Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Corrupting democracy

Its tedious to have to say over and over again that the Bush administration has used the American federal government as a spoils system to reward its campaign financers at the expense of American democracy.

With the recent focus on mining disasters we witness another example of that process in action, as highlighted by Mr. Brayton at Dispatches from the Culture Wars. As it turns out, Richard Stickler, the former mining executive chosen by President Bush to head the Mining Safety and Health Administration, had a history of running unsafe mines and was rejected twice by the Senate, at which point Bush got him the job via recess appointment.

Take it away, Ed.

So not only do we have a guy with a terrible safety record in mine safety running the government's mine safety program, but he was snuck in to the job after being rejected by the Senate not once but twice. Bush went out of his way to appoint someone clearly unqualified, someone rejected twice by a Republican-controlled Senate, when it would have been easier - and obviously better for the country - to find someone who was qualified to pass the Senate confirmation.

The arrogance of this administration never ceases to amaze me. They really do seem to think that they are omniscient and omnipotent, that there's no possible way they could ever be wrong about anything. Even when faced with his own party's rejection of a nominee who is clearly unqualified for the job, does it even occur to them that perhaps they should change course and find another person for the job? Of course not. They just wait until Congress leaves town and slide them in under the radar. Staggering arrogance.
Hey, it's par for the course.

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