007]

REPORT: Inspectors General: Opportunities to Enhance Independence and Accountability [Government Accountability Office July 11, 2007]

REPORT: 2006 Information Security Oversight Office Report to the President on classification and declassification activities

REPORT: GAO: Government Accountability Office and General Accounting Office [Updated June 22, 2007]
[Through the Federation of American Scientists]

REPORT: CREW released a report, Crossing the Line: The Bush Administration's Efforts to Expand Its Powerful Reach
[7.2.07]

REPORT: National Security Archive FOIA Audit: 40 years of FOIA, 20 years of Delay

REPORT: Secret Sessions of the House and Senate [CRS report Updated 5.25.07]

REPORT: The CIA's Family Jewels: Agency Violated Charter for 25 Years, Wiretapped Journalists and Dissidents [National Security Archive, 6.21.07]

REPORT: The Blogging Revolution: Government in the Age of Web 2.0
[David C. Wyld, Associate Professor Southeastern Louisiana University, thanks to beSpacific.com]

REPORT: Federal Research: Policies Guiding the Dissemination of Scientific Research from Selected Agencies Should Be Clarified and Better Communicated [GAO May 2007]

REPORT: CDT Identifies Most Wanted Warrantless Snooping Documents: Most Wanted Documents and Most Wanted Answers [6.20.07]

REPORT: Openness & Accountability: A Study of Transparency in Global Media Outlets

REPORT: Attorney General's Report to the President Pursuant to Executive Order 13,392, Entitled "Improving Agency Disclosure of Information" [June 2007]

REPORT: The Power of Information [UK] by Ed May and Tom Steinberg, June 2007

REPORT: Reforming the State Secrets Privilege
Statement of the Constitution Project's Liberty and Security Committee & Coalition to Defend Checks and Balances
[5.31.07]

REPORT: Office of the Inspector General (OIG) Semiannual Report to Congress: October 1, 2006-March 31, 2007

REPORT: ACLU released a new report on lack of protections for national security whistleblowers

REPORT: Governing by the Numbers: The Promise of Data-Driven Policymaking in the Information Age
[By Daniel C. Esty, Reece Rushing, Center for American Progress 4.23.07]

PAPER: First Generation E-Rulemaking: An Assessment of Regulatory Agency Websites

PAPER: Government Websites and Political Engagement: Facilitating Citizen Entry Into the Policy Process

REPORT: Without a Trace: The Story Behind the Missing White House Emails and the Violations of the Presidential Records Act [CREW]

REPORT: How trustworthy are state-level primary legal resources on the Web? Find out in a new report by the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL), State-by-State Report on Authentication of Online Legal Resources. Press release.

REPORT: Congressional Web Site Investigation: Citizen journalists evaluated congressional Web sites to determine their Transparency score. The Results are in!

REPORT: NET worked Radicalization: A Counter-Strategy [The George Washington University Homeland Security Policy Institute and the University of Virginia Critical Incident Analysis Group]

REPORT: Nationwide Information Audit of Public Hazmat Documents Meets with Suspicion, Confusion And, Sometimes, Compliance

REPORT: Agencies Violate Law on Online Information: Only One in Five Federal Agencies Meets Congress's Requirements 10 Years After Electronic Freedom of Information Amendments [The National Security Archive]

REPORT: Federal Government Seen As Increasingly Secretive; National Poll for Sunshine Week Finds Privacy Concerns

REPORT: Congressional Information & the Internet: A Collaborative Examination of the House of Representatives and Internet Technology [The Open House Project, May 8, 2007]

RESOURCES

RESOURCE: Death and Taxes : A Visual Guide to Where Your Federal Tax Dollars Go. 2008 edition now available.

RESOURCE: governmentattic.org – "rummaging in the government's attic" for government documents

RESOURCE: Index of Presidential Signing Statements 2001-2007 A comprehensive index of presidential signing statements issued between 2001 and 2007. [Compiled by Neil Kinkopf, associate professor of law at Georgia State University College of Law and former special assistant in the Office of Legal Counsel at the Department of Justice] Related postings on Presidential signing statements
[Thanks to beSpacific]

RESOURCE: "Wiki the Vote" Project on Congresspedia Profiles Congressional Candidates in the 2008 Election [Center for Media and Democracy and the Sunlight Foundation]

Mexico Project Launches New Transparency Web Site [via The National Security Archive]

Gov Gab – Your U.S. Government Blog – Gov Gab is written by a team of five bloggers with different backgrounds and interests, all experts on government information via their jobs at USA.gov, Pueblo.gsa.gov, or 1 (800) FED-INFO.

Earmark Watch: Bringing Citizen Oversight to Congressional Spending. Your chance to investigate earmarks [A project of Sunlight Foundation and Taxpayers for Common Sense]

Dipnote, the State Department's first-ever blog [Thanks to beSpacific]

RESOURCE: LSU Libraries Federal Agencies Directory [The directory is a partnership of Louisiana State University and the Federal Depository Library Program]

RESOURCE: FBI Unbound: How National Security Letters Violate Our Privacy. The 26-minute video, available on DVD from BORDC, explores the repercussions of the FBI's power to demand hundreds of thousands of Americans' private records without any oversight by a court or Congress.

RESOURCE: The FOIA Files: Searchable database of stories that FOIA Made Possible [Sunshine in Government Initiative]

C-SPAN Libraries series opens door to presidential history [Houston Chronicle 9.6.07] Also see the C-SPAN website for hundreds of newly discovered films, audio, and video recordings and serves as the companion piece to C-SPAN's television and radio series.
[Thanks to Free Government Information]

RESOURCE: Congressional Committees – Secrecy and Delayed Transparency
[Free Government Information, Open House Project]

Summaries of New Decisions in FOIA Cases – A new feature of DOJ FOIA Post
[DOJ Office of Information and Privacy, Aug. 07]
[Thanks to beSpacific]

White House Office of Administration and FOIA:

[Thanks to Michael Ravnitzky]
Related: White House Declares Office Off-Limits [TPMmuckraker 9.4.07]

RESOURCE: 60 Years of Federation of American Scientists Public Interest Reports Available Online. Reports online range from 1946 to 2005. [Thanks to Michael Ravnitzky]

RESOURCE: Business Filings Databases Updated
All 50 states make some level of corporate and business filings available online. [Thanks to beSpacific]

RESOURCE: The Government Domain: Back to School for Constitution Day 2007
[By Peggy Garvin, LLRX.com 8.27.07]

RESOURCE: PolitiFact: Reporters and researchers will analyze candidates' speeches, TV ads and interviews for accuracy. A project of the St. Petersburg Times and Congressional Quarterly. [Thanks to beSpacific]

RESOURCE: Town Hall Meetings (Organized by State and District)
[Bill of Rights Defense Committee]

RESOURCE: State Sunshine and Open Records: open records at the state and local level

RESOURCE: Carnival of Open Records, a blog-centered project to build and promote awareness about open records issues and concerns [Thanks to Tapscott's Copy Desk]

RESOURCE: Many Eyes: Allows users to visualize data sets and post them. Make colorful graphics out of earmark data, census data, and many other data sets that users upload

RESOURCE: Local Sunlight: The Sunlight Foundation highlights local blogs

RESOURCE: The Secrecy File
Daily developments about the growing level of secrecy in the federal government and how it impacts the public's right to know from Cox Newspapers

RESOURCE: Trends in Business Intelligence, Libraries of the Future and Other Presentations from the DNI Open Source Conference

RESOURCE: Disclosure of Broadband Data
Find out who owns the media in your region
[Center for Public Integrity]

RESOURCE: FY2008 Appropriations Bills: TCS Analyses and Earmark Databases
[Taxpayers for Common Sense]

RESOURCE: League Launches Government Transparency Handbook: Observing Your Government in Action
[Also available for purchase ($5)]
[League of Women Voters]

RESOURCE: Coming Up This Week in Congress [Center for Media and Democracy]

RESOURCE: WhiteHouseForSale.org Public Citizen unveiled a Web site that provides an up-to-date listing of the 2008 presidential hopefuls' 'bundlers," the super-fundraisers who are powering the billion-dollar race for the White House.

RESOURCE: Federal Reserve Economic Data (FRED). Over 11,000 data series have been added to the regional data category in the database, including labor force and unemployment rate time series for every state, county, and metropolitan statistical area (MSA) in the US

Also see the new data-mapping tool called GEOFRED, which displays color-coded data on the state, MSA, and county levels.

RESOURCE: POGO's Contractor Misconduct Database
Also see Testimony of POGO's Scott Amey on Federal Contracting: Why Do Risky Contractors Keep Getting Rewarded With Taxpayer Dollars?

RESOURCE: How easy is it to find information on the private interests of public officials? The Center for Public Integrity researched state requirements on the filing of Personal Financial Disclosures by all three branches of state government

RESOURCES: Legistorm: Congressional staff salaries and database of all privately financed trips taken by members of Congress and congressional staffers. Also see PatentStorm, a searchable database of millions of US patents.

RESOURCES: Insanely Useful Websites on government transparency
[Compiled by the Sunlight Foundation]

RESOURCE: State Agency Databases Across the Fifty States
[ALA Government Documents Roundtable (GODORT) wiki]

RESOURCE: Generate a letter to request a deceased family member's FBI files

RESOURCE: SEC Adds Software Tool for Investors Seeking Information on Companies' Activities in Countries Known to Sponsor Terrorism
[SEC press release 6.25.07]

Contracts Report and Database
[House Oversight and Government Reform Committee]

RESOURCE: Pilot Project Will Post Digital Audio Recordings Online
[Newsletter of the Federal Courts]

RESOURCE:10 Million Pages of CIA Declassified Records Available [6-5-07, thanks to beSpacific]

RESOURCE: New search engine of federal documents called LOUIS — the Library Of Unified Information Sources [Sunlight Foundation]

RESOURCE: Government Document Library [outragedmoderates.org]

RESOURCE: Congressional Oversight Training Seminars by POGO (click Resources used at past trainings)

RESOURCE: Judicial Salary Resource Center [National Center for State Courts]

RESOURCE: GovITwiki: A Community Reference Resource for Government Information Technology

RESOURCE: New Book: Presidential Secrecy and the Law

RESOURCE: The Corporate Research Project – The Corporate Research Project is a non-profit center that assists community, environmental and labor organizations in researching and analyzing companies and industries.

RESOURCE: A list of links to the official state government libraries in all 50 states
[Thanks to the SEJ WatchDog TipSheet]

RESOURCE: Unfluence: Mapping political contribution networks

RESOURCE: Death and Taxes: A Visual Guide to Where Your Federal Tax Dollars Go

RESOURCE: Fact Sheet on Updates to FISA
[DOJ and ODNI 4.13.07]

RESOURCE: OMB Earmark Database

RESOURCE: Free Government Information has announced a browser toolbar they hope will increase awareness and usage of government information.

RESOURCE: Check out BORDC's new web page on Presidential Signing Statements

OTHER

LETTER: POGO urges Department of Transportation investigation into Traffic Information Contract Project on Government Oversight [10.14.07]

Lunchtime Listen: Checks and Balances. Charlie Savage discusses his new book, Takeover: The Return of the Imperial Presidency and the Subversion of American Democracy
[Thanks to Free Government Information]

NPR on Presidential Secrecy [NPR's On Point 9.4.07]

Daily Show: Robert Pallitto explains how Presidential secrecy threatens democracy

What should be America's national broadband strategy? Draft legislation with Dick Durbin

Science Idol: The Scientific Integrity Editorial Cartoon Contest Winner Announced!

Are You a Sunshine Activist?
[The Lucy Burns Institute]

Politico.com's Map of the Blogosphere

Photographer: Here's why you don't see photos of the wounded
[RCFP's Behind the Homefront 7.9.07]

OTHER: Presidential Candidates Asked to Pledge Open Government
Read the Pledge
[PEER 7.2.07]

Transportation Security Agency notice to Federal Air Marshals regarding protection of sensitive data
[Secrecy News 6.28.07]

Non-Executive Decision: The federal government has three branches. Dick Cheney is the fourth.
[The Daily Show]

Mind Mashup: Make a short video to illustrate the value of information sharing. Win a Sparky Award and $1,000 [SPARC]

Has Your Member of Congress Taken the Earmark Transparency Pledge? [The Sunlight Foundation, Americans for Prosperity, OMB Watch and Taxpayers for Common Sense]

Technology and Terrorism: Are we being too naive? by Alex Iskold on Read/Write web [6.02.07]

Don't We Have a Constitution, Not a King? by Marjorie Cohn, professor at Thomas Jefferson School of Law [6.01.07]

CREW Sues White House Office of Administration Over Refusal to Respond to FOIA on Five Million Missing Emails [5.23.07]

Official Wiki for the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals

Free Government Information has started a podcast.

Video from the National Freedom of Information Coalition Summit

E-mail records problems by J. Timothy Sprehe
[FCW.com 5.14.07]

Access to CRS Reports [Memorandum from CRS director Daniel P. Mulhollan 4.18.07] [more info from Secrecy News]

Congress orders EPA to disclose library reorganization plans [National Coalition for History 5.10.07]

Los Alamos Blocks Researcher Access to Archives
[Secrecy News 5.3.07]

Federal shield laws introduced in both houses
[RCFP News Media Update 5.2.07]

Hazardous Secrecy Proposal Re-Emerges [Sunshine in Government Initiative summary of WMD FOIA proposal]

Submit a question to the GOP Presidential Candidates Debate
The debate will feature three segments in which questions come from politico.com readers.
[Politico.com]

SURVEY: Public Knowledge of Current Affairs Little Changed by News and Information Revolutions
[The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, Released April 15, 2007]

NEW POLL: A national poll [.pdf] shows overwhelming support for new whistleblower protections

REMARKS: Surge in Secrecy: Democracy's Incremental Disaster, by Paul McMasters [James Madison Award Remarks, National FOI Day Conference, 3.16.07]

INTERVIEW: Blogger News interviews Alasdair Roberts, author of Blacked Out: Government Secrecy in the Information Age

INTERVIEW: Listen to an interview with U.S. Archivist Allen Weinstein about the Dec. 31st, 2006 automatic declassification deadline

NEW WEBSITE: The new official blog of the National Freedom of Information Coalition and the FOI ADVOCATE

ARTICLE: Who is at Fault Here? The Bush Administration, Presidential Power, and the Signing Statement
by Christopher S. Kelley, Miami University of Ohio

Categories: Uncategorized