The Obama Czar System

President Obama has already appointed a record 16 Czars to oversee many aspects of his administration. I suspect more Czars will be appointed, it seems there is a new one every week. Czars have been appointed by other Presidents, but nothing like the Obama administration. Czars are chosen by the President and do not have to be confirmed by the Senate. On the other hand, the President’s Cabinet members must be confirmed by the Senate. Thus, Czars are not necessarily qualified to do the job and may have simply gotten the position based on political favors. It certainly begs to reason why Obama needs both Cabinet and Czar roles in his administration? It makes little sense since there is overlap and redundancy between these positions and that obviously leads to wasteful spending. Here are some facts and issues with the Obama Czar Program:


Here is a list of Czars in the Obama Administration: Energy and Environment, Health, Urban Affairs, Economic, Regulatory, Government Performance, Bailout, Drug, Border, Iran, Middle East, Technology, Great Lakes, Cyber-Security, Pay, and Car. Each Czar is responsible for a large budget with absolutely no oversight and some Czars do not even have any practical experience in the field they are a presiding over.


Many of the Czar’s responsibilities overlap many facets in government. Thus, the Czar program only promotes larger government and more bureaucracy. For example, the Cyber-Security Czar duties overlap many agencies in the Homeland Security Cabinet including the Pentagon, CIA, FBI, and so forth. In fact, many Cabinet and Czar positions are eerily similar: What is the difference between the Energy and Environment Czar and the head of the Environmental Protection Agency and the head of the Department of Energy Cabinet roles? In my corporate experience, adding additional layers of bureaucracy does not improve communication, but hinders it.  It makes sense since communication deficiencies increase as more people are placed in the loop. Redundancy is good in rock climbing, but it is not good in our government.


Obama must have somewhere in the vicinity of 50 direct reports. This is a ridiculous number and a disaster waiting to happen. At one time in my corporate days I had over 20 people reporting to me. It was overwhelming and I basically did not know which way was up. Because of that I did some research and most business books say that most people can effectively deal with anywhere from 6 to 10 direct reports. I know most liberals believe Obama is “God”, but there is no way he can have this many direct reports and not make critical mistakes.


Obama claims to be the man that will lead a transparent administration. The Czar program is the antithesis of transparency. Since these men report and are appointed solely by the President, the other agencies of government (legislative and judicial) do not have any checks and balances over these individuals. They are not confirmed and can claim “executive privilege” and not have to report on matters to Congress, even if a scandal or fraud is suspected. Thus, there is no oversight and regulation of the Czar program which is nothing more than an Executive Branch “Power Grab”. Oversight and regulation should sound familiar, this is what liberals demand in the private sector, but they conveniently look the other way and require no oversight and regulation in government. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are good examples of a lack of government oversight. Democrats argue that each Czar position provides more oversight into the government spending process. That would be true if the Czars were not restricted to answer solely to the Executive Branch.


Because the Obama Czar program does not fit into the “checks and balances” the Constitution outlines for government, it violates the Constitution. Our forefathers purposely wrote a document to create a government with three branches with “checks and balances” to prevent one branch from gaining too much power. Remember, the authors of the Constitution fought a war to break away from the Tyranny of England. I doubt they would appreciate any President growing the Executive Branch in power and stature.  


I am a little surprised that Obama actually uses the term Czar. If history taught us one thing: the ruling Czar’s in Russia were fairly inept, tyrants, dictators, and brutal leaders. Obama has already changed the name to much terminology because it does not fit our politically correct society, such as changing “terrorists” to “enemy combatants” and so forth.


My Book: Is America Dying? (Barnes and Noble, Amazon.com)

My Blog: http://patrickbohan.blogtownhall.com/ (The Theory of Mediocrity)