Obama's Values and Political Agendas Are Reflected in the Individuals Whom He Has Appointed to Key Posts in His Administration
Alikhan, Arif (Assistant Secretary for the Office of Policy Development): When he was Deputy Mayor of Homeland Security and Public Safety for the City of Los Angeles, Alikhan was responsible for derailing the LAPD's efforts to monitor activities within the city’s Muslim community, where numerous radical mosques and madrassas were known to exist, and where some of the 9/11 hijackers had received support from local residents.
Berwick, Donald (Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services): Opposed to free-market health-care systems, Berwick favors a government-run, single-payer model. He is particularly fond of Great Britain’s government-run National Health Services (NHS) and its National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), a body of bureaucrats who evaluate the relative costs and benefits of various medical therapies in order to determine what procedures the NHS will cover. In Berwick's calculus, America's health-care system traditionally has been inferior to Britain's because of the free-market elements present in the U.S. system.
Bloom, Ron (Senior Counselor to the President for Manufacturing Policy): Asserting that “the free market is nonsense,” Bloom supports federal-government control of the American healthcare system. “We kind of agree with Mao,” says Bloom, “that political power comes largely from the barrel of a gun.”
Brooks, Rosa (Undersecretary for Defense Policy): In a September 2006 L.A. Times column, Brooks referred to President Bush as America’s “torturer-in-chief,” and she suggested that Islamist terror attacks against the U.S. were manifestations of a backlash against America’s foreign transgressions. “Today, the chickens are coming home to roost,” she said.
Browner, Carol (Assistant to the President for Energy and Climate Change): Browner formerly served as a “commissioner” of the Socialist International, the umbrella group for 170 “social democratic, socialist and labor parties” in 55 countries. The Socialist International's “organizing document” cites capitalism as the cause of “devastating crises,” “mass unemployment,” “imperialist expansion,” and “colonial exploitation” worldwide. Browner also worked on the Socialist International's Commission for a Sustainable World Society, which contends that “the developed world must reduce consumption and commit to binding and punitive limits on greenhouse gas emissions.”
Chu, Steven (Secretary of Energy): In 2008, Chu advocated steep rises in gasoline prices as a means of coaxing Americans into being more fuel-efficient and purchasing green energy cars: “Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe” (i.e., approximately $10 per gallon).
Cole, James (Deputy Attorney General): After 9/11, Cole contended that prosecutions related to terrorism should be adjudicated in civilian courts rather than in military tribunals. Further, he legally represented Prince Naif Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, a member of the Saudi royal family, in a lawsuit filed by Motley Rice on behalf of 9/11 families. Prince Naif headed the terror-aligned Al Haramain Islamic Foundation. Between 2002 and 2004, the Treasury Department concluded that 13 branches of that Foundation had ties to al Qaeda; in 2008, Treasury extended the terror designation to the entire Foundation.
Dunn, Anita (White House Communications Director): Dunn has cited former Chinese dictator Mao Zedong as one of her “favorite political philosophers.”
Emanuel, Rahm (Chief of Staff): In December 2008 it was reported that Emanuel, cognizant of the fact that the economic recession in which America was mired presented an opportunity for the Democratic Party to enact sweeping legislation under the guise of an economic recovery plan, had said the following in a candid moment: “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste—and what I mean by that is it's an opportunity to do things that you think you could not do before.”
Freeman, Charles: (Nominated for Chair of the National Intelligence Council, but withdrew from consideration in March 2009): In a 2002 speech, Freeman said: “Saudis and other Gulf Arabs were shocked by the level of ignorance and antipathy displayed by Americans toward them and toward Islam after September 11. The connection between Islam and suicide bombing is a false connection. Kamikaze pilots were not Muslims…. And what of America's lack of introspection about September 11? Instead of asking what might have caused the attack, or questioning the propriety of the national response to it, there is an ugly mood of chauvinism. Before Americans call on others to examine themselves, we should examine ourselves.” In 2007, Freeman said the U.S. had provoked Islamic terrorism by failing to put an end to “the brutal oppression of the Palestinians by an Israeli occupation that is about to mark its fortieth anniversary and shows no sign of ending.”
Geithner, Timothy (Secretary of the Treasury): During Geithner’s Senate confirmation hearings, it was learned that he had failed to pay $43,000 in federal self-employment taxes over a four-year period. He subsequently paid the amount in full, stating that he had been guilty only of making “careless” and “unintentional” errors. In March 2009, the Associated Press reported that Geithner would soon “unveil a series of rules and measures … to limit the ability of international companies to avoid U.S. taxes.” Also in March, Geithner told the House Ways and Means Committee that President Obama intended to propose legislation to limit the ability of American companies and high earners to shelter foreign earnings from U.S. taxes.
Holder, Eric (Attorney General): Holder was deeply involved in former President Clinton's pardons of Puerto Rican FALN terrorists and Marc Rich (a fugitive oil broker who had illegally purchased oil from Iran during the American trade embargo, and had then proceeded to hide more than $100 million in profits by using dummy transactions in off-shore corporations). He also has condemned the Guantanamo Bay detention center as an “international embarrassment”; has sought to try islamic terrorists in civilian courts rather than in military tribunals; has filed suit against several states that had passed laws designed to stem the flow of illegal immigration; and has opposed efforts to purge voter rolls of ineligible names, or to enact voter-ID laws.
Holdren, John (Assistant to the President for Science and Technology): Viewing capitalism as an economic system that is inherently harmful to the natural environment, Holdren once called for “a massive campaign … to de-develop the United States” and other Western nations in order to conserve energy and facilitate growth in underdeveloped countries.
Johnsen, Dawn (Assistant Attorney General to the Office of Legal Counsel): Johnsen views the United States generally as a nation rife with all manner of injustice, including racial discrimination against nonwhites. In an April 2008 article she lamented “the devastatingly disproportionate rates of imprisonment of racial minorities.” In 2008 she characterized the War on Terror as an ill-advised brainstorm that President Bush had undertaken impetuously as an overreaction to a single act of terrorism. Moreover, she believes that nominees for the federal judiciary should automatically be disqualified from consideration if they subscribe to the concept of Constitutional originalism (as opposed to the notion that the Constitution is a malleable “living document”).
Jones, Van (Special Advisor for Green Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation): In 2004 this self-identified revolutionary communist signed the 9/11 Truth Statement, which called for a federal investigation into whether President Bush had been privy to advance knowledge of—or perhaps had colluded in—the destruction of the World Trade Center.
Koh, Harold (Legal Advisor to the U.S. State Department): Koh is an advocate of transnationalism, a concept arguing in favor of “global governance” as opposed to the constitutional sovereignty of independent nation-states. This perspective holds that the world's most challenging problems are too complex and deep-rooted for any single country to address effectively on its own. The solution, says Koh, is for all members of the international community to recognize a set of supranational laws and institutions whose authority overrides those of any particular government.
Lloyd, Mark (Diversity Chief of the Federal Communications Commission): Lloyd seeks to shut down, or at least weaken, talk radio—on the pretext that doing so would promote “diversity” and the interests of “local” populations.
Medina, Eliseo (National Latino Advisory Council): Medina once served as an Honorary Chairman of the Democratic Socialists of America.
Mogahed, Dalia (Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships): Mogahed views the United States as a nation rife with discrimination against Muslims. She contends that the Western view of Sharia Law is “oversimplified,” and that the majority of Muslim women around the world associate Islamic Law with “gender justice.”
Muñoz, Cecilia (Director of Intergovernmental Affairs; Director of the Domestic Policy Council): By Muñoz's reckoning, America is a nation rife with white racism and bigotry. On one occasion, she toldThe Detroit News: “It gets old. We're [Latinos] tired of being treated as if we don't belong here.” Muñoz calls for immigration reform that would create a clear path to citizenship for illegal immigrants, and describes organized opposition to this agenda as a “wave of hate.”
Napolitano, Janet (Secretary of Department of Homeland Security): From her earliest days as the head of DHS, Napolitano broke with the Department’s tradition of warning the American public about potential terrorist threats. Instead, Napolitano began referring to acts of terrorism as “man-caused disasters.”
Perez, Thomas (Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division): In June 2010, J. Christian Adams, a five-year Department of Justice (DOJ) veteran, resigned to protest the “corrupt nature” of DOJ's dismissal of a case involving two Philadelphia-based members of the New Black Panther Party who had intimidated white voters with racial slurs and threats of violence on Election Day, 2008. Adams cited Thomas Perrelli (the Associate Attorney General) and Thomas Perez as the two DOJ officials most responsible for dropping the case. In July 2010, Adams gave damning public testimony about how Perez and other Obama DOJ officials believed that “civil rights law should not be enforced in a race-neutral manner, and should never be enforced against blacks or other national minorities.”
Posner, Michael (Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor): In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, Posner asserted that America's treatment of Middle Easterners was akin to the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. Particularly appalling to Posner was the government's practice of holding suspected terrorists such as al Qaeda operatives Jose Padilla and Yaser Hamdi in military detention indefinitely and without access to legal counsel. From the time of Padilla’s arrest in 2002, Posner was deeply engaged in the defendant's case and filed the first amicus brief on his behalf in July 2003. In May 2010, Posner headed the American delegation to a “U.S.-China Human Rights Dialogue,” where he repeatedly made reference to the recently enacted Arizona immigration-law-enforcement bill as an example of America’s own human-rights failuresâ€•calling it “a troubling trend in our society, and an indication that we have to deal with issues of discrimination or potential discrimination.”
Power, Samantha (Director for Multilateral Affairs, National Security Council): Power has said that America’s relationship with Israel “has often led foreign policy decision-makers to defer reflexively to Israeli security assessments, and to replicate Israeli tactics”â€•thereby provoking terrorist attacks upon America from the Muslim world.
Rice, Susan (Ambassador to the United Nations): Downplaying the aggressive, faith-based intentions of radical Islamists, Rice contends that terrorism is primarily “a threat borne of both oppression and deprivation.” In the aftermath of the deadly September 11, 2012 attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Rice went on five separate news programs and falsely stated that the attacks were a “spontaneous reaction” to an obscure Internet video that was critical of the Prophet Mohammed. Soon thereafter, it was learned that the American consulate in Benghazi had been attacked and threatened at least 13 times before the deadly September 11 attack, and that the Obama administration had failed to provide proper security at the facility.
Solis, Hilda (Secretary of Labor): Solis firmly embraces President Obama's class-warfare mindset. In April 2012, for example, she delivered a speech at Al Sharpton's National Action Network, where she stated that imposing higher taxes on the wealthy was justified: “It’s about fairness in the workplace; it’s about fairness in education; and it’s about fairness in terms of what services are provided by government.... [T]hose that can afford it, the billionaires and millionaires ... want to pay more because they know it’s their obligation!”
Sunstein, Cass (Administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs): Sunstein's views on taxes are wholly consistent with those of President Obama. Wries Sunstein: “In what sense is the money in our pockets and bank accounts fully ‘ours’? Did we earn it by our own autonomous efforts? Could we have inherited it without the assistance of probate courts? Do we save it without the support of bank regulators? Could we spend it if there were no public officials to coordinate the efforts and pool the resources of the community in which we live?… Without taxes there would be no liberty. Without taxes there would be no property. Without taxes, few of us would have any assets worth defending. [It is] a dim fiction that some people enjoy and exercise their rights without placing any burden whatsoever on the public fisc. … There is no liberty without dependency. That is why we should celebrate tax day …”
Sutley, Nancy (White House Council on Environmental Quality): On December 15, 2008, President-elect Barack Obama appointed Sutley to lead the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ). Sutley and the CEQ came under scrutiny in 2009 when it was learned that Van Jones, President Obama’s “Green Jobs Czar” and also a member of the CEQ, was a communist with a twenty-year history of radical activism. Sutley initially had championed Jones as “a strong voice for green jobs,” but once the scandal snowballed and eventually forced Jones to resign, Sutley issued only a short statement on Jones' “hard work” and dedication to green jobs and renewable resources.
Tauscher, Ellen (Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security): When she was a congresswoman, Tauscher opposed efforts to create any new nuclear weapons and withheld funding from the Reliable Replacement Warhead program, which was designed to secure America's aging nuclear stockpile. Not only were missile-defense systems “untested,” in Tauscher's view, but they were unnecessary—because Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejiad and al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden did not yet possess nuclear weapons. In March 2009 Tauscher excoriated advocates of missile defense for “running around with their hair on fire warning about a long-range threat from Iran that does not exist.” Tauscher believes that in order to discourage aggressive dictators from developing nuclear weapons, the United States should disarm itself of its own nuclear stockpiles. In February 2009 she told the Munich Security Conference: “The U.S. would, without question, be more secure in a world free of nuclear weapons. The real question is whether pursuit of such a goal is in our security interests. I believe it is.”
Trumka, Richard (Member of President Obama's Economic Recovery Advisory Board): This powerful socialist labor leader helped rescind a founding AFL-CIO rule that banned Communist Party members and loyalists from leadership positions within the Federation and its unions. As a result, Communist Party delegates became free to secure positions of power in the Federation. The Communist Party USA (CPUSA) declared itself “in complete accord” with the “very positive” new policy. In the late 1990s, Trumka twice invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination in a congressional committee investigation of a corruption and money-laundering scandal.
Warren, Elizabeth (Special Assistant in charge of organizing and establishing a new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau): In 2009 Warren appeared in Michael Moore's anti-capitalist film titled Capitalism: A Love Story. In a taped interview, the filmmaker told Warren that “capitalism in and of itself, at least the capitalism we know now, is immoral, it’s not democratic, and worst of all, it doesn’t work...” Warren did not disagree, replying: “But we made up these rules, and the rules are of men, of people. We pick what the rules are. The rules have not been written for ordinary families, for the people who actually do the work. We have to rewrite those rules.” When Moore then blamed the greed of “corporate America” for allegedly having tricked people into borrowing money they could not repay, Warren said: “Its a big part of what happened, and then just layer in on top of that: 'Can we sell them more credit cards that are loaded with tricks and traps?'” In April 2012, Warren became embroiled in controversy when it was learned that during the 1990s she had falsely identified herself as part-Native American in an effort to bolster her chances of being hired by a university seeking to improve its “diversity” hiring record.
West, Tony (Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Civil Division): In 2001, West joined the legal defense team of John Walker Lindh, an American Muslim convert and a member of al Qaeda, who had taken up arms against U.S. troops in Afghanistan after 9/11. In July 2002, after Lindh signed a plea deal that would send him to jail for up to 20 years, West stated that Lindh “is not a terrorist,” but a young man of great “intellectual curiosity.” “He’s so intellectually driven,” said West, “and he has a wide variety of interests—from English literature to World History to Islamic studies. I truly believe John will have a lot to offer after his incarceration, and I believe John’s faith has led him to the same conclusion.” On a later occasion, West argued that “defending the despised,” in this case Lindh, was akin to the founding father John Adams’ 1770 defense of the British officers who had participated in the Boston Massacre.