You Aren't My Sunshine

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It's Sunshine Week, ladies and germs, which means time to assess how various guvmint agencies inside these United States are responding to Freedom of Information Act requests to peak underneath the State's hood. The Associated Press took an extended looksie at the "about 130 annual FOIA reports submitted to the Justice Department by the 15 executive departments between 1998 and 2004," and found that:

The percentage of requested information that is eventually released in full has been declining since 1998 at the Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Education, Interior, State, Transportation and Treasury departments. The Justice Department began reducing the information it releases in full after the 2001 attacks.

At the CIA, just 12 percent of the FOIA requests processed were granted in total in 2004, down from 44 percent in 1998. The FBI gave people asking for records everything they asked for just 1 percent of the time in 2004, compared to 5 percent in 1998.

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NEXT: A Domino Effect of Questions

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  1. Here’s a story today about a guy in SF who’s been waiting 24 years for his FOIA request.

    http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2005/03/14/reporters_foia_request_dates_to_1981/

  2. We can trust the Bush administration, right? After all, according to Charles Paul Fruend and Michael Young, they are benevolently bringing freedom to the middle east.

  3. Sure, GG, I can just see it now at the Iraqi Constitutional Convention: “Don’t they have a Freedom of Information Act in America? Let’s ask Negroponte if we should have one too.”

    Don’t hold yer breath…

  4. cdunlea,

    I’ve known a number of people who have had to work their way through the FOIA maze. What the government does to keep secret its fuck ups just illustrates how slimy public servants are.

  5. illustrates how slimy public servants are

    Nasty confrontation with joe in 3…2…1…

    joe, you are a go.

  6. requests to peak underneath the State’s hood

    Is that peak as in climax, or — hold on while I peek at the American Heritage — the more mundane “To bring to a maximum of development, value, or intensity”?

  7. extended looksie

    Another look-see at the American Heritage reveals that extended is oxymoronic.

  8. I can neither confirm nor deny that I know anything that anyone would want to know.

  9. Remember how the Soviet Union used to brag about about having one the best constitutions on the planet? Until it came time to live up to it, of course.

    Remember how the United States used to brag about being being an open society? Until it came time to live up to it, of course.

    “The percentage of requested information that is eventually released in full has been declining since 1998 at the Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Education, Interior, State, Transportation and Treasury departments.”

    Is it just me, or can anyone, anywhere, at anytime, justify a single secret in regards to the Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Education, Interior, Transportation, or Treasury? Or the existence of said departments? But that is a matter for another day…

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