This section of the site will continue to grow and change as sections or content is added.
Clicking links will take you to pages off of and outside the control of this site and its manager. No guarantees are made as to the privacy policies and/or content on linked sites.
Informational only. Use your own discernment.
CONTACT WHITE HOUSE
WHITE HOUSE BRIEFINGS & STATEMENTS
CONTACT WHITE HOUSE
EMAIL FORM https://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/
Visitor’s Office: 202-456-2121
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
FIND YOUR REPRESENTATIVE
CALL YOUR REPRESENTATIVE - CONGRESSIONAL SWITCHBOARD
(ASK TO BE TRANSFERRED TO YOUR HOUSE REP OR SENATOR)
Library of Congress Tools
Government grants (view pork first hand!):
National Archives and Records Administration:
U.S. Department of Agriculture – data on crop production, etc.:
United States Government Resources:
HOUSE / SENATE VOTES DATABASE:
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION (FCC)
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE PRESS RELEASES
FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION (FBI)
FBI OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASES
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
FED GOVERNMENT CONTRACTS AND SOLICITATIONS
(The above link is where it was found and confirmed that our government was stocking up on blankets, food, mre's, fuel and underwater recovery body bags.)
Visit THOMAS and find up-to-date information on who's really saying what on Capitol Hill.
THOMAS is a service of the U.S. Congress to make legislative information publicly available. It contains full text of legislation (both House and Senate bills searchable by keyword or by bill number) and full text of the Congressional Record. No spin, bias, or sound bytes here... Just the raw data from which you can draw your own conclusions.
USA.gov is the U.S. government's official web portal, a guide to finding government info and websites on a wide variety of topics, including Benefits and Grants, Consumer Guides, Environment, Energy and Agriculture, Health and Nutrition, Money and Taxes, Public Safety and Law, Science and Technology, and Voting and Elections.
United States Treasury
CBO Projections :
Treasury Bulletin (summaries) :
Inspector General Reports:
Public Debt (Up to Minute):
Daily Treasury Statement (gov't account balances) :
Monthly Treasury Statement:
Social Security and Medicare Reports:
Detailed Reports on Government Agencies – GAO :
Detailed Financial Report for Fed Gov –
Federal Reserve – Money supply (H.6), bank liquidity (H.3), industrial production (G.17), flow of funds data (Z.1), consumer credit (G.19), Fed balance sheet (H.4.1), bank balance sheets (H.8), interest rates (H.15), foreign exchange rates (H.10), etc.
Statistics and Historical Data:
Bureau of Economic Analysis – GDP, personal income, consumer spending, corporate profits (non-GAAP), balance of payments, international trade, international investments, etc:
Gross Domestic Product:
GDP Detailed Data:
If you run a business and want a detailed month by month view of how each specific sector of the economy is doing, including inflation statistics (GDP deflator—a better and more comprehensive measure than CPI, which is calculated for each individual industry) you are going to want to go to this site.
Bureau of Labor Statistics – Inflation, spending, employment, productivity:
"Unfudged" statistics – Shadow Stats:
FDA Home Page:
At the above site you can get labels and medical review documents. Most doctors rarely read labels and virtually NEVER read the medical review documents which often contains important tidbits that are left out of the label (i.e. Bextra – original medical review documents posted showed risk of thromboembolic events at higher doses and concerns by FDA reviewers about this – it was approved anyway without concerns reflected in label.)
Centers for Disease Control – Tracking of illnesses, recommendations on prevention, etc.
CDC Home Page:
CDC Flu Activity Reports:
TRANSPORTATION SECURITY ADMINISTRATION - PROHIBITED ITEMS
OFFICIAL INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL WARNINGS
INTERNATIONAL EMBASSY TRAVEL NOTICES
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION (FAA)
FAA AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL COMMAND CENTER: CURRENT AIRPORT ON-TIME STATUS FOR INBOUND AND DEPARTING FLIGHTS
NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD
Delving BEYOND Public Records – Public Records Requests The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) at the federal levels and public disclosure laws at the state level are EXTREMELY powerful tools that one can use to get any and all sorts of information. This includes information the government has on you including your IRS master file, FBI files, etc. as well as a wide variety of correspondence between public officials and private corporations. The major limit is your imagination, and various rules regarding the confidentiality of information. When in doubt, you can ask first and the agency will respond as appropriate.
It is necessary to know the rules in detail if you suspect they are holding something back inappropriately, in which case you might need to write a follow-up correspondence or even file a lawsuit. If you EVER have a problem with the government, the first thing is carefully wording a public disclosure request to get at the heart of the problem and could be used as evidence or ammunition against public officials gone mad with power.
There is no central clearing house for public records request. You are going to need to contact the relevant agency of government who will have an information officer, which will usually appear on the website of the agency. For a city government, it is likely to be the city clerk's office. For larger agencies like the Department of Ecology, they will have a public disclosure or FOIA officer. You want to word the request very specifically so they know exactly what to look for, and you can submit the request in writing and/or email depending on the agency.
Things to keep in mind:
1. Do not ask questions; ask for documents and documentation. The information officer is not there to answer questions, but to provide documentation. Instead of asking a question you want to frame the requests such that you are looking for specific documentation which would serve to answer the questions that you wish to know the answers to.
2. Always specify a timeframe for the records you want. The longer the timeframe the more inundated with records you are going to get.
3. List each type of record you want. If you want emails, specify it. If you want contracts, specify it. Think of exactly what you want and any type of recorded record or log that might be produced. If you do not mention it, the information officer might not think of it. If you are looking for something in particular and happen to know the system of records that the particular agency is using (published in the Federal Register for each federal agency), you can specify the record number (example for copyright office: http://www.copyright.gov/docs/ml651.pdf). Similar indices are generally kept at the state level as well as mandated by law.
4. Decide on a strategy to get the records. I like starting with a really broad request (see SAMPLE PRA based on what I recently submitted to the Department of Ecology to a CD with recent climate documents). This is the best way of catching your government doing something that you might not expect. It is harder to filter a request like this as well. The bad thing is you are going to get a LOT of information. You might have to dialogue with the information officer to help them narrow it down. However, if you request a CD or internet link, it makes it easier both in terms of minimizing copy fees and you can use modern search tools to search for keywords. Once you have an idea of exactly what you want, you can ask a much more specific request and perhaps get records that were missed in the first search, and you can use references in the documents from the first search to track down things left out.
5. Do not request copies all up front, if there are a lot. You have a right to go into a reading room and view the records personally before deciding if you want copies. If 95% are useless to you, this is going to save you copy costs, and depending on the agency, the first 100 or so copies could even be free. If they deliver the material electronically as described above, this is less of an issue as you can peruse the records from your own computer.
6. Make sure to notarize any request for personal information about yourself. Such requirements are usually specified at the public disclosure website, stating you need to get your signature notarized, so you are proving you are who you say you are (so your privacy is not violated), as well as your needing to state that you are aware of the penalties for impersonating someone to get their private records. Many times the agency will have a boiler plate form to fill out to that effect. You do not have to have the notarization on that page. To save money on notaries get a generic letter with similar wording saying you are who you say you are and you recognize the penalties using similar if not identical language to a FOIA form referenced above, and have it signed and notified. You can then make copies of this and attach it to any applicable FOIA requests (make reference to it in your written request so they know to look for it) you might make on your personal information. The notary is supposed to be valid for one year, and from what I understand, generally will be accepted much after that period.
7. Give them plenty of time to get the records. Many of these departments are understaffed, and if you have a large request it takes time. In my experience, the public records officers are great advocates for you (their job is to get the information to you and stand up for you against officials who are reluctant to release records, as they are held responsible for complying with the law) and you should give them every courtesy in taking the time to get the records to you.
8. If sending the request by mail, be sure to indicate somewhere on the letter that it is a Freedom of Information or Public Records Act request to expedite processing. There is no need to send certified mail, and some prefer to send via email. Generally, they are going to be good about responding and there is no need to be paranoid about them conveniently losing the request.
9. Ask them to identify the records and index numbers of any records they withheld from you under an exemption. By making sure you have notice of exactly what is being withheld, you can better decide if a legal challenge is necessary. The case law surrounding public records is generally heavily on the side of the public, with courts liberally construing the law towards the public's benefit given a common law right to open government in this country. You can also ask if a document in its entirety is withheld, whether parts of it can be redacted so you can see the remainder of the document.
10. You might have to ask several different agencies to get the right request. Since each office has its own information policies, you might have to try several different locations to find what you are looking for. If you are unsure, you should send letters out to all relevant agencies or offices.
11. State in your request that you intend to pay for any copies that you request. Usually this is included in the wording of any standard public records form. If you do not intend to inspect the records personally, you should put a numeric limit on the amount you are willing to spend copies on and be aware of potential costs before sending in the request (should be posted on the website of the agency). You might even be able to dialogue with the public disclosure officer as far as what information they have so you can send generally those which may or may not be relevant. In certain instances it might be in your best interests to send several more limited requests to the same agency over a period of time (for instance, the IRS allows the first 100 copies for free per request, and if suspect information might be withheld there is also a per request fine if they do not give you the information as per law).
12. EXEMPTIONS: Under recent Law, the federal government does NOT have to give you information that they deem could be a risk to National Security. More specifically, the agencies that are now under the control of or partnered with the Department of Homeland Security may: decline your request (which you can appeal but have to pay fees to do it - with a questionable outcome); or give you no useful or minimal information to your request. (There are over 70 agencies, programs and private businesses now under or partnered with the Department of Homeland Security. For a list, please watch the video: "FEDERAL CONSOLIDATION - DHS BYPASSING CONSTITUTIONAL LAW IN THE NAME OF NATIONAL SECURITY" on YouTube.)
Good resource for getting started with public records requests:
Freedom of Information Act:
Department of Justice FOIA page (links to other agencies FOIA sites are here!):
National Security Archives FOIA Basics:
IRS FOIA Page (good elaboration on 9 exemptions):
5 U.S.C., Chapter 5, Subchapter II, Section 552
Click on section 552. Also see 552a on personal records which deals with the Privacy Act of 1974, one of the most undervalued assets in a citizen's arsenal, particularly with regards to your rights NOT to disclosure your social security number. Also note 552 (d)(2)(B)(i) on your right to remove information that is inaccurate or irrelevant (also see (e)(1)). Search for "trade secret" in this page and you will be taken down to the 9 exceptions to what shall be made available public: 552 (b)(1)-(9) (see IRS information page listed above which is a good elaboration on these). There will also be additional interpretations in the CFR for each relevant agency as far as their procedure for complying with the act (for example CFR Title 28, Part 16 for the Justice Department)
Citizens Guide to using the Freedom Of Information Act
Federal Open Government Guide
The 9 Exemptions to FOIA:
INTERNAL AGENCY RULES
INTERNAL AGENCY MEMOS
LAW ENFORCEMENT RECORDS
OIL AND GAS WELL DATA
FOIA LETTER GENERATOR
Public information and general public records information:
This site is a pretty good all in one resource on public records, freedom of information requests, and elections law. The disadvantage is the same as with wikipedia—since the public is contributing content, you are going to want to double check the accuracy as there could be mistakes that are missed. When in doubt check out the official government sites, many are given below... BUT don't count on them to be up front about everything you are looking for (of course).
How to Look up the Law
When a bill is passed by both houses of Congress and signed by the President it becomes a Public or Private Law. Public laws are the ones that apply to everyone and are published with an identifying number. To find a listing of all Public and Private laws passed in the United States go to:
Public and Private Laws:
These laws are then taken and integrated into the United States Code (U.S.C.) which is an organized tabulation of all the federal laws in effect. This is the main resource where one would go to look up the law of the land, relative to the federal government. It is organized into Titles, Chapters, Subchapters, Sections, and Subsections. For example Title 26 U.S.C. is the much dreaded, inscrutable Internal Revenue Code. For a complete listing of the United States Code go to:
United States Code (U.S.C.):
Whenever reading any section of the code, it is important to read the "definitions" sections as these often differ from section to section, and these distinctions can be quite important (i.e. definition of "taxpayer" in context of Public Laws authorizing the income tax). These codes also need to be read in context of what is called the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR—not to be confused with Council on Foreign Relations). These represent either the interpretations of the law by the executive branch agency responsible for overseeing a particular section of the United States Code, or decisions made by such agency in cases where authority was specifically ceded to them by Congress to make such regulations. For example the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services under the Department of Health and Human Services is given the right under the U.S.C. to determine medicare reimbursements, which are published in the CFR. Please note that just because something appears in the CFR, does not make it lawful, as administrative agencies often overstep the boundaries of control established in the U.S.C. in creating such regulations (in the same manner laws codified in the U.S.C. are often outside the bounds of the authority vested to the federal government in the Constitution). To look up items in the code of regulations go to:
Code of Federal Regulations (CFR):
Listing of all Titles on One page:
Click "Browse and/or search the CFR" below the search box in the first link. The chapters are updated each year so you want to click on the most recent version. The titles do not usually correspond to the USC Code (Title 26 being an exception). Of course, everyone should know likewise that all of these codes and regulations should conform to the Constitution, which most of you should have a copy of. If not it can be found here along with the Declaration of Independence (click on "Text" or "PDF" next to S. Doc. 105-11 under search box):
U.S. Constitution, Declaration of Independence, and Interpretations:
TIP: DON'T FORGET TO ALSO LOOK "LOCAL"
YOU can make the MOST difference focusing on LOCAL & STATE Levels. That does not mean "Ignore" Federal Bills or Issues - but Focus yourself and Act on something that you have the CONTROL to make a BIGGER IMPACT with. (Remember the 10th Amendment - "Local" is your First & Last line of defense.)
Track Federal Bills:
U.S. Census Bureau – incredible resource on variety of statistics covering United States. The census does not just do population, they also collect statistics for many other government agencies including much of the data used to compile various economic reports like GDP. You can often go here to get a more detailed look at the statistics used by the various economic agencies.
Other state data centers:
LEGISLATIVE & MEDIA RESOURCES
Economic Activity and Statistics
A great place to get a sense of all the economic reports available and when they are released is the general economic calendar of events: Economic Calendars:
Better Business Bureau, including customer complaints:
Complaints, Rip Off Report:
Find home values:
Detailed public company SEC reports:
Stock Movement Scraper:
http://qest.us (for seeing LARGE movements of $)
Federal Procurement Data System:
WebAlert App: can be used to create alerts
U.S. PACER Database:
The above is a GREAT comprehensive database for looking up ANY federal court case. Get the case number and the summary records here and then call up the court clerk for the particular judge presiding the case to get the documents referenced if they can be made public (complaints, filings, etc.).
LexisNexis – Huge searchable database of every case, publication, article, etc. imaginable. Often used by law firms, law students, and journalists. It is not cheap either. For more details:
http://www.lexisnexis.com/ Lexis.com is targeted to lawyers, and Nexis.com is targeted to corporations.
FindLaw – For those who cannot afford Lexis or do not have time to go to the law library, this is a reasonable resource to look up selected case law precedents:
Go to http://lp.findlaw.com/ and register to look up cases.
Justia – another good site for looking up commonly cited precedents –
United States Supreme Court:
HUMAN TRAFFICKING ARRESTS
MIKE FLYNN DEFENSE FUND
Q POST VIEWING
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