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Joe Biden update: He meets on transparency today. But the meeting is closed


Everybody should just relax and take it easy.

Unsubstantiated rumors that Vice President Joe Biden had suddenly gone a little loopy and ordered some of his official meetings opened to at least cursory public or media attention were just that -- unsubstantiated rumors.

After a recent public sighting, fears had mounted that the one-time, long-term senator might rebel against traditional White House strictures and start acting on all the administration's oft-promised promises of government transparency and official openness running back into 2008.

But the VP's public schedule today puts all those fears to rest.

In fact, loyal Ticket readers will recall that one day last summer with no advance warning whatsoever Biden's official White House schedule changed from listing frequent "private meetings" to listing frequent meetings that are "closed press." Was this dramatic and....

...little-noticed vocabulary change a sign of internal administration turmoil? What did it really mean?

No, of course not. And, nothing.

Announcing everyone the VP meets with, including sessions with unidentified senior staff, which consume much of the vice president's listed time, and what subjects they talk about would have been a stark contrast to George W. Bush's administration, whose notoriously secretive ways drew such criticism from Democrats in Congress during eight long years of really failed policies.

Instead, in the apparent interests of bipartisanship, the Delaware Democrat has adopted much the same sort of undetailed schedule as his Republican predecessor, Dick Cheney, who was not in the Senate when Obama was only 11 years old.

In fact, today's Biden schedule highlight is a meeting with the chief of transparency for economic recovery. But, unfortunately, the transparency meeting is non-transparent, closed to the press. (See his full schedule below.) Which makes it -- what? -- secret openness? Open secrecy?

In a joint report issued early this week a league of nonprofit groups including Common Cause gave the Democratic administration high marks for its openness, although it said the work was incomplete and didn't really go into the lack of open healthcare legislative hearings televised by C-SPAN, as promised by candidate Obama.

Under the category of good but not good enough, here's another viewpoint from Tommy Christopher, including the Obama C-SPAN promise video.

Biden once described Cheney as the most dangerous VP in American history. But since Biden will only turn 68 this year, he was probably overstating in his well-known, jolly way the dangerous vice presidents that he's known whose devious backroom skills and ways earned them fame over the decades --men with household names like William King, Henry Wilson and T.A. Hendricks.

Someday, who knows, Biden's too may join them.

-- Andrew Malcolm

Here is the vice president's official schedule for today. Boldface was added in the interests of emphasis. Note especially that the vice president's meeting with the chairman of the Recovery Act Transparency and Accountability Board is closed, meaning non-transparent.

The "pool spray" mentioned has nothing to do with aquatics. It's a coded message to media that a few select members will be allowed in to take pictures briefly -- possibly for only a few seconds -- as Biden and his guest pretend to continue their previously private conversation as if the meeting was open.


In the morning, the President and the Vice President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing and the Economic Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. These briefings are closed press.

At 11:30 AM, the Vice President will meet with Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood to discuss the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. This meeting is closed press.

Afterwards, the President and the Vice President will have lunch in the Private Dining Room. This lunch is closed press.

 At 1:00 PM, the Vice President will meet with Iraqi Vice President Adil Abd al-Mahdi in the Roosevelt Room. There will be a pool spray at the bottom of this meeting; gather time is 1:45 PM in the Brady Briefing Room.

(UPDATE 2:20 p.m.: The White House issued its own report on this closed meeting. Both paragraphs are added below at the end of the VP's schedule.)

Then, at 2:15 PM, the Vice President will meet with Earl Devaney, chairman of the Recovery Act Transparency and Accountability Board. This meeting is closed press.    ###

White House report on one of Biden's closed meetings:

Today, Vice President Biden met with Iraqi Vice President Adil Abd al-Mahdi at the White House. President Obama joined part of the discussion. The leaders discussed preparations for the March parliamentary elections and ongoing efforts to resolve outstanding national unity issues.

Today’s meeting was the latest in an ongoing series of high-level engagements between U.S. and Iraqi officials. The U.S. government remains committed to a long-term partnership with the Iraqi government and people.    ###

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Photo: Associated Press

Comments () | Archives (198)

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Well, those who were dumb enough to vote for the Obama/Biden ticket are now getting their just rewards. We are now all seeing first hand that their campaign promises were nothing but lies.

Transparency is what Obama wants to have on all of the people in America. Not transparency of the government to the people.

Wake up people.

I'm Shocked! SHOCKED!!!

I'm shocked that this is considered news!

Leopards don't change their spots. Likewise with liars. Liars are liars.

You didn't really think that the Vice-Pres would operate any more openly than the Pres., did you?

The Messiah II, alias Chicago Thug, Union Darling, Bribe Giver and Taker, and oh yes, what Campaign Promises? and him minions would never have an open meeting, just like they'd never have a press conference. They might have to answer a question with something resembling the truth. That from The White House and the Harry-Nancy Congress show would never do. We couldn't stand the truth!

Democrats are liars and thieves, that is just what they are. If you ever believed that they would have a transparent administration then you are a gullible fool.

Biden's name is actually an acronymn:
Boy I am Dense.
Now everyone understands why Joe has all the mental acumen, and personality of an onion; now matter how many levels are peeled back, he still stinks.

People our Senate Majority Leader said it the best: We have elected a "light-skinned" male that doesn't speak with a "negro dialect"
He did not say Obama was particularly smart, or shared beliefs with the American people. Just that he was "light-skinned" male that didn't speak with a "negro dialect",
So, that is what we have, " a light-skinned president that does not speak with a negro dialect. We got what we voted for....nothing!

And we were supposed to be worried about Sarah Palin?

Where is the surprise? Isn't that how all dictatorships work?

So, in the State of Union address coming up it's OK for Joe to get up again and say. YOU LIE!!!!!!!!!!! At least it will be true this time.
Someone Republican is going to snap at that address. When are people in this nation going to wake up to Obama and his crew damaging polices. Change and Hope, yea right. Get Americans back to work.

Naturally, just to march in step with Transparent Obama, the Gaff that keeps on giving held his version of Tranparency in at an Undisclosed dark cave in the middle of the night well attended by Party BATS.... Now is this Change we can Believe in or not???? I say it is worthy of a Nobel Prize...For... oh Whatever>

You can't make this stuff up. Open secrecy! Ha! These people are in charge of the country. We all need to laugh because if we don't we will cry.

I guess what Comrade Obama and his socialist party meant by transparency was that as long as THEY were there to see what was going on it would be considered transparent.

Lovely joke, Biden, except we're the punchline.

promises promises! This is change? The most transparent administration ever!

Joe Biden has never worked a day in his life. He's never managed a company nor has he ever managed a payroll. He is a bumbling foot-in-his-mouth fool, who harkens back to the days of Spiro Agnew. How this loser continues to get re-elected is impossible to comprehend. Perhaps when this national nightmare of Obama/Biden ends this political hack can wander off into a corner and write a list of accomplishments. It should take up about two pages(with big type).

Oh, how so sweetly "Bidenesque." He really must be the comic relief for this sourpuss bullying administration. Why else put a plagiarizing moron who constantly suffers from "foot in mouth" as Veep? Of course the POTUS without his TOTUS doesn't come off as being terribly bright either, and has certainly committed a number of ill conceived gaffs on his own, particularly to the chagrin of our soon to be former allies.

I'm sorry, but which of Bush's policies were "really failed policies"?? I'm no republican, but c'mon, really? Do you really have a problem with being kept perfectly safe in the middle of a world war for nearly 8 years? Maybe you're confusing Bush's policy with that of the Democrat law-making over the last 3 years. Don't worry, many people have the same problem as you do... lack of critical thought.

Transparency is the biggest joke ever. There have been lies every election campaign but Obummer takes the prize. He must have said dozens of times that if we elected him there will be no more secret meetings. That everything his administration does will be out in the open, some on CSPAN. What a liar this guy turned out to be.

He says he wants redistribution of wealth. That means taking money from everyone and giving it to his buddies. And his buddies aren't black, people. Look at who he is buddies with. Most of his closest people are white. Union heads, most of his czars and business associates.

He doesn't want to be black, he wants to be white. He keeps a few blacks around to make it look good, but the people who are going to get this redistribution are mostly white.

He hasn't done anything for poor blacks. They're still poor and aren't getting anything. Their dropout rate in school is worse than ever. He has fooled them just as he has fooled us. When this bum is finished, they're going to be just a bad off as they ever were, maybe more so.

He and his white friends are going to be filthy rich. He is going to screw his own people just as easily as he will the rest of us. We've all been had. What a bum.

The "pool spray" mentioned has nothing to do with aquatics. It's a coded message to media that a few select members will be allowed in to take pictures briefly -- possibly for only a few seconds -- as Biden and his guest pretend to continue their previously private conversation as if the meeting was open.

If the press is ignored, why do they co-op with the ignorers?
Wouldn't it be better to respectfully decline and not show a facade?

This is the epitome of and the problem with the democrats. "Do as I say, not as I do." Neither party are choir boys (or girls), but I would say the democrats are and have always been the biggest hypocrites. That's really saying something.

Just one word for Biden NUTS but you can use the same word for Obama and all the Dems.

Can you imagine Biden in charge instead of a Chicago thug? OMG what have we done? How did this guy get elected in Delaware? Are they stupid?

That's it? He only schedules things until 2:20 in the afternoon and part of that is a lunch?
What a slacker!

Maybe transparency every other year: ie, 2009 and 2011 - no transparency, and 2010 and 2012 - transparency. Just ridiculous.

So sick of liberal media. America can see through all this, and we might respect you more if you wrote some unbiased articles. Right now, you're a joke.

(Have someone read this to you, Candace, before you leave your comment about liberal media.)

biden reminds me of one those baseball hats with the two bills and written across is 'which way did they go?" He is clueless along with his pal, what is his name? oh yeah obama. I don't like to wish my life away, but the elections can't come too soon.

"Pool spray?" Who comes up with these phrases? I think if the notorious Reich Minister for Propaganda and Public Enlightenment were alive today, he would be very impressed that his talents have heavily infiltrated his former enemies in America.

Worst president evah. Biden makes Palin look like a mother Teresa rocket scientist. Obama is as bad if not worse than Bush, just on the opposite end of the political spectrum.

Bottom line folks, Howard Dean was right in 2004. The system is broken. To all those who thought it was just a Bush thing, wake up, it's a systemic problem as proven by change, for the worse 2008, express to hell. We need to remove the circus in DC and start over, and adhere to the Constitution while doing so. Rally together for REAL change America, reject the partisan politics that has divided and conquered our people!

Only VP Biden would have a secret meeting on transparency. What a dufus.

bunch of crooks the dems. lies upon lies and all secrets. this is THE worst gov't ever in the history of our nation. change? hope? transparency? why say all these things? just to get elected? words, meaningless words. impeach and get them out. they just continue to lie. they are shameless. only hopeful thing is that none of them will be allowed through those pearly gates. They are going straight the burning fires ... its obvious they are already doing the devils work.

LOL....nothing like some comic relief to lighten to day:o) The granola people are running the country (fruits, nuts and flakes).....

Why do we put up with this crap from public servants?

Soon after Pres. Obama took office I decided to look into which contractors were supporting the TARP office at Treasury. So I got ahold of contracts that had been released under FOIA.

First, I was disturbed that those contracts were so redacted there was nothing to read.

Next, when I went to the TARP Special Inspector General (SUG) web site to complain, I was pleased to see the SIG put the contract it had with its own support contractor out there for all to read. Only problem was it was more redacted than contract I was planning to complain about.

Finally, the SIG's Chief Counsel sent me a letter. His excuse for the redactions? He said TARP officials were afraid they'd be prosecuted for disclosing "company proprietary secrets" if they made public such information as hourly rates or the total amount of the contract, or anything else except the name of the company. Anyone who seriously wants proof can contact me at, or of course can contact the Chief counsel himself.

This guy makes Dan Quale look brilliant. What were we thinking when we bought the transparency promises? Even Democrats are having a hard time swallowing a the bull being piled up outside the closed-door sessions. Wonder what they're hiding? Smells rotten whatever it is.

The only reason the president lied about transparency is because the issues at stake are too important. This really isn't back-room politics; it's people who know better looking out for the little people - you know the stupid little people who don;'t really matter.


Here is my Job creation Computations:

America Imported in 2006 mainly from China, Mexico, Japan and India well over $760 Billion Dollars more than we exported in 2006.

The $760 billion dollar import number that I am quoting includes Oil Imports which is something that America cannot change over night therefore must be subtracted out of total import number. The total U.S. crude oil imported during 2006 amounted to: $309.4 billion dollars of crude oil in 2006.

So, $760 billion minus $309.4 billion = $450.6 billion dollars worth of Manufactured Goods that could have and should have been produced right here in America.

Based on conventional wisdom in job creation, if you take $450.6 billion dollars worth of imported goods / $30 billion to create one million jobs = 15.02 million jobs would be automatically created almost over night.


Now because some of you people still do not understand what I an saying. I am going to recalculate the cost of the Trade Deficit in just Jobs.

So please do not tell me the stock answer: “YEA, but look at all of the EXPORTS JOBS the USA will LOSE.”

The American people have been BRAIN WASHED into believes in that GLOBALIZATION is in the best interest of USA. I think they are trying to destroy the USA because that will be the final outcome.


Total USA Imports in 2006:
$ 2,211.7 billion ------ (This includes Crude Oil)
$ 309.4 billion less --- (Spent on Imported Crude Oil)
$ 1,902.3 billion / 30 billion=63.41 million jobs from Import. ==================================================

Total USA Exports in 2006:
$ 1,451.7 Billion / 30 billion=48.39 million jobs from Export.

If USA Pulls out of NAFTA and WTO right now:

USA could possibly lose 48.39 million Jobs from EXPORTS.

However, I am sure many countries will still export many items from the USA because they will be forced too. That would create even more jobs gained than I have estimated.

USA would absolutely gain 63.41 million Jobs from IMPORTS.

So, 63.41 minus 48.39 = 15.02 million NET JOBS GAIN. (An increase of 31% over export jobs)

My calculation means an ABSOLUTE 15.02 million Jobs gained if the rest of the world did not buy one penny of USA EXPORTS.

But, instead the Washington Politicians with all their Infinite Wisdom elected to move all of that manufactured goods off shore to China. Even as America has up-ward of 16% unemployment rate and climbing.

Then to make things even worse the Federal Government must borrow money from China and Japan to purchase back these very products as they are being brought back into America.

I think we are witnessing the Federal Government in the process of transferring all the America Assets off shore to Communist China on a silver platter.

Why would the American Government sit on their hands and watch as all the Manufacturing Base and all our high Technology are being shipped off shore to a Communistic Country like China?

Make no mistake about it China is still a Communistic Country.

We are handing all of the American Military Defenses and our entire manufacturing base over to China on a silver platter.

Please tell me; “What the HELL are we going to do if we get into a War with Russia and China”?

I wish all of the washington whitehouse baffoons were behind closed doors wearing orange.

Transparency depends on which side of the one way mirror you are on.

How many Bidens does it take to put in a light bulb? It takes 3! One to hold the bulb and two to turn the ladder!

Jimmy Carter can really smile big now because his gross failure and incompetence as president is now truly trumped by this absolute dangerous tyrant and despot clown in the oval orifice today. This inept Marxist makes Jimmy the peanut farmer nu-cu-lar physicist shine. Be happy jimmy.

Congratulations America, how is that "hoax and chains" working out for you? Oh yeah that's right, if you are a Marxist too then the hoax and chains is just fine with you and exactly what Nikita Kruschev meant when he said: On August 24, 1963, Khrushchev himself remarked in his speech in Yugoslavia, "I once said, 'We will bury you,' and I got into trouble with it. Of course we will not bury you with a shovel. Your own working class will bury you," [4] a reference to the Marxist saying, "The proletariat is the undertaker of capitalism", based on the concluding statement in Chapter 1 of the Communist Manifesto: "What the bourgeoisie therefore produces, above all, are its own grave-diggers. Its fall and the victory of the proletariat are equally inevitable".

That is" Barry Baraq Mohammad Hussein Sottero Obama’s goal, to bury capitalism and reduce America to a third world banana republic with himself installed as king. He can have the title "KING OF MORONS" for those who hate America with him! The rest of us know him for what he truly is!

Friends that voted for these buffoons are disgusted, our Dem. friends are TRULY embarrassed by Biden and our UnPresident, neither of them nor any of their staff can even spell Transparency, anyone that thought Bush was crooked is now being floored by these thugs ! ! ! !
What doesn't anyone understand, these are the Liars the fools voted in, they were and are the best in the Land and if we allow they will ruin the U.S.A. ....

So now government Opacity is actually government Transparency. George Orwell knew totalitarianism and its tricks. It's amazing to actually witness them being used in the USA.

This boob couldn't pour piss out of a boot if the instructions were written on the heel.

I am not aware of a time when joe biden was not loopy.

YOU got what YOU voted for... CHANGE with out CHANGE!

This: "Announcing everyone the VP meets with, including sessions with unidentified senior staff, which consume much of the vice president's listed time, and what subjects they talk about would have been a stark contrast to George W. Bush's administration, whose notoriously secretive ways drew such criticism from Democrats in Congress during eight long years of really failed policies."

Is where I stopped reading. The author of this article is a stooge who writes "really failed policies" its a barely literate phrase. Like a 3rd grader. It is also a very lame jab at Bush and it amounts to a sophomoric opinion weak on facts.

This is an administration of the elite and connected.
If you're an ordinary citizen, you're voice is snuffed out and you'll pay the higher taxes.

If you belong to a union, your union has strong-armed the president so you don't have to pay into this healthcare monstrosity.

What a moron:o(

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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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