Sunday, November 16, 2008

November 16, 2008

     It's time to have fun in Washington these days, time to spread irresponsible rumors.  Just wander down the street where two or three people can hear you and say something like, "I hear it's Charlie Brown for Defense."  Keep walking.  They'll pass it on and, with any luck, you'll read some pundit in the morning, "Reliable sources say Charlie Brown is on the short list for Secretary of Defense."  You can't beat it.
    The fact usually is, of course, that the ones who know don't talk and the ones who talk don't know, but that's no reason not to have fun with it.  I keep reading, for instance, that Hillary Clinton is on the short list for Secretary of State.  Well, why not?  If I were President-elect Obama,  I'd be more likely to offer her Health, Education & Welfare.  She spent a lot of time, you may remember, working on health care during her husband's first year as president.  It didn't go anywhere; Congress didn't pass a bill.  But I'm sure she learned a lot about the issue and has learned more since.  What the heck, let Charlie Brown drive the tank.
     And that raises another question.  How much fun would you have in a cabinet job?  Most presidents want to be in charge themselves on the big issues:  foreign policy, defense.  You might have more power as Secretary of Agriculture.  Presidents are less likely to want to read the fine print on a 400 page farm bill.  Or maybe you'd be happier back in the Senate.  Nebraska Republican Chuck Hagel was quoted as saying he'd rather stay there.  You can pretty much choose how many hours you work, except for when big votes are scheduled, and you can learn as much or as little as you want about the various issues.
     The restaurant's gone up and down over the years, but most people who lunch at the State Department cafeteria don't rave about it either.    
     Anyway, it's an exciting time.
     Really?  Angelina Jolie for Treasury?  Where'd you hear that one?  I'll pass it on.

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