Buy My Book Here

Fox News Ticker

Please check out my new books, "Prosecutors Gone Wild: The Inside Story of the Trial of Chuck Panici, John Gliottoni, and Louise Marshall" and also, "The Definitive Dossier of PTSD in Whistleblowers"

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Obama's Transparency Two Step

Throughout the campaign, Barack Obama made a point of demanding transparency not only from the government but from business. The President made this one of his first commitments right after being sworn in.

In the Presidential Memorandum on Transparency and Open Government, and the Presidential Memorandum on the Freedom of Information Act, the President instructs all members of his administration to operate under principles of openness, transparency and of engaging citizens with their government. To implement these principles and make them concrete, the Memorandum on Transparency instructs three senior officials to produce an Open Government Directive within 120 days directing specific actions to implement the principles in the Memorandum. And the Memorandum on FOIA instructs the Attorney General to in that same time period issue new guidelines to the government implementing those same principles of openness and transparency in the FOIA context.

President Obama has continued to beat the drum of least when its convenient.

No more fine print, no more confusing terms and conditions," he told reporters Thursday after meeting with executives from the industry, including representatives from Bank of America Corp. and American Express Co. "We want clarity and transparency from here on out."

Obama demanded that credit-card issuers "eliminate some of the abuse" in the industry, citing sudden rate increases on cards and changes in fees. He also called on credit-card companies to make available "a plain vanilla' account with simple and easy to understand terms."

It seems as though in the Obama administration transparency is only important if you're not a constituency he seeks. So, while he is busy demanding more transparency from the credit card companies, he is also busy making the unions less transparent.

The Obama administration, which has boasted about its efforts to make government more transparent, is rolling back rules requiring labor unions and their leaders to report information about their finances and compensation.

The Labor Department noted in a recent disclosure that "it would not be a good use of resources" to bring enforcement actions against union officials who do not comply with conflict of interest reporting rules passed in 2007. Instead, union officials will now be allowed to file older, less detailed conflict reports.

These reports are known as the LM-30 Rule. Worse than the hypocrisy of it all is that there is a clear conflict of interest between the administration and the unions. That conflict is a former AFL-CIO attorney named Deborah Greenfield. Greenfield was an attorney for the AFL-CIO. She worked hard to reverse LM-30 Rule during the Bush administration. She also became an Obama advisor during the campaign. She worked on his transition team on labor issues. She's now a high ranking deputy in the Labor Department.

This isn't the first time that a clear and corrupt conflict between the administration and the unions has occurred. The most obvious example is the so called deal that the Obama administration to give the UAW a major ownership stake in both GM and Chrysler. The administration also stopped the D.C. voucher program. The program was opposed rather strenuously by the teacher's union. Now, we have this move. It appears that the administration's links to the unions are the real unholy alliance.

No comments: