“This is the most closed, control-freak administration I’ve ever covered.” (288)
– David Sanger, Chief Washington Correspondent for New York Times
“The greatest enemy of press freedom that we have encountered in at least a generation.” (289)
– James Risen, New York Times
“This administration more control what George W. Bush’s did, and his before that.”(290)
— Bob Schieffer, CBS News
“A cantankerous press, an obstinate press, a ubiquitous press must be suffered by those in authority in order to preserve the even greater values of freedom of expression and the right of the people to know.” (291)
—Judge Murray Gurfein, Pentagon Papers case, June 17, 1971
“In regards to press freedoms, the Obama administration is far worse than the Bush Administration.” (292)
– Jill Abramson, Recently Fired Editor, New York Times
On October 10th, 2013 the Committee to Protect Journalists published a report stating the Obama Administration is the most aggressive administration against information leaks, since Richard Nixon was in office. (293) Those administration insiders who are suspected of discussing with reporters anything that the government has classified as secret are subject to investigation, including lie detector tests and scrutiny of their telephone and email records according to the report.(294)
The report also cites the outcry in May of 2013 when the Justice Department informed the Associated Press that it had secretly subpoenaed and seized all records for 20 AP telephone lines and switchboard for two months of 2012.(295) While only a few reporters were being investigated, thousands of news gathering calls by more than one hundred AP journalists ere included in the records that were seized.(296) The more secretive the government is about its own information, it seems the more interested the government becomes of everyone else’s information.
According to the report this has had a truly chilling effect on the ability of the press to keep the government accountable and for an informed citizenry to make informed decisions.(297) Democracies do not operate this way.(298) Which begs the question to be addressed in Part 3 of this research blog:
If this is the information age, is our information sufficiently secure from theft and illicit use? I will now start on Part 3 of this research blog.