Nope. You are wrong.
"Self-censorship" is not the issue here; Being a cagey businessperson is.
You can't be a bull in a china shop and expect to get anything other than broken dishware.
Sometimes it is smarter to cloak your real purpose behind some carefully chosen wording. This is the case throughout the business world, and especially in the world of government funding. If you want to get them to release the money you need to do your work, then you need to phrase your needs in terms they will be supportive of.
This is the path of success in business and government. It is not "self-censorship".