A recent story in the LAT noted that of Obama’s 300 foreign policy advisors in the campaign, not a single one has been appointed to a cabinet level position. The story is of course notable for the information that the by-lined reporter, Paul Richter, desperately seeks to conceal from his readers.
The truth is that Obama’s people have a history of extreme statements and actions, corrupt relationships, or both. This makes nearly all of them unconfirmable. Disasters waiting to happen. And not so coincidentally, his staff, larded up with these folks, a coal-dust filled silo waiting to explode. Karl Rove, in a recent Wall Street Journal Editorial, noted that Obama’s staff was exceptionally crowded. He missed the obvious point, Obama’s staff is crowded because his closest advisors won’t pass muster on Capitol Hill. Not even by the standards of Tim Geithner (“taxes are patriotic,” unless you are a connected big shot, then they are not). Noted tax evader, pleader of special privilege, and US Treasury Secretary.
For example, Paul Richter cites Richard Danzig, former Clinton Navy Secretary, and key campaign advisor on the military and national security, as a man inexplicably passed over for Defense posts in favor of Bush hold-over Robert Gates. No actual research is done as to WHY this man might not be offered a position requiring Senate confirmation.
No mention of the fact that Danzig in an interview believed that Winnie the Pooh and Star Wars held the key to stopping terror plots.
”Winnie the Pooh seems to me to be a fundamental text on national security.”
Danzig is noted for trying to put female sailors on nuclear submarines, a policy vociferously resisted by the Navy for obvious reasons (you can’t simply discharge pregnant sailors from submarines as you can from surface ships). The fact that many female sailors get pregnant each cruise (an easy way out of the difficult environment of life at sea) escaped the man who spent not a day in the military and whose entire background is in Law. He has called for more Affirmative Action in the military, calling it a “white male bastion.” This despite the fact that the military is all volunteer.
Danzig is also the CEO of Human Genome Sciences and National Semiconductor Corporations. A walking set of conflicts of interest, both are major contractors with the Defense Department.
Danzig is famous for calling the Pentagon a “communist system” and wants ad-hoc budgets made on the fly. [A guarantee for chaos only a lawyer could love.]
Any Cabinet level post for which Danzig would be nominated would entail a lengthy look at his movement from Clinton-era Navy Secretary to his posts at two companies for which, to put it mildly, he seems unqualified for excepting his influence peddling. Not to mention his anti-White male statements and positions, his repeated attempt to impose political correctness on the Navy at the expense of operational requirements, and rather lunatic statements about proper counter-terrorism policy and Iraq and much else. [Government by Winnie the Pooh.]
All this was found with just a few minutes of Google searching. Presumably Richter is not totally lazy, and knew this background well. He certainly did not wish to share this vital background information with his readers.
Richter next moves on to Ivo Daalder, Phd in Political Science from MIT. Daalder is the author of Obama’s “Talk to Iran Without Preconditions” policy, and as such, raises a high stakes game over Iran policy. One that is inevitable the moment his name is put forward for Senate Confirmation. Made all the worse in that Daalder proposed in print to simply take Iran’s word for it that the regime was not creating nuclear weapons material. Then there is his suggestion that any US intervention anywhere in the world needs either the UN Security Council’s authorization or some ill-defined “League of Democracies.”
Richter also mentions former US Ambassador to Israel, and Egypt, Daniel Kurtzer. As noted in the American Thinker, Kurtzer has a troubling background of extreme, anti-Israeli/Jewish statements: he blames Israel for the violent Palestinian terror attacks, holds the existence of Israel as provoking all Muslim terrorism, and has characterized/excused terrorism as “guerillas.”
Kurtzer is a protege of pro-Palestinian, anti-Jewish figure James Baker.
Like Jimmy Carter, Kurtzer is a proponent of a comprehensive, “fix everything” Middle East Peace settlement, a path rejected by both Presidents Bush 43 and Clinton. Nominating Kurtzer will bring all these issues up, in a way that Obama certainly does not wish, raising the questions of how much Obama believes in a big bang peace settlement, blames Israel for all terrorism, and implicitly wants Israel to cease to exist to “solve” the US terrorism problem.
Richter of course does not want to tell his readers these inconvenient truths, because they paint a rather ugly portrait of the team around Obama: riddled with conflicts of interest, extreme, hard-left and anti-Israel/Jewish statements, and laughably naive views about power and America’s place in the world. Even more dangerous to Richter would be his readers finding out that these are the men making informal policy through staff positions, ad-hoc and by the seat of their pants, causing a whipsaw effect in the Obama Administration. Whichever staffer had Obama’s ear last, makes policy. Until it too is reversed.
George W. Bush had many faults as a leader, lack of formal process for policy making and review was not one of them. One might quibble with the results and quality of the policy, but at least the process in which it was made allowed for some open-ness, input of policy opponents, decision making by Cabinet officers approved by the Senate, and a known cadre of advisors who were hardly invisible to the Press or public attention.
By contrast, the chaos, disorganization, ineptness, and weakness of the Obama administration in handling Cabinet appointments, the bailout bill, and initial discussions with Russia over missile defense, reek of policy by unappointed, extremist, unvetted staff.
The real lesson of Richter’s article is that Obama’s closest advisors can’t get confirmed by the Senate, and that they are loons and riddled with conflict of interest. Something that the Press in general is desperate to conceal from the public.
Eventually, however, Obama’s manifest incompetence of his team, lacking any formal review and depending on chaotic, relationship based policy making, will become evident to us all. God help us.