Obama’s most outrageous nominees.
If a man is to be known by the company he keeps, then we know a lot about President Obama’s ideology and priorities. After his election in 2008, he won praise for choosing such non-ideological advisers as Robert Gates, Paul Volcker, Larry Summers, and James Jones. Yet when it has come to selecting officials for less prominent positions, the president has often appointed people who have little admiration for the U.S. Constitution and espouse a radical agenda. A year and a half into his presidency, Obama has repeatedly appointed outré liberals to serve as his aides, executors, regulators, judges, and legal advisers.
A typical example is White House director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy John Holdren, also known as the “science czar.” He has argued vigorously for population control since the 1960s. As David Freddoso reported in the Washington Examiner, he’s even written in favor of forced population control. As he considers in his book Ecoscience:
[R]esponsible parenthood ought to be encouraged and illegitimate childbearing could be strongly discouraged. One way to carry out this disapproval might be to insist that all illegitimate babies be put up for adoption — especially those born to minors, who generally are not capable of caring properly for a child alone….It would even be possible to require pregnant single women to marry or have abortions, perhaps as an alternative to placement for adoption, depending on the society.
To be sure, Holdren’s position on the nuclear family is likely to offend liberals as well.
Holdren has repeatedly made apocalyptic claims about climate change and the environment. In 1971, he predicted that “some form of ecocatastrophe seems almost certain” before the end of the century. He’s also gone as far as to call for a “de-development” campaign in the United States. With Department of Labor data showing 3 million job losses since Obama’s inauguration, such a campaign may well be under way.
Holdren could have had a friend in the head of the Office of Legal Counsel were it not for a pesky public and the Senate. The head of OLC is responsible for reviewing all executive orders and advising the attorney general and the Executive Branch on the legality of their actions. Dawn Johnsen, who has compared pregnancy to slavery, was the person President Obama wanted in that position. The former ACLU attorney wrote of pregnant women in an amicus brief she signed in 1989, “Statutes that curtail her abortion choice are disturbingly suggestive of involuntary servitude, prohibited by the Thirteenth Amendment, in that forced pregnancy requires a woman to provide continuous physical service to the fetus in order to further the state’s asserted interest.” She was more than a one-hit wonder. While working for the Abortion Rights Mobilization, she sought to strip the Catholic Church of its tax-exempt status, costing the Church millions of dollars in legal fees in a case it eventually won. Upon her nomination in 2009, Senate conservatives began to invoke Frankie Valli, as in “Dawn, go away.” In early April she did, as her nomination was quietly withdrawn.
Recess-appointed National Labor Relations Board member Craig Becker would like to de-develop the private sector on behalf of Big Labor. The SEIU and AFL-CIO associate general counsel not only advocates Card Check, but also believes every worker should be a dues-paying union member. In 1998 he termed union elections “profoundly undemocratic” because workers can choose to remain unrepresented. Becker is on a five-member panel governing the relations between unions and the private sector.
Chai Feldblum, another recess appointee, is now commissioner of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Having cut her teeth clerking for Justice Harry Blackmun, author of Roe v. Wade, she has also done advocacy work for the Human Rights Campaign and the ACLU. Asked by the Weekly Standard in 2006 about weighing considerations when religious liberty and “sexual liberty” conflict, she replied, “I’m having a hard time coming up with any case in which religious liberty should win.”
Sexual liberty remains a top administration priority. Kevin Jennings, assistant deputy secretary for the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools at the U.S. Department of Education, believes schools are trying to brainwash children to be heterosexual. At a speech reportedly given in Iowa in 2000, Jennings declared, “Every time kids read Romeo and Juliet, or they’re encouraged to go to the prom, or whatever it is, kids are aggressively recruited to be heterosexual in this country.”
In 1988, when Jennings taught high school in Massachusetts, a male sophomore reported to him that he was having sex with an older male. Rather than report the incident, Jennings told the child, “I hope you knew to use a condom.” They don’t call him “safe schools czar” for nothing.
The third czar on our list — Obama’s “green jobs” czar Van Jones, the former special advisor for Green Jobs, Enterprise, and Innovation in the Council for Environmental Quality — was the ultimate charm. He resigned last September amid news that he had signed a petition suggesting that President Bush “may indeed have deliberately allowed 9/11 to happen, perhaps as a pretext for war,” and had called Republicans “assholes” in a speech prior to his joining the administration.
But there was much more in his file. About the federal government’s response to Hurricane Katrina in 2005: “My fore-bearers would have known better than to expect the U.S. government to prioritize saving Black people from serious danger, in the first place.” About the Columbine massacre: “You’ve never seen a Columbine done by a black child. Never. They always say, ‘we can’t believe it happened here. We can’t believe it’s these suburban white kids.’ It’s only them. Now, a black kid might shoot another black kid. He’s not going to shoot up the whole school.” He has also accused “white polluters” of “steering poison into communities of color.” He will be teaching at Princeton next fall.
While putting up with lefties, President Obama has reached out to believers in faith-based programs. Mercedes Marquez is Obama’s assistant secretary of Housing and Urban Development for Community Planning and Development. According to a report in the Los Angeles Times, Marquez spent $18,819 of Los Angeles Housing Department funds on Zen Buddhist management training back when she was general manager. The training included playing with sticks, breathing exercises, and standing practices. Some colleagues found the routine intriguing, although others argued they were pointless and insulting because they already knew how to stand and breathe. Marquez is a Zen priestess.
Then there are Obama’s judges. In 2007, the future president told Planned Parenthood what he was looking for in his judicial nominees:
Good intellect, you read the statute, you look at the case law and most of the time, the law’s pretty clear. Ninety-five percent of the time. Justice Ginsb[u]rg, Justice Thomas, Justice Scalia they’re all gonna agree on the outcome.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?