Obama’s Cabinet Postings (1)

As I have told you, it is not my intention to give Barrack Hussein Obama a pass on anything. However, I have to admit, having him as the president-elect is a gold mine for a guy like me. There will always be something to write about.

He has not even taken office and he is giving us a great deal about which to be concerned. I am not going to address his massive money give-away which will put succeeding generations of Americans behind the eight ball for many years.

This time I am going to address his gross lack of judgment. One of the more stellar traits that Ronald Reagan had was to be able to surround himself with experts; people who clearly understood all aspects of the job they were given. We are being told how smart our next president is. Let’s look at his display of intelligence in the area of surrounding himself with experts. This will be the first in a series of discussions about the president-elect’s judgment with respect to his appointees. Other discussions about his judgment, in general, will come later.

Treasury Secretary

The current flap concerns his choice for Treasury Secretary. Tim Geithner has served as director of the Policy Development and Review Department at the International Monetary Fund; president and CEO of the New York Federal Reserve Bank, this position doubles as the vice chair of the Federal Open Market Committee which sets interest rates; chairman of the G-10’s Committee on Payment and Settlement Systems of the Bank for International Settlements; and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Group of Thirty. This is an impressive resume.

Looking at events he has directly influenced, he was the architect of the Bear Sterns bailout. I asked this question of my colleagues at the time, why? Where in the US Constitution does it say that it is the responsibility of the federal government to keep failed companies afloat? Of course, one could argue that since it was the federal government’s policies that caused many of the banking failures, they had a responsibility to fix what they broke.

As the head money guy for the federal government he will be responsible for keeping track of all of our finances; this includes being overall in charge of the Internal Revenue Service. That would imply that he has a good understanding of our tax laws and is in compliance with them. But wait; what about the $43,000 in federal self employment taxes he failed to pay? Interestingly enough, he was working with the IMF at the time. It is the policy of the IMF to reimburse their folks for their self employment tax; it sounds, to me, like he was pocketing some extra perk money. Hmmm! Was it just an oversight that he employed an immigrant maid for three months after her work authorization papers had expired (that makes the maid an illegal)?

An individual like Mr. Geithner who recklessly flaunts the law as the Treasury Secretary makes me a bit queasy when I think about how my income taxes are assessed and how this money is managed. Does this appointment reflect sound judgment, or does the president-elect share Mr. Geithner’s ethos?

As usual, I welcome all comments and discussion.


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