STILL PLAYING FAST AND LOOSE…. I had an item a couple of weeks ago noting an instance of the LA Times’ Andrew Malcolm playing fast and loose with the truth as part of a slam job on Democrats. Since then, I’ve received quite a few emails from readers highlighting examples of Malcolm, a former press secretary for Laura Bush, not only being a rather blatant partisan, but being surprisingly sloppy with basic truths.

I mention this because the lead story on Memeorandum right now is this gem from Malcolm, criticizing President Obama’s alleged lack of transparency.

We are not making this up:

Barack Obama was elected commander in chief promising to run the most transparent presidential administration in American history. This achievement and the overall promise of his historic administration caused the National Newspaper Publishers Assn. to name him “Newsmaker of the Year.”

The president is to receive the award from the federation of black community newspapers in a White House ceremony this afternoon. The Obama White House has closed the press award ceremony to the press…. Maybe they’ll let the newspaper people pass the award through the fence.

As is often the case with Malcolm’s columns, this isn’t even close to an accurate reflection of the facts.

To hear Malcolm tell it, the award ceremony is both ironic and an example of Obama hypocrisy. How can be rewarded for his transparency if he’s attending an event with journalists that is closed to the media? Outrageous!

Except, it’s not. In our reality, the president will be speaking to the National Newspaper Publishers Association, granting them an exclusive interview. There’s obviously transparency, since the journalists will report on what Obama has to say. As Eric Boehlert explained, “Press members from the NPPA have been granted exclusive access to Obama and will write about their time with him. But the NPPA does not want other journalists to be in the room when they meet with Obama because that would rob the NPPA of its exclusivity.”

Andrew Malcolm works for a major newspaper. One would like to think he’d understand this.

For that matter, one would also like to think he’d tell the LA Times’ readers the truth.

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.