EDITORIAL: Just say no to political lackeys in top positions
The president's nominee to lead the Consumer Product Safety Commission withdrew today, facing a fire storm of opposition. Michael Baroody faced heat from Senate Democrats who objected to his credentials as a manufacturers' lobbyist. More specific...
The president's nominee to lead the Consumer Product Safety Commission withdrew today, facing a fire storm of opposition.
Michael Baroody faced heat from Senate Democrats who objected to his credentials as a manufacturers' lobbyist. More specifically, he was a lobbyist for the National Association of Manufacturers.
Whatever happened to the days when a job applicant had to display something that indicates they're qualified for the position they seek? For instance, someone leading the Consumer Product Safety Commission might benefit from a background in engineering.
This is nothing new in Washington. Under the current administration, the federal Environmental Protection Agency must be sued before it will enforce its own regulations.
The Bush administration defended its choice of Baroody.
''The president selected Mr. Baroody to serve in this position because of his strong commitment to protecting American consumers, his impressive leadership record and extensive public service" in the Reagan administration, the White House said in a prepared statement to The Associated Press.
It's unclear how Baroody protected American consumers as a lobbyist. But one thing is clear: A growing number of dangerous products are recalled from the market each year, including numerous Chinese toys that contain lead. It might be argued they shouldn't have reached the market in the first place.
We also wonder about Baroody's "public service." That phrase seems to be highly misused. People who work for a government agency are "employees" like everyone else. Being engaged in "public service" implies they work without pay, which isn't the case.
Like many federal agencies, the Consumer Product Safety Commission won't benefit by seating a political lackey at the helm. To do so would be a disservice to taxpayers.