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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

CZAR Wars - Truly biCZAR - Where is the Outrage?

Just another example of why this may be one of the most dangerous times of our, and our country's, lives - as government is in the middle of the one of the greatest power grabs in U.S. (and possibly the World's) history - did even the Obama supporters really believe they voted for THIS????:

First, as Obama the candidate promised so much, with so much transparency, Obama the President is not delivering (truly an understatement) - from the Concord Monitor:

“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."

From our friends at American Daughter (they seem to have the most complete list of CZARs - which will keep multiplying as we speak - I will update from time to time)

"Bypassing the authority of Congress, Barack Obama rules through czars — the beginnings of dictatorship.

Afghanistan-Pakistan (Af-Pak) czar, Richard Holbrooke
AIDS czar, Jeffrey Crowley [openly gay white man]
Auto recovery czar, Ed Montgomery
Behavioral science czar, position not yet filled
Bailout czar, Herbert Allison Jr., [replaced Bush bailout czar Neel Kashkari, Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Financial Stability confirmed by Senate]
Border czar, Alan Bersin
Car czar, Ron Bloom [Counselor to the Secretary of the Treasury , under Senate oversight]
Climate change czar, Todd Stern
Copyright czar, not appointed yet
Counterterrorism czar, John Brennan
Cybersecurity czar, position will be vacant on August 21st [upon the departure of Melissa Hathaway]
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]
Domestic violence czar, Lynn Rosenthal
Drug czar, Gil Kerlikowske
Economic czar, Larry Summers
Economic czar number two, Paul Volcker
Education czar, Arne Duncan
Energy czar, Carol Browner
Food czar, Michael Taylor [a former Monsanto executive, or, the fox in charge of the henhouse]
Government performance czar, Jeffrey Zients
Great Lakes czar, Cameron Davis
Green jobs czar, Van Jones [who has a communist background]
Guantanamo closure czar, Daniel Fried
Health czar, Nancy-Ann DeParle
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.]
Intelligence czar, Dennis Blair [Director of National Intelligence, a Senate confirmed position. He is a retired United States Navy four-star admiral]
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.]
Mideast peace czar, George Mitchell
Mideast policy czar, Dennis Ross
Pay czar, Kenneth Feinberg
Regulatory czar, Cass Sunstein
Religion czar, aka God czar Joshua DuBois
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]
Science czar, John Holdren
Stimulus oversight czar, Earl Devaney
Sudan czar, J. Scott Gration
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]
Technology czar, Aneesh Chopra
Trade czar, Ron Kirk
Urban affairs czar, Adolfo Carrion
War czar, Douglas Lute [retained from Bush administration, married to Jane Holl Lute, currently a Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security]
Water czar, David J. Hayes [a Deputy Interior Secretary and therefore subject to Senate oversight]
Weapons czar, Ashton Carter [actually Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics and so subject to Senate confirmation]
Weapons of mass destruction czar, Gary Samore
Diversity czar: Mark Lloyd

Positions being planned:
Income redistribution czar
Land-use czar
Mortgage czar, formally “consumer financial protection czar” (source)
Radio-internet fairness czar
Student loan czar, to oversee a program of mandatory service in return for college money (source)
Voter list czar
Zoning czar

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.
On July 15, Rep. Jack Kingston (R-GA) introduced H.R.3226, the Czar Accountability and Reform (CZAR) Act of 2009, with 34 co-sponsors. There is some comfort in knowing that there are still a few folk in the House of Representatives who are fighting for constitutional government.

This new list is alphabetized by the czar positions, to facilitate comparison with the excellent research on the duties of each office done by Terresa Monroe-Hamilton at Noisy Room. "

Each Czar has avoided congressional oversight, receives $179,000 annual salary, and a staff of 10 people - and no outrage???

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