White House propaganda

If you want to know how the Obama Administration carefully controls its image, spend a little time this morning reading this piece by Ron Fournier in the National Journal.

You will finish the article reminded of another of President Obama's spectaular lies: His most assuredly is NOT the most "transparent" presidency -- evah.

All presidents, of course, record their presidencies in taxpayer-funded pictures. That's not the beef. The issue is that more than any other president, this administration has forbidden the free press from covering events. A lot of events other presidents would have allowed.

They say the events are private. Then pictures of the event -- shot by a taxpayer-funded photographer -- show up on social media.

This is not transparent. This is abusively restrictive.

Begins Fournier: "New York Times photographer Doug Mills strode into Jay Carney's office Oct. 29 with a pile of pictures taken exclusively by President Obama's official photographer at events the White House press corps was forbidden to cover. 'This one,' Mills said, sliding one picture after another off his stack and onto the press secretary's desk. 'This one, too – and this one and this one and … ' "

The red-faced photographer, joined by colleagues on the White House Correspondents' Association board, finished his 10-minute presentation with a flourish that made Carney, a former Moscow correspondent for Time, wince.

"You guys," Mills said, "are just like Tass."

Carney blew off the photographers with a smart-alec quip that upset the photographers even more. The issue remains at an impasse.

So the situation today is that the independent press is frozen out of many events that they should be allowed to shoot and instead we get only White House-approved photos.

Some of the photos are fine, but as Fournier correctly points out, good or not, "as a matter of public record (these WH photos are) no better than beefcake photos of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

I suspect there is little chance the Obama White House will change. What I hope for, however, is that more in the press learn (better late than never) that they have an adversarial role with these White House guys. If the White House tells reporters that the sky is blue, they need to check it out for themselves.