Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The Republican Street Fight over Transparency in Government

Lawrence Lessig writes (and I could not avoid reading it in his voice) in The Daily Beast about The Republican Street Fight over Transparency in Government. "A growing rift in the Republican Party about transparency has deepened within the Senate, with 16 Republicans now scolding a federal agency for the outrage of requesting that scientists submitting studies in a rule-making procedure identify any financial conflicts of interest."

"The real question here for the Senate—and for that matter, for President Obama, since he is, after all, the executive—is not whether OSHA, like Oliver Twist, should be permitted to beg for the disclosure of financial conflicts. (‘Please, sir, tell me some more?’) The real question is why every federal agency doesn’t require disclosures of the financial interest of anyone seeking to affect federal policy through supposedly scientific submissions. Every single brief filed in any federal court must include a disclosure of interest by the parties making the arguments. Every senator must disclose every financial contribution (over $200) made to his or her campaign. Why, exactly, should federal agencies be any different?"

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