Originally published June 13 2013
Top Obama appointees using secret email accounts to avoid having their crimes archived
by J. D. Heyes
(NaturalNews) With each passing day it become more apparent that the Obama Administration is by far the most corrupt in the history of the nation, as official after official becomes embroiled in scandal and controversy.
The latest example surfaced June 4th, as reports began to circulate that some of President Obama's political appointees had created and were using secret government email accounts to conduct official business, in violation of rules requiring them to conduct their business in the open.
As reported by The Associated Press, the secret emails constitute "a practice that complicates agencies' legal responsibilities to find and turn over emails under public records requests and congressional inquiries."
As has become standard modus operandi, White House propagandist-in-chief Jay Carney - a former Time magazine bureau chief who is married to Claire Shipman, a senior ABC News correspondent - defended the practice, saying it made perfect sense for Cabinet officials to use secret email so they could conduct business using accounts that, you know, didn't fill up with unrelated messages.
'We're not the first ones'He then went onto say that all public officials' email accounts were subject to congressional oversight and citizen Freedom of Information Act requests, but that tortured explanation is ludicrous when you consider that the very nature of the accounts is that they are secret - meaning that, since Congress and the American public didn't even know they existed, lawmakers and citizens alike would never ask to see them. Unreal.
"There's nothing secret," Carney told reporters - which, of course, was a lie.
In its review, of hundreds of pages of government emails that had been released via federal open records laws, the AP said it could not "independently find instances when material from any of the secret accounts it identified was turned over." Also:
Congressional oversight committees told the AP they were unfamiliar with the few nonpublic government addresses that AP identified so far, including one for Secretary Kathleen Sebelius of the Health and Human Services Department.
Using the "hey, we're not the only ones who have done this" defense, the White House said the practice of using secret email accounts has been done in the past, as if that justifies their use by Obama appointees. Still, that is probably the truth and if so, it simply serves as yet another example of how those elected to serve us hold our demands for open government in contempt.
AP further notes that the scope of email secrecy is proving impossible to gauge: "Most federal agencies have failed to turn over lists of political appointees' email addresses, which the AP sought under the Freedom of Information Act more than three months ago. The Labor Department initially asked the AP to pay more than $1 million for its email addresses."
The newswire service requested those addresses following disclosures last year that former heads at the Environmental Protection Agency used secretive government email accounts. "The practice is separate from officials who use personal, non-government email accounts for work, which generally is discouraged due to laws requiring that most federal records be preserved," the AP reported.
There are a host of problems associated with secret accounts, over and above the perception that such secrecy leaves the public feeling as though appointees and bureaucrats are trying to obscure their actions. For one, secrecy robs Congress of its oversight role and it severely diminishes the public's right to know because concealed correspondence would not show up as part of congressional or internal investigations or as part of public records requests.
"What happens when that person doesn't work there anymore? He leaves and someone makes a request (to review emails) in two years," Kel McClanahan, executive director of National Security Counselors, an open government group, told AP. "Who's going to know to search the other accounts? You would hope that agencies doing this would keep a list of aliases in a desk drawer, but you know that isn't happening."
Institutional arrogance and abuseThe attitude of many of our public servants shifted long ago from one of public service to one of self-service. Fat-cat, tenured bureaucrats throughout the bloated federal leviathan have been left to their own devices by successive AWOL congresses for a generation, so it is little wonder they are today populated by mid- and upper-level managers who have a disdain for the very public they were hired to serve. They use the power of their offices and positions to intimidate, abuse, harass and penalize an American public that finances its own abuse through taxation.
The Obama Administration, therefore, is not the cause of so much corruption, but rather emblematic of it. This president has inherited an executive branch with the kind of singular power our founding fathers never envisioned.
Now is not the time to allow Congress to once again fade into the shadows of responsibility and slink away unnoticed; any who do should be replaced at the earliest election cycle.
Sources for this article include:
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