Saturday, September 05, 2009

What is a Czar?

Czar [zahr] noun - any person exercising great authority or power in a particular field: a czar of industry.
Lately I have been hearing this word pop up in news reports over and over again. In my mind, I relate czars with Russian rulers, and not in a favorable way. So, when I repeatedly heard names of people who are being appointed as "White House Czars" I became curious. I found a Wall Street Journal article that was very informative on the topic and thought I should share.
You might be wondering why this is important. Haven't all presidents had their "special advisers"? Well, yes and no. Although many presidents have had one or two people that could fall into the "czar" category, this administration has named an unprecedented number that is now in excess of 30. That is a pretty big number. What makes this troubling, and why we should all care regardless of our political leanings is that there is no official screening process for any of these positions. It is simply a way to circumvent the checks and balances that Congress provides. All that is required to get one of these high level advisor positions is for the president to give them the nod. Then before you know it, this person who has not been approved by anyone other than the president, is telling cabinet members what to do and heavily influencing policy.
One would assume that background checks, or at the very least a simple Google search would be done before any one was offered such an important job, but you know what they say happens when you assume. We need to all be asking ourselves if the White House staff or even the president knew that they were appointing a one time member of the Socialist International's Commission for a Sustainable World Society, a group that wants wealthy countries (such as ours) to shrink their economy in an effort to reduce the effects of climate change. Don't we have a shrinking economy now? search Carol Browner: Energy and Environmental Czar. Or, how about the one that wanted animals to have legal right so that they can sue people and ban hunting? search Cass Sunstein: Regulatory Czar. Then there is my personal favorite, the guy who supported compulsory sterilizations and mandated abortions as the way to provide a higher quality of life (think China's 1 child rule) search John Holdren: Science Czar.
The most recent and certainly the most entertaining of the czars is a man named Van Jones, the Green Jobs Czar. He is openly communist, thought 9/11 was an inside job, blames white people for sending poison into the black communities, and was the great mind that told us all that even though young black kids might go to school and shoot another back kid, only white suburban kids shoot up the whole school. He went from crazy rantings to top level official without anyone noticing, or at least not caring, what his personal agenda might be.
I wonder what is in the background of the other 27+ people currently serving as czars, and you should be wondering, too.

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