Monday, August 17, 2009

The Compleat List of Czars

Updated, Monday, 8/17/2009

Drafting the fishy angles and curves of the czar regime of Barack the Destroyer. And here we thought we already had a government -- you know, the constitutional one.

The Compleat* List of Czars
in American Daughter, by Nancy Matthis

Bypassing the authority of Congress, Barack Obama rules through czars -- the beginnings of dictatorship:
  1. Afghanistan-Pakistan (Af-Pak) czar, Richard Holbrooke
  2. AIDS czar, Jeffrey Crowley [openly gay white man]
  3. Auto recovery czar, Ed Montgomery
  4. Behavioral science czar, position not yet filled
  5. Bailout czar, Herbert Allison Jr., [replaced Bush bailout czar Neel Kashkari, Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Financial Stability confirmed by Senate]
  6. Border czar, Alan Bersin
  7. Car czar, Ron Bloom [Counselor to the Secretary of the Treasury , under Senate oversight]
  8. Climate change czar, Todd Stern
  9. Copyright czar, not appointed yet
  10. Counterterrorism czar, John Brennan
  11. Cybersecurity czar, position will be vacant on August 21st [upon the departure of Melissa Hathaway]
  12. Disinformation czar, Linda Douglass [This is a new media buzz since our earlier list, a response by pundits to the White House request for informants: see Glenn Beck and Lew Rockwell]
  13. Domestic violence czar, Lynn Rosenthal
  14. Drug czar, Gil Kerlikowske
  15. Economic czar, Larry Summers
  16. Economic czar number two, Paul Volcker
  17. Education czar, Arne Duncan
  18. Energy czar, Carol Browner
  19. Food czar, Michael Taylor [a former Monsanto executive, or, the fox in charge of the henhouse]
  20. Government performance czar, Jeffrey Zients
  21. Great Lakes czar, Cameron Davis
  22. Green jobs czar, Van Jones [who has a communist background]
  23. Guantanamo closure czar, Daniel Fried
  24. Health czar, Nancy-Ann DeParle
  25. Infotech czar, Vivek Kundra [Shoplifted four shirts, worth $33.50 each, from J.C. Penney in 1996 (source). His last day in DC government was March 4 but on March 12 the FBI raided his office and arrested two staffers.]
  26. Intelligence czar, Dennis Blair [Director of National Intelligence, a Senate confirmed position. He is a retired United States Navy four-star admiral]
  27. Latin-American czar, Arturo Valenzuela (nominee) [although this post is referred to as a czar, he is nominatied to be Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs and so is subject to Senate confirmation. Voting on his confirmation was delayed to clarify his position on Honduras. Watch WaPo's Head Count to track status of confirmation.]
  28. Mideast peace czar, George Mitchell
  29. Mideast policy czar, Dennis Ross
  30. Pay czar, Kenneth Feinberg
  31. Regulatory czar, Cass Sunstein
  32. Religion czar, aka God czar Joshua DuBois
  33. Safe schools czar, Kevin Jennings [appointed to be Assistant Deputy Secretary of the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools, a newly created post (that does not require Senate confirmation); openly gay founder of an organization dedicated to promoting pro-homosexual clubs and curricula in public schools]
  34. Science czar, John Holdren
  35. Stimulus oversight czar, Earl Devaney
  36. Sudan czar, J. Scott Gration
  37. TARP czar, Elizabeth Warren [chair of the [Congressional Oversight Panel for the Trouble Assets Relief Program; note that Herb Allison is frequently called the TARP czar]
  38. Technology czar, Aneesh Chopra
  39. Trade czar, Ron Kirk
  40. Urban affairs czar, Adolfo Carrion
  41. War czar, Douglas Lute [retained from Bush administration, married to Jane Holl Lute, currently a Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security]
  42. Water czar, David J. Hayes [a Deputy Interior Secretary and therefore subject to Senate oversight]
  43. Weapons czar, Ashton Carter [actually Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics and so subject to Senate confirmation]
  44. Weapons of mass destruction czar, Gary Samore
Positions being planned:
  1. Income redistribution czar
  2. Land-use czar
  3. Mortgage czar, formally "consumer financial protection czar" (source)
  4. Radio-internet fairness czar
  5. Student loan czar, to oversee a program of mandatory service in return for college money (source)
  6. Voter list czar
  7. Zoning czar

Obama the Great

Obama has moved swiftly to concentrate power in the White House, bypassing the review of our elected representatives in Congress in most of the posts listed above. Even though cabinet positions are part of the executive branch, the cabinet secretaries must be approved by Congress, they are funded by Congress, and they can be called before Congress to testify. Most of these czars, on the other hand, are appointed by Obama at his sole discretion, and are answerable only to him. If subpoenaed by Congress, they can claim executive privilege.

Right after the election last November, Lowell Ponte of NewsMax published a tongue-in-cheek article that purported to be written eight years in the future, looking back on the Obama administration. Given the administration's current initiatives, the ominous prognostication seems frighteningly likely:
Looking back from 2016 on eight strange years of President Barack Obama's administration, we see that it has been nothing like what idealists believed they were electing in 2008.

The Obama years will be remembered in the Ministry of Truth's official history as the era of 1,000 czars, the elitist commissars he gave the power to rule by fiat in every sector of America's government, economy, and society.... And through their partisan power, Barack Obama became America's permanent caesar.


[This article is an update of our earlier post -- Obama's Imperial Court. It was created specifically to serve as a current reference list of czars with news links, since we have not found such a research tool readily available.]

References:

Concord Monitor -- Obama and his 32 czars
"The biggest problems that we're facing right now have to do with George Bush trying to bring more and more power into the executive branch and not go through Congress at all. And that's what I intend to reverse when I'm president of the United States."

- Sen. Barack Obama, March 31, 2008

To say President Obama failed to follow through on this promise is an understatement. By appointing a virtual army of "czars" - each wholly unaccountable to Congress yet tasked with spearheading major policy efforts for the White House - the president has made an end-run around the legislative branch of historic proportions.... Vesting such broad authority in the hands of people not subjected to Senate confirmation and congressional oversight poses a grave threat to our system of checks and balances.
NewsFlavor -- The Obama "Czars"
These Czars are well paid, earning between $158,500 and $172,200, and using just the lower level of $158,500, this calculates to $5,072,000 annually.... These Czars are designing policies in our country, and are neither subject to congressional approval or oversight. They do what they want, when they want, and the public through its elected representatives have no recourse.
WorldNetDaily -- Obama's radical, anti-American czars
Among Barack Obama's 34 unaccountable "czars" are at least two whose radical roots and extremist views should disqualify them from service in government at any level – let alone as top advisers to the president.... John Holdren, his pick as top science adviser, is a population-control zealot who believes the Constitution justifies compulsory abortions on a massive worldwide scale. So much for the notion that radical abortion politics is ultimately about "choice."... Van Jones, the special environmental adviser to the White House, has an equally checkered past deep-rooted in radical politics, including black nationalism, anarchism and communism.
The Daily Beast -- Get to Know Obama's Czars
....maybe he just likes delegating, but President Obama has been appointing czars at a furious rate since taking office.... ...the czar-ness of various executive branch positions is somewhat ambiguous (one man’s czar is another man’s special assistant to the president)....
NoisyRoom -- Obama's Czars Listing UPDATED
Note from ADMC: While this list contains some inaccuracies, it has something none of the other sources offered -- a comprehensive list of duties associated with each position. Terrific piece of research by Terresa Monroe-Hamilton. (UPDATE 8/3/09, late evening: All inaccuracies have been corrected.)
IMAO -- Czar Czar Galore
The Obama Administration is not the first administration to appoint someone with broad powers to oversee a function. You know. A "czar." Previously, we've had Drug Czars, Energy Czars, and so on. But, Barack Obama has gone Czar crazy.
The Business Insider -- Obama's Czars: The Men Behind The Crown
UPDATE: Some clarification is needed about the "car czar." In mid-February, Obama created the Presidential Task Force on the Auto Industry, officially led by Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and National Economic Council Director Lawrence Summers ("economic czar"). In practice, Wall Street hedge fund mogul and auto industry insider Steve Rattner was brought to Washington to spearhead operations -- his official title was Counselor to the Secretary of the Treasury -- and he was dubbed the "car czar" by the media.

Rattner orchestrated the amazingly fast restructuring of Chrysler and General Motors, but his brief service was plagued by unresolved allegations of his involvement in the New York State retirement fund kickback scandal, exacerbated by the fact that he was building a $15 million summer home on Martha's Vineyard as many Americans were losing their primary homes to foreclosure.

Ron Bloom, formerly a Wall Street investment banker who was familiar with the auto industry from serving as advisor to the United Steel Workers Union, was already working alongside Rattner on the task force. When Rattner left, Ron Bloom stepped into the job of Counselor to the Secretary of the Treasury vacated by Rattner, leading many to call him the new car czar.

But the "heavy lifting" of the task force had already been done in the restructuring of the car manufacturers, and the emphasis now shifted to the recovery of the auto industry. That is the responsibility of Ed Montgomery, whose official title is Director of Recovery for Auto Communities and Workers. And unlike Rattner, who nominally reported to a Cabinet Secretary subject to Congressional review, Montgomery is a true "czar" who reports directly to the President, is not subject to vetting, and enjoys executive privilege.

We could resolve this ambiguity in the "czar list" as follows:
  • Ron Bloom, car czar

  • Ed Montgomery, auto recovery czar
but we may not hear a lot about Ron Bloom going forward, while the work of Montgomery will remain in focus. Bottom line: Ron Bloom got Steve Rattner's actual job, but Ed Montgomery inherited the media mantle of "car czar."
___________________
* The spelling of the title is a literary allusion to The Compleat Angler by Izaak Walton, circa 1653, a staple of English literature. The variant spelling "compleat" signifies "quintessential," the be all and end all, the last word.

Thank you, American Daughter.
Is this preparing the way for a replacement government, when the "disruption" of America is... compleat?

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

What a list...the king is on the throne.

Why am I having trouble accessing this site...since last night...Internet Explorer is aborting the site on my computer

Gort said...

The Third Reich parallels started with the Bush Regime,but this King Tut Regime is blending all past ancient empires into one Beat Empire.It is astounding that the mainstream media can deliver the propaganda with a straight face.This one subject could be a nightly news topic of the fictional character Howard Beale variety.Some of these things are covered,but never with the words sedition or treason.An occasional "this stuff appears to be unconstitutional",but then on to the next story.All that remains is the right crisis for this puppet to assume a dictatorial title.He already has the power.Overreach with the Hate Crimes Bill,step back and get it passed.Looks like a compromise,but is a win.Same with the Health Care Bill.Looks like a compromise is coming,but it will be another win.And it will still be a death bill full of eugenics policies.

Gort said...

It should be noted that Bush Sr. and the Clintonista administrations were quasi-regimes,and paved the way for this Nimrod.Hillary had the same death care bill idea and Bill started the militarization of our police forces,and turned FEMA and BATF into the Gestapo and SS.

Chris said...

Could someone explain to me the difference between a "czar" and an "advisor"?

Also, I was wondering where you people were when President Bush created the position of the "Director of Lessons Learned" at $106,000 per year?

These should be two VERY simple, straight forward questions. I'll be watching for answers.

Anonymous said...

Here is a more comprehensive listing of the czars. Not as many listed, but more information: http://me.jeremybuff.com/blog/list-of-obama-czars/

ZZMike said...

Chris: "... difference between a "czar" and an "advisor"?"

First off, I doubt that "Czar" is the official title in the job description. "Czars" have been with us since the days of Andy Jackson. Sure, Bush appointed czars. So did Clinton, Ford, Carter, ...

In fact, that's how the name got started - in Jackson's time, Russia had a real Czar (of course, they spelled it funny: Tsar).

Now back to the "advisor" difference:

Advisors advise. As in, "I think this would be a good idea".

Czars dictate. As in, "This is the way it's gonna be now. Capice?".

My simpler question is, by what authority does any President appoint these people? Next, what payroll are they on?

The obvious reason for appointing these people is (1) they're neither elected by the people nor consented to by the Senate, (2) they're there precisely to expand the power of the Presidency, and (3) they answer to nobody but Obama.

Pick one at random (yeah, right): John Holdren, Science Czar. Bright guy - MacArthur prize, ...

Wrote a book, "Ecoscience", with Paul and Anne Erlich. You can check that one out easily enough. Here's a quote or two:

"Indeed, it has been concluded that compulsory population-control laws, even including laws requiring compulsory abortion, could be sustained under the existing Constitution if the population crisis became sufficiently severe to endanger the society."

"Adding a sterilant to drinking water or staple foods is a suggestion that seems to horrify people more than most proposals for involuntary fertility control. Indeed, this would pose some very difficult political, legal, and social questions, to say nothing of the technical problems. No such sterilant exists today, nor does one appear to be under development. To be acceptable, such a substance would have to meet some rather stiff requirements: it must be uniformly effective, despite widely varying doses received by individuals, and despite varying degrees of fertility and sensitivity among individuals; it must be free of dangerous or unpleasant side effects; and it must have no effect on members of the opposite sex, children, old people, pets, or livestock."

[But as soon as we can come up with one that doesn't harm pets or livestock, we're good to go.]

"Why should the law not be able to prevent a person from having more than two children?"

There's your Science Advisor.

Anonymous said...

Get real people. Why didn't you investigate the Bush administration, includind Dick Cheney (obviously doesn't beleive in our Constition)?
Was it Ok for Bush to appoint Czar's? How about his appointee to FEMA? What were his qualifications?

james5213 said...

For those of you, who are insistent on spreading alleged facts, please identify your sources; otherwise, we can assume you either solicited your information from Glenn Beck or perhaps from your own imagination. This site, which I accidently discovered, frightens me. Quite candidly, it this vile and ignorant disinformation that makes me believe mandatory abortion and death panels might be a fruitful option should we wish to evolve this country into the next century.

Anonymous said...

To James5213~~it is people like you that really "p.." me off. All you did was complain about the website and the truths (with sources~~but you're probably too lazy to do another click to read the "rest of the story"). I have yet heard anyone from the "liberal" side answer a question with a straight answer~~and you seem to fall into that category. If this site so terrifies you~~GOOD! IT SHOULD! And as for mandatory abortion and death panels~~I don't believe I even read those words on this site. Must be you are so terrified that it might happen to you????

jendreamer said...

I refuse to listen to anyone who can't even spell, proof read or use spell checker!!!! The word is spelled COMPLETE!! Perhaps you need a spelling czar!

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C In Irving said...

Source about john holdren and the book he wrote, excerpts here. He is into Eugenics. His own published written word is hard to dispute. Since Obama made him the Science advisor/czar, also Jones who stepped down from his offer of czar/advisor believed in Eugenics, so does that mean Others do too?
http://zombietime.com/john_holdren/

Anonymous said...

The one thing that sticks out for me is the absents of the behavioral science czar. I do not think they want to leave a paper trail or let any one in the loop.