You know I believe too much in EVERY Presidential administrations is classified that should not be — and that over classification is deliberately done to cover up (hide) mistakes and even bad conduct. Over classification is so out of control that sometimes documents not originally classified, when then requested by the media, suddenly get classified and then put out of reach of the American people.
I also think that some information is wrongfully hidden from the American people by the ‘deliberative process privilege’ (definition below.) While Administration officials should have much protection so they feel free to give their opinions and thoughts on important issues (national security, economy, political appointments etc) — the Administration’s statements in an email about a media strategy after a Fox New Channel report about Benghazi does not “result in better decisions for society as a whole.” Media strategy is not exactly national security, right? This is an effort to manipulate the message. The Administration wants to hide this one.
It is known the Administration is hostile to Fox News (even the President makes cracks about Fox and it is obvious Fox has gotten under his skin; Fox News got excluded from both the State Department and CIA briefings about Benghazi) so it is reasonable to be suspicious that this email about media strategy after a Fox News Channel report is not simply ‘deliberative process’ ‘resulting in better decisions for society as a whole.’
Protecting certain communications at the top of our government can be important to democracy. ..but so is transparency important to a democracy..and so is Freedom of the Press, not attempted intimidation of the Press, important to democracy.
Deliberative process privilege
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Deliberative process privilege is the common-law principle that the internal processes of the executive branch of a government are immune from normal disclosure or discovery in civil litigations, Freedom of Information Act requests, etc.
The theory behind the protection is that by guaranteeing confidentiality, the government will receive better or more candid advice, recommendations and opinions, resulting in better decisions for society as a whole. The deliberative process privilege is often in dynamic tension with the principle of maximal transparency in government.
In the context of the US presidential offices and their workproducts, this principle is often referred to as executive privilege.