Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Just a question

Why should anyone care if Obama appoints a lot of "czars" or not? I'm not sure what the foul is here. If it's that they're "unaccountable", this isn't true, as they're accountable to Obama, and aside from confirmations, that's all that cabinet secretaries are. If it's that they're not Senate-confirmed, it's worth noting that few countries require executives to confirm their cabinet. I know Britain and France don't, and yet they survive.

I don't even see the angle for an effective attack here. There are two possibilities for who is driving this unusually insipid attack strategy:
  1. Right-wing senators who are angry at having their bailiwicks upended
  2. The usual FoxNews editorial strategy of scaring the bejesus out of the base, so that they'll quiveringly tune into the teevee nightly about stories about the evil shadow government that Barack Obama is obviously constructing
Unsurprisingly, I tend to go with option number two. Fox could give a damn about what makes Jim Inhofe cry. But I do think that we need to rethink the whole "advise and consent" idea at some point. I'm sure that the Senate has all sorts of ideas as to what makes an ideal Assistant Secretary of Transportation for Aviation, but they needn't bore the rest of us with them.

The Man, The Myth, The Bio

East Bay, California, United States
Problem: I have lots of opinions on politics and culture that I need to vent. If I do not do this I will wind up muttering to myself, and that's only like one or two steps away from being a hobo. Solution: I write two blogs. A political blog that has some evident sympathies (pro-Obama, mostly liberal though I dissent on some issues, like guns and trade) and a culture blog that does, well, cultural essays in a more long-form manner. My particular thing is taking overrated things (movies, mostly, but other things too) down a peg and putting underrated things up a peg. I'm sort of the court of last resort, and I tend to focus on more obscure cultural phenomena.