deadlines amuse me

exploring how the world works and why it works that way …

Archive for July 2009

President Obama’s ambassadors: more political picks than career professionals

leave a comment »

Twenty-seven people nominated to ambassadorships by President Obama, as tracked by the Center for Responsive Politics, have made $4,475,725 in campaign contributions, almost all to Democrats, since 1989.

These 27 nominees contributed $144,431 to President Obama and $57,900 to once-rival and now Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, reports the center. They have bundled (collected, as middleman, donations from others) at least $5 million for the president’s campaign and at least $1,782,500 for the president’s inauguration.

The president’s most recent nominee as ambassador to Germany, former Democratic National Committee finance chair and former Goldman Sachs executive Philip D. Murphy, and his wife “have contributed nearly $1.5 million to federal candidates, committees and parties since 1989, with 94 percent of that sum going to Democrats, according to a Center for Responsive Politics analysis. They also contributed an additional $100,000 to Obama’s inauguration committee.”

But this isn’t the real news. According to figures kept by the American Foreign Service Association, President Obama is making political patronage nominations to ambassadorships at twice the rate of the previous nine presidents.
Read the rest of this entry »


Written by Dr. Denny Wilkins

July 11, 2009 at 1:47 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Being an American means being an active critic of government

with one comment

I am a citizen of the United States of America. In this country, I can criticize my government as intelligently, as profanely, or as stupidly as I wish. I can call the president of the nation an unintelligent, uninspiring, and incompetent leader — which I have done. I can call my representative in Congress a buffoonish party hack — which I have done — and urge his removal from office by the voters. I can attack the policies enacted by government at all levels as often as I wish.

I can assemble with others to complain about the government. I can petition the government for redress of grievances. I can practice a religion free of government interference. Most importantly, I have the right to speak my mind. I can say whatever I want about the government short of advocating violence against it. I am free to speak or write critically about the actions or inactions of my government.

I can be a critic of my government because for hundreds of years, hundreds of thousands of Americans before me fought and died for my right to do that.
Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Dr. Denny Wilkins

July 4, 2009 at 12:07 pm

Posted in Uncategorized