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ADAM ANDRZEJEWSKI: Here’s What The Government Is Hiding From You


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Adam Andrzejewski Adam Andrzejewski is CEO and Founder of, the largest private database of U.S. public sector expenditures.
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Over the decades, nearly every presidential candidate promised that if elected they would run The Most Transparent Administration in History ™. 

Today, however, the culture of secrecy is more pervasive than ever before. Basic government operations are hidden. Our government has declared war on transparency and the examples are egregious. (RELATED: ADAM ANDRZEJEWSKI: Here’s What The Southwest Airlines Debacle Reveals About Gov’t Bailouts)

The following are six ridiculous examples of unjustified government secrecy; after reading them, no one could be blamed for concluding government officials have stopped working for the taxpayer and instead begun working to perpetuate their own agendas.  

$36 Billion Hidden In The Swamp – As recently as the final year of the Obama administration, the Office of Personnel Management – which oversees most federal employees – was sharing most of the 1.3 million employees on its payroll, exempting just 2,367 names and salaries. That number has skyrocketed to 360,000 employees, representing $36 billion in estimated hidden and unaccounted payroll. The Biden Administration says that sharing the information is an “unwarranted invasion of personal privacy” protected by FOIA exceptions. Just one problem: these are public servants, paid with public tax dollars!

Afghan Withdrawal – The Biden administration claimed the military withdrawal from Afghanistan was the most successful ever. No one believed it. However, just how much military gear was left behind? We quantified $83 billion in equipment and training followed to Afghan security forces over a twenty-year period. Just one Inspector General audit showed $174 million in lost ScanEagle drones alone. However, what is the price tag on all that’s been abandoned? The Department of Defense should open the books and let taxpayers follow the money, and equipment.

The Return of Earmarks –President Barack Obama and U.S. Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) found common ground to spearhead a ban on pork-barrel spending, earmarks that lasted ten years. However, last December, 158 House Republicans held a secret vote to join Democrats and bring the pork back. The 2023 omnibus spending bill is littered with $16 billion worth, representing 7,500 member pet projects doled out to legally bribe legislators for their votes. Now that Republicans control the U.S. House, we encourage them to put the whole concept of earmarks up for a public vote!

Veep Makes a Big Leap – The Office of the Vice President rejected requests to see their spending – on one heck of a technicality. The Freedom of Information Act applies to government agencies, and Kamala Harris’ office says it’s not an agency. That makes her the ONLY elected official in the country not required to share her office’s spending. Team Harris has suffered consistent staff turnover, which could add to costs, and there are widespread questions about her mission focus. Is it the border? Space? Equitable infrastructure projects?  We deserve to understand how her team is allocating resources. 

The Fed is Awfully Reserved – The Federal Reserve is the central banking hub of the United States; their decisions have global economic implications. But they also “reserve” the right to be secretive about employee compensation and spending. They shared the pay of just 367 executives, claiming the other 23,000 employees’ earnings don’t “shed any further light on the Board’s performance of its statutory duties.” They also claim they searched for a database of their other expenditures and turned up nothing. No one’s buying this one.

Post Office Checkbook – The US Postal Service refuses to share their spending with the public. Their excuse is that it would invade the privacy of the vendors it pays and “expose trade secrets.” Somehow, we doubt UPS or FedEx would be looking for magical innovations from government mailmen, who posted $70 billion in losses during a recent eleven-year period. The service also refuses to share bonuses they pay out with tax dollars. You get a tracking number for your packages, but no, you may not track how your money is spent. 

These are just six of the numerous ways government bureaucrats default to hiding their activities and spending from us, the taxpayers who employ them.

Adam Andrzejewski is CEO and Founder of, the largest private database of U.S. public sector expenditures.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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