Obama Is An Open Government Pioneer, Spymaster Dataholic


Love him or hate him, President Obama is no hypocrite: he’s been as fiercely innovative at encouraging citizen input to improve governance as he has been in secretly stealing Americans’ private information. Transparent budget spending, crowdsourcing government waste, unprecedented spending on polls, collecting school performance metrics, and rewarding civic app designers have co-existed with a massive expansion in Internet snooping and big-data spying.

In short, Obama is a philosophically consistent dataholic — a policy that other innovative/civil liberty-ignoring political leaders, such as Mayor Michael Bloomberg, have proudly championed.

(Note to commenters: I’m not defending Obama’s massive spying apparatus (I find it invasive). I am arguing that we’ll likely have to choose between a civil libertarian  and an open government champion.)

Many were quick to label Obama a hypocrite after a string of expose’s detailing the National Security Agency’s massive phone and Internet spying apparatus, “It is the…

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