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This site is the inspiration of a former reporter/photographer for one of New England's largest daily newspapers and for various magazines. The intent is to direct readers to interesting political articles, and we urge you to visit the source sites. Any comments may be noted on site or directed to KarisChaf at gmail.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Obama’s Cabinet: The One Place Americans Can’t Get Laid Off or Fired -- By Jim Geraghty, National Review

(text from within article)

Okay, but Sebelius still managed and directed perhaps the biggest and most consequential cluster-you-know-what in American domestic policy history. She helped craft a policy that was sold with PolitiFact’s “Lie of the Year” and the Washington Post Fact-Checker’s biggest Pinocchio of the Year. What’s more, if Obama is telling the truth, he was kept in the dark about the unfolding disaster until a week after Healthcare.gov launched. She still isn’t giving straight answers. If all of that hasn’t earned a dismissal, what does?

We know that Obama isn’t particularly close to anyone in his cabinet; Politico called serving in Obama’s cabinet “the worst job in Washington.”

The staffers who rule Obama’s West Wing often treat his Cabinet as a nuisance: At the top of the pecking order are the celebrity power players, like former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, to be warily managed; at the bottom, what they see as a bunch of well-intentioned political naifs only a lip-slip away from derailing the president’s agenda. [Energy Secretary Steven] Chu might have been the first Obama Cabinet secretary to earn the disdain of White House aides, but he was hardly the last.
“We are completely marginalized … until the [s-word] hits the fan,” says one former Cabinet deputy secretary, summing up the view of many officials I interviewed. “If your question is: Did the president rely a lot on his Cabinet as a group of advisers? No, he didn’t,” says former Obama Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.

It’s hard to believe Obama really thinks of Sebelius or anyone else in his cabinet as indispensible.

Of course, Obama’s not the first president to demand loyalty from his staff and repay it in kind. George W. Bush was loyal to “his guys” and “his gals.” That was one factor in how Harriet Miers came to be nominated by the Supreme Court.

The advantages of the Bush-Obama loyalty approach are obvious, but let’s imagine the opposite. Imagine you had a president who wasn’t afraid to fire any member of the cabinet who turned into a liability. Imagine a president bold enough to say he likes being able to fire people for bad service. Imagine a president known for cutting people loose, quickly and coolly, after any massive foul-up with big consequences.

Don’t you think that might cut down on the number of massive foul-ups with big consequences?

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