Monday, May 15, 2017

Washington Post — Under Trump, inconvenient data is being sidelined

America needs to know what the person they hired — their President — is up to. It’s not different than a board of trustees or a company's stockholders need to know what the person that heads their enterprise — their President — is up to. They need to know what’s happening with their investment. Yet President Donald Trump desires to keep his doings secret. Americans need to know about their investment too.

It’s called transparency. An obligation to be open, accountable, and honest is required by the President of the United States in sharing information with Americans. It’s the only way for Americans to know the direction the President is leading them and to hold him accountable.

Robert Reich says,

Under Trump, Information that former administrations made readily available is being buried or removed.

1. Enforcement actions taken by federal agencies against companies and employers. For example, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has scaled back publicizing fines against firms.

2. The conduct of top officials. Government no longer publishes online the ethics waivers granted to appointees who would otherwise be barred from joining the government because of recent lobbying activities. Nor is the White House releasing logs of its visitors, making it difficult for the public to keep track of who is stopping by to see the president’s inner circle.

3. Websites and other material supporting policies the Trump administration no longer supports. For example, a White House Web page that directed prospective donors to private groups that aid refugees fleeing Syria and other embattled nations.

4. Scientific information about climate change. For example, studies evaluating the danger that the desert ecology in the Southwest could face from future warming.

5. Federal contractor rankings on policies to curb carbon emissions. For example, the Greenhouse Gas Management Scorecard that ranks contractors.

Trump's big lies are bad enough. Removing information is another Orwellian technique to keep the public in the dark.

Eric Trump, Donald Trump Jr., and
Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump attend
the groundbreaking of the
Trump International Hotel at the
Old Post Office Building in Washington,
July 23, 2014.

(Photo: Reuters/Gary Cameron)

Under Trump, inconvenient data is being sidelined

By Juliet Eilperin