NYT reporter: Obama admin “most closed, control-freak administration I’ve ever covered”

posted at 1:01 pm on October 5, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

Remember when the media rushed to talk about transparency in the Barack Obama “Hope and Change” era? Good times, good times.  Leonard Downie, who once worked as the executive editor of the Washington Post and wrote a novel about Washington corruption and the Iraq War, finds a bigger and non-fictional problem in the successor to George W. Bush.  Downie gives the Post a preview of his report from the Committee to Protect Journalists which outlines the Obama war on reporters and their sources:

“A memo went out from the chief of staff a year ago to White House employees and the intelligence agencies that told people to freeze and retain any e-mail, and presumably phone logs, of communications with me,” Sanger said. As a result, longtime sources no longer talk to him. “They tell me: ‘David, I love you, but don’t e-mail me. Let’s don’t chat until this blows over.’ ”

Sanger, who has worked for the Times in Washington for two decades, said, “This is most closed, control-freak administration I’ve ever covered.”

Many leak investigations include lie-detector tests for government officials with access to the information at issue. “Reporters are interviewing sources through intermediaries now,” Barr told me, “so the sources can truthfully answer on polygraphs that they didn’t talk to reporters.”

The investigations have been “a kind of slap in the face” for reporters and their sources, said Smith of the Center for Public Integrity. “It means you have to use extraordinary measures for contacts with officials speaking without authorization.”

Amusingly, Downie posits this question at the end of the essay:

Will Obama recognize that all this threatens his often-stated but unfulfilled goal of making government more transparent and accountable? None of the Washington news media veterans I talked to were optimistic.

“Whenever I’m asked what is the most manipulative and secretive administration I’ve covered, I always say it’s the one in office now,” Bob Schieffer, CBS News anchor and chief Washington correspondent, told me. “Every administration learns from the previous administration. They become more secretive and put tighter clamps on information. This administration exercises more control than George W. Bush’s did, and his before that.”

Does it even occur to Downie that Obama’s claim to deliver “the most transparent administration ever” (not just incrementally more transparent than before) was simply a load of hogwash? Apparently not — because if Downie and the rest of the Obama-fawning media had to acknowledge that possibility, then they would have to ask themselves why Obama would deliberately set out to make his administration the least transparent ever, as Schieffer acknowledges.

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These idiots are just trying to cover their behinds, so the public says ‘ oh that’s why they seem to be in bed with Bari they can’t get any information’ it BS, and we know it……

angrymike on October 5, 2013 at 5:05 PM

Ooh, nice entrance……;-)

angrymike on October 5, 2013 at 5:06 PM

Awwww. Poor babies. Own it suckers.

vcferlita on October 5, 2013 at 5:16 PM

Didnt read all the posts but the NYT reporter forgot to mention, arrogant, self-centered, self serving… etc

ThinkingForMyself on October 5, 2013 at 5:35 PM

NYT reporter: Obama admin “most closed, control-freak administration I’ve ever covered”

A common trait among Marxist/Communist governments.

RJL on October 5, 2013 at 5:43 PM

yet they continue to attend “off the record” meetings at the WH to push the regime’s message, pathetic.

burserker on October 5, 2013 at 5:56 PM

So they think Obama will get better if they fail the American people by refusing to report honestly?

How is the working for you?

If the President isn’t mad at reporters the reporters aren’t doing their job. You aren’t supposed to be friends.

Maybe these reporters aren’t tough enough to take it. They are simply too soft. Wimps. Part of their generation I guess.

petunia on October 5, 2013 at 6:00 PM

As much as would like to bash Obama I cannot on this issue. The leaks have been very damaging to national security.

Dennis D on October 5, 2013 at 6:43 PM

Obama lies. But, since that can’t be, we get this “natural progression” nonsense.

He plays “veteran” media hacks for fools and they blindly lap it up like milk for the kitty.

IndieDogg on October 5, 2013 at 7:08 PM

When I was a kid we used to make fun of the Soviet Union’s media, Tass and Pravda, for their creative parroting of the Party line, not knowing that it would be the same here (except not as creative). What is worse than a closed, control-freak administration? A media that covers for it.

Shay on October 5, 2013 at 7:20 PM

As much as would like to bash Obama I cannot on this issue. The leaks have been very damaging to national security.

Dennis D on October 5, 2013 at 6:43 PM

I think he is saying they are secretive and closed about everything. National security is but one element of reporting on an administration.

I really don’t think Obama gives a damn about whether reporters think he’s compromised his fictional reputation for transparency. He thinks they’re a bunch of patsies and so far, he’s right.

Missy on October 5, 2013 at 7:33 PM

Hope and Change!

Local story today, video from high school political exercise, a very earnest, black high school senior girl says, “This government shutdown is preventing the country from the kind of hope and change we need to become a better country”.

Then it occurs to me how tautological this whole “hope and change” meme can be. Obama represents hope and change, because. Because he does. If you have Obama, you have hope and change. No Obama, no hope and change.

Paul-Cincy on October 5, 2013 at 8:17 PM

Remember when Obama went on Mexican televion to appeal to latinos

Their press actually did their job

Insightful questions

Deer in the headlights responses from Heil emporer

audiotom on October 5, 2013 at 8:41 PM

The media lap dogs are still covering for their leader no matter what. MSM has become totally irrelevant.

UnEasyRider on October 5, 2013 at 9:14 PM

In yet another sign of Barack Obama’s increasing paranoia, he’s now ordered the salute used by the Military, Homeland Security, and Park Service employees from a bent-elbow with the fingers of the right hand just touching the right eyebrow to a stiff right arm pointing forward with the palm of the hand facing the ground.

You know… I’ve seen this kind of salute somewhere before but I just can’t quite remember where.

Mahdi on October 5, 2013 at 10:22 PM

Somewhere, Richard Nixon is smiling.

thejackal on October 5, 2013 at 11:33 PM

And yet this corrupt media will do whatever it takes to make sure that they do Obamas bidding. Even as this article went to press there are those in the msm who have enough evidence to take this man down. No one can tell me that the msm doesn’t have his college transcripts or other damaging evidence. These fools are destroying not only their own profession but taking down the country with them. The Tea Party is simply grass roots folks asking for smaller government and common sense and how are they portrayed? As extremists or racists. This is a topsy turvey world we are living in. Stop the ride I wanna get off.

neyney on October 6, 2013 at 12:19 AM

Hope he has checked the brakes on his car.

AshleyTKing on October 6, 2013 at 12:37 AM

I really don’t think Obama gives a damn about whether reporters think he’s compromised his fictional reputation for transparency. He thinks knows they’re a bunch of patsies pasties and so far, he’s right.

Missy on October 5, 2013 at 7:33 PM

FIFY, although either one works.

Marcola on October 6, 2013 at 12:49 AM

NYT reporter: Obama admin “most closed, control-freak administration I’ve ever covered”

So you support a totalitarian and then express shock that his actions are totalitarian?

Dr. Charles G. Waugh on October 6, 2013 at 6:47 AM

“A memo went out from the chief of staff a year ago to White House employees and the intelligence agencies that told people to freeze and retain any e-mail, and presumably phone logs, of communications with me,” Sanger said.

David Sanger’s NYT article was published on June 1, 2012. So when did the Obama administration begin shipping Libyan arms to Al Queda?

Mike OMalley on October 6, 2013 at 7:14 AM

Guess he doesn’t respect them in the morning.

Mr. D on October 6, 2013 at 9:21 AM

NYT reporter: Obama admin “most closed, control-freak administration I’ve ever covered and I would vote for him again in a heartbeat”

Fixed

bgibbs1000 on October 6, 2013 at 9:31 AM

No surprise here, that’s the way totalitarians/dictators act.

RoyalFlush on October 6, 2013 at 9:53 AM

Ironic isn’t it. They’ve got there hero in the WH, virtually created him, and he stiffs them. And please, don’t bring up George Bush and hide behind him, just compare a Bush press conference with those of today, stumbling, lying, evasive, and that’s with a fawning press that’s trying to make this turd look good. Bush got off to a shaky start but after a short while he saw the media scum he was dealing with. Now in the fifth year they see the Frankenstein they created. Late, very, but then nobody ever accused the media of having brains or character.

arand on October 6, 2013 at 10:13 AM

If only der Fuhrer knew!

claudius on October 6, 2013 at 10:24 AM

Yes Virginia there is a Santa Claus. Hope and Change. Bush did it! Tea Party people are terrorists. You must pass this bill to find out what’s in it. There is no debt problem. Oceans will recede and the earth will heal.
G. Washington must be turning over in his grave and the man was brilliant because he was against political parties. If you notice people have become more loyal to their political parties than our nation or they wouldn’t believe such stupid s..t.

Herb on October 6, 2013 at 10:34 AM

At least Bush didn’t think he was a king.

RebeccaH on October 6, 2013 at 11:20 AM

NYT reporter: Obama admin “most closed, control-freak administration I’ve ever covered”

We told you this years ago.

James on October 6, 2013 at 11:34 AM

Related…

Snotty Leftwing bloward on FACE THE NATION just called Conservatives “fifty irrational people” in Congress.

Referred to his ‘willingness’ to end shutdown as “an embarrassment of wealth” on his part. Adding, “if only people would start acting rationally.”

THAT’S THE LEFT: a skimming floating layer on the top of our population enjoying wealth and largesse and hugely snobby personalities, “looking down on ‘irrational’ Conservatives” and only this Democrat layer knows reality and what’s “rational”.

Cray-cray, the guy is but he’s as common among this strata of Democrats as fleas…

Oh, now another one of them is going on about Ted Cruz and how presumptuous he is…

Lourdes on October 6, 2013 at 11:47 AM

NYT reporter: Obama admin “most closed, control-freak administration I’ve ever covered”

We told you this years ago.

James on October 6, 2013 at 11:34 AM

Many of us on the Right — either or neither “Conservative” or “Tea Party” and even Moderate by comparison, a wide variety of voters on the RIght, is my point — SAID THIS loudly, clearly, consistently for YEARS starting back when Obama and Hillary were scratching things out.

We’ve been ignored, we’ve been massively ridiculed, we’ve been shunned but we were right and Right and still are.

NYT, Politico, MSNBC/NBC, Hollywood ‘celebrities,’ and more among the Left, we told them, they ridiculed us. But we were and are right. We told them so, we saw it coming.

Lourdes on October 6, 2013 at 11:50 AM

NYT reporter: Obama admin “most closed, control-freak administration I’ve ever covered”

The Left swarmed around a celebrity as a candidate, as a potential President, they created the celebrity about the ugly person that is otherwise Barack Obama, the Left just had to have this false-shiny object and they abandoned all reason about looking at who the guy actually was and what his skills were, or were not, as the case is with Obama.

Obama’s ONLY skill is sneaking around biting at people when they’re offering him a seat. Obama’s hostile toward the USA, always has been, and his goals seem to continue from his drug-selling beach days in Hawaii and that was to ‘get the Man’ and ruin the nation.

Instead, the Left saw a face-lifted, retouched, teeth-realigned salvage from the street and I mean that sincerely because that’s what Obama is about: he’s street, he’s rude, hostile, he’s unfair, he’s a liar and he’s lazy and he feels he is owed a huge amount of servitude and gratuity and other lusty gifts.

That’s who the Left elected. Which isn’t to say Hillary would have been any different.

Lourdes on October 6, 2013 at 11:55 AM

Hitler purged himself of the circle of Socialists who wrote the party platform and raised him up from his penniless, fame-less scrabby days as a painter. Once he was elevated to party leader, “celebrity,” he purged himself of those who’d created that and replaced them with who he really was about. Same as Obama has done and will continue to do if he gets the chance.

Lourdes on October 6, 2013 at 11:57 AM

Drudge has this thread linked, prominently.

Schadenfreude on October 6, 2013 at 1:33 PM

I miss George W. Bush. The man had integrity and much thicker skin than the little baby in currently in the White House.

SC.Charlie on October 6, 2013 at 2:28 PM

Lourdes, I don’t like Obama, but any reference to Obama as Hitler-like is over the top, just as in the days went the looney left called him Hitler-like.

SC.Charlie on October 6, 2013 at 2:33 PM

Lourdes, I don’t like Obama, but any reference to Obama as Hitler-like is over the top, just as in the days went the looney left called him Hitler-like.

SC.Charlie on October 6, 2013 at 2:33 PM

Sorry but my top’s a little bit higher than yours.

bgibbs1000 on October 6, 2013 at 2:51 PM

Snotty Leftwing bloward on FACE THE NATION just called Conservatives “fifty irrational people” in Congress.

Lourdes on October 6, 2013 at 11:47 AM

Yeah, so “rational” that when confronted with truth, the Left changes the subject rather than give an answer. Seen it time and time again. It is what happens when they get caught in a lie.

IrishEyes on October 6, 2013 at 4:35 PM

Lourdes, I don’t like Obama, but any reference to Obama as Hitler-like is over the top, just as in the days went the looney left called him Hitler-like.

SC.Charlie on October 6, 2013 at 2:33 PM

How would you classify President Choom’s & Holder’s behavior about Fast & Furious then – as being Christ-like?

0dumba is a fascist goon, and it’s a dereliction of honesty & decency to pretend otherwise…

Anti-Control on October 6, 2013 at 6:46 PM

How can a reporter working for the NYT not know the NYT agenda on 90% of the news? It’s a known fact the paper is heavy to the left; just about all media is edited via the White House. Late breaking news on TV is about a day and a half late to readers of the net.

mixplix on October 7, 2013 at 12:23 PM

I hope Downie, Sanger, and Old Man Schieffer have all of their tax and financial data from the last seven years ready, for their upcoming IRS colonoscopies.

Ward Cleaver on October 7, 2013 at 2:04 PM

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