Is Our Government Keeping Too Many Secrets?

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Bill Clinton's Attorney General, Janet Reno, ordered that government agencies should tell American citizens what they wanted to know, as long as it would "do no harm."  After September 11, John Ashcroft changed the standard to tell the public less, rather than more, saying he would defend in court any legal argument against releasing information.  While the argument is that, especially in times of war, it's best to err on the side of caution, critics contend that too much secrecy is counterproductive and destroys the openness that leads to trust in representative government.  Last week, the House passed what's called "sunshine" legislation.  If it passes the Senate, the White House threatens a presidential veto. We talk about privacy, national security--and political embarrassment.

Credits

Guests:
Patrice McDermott - Open the Government - @McD_Patrice , Pete Weitzel - Coordinator for the Coalition of Journalists for Open Government, Robert Dallek - Presidential historian, David Rivkin - BakerHostetler - @DavidRivkin

Host:
Warren Olney

Producers:
Christian Bordal, Karen Radziner, Vanessa Romo