Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Obama chooses Socialist for “Climate Czar”

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Obama chooses carol brownerPresident-elect Barack Obama has selected the former head of the Environmental Protection Agency under Bill Clinton, Carol Browner, to serve as his “Assistant to the President on Energy and Climate Change.” Plenty of the “qualifications” on her résumé should raise eyebrows for anyone concerned about freedom or sovereignty, but perhaps most alarming is her leadership seat on Socialist International’s “Commission for a Sustainable World Society.” The organization believes, among other things, that “an essential aspect of realising a more fair and effective form of global governance is reform of the United Nations,” it says on its website.

Its members want to “promote socialist ideas and work towards this objective at international level.” The organization also claims “rich countries must shrink their economies to address climate change,” as was noted in a recent story by the Washington Times about Browner’s connection to the group. Other leaders of the commission include the head of Belgium’s socialist party (PS), the chairman of the Council of the Russian Federation, and from Morocco, the minister of state who is also the leader of the “Socialist Union of Popular Forces.” Browner’s name and biography were removed from Socialist International’s website sometime after January 9, but the Google search engine still had a cached file of the site available showing clearly all the relevant information.

Obama’s transition team said Browner’s membership in the socialist world-government-promoting organization “is not a problem” and that “it brings experience in U.S. policymaking to her new role.” A spokesman for the transition team also told the Washington Times that “Carol Browner was chosen to help the president-elect coordinate energy and climate policy because she understands that our efforts to create jobs, achieve energy security and combat climate change demand integration among different agencies; cooperation between federal, state and local governments; and partnership with the private sector."

Despite her lengthy career in government, including the longest administratorship of the EPA in its history, she does have some private-sector experience too on the board of directors of APX, a company that works with “carbon offset credits” and “emission allowances,” among other things. In a press release announcing her joining APX dated March 10, 2008, Browner noted: “APX is a world-class environmental infrastructure company with a long history of public private partnership, and I look forward to helping them capitalize on the full potential of these markets." It seems that now she will be better positioned to accomplish this than ever before, especially considering the fact that the newly created position doesn’t even require approval by the Senate.

Other aspects of Browner’s résumé are noteworthy as well. She was a principal in The Albright Group LLC and Albright Capital Management LLC, two firms founded by Madeleine Albright, Bill Clinton’s Secretary of State. Both firms are filled with members of another world-government promoting organization, the Council on Foreign Relations. Browner was also on the board of directors for Al Gore’s “Alliance for Climate Protection,” as well as the National Audubon Society, the League of Conservation Voters, and the Center for American Progress.

As head of the EPA, Browner lost a historic case in a federal court. She and the agency were found guilty of discrimination and retaliation against whistle-blowers. After the decision in Coleman-Adebayo v. Carol Browner, a furious Congress passed the No FEAR Act to prevent retaliation against whistle-blowers in government. It is now required reading for federal employees, but strangely the media have remained relatively silent on Browner’s selection and what should be a massive controversy. At least the former EPA employee involved in the suit against Browner is speaking out. “The very woman I prevailed against in court is being elevated to a White House decision-level position — what message does this send to others in the Federal government who are considering exposing corruption or discrimination?” wondered Coleman-Adebayo. “Should government managers take comfort in the fact that employees can prevail against them in Federal court, Congress can unanimously condemn their leadership and pass a law to stop them, and they still may be tapped for a high level position? How tragic."

Whether Obama is aware of all of these glaring conflicts of interest is not presently known, but since her appointment doesn’t require approval, it seems that for the time being the new administration is just counting on nobody paying attention.

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