Other Tragic Appointments and Advisers in the Bush Administration
Dr. W. David Hager to head up the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee
Judicial Nominees (Charles W. Pickering, Priscilla Owen )
Attorney General: John Ashcroft
FDA's Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee: W. David Hager
National Advisory Committee on Violence Against Women ,Nancy Pfotenhauer
Department of Agriculture Under Secretary of Agriculture for Rural Development: Thomas Dorr
Tommy Thompson Secretary of Health and Human Services; HHS
Assistant Secretary for Family Support: Wade Horn
Gale Norton, Secretary of Interior
Diana Furchtgott-Roth , Council of Economic Advisors,Director of the Federal Housing Finance Board
Spencer Abraham, Secretary of Energy
Molly Ivins: More bizarre appointments from the Bush team
B. John Williams, a corporate tax attorney, as chief counsel to the Internal Revenue Service
John Graham, the "regulatory czar," for Office of Management and Budget
J. Steven Griles, new deputy secretary at the Interior Department
Jon Huntsman Jr., deputy trade representative
At this site you can:
VIEW PROFILES BY DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY:
Council On Environmental Quality | Department of Agriculture |
Department of Defense | Department of Justice | Department of
the Interior | Department of the Navy | Environmental Protection
Agency | Office of Management and Budget
VIEW PROFILES BY NAME:
John Ashcroft | James E. Cason | James Connaughton | Linda J.
Fisher | John D. Graham | J. Steven Griles | Jeffrey Holmstead |
William Geary Myers, III | Gale Norton | Mike Parker | Jean-Marie
Peltier | Bennet William Raley | Mark Rey | Thomas Sansonetti |
Patricia "Lynn" Scarlett | Donald Schregardus | Adam J. Sharp |
Christine Todd Whitman | Ann Veneman | Rebecca W. Watson |
John Paul Woodley
43 "Pioneer" Fundraisers Get Bush Appointments
Bush Pioneers Get Top Job New Report: 43 ''Pioneer'' Fundraisers Get Bush Appointments"
Enron chairman, Kenneth Lay, recommended FERC appointments
Enron: Power Trader Tied to Bush Finds Washington All Ears
Many stories on Bush appointments
Appointments that expose Bush's hypocrisy in 'war on terrorism'
Bush's inner circle of old Texas hands
Bush Appointments Include Fewer Women
Chicken Hawks in/associated with the Bush Administration
also an FlashMX animated version of same subject can be found at:
Hispanic leader criticizes Bush over appointments
also related article with a list of Bush's Mexican and Texas crime family ties
Bush's Appointments Mostly Retreads
Steven Griles Deputy Interior Secretary
March 2001--President George W. Bush has nominated J. Steven Griles, a lobbyist for the mining, oil, and gas industries, as the new Deputy Interior Secretary. If confirmed, Mr. Griles will have broad authority over national parks, national monuments, wildlife refuges, and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands.
"Norton's announcement that J. Steven Griles will be her deputy interior secretary made it clear that champions of industry will be running the department that oversees most of the nation's public lands." [Denver Post, 3/9/01]
We can't say it any better than that. By selecting Mr. Griles for such a powerful land management position, the Bush Administration has signaled its intent to give industry interests priority over protection of our nation's public lands.
Another candidate, Conservation Fund President John Turner, had been widely expected to gain the job. But Interior Secretary Gale Norton pushed for Griles, and a major campaign mounted by property rights advocates succeeded in swaying the White House's decision.
Industry Hails Nomination
As expected, industry interests are overjoyed by Griles' selection:
"He's an ally of the industry. This hopefully will be a breath of fresh air." --National Mining Association spokesman John Grasser [Denver Post, 3/9/01] (Ironic compliment coming from the coal industry…)
"Here is someone ready to carry out Gale Norton's agenda on property rights." --Wise use lobbyist Mike Hardiman of the American Land Rights Alliance, a property-rights group [Denver Post, 3/9/01].
Biographical Highlights -- Industry Lobbyist
(Thanks to Clearinghouse on Environmental Advocacy and Research for biographical details.)
**Griles currently serves as Vice President for National Environmental Strategies, a Washington DC-based lobbying firm. According to the most recently available lobbying registrations posted by the Center for Responsive Politics, Griles' clients include utility, coal and oil interests. Among them are Sun Co, Pennsylvania Power and Light, Occidental Petroleum, National Mining Association, Edison Electric, and the Aluminum Association. Past clients have included Integrated Waste Services Ass'n, National Food Processors Ass'n, The Southern Company, Air Implementation Reform Coalition, National Ass'n of Metal Finishers, and Shell Oil.
**Through his own firm, J. Steven Griles and Associates, Griles represented the Coal bed Methane Ad Hoc committee and Dominion Resources.
** Griles is a former Senior Vice President of environment and public affairs at the United Company, a Virginia-based company in coal, oil and gas development and gold mining, and real estate development.
Biographical Highlights -- Dept. of Interior
**Griles has known Interior Secretary Gale Norton since they served together in the Interior department during the Reagan administration.
**Griles served as Assistant Secretary. of the Interior for Land and Minerals Management 1985-89, as Deputy Assistant Secretary to the same department between 1983-85, and as Deputy Director of the Office Surface Mining during James Watt's time as Secretary, 1981-83.
**Senator Howard M. Metzenbaum (D-OH) once told Griles, ''There's considerable evidence that under your stewardship Office of Surface Mining carried out a campaign to gut the Federal strip mining laws." Metzenbaum voiced these concerns during committee-level confirmation hearings for Griles' promotion to Assistant Secretary. Metzenbaum was questioning Griles' record during his tenure as Deputy Assistant Secretary and his time as acting Assistant Secretary. [The New York Times, December 6, 1985 and The Oil Daily December 5, 1985]
**When Griles was made acting Assistant Secretary in 1994, the off-shore oil industry considered Griles the "ideal choice head up the agency as programs in coal and offshore oil and gas leasing enter critical phases in the next six months." [The Oil Daily, November 27, 1984]
** According to the Oil Daily, Griles was not an effective leader. The paper wrote, "The federal district court here has overturned most of the regulatory revisions attempted by the [Office of Surface Mining] agency when Griles was its deputy director." The Oil Daily also reported that "a House Government Operations Committee report said the program was so badly administered that Congress should consider transferring it to another agency." [The Oil Daily December 5, 1985]
**Before joining the Reagan administration, Griles served at the Virginia Department of Conservation, in Richmond between 1968 and 1981.
Elaine L. Chao is Bush's selection to
head the Labor Department
Affirmative-action critic Chao is a fellow at the conservative Heritage Foundation think tank. Heritage receives major funding from Pioneer Maurice "Hank" Greenberg. After he complained about its cautious position on trade with China, Heritage issued a new paper that was bullish on the topic. Chao was President Bush's Peace Corps director and deputy secretary of Transportation. United Way of America hired her to clean up its wreckage in '92, after charges that her predecessor spent $600,000 of charity funds on himself and a teen-age girl friend. Chao restored credibility but stumbled over her exit. Some board members offered her a goodbye gift of $292,500 out of their personal funds to supplement Chao's $195,000 salary. She did not refuse the money until the media cried foul. Chao's husband, Sen. Mitch McConnell, is the leading defender of special-interest campaign money in Congress.
OVERVIEW ARTICLES ON BUSH APPOINTMENTS
Analysis: Oil and the Bush cabinet
By Katty Kay
A majority of President Bush's new cabinet are millionaires and several are multimillionaires.
According to information from financial disclosure reports, released by the Office of Government Ethics, most cabinet appointees have amassed their fortunes in stock options.
Now a Washington-based think tank is questioning whether some of the cabinet members could face a possible conflict of interest.
It is not unusual for American politicians to be rich. For the last two decades more than half of all cabinet members have been millionaires.
But the number of millionaires in this new cabinet highlights the influence of money in American politics.
"You don¹t come to Washington and give up your life and business unless you have a lot of money, "said Charles Lewis, executive director of the Center for Public Integrity.
What makes the new Bush administration different from previous wealthy cabinets is that so many of the officials have links to the same industry - oil.
The president, vice-president, commerce secretary and national security adviser all have strong ties to the oil industry.
Vice-President Dick Cheney amassed some£50m-$60m while he was chief executive of Haliburton oil company.
Commerce Secretary Donald Evans held stock valued between $5m and $25m in Tom Brown Inc, the oil and gas exploration company he headed.
National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice was a director of Exxon.
The concentration of energy connections is so pronounced that some critics are calling the Bush government the "oil and gas administration".
There are also questions about how energy policy decisions may be affected by the private financial interests of so many senior cabinet members.
The Bush administration has already made it clear that it would be interested in opening up oil exploration in Alaska.
It is a move opposed by environmental groups but favoured by energy companies. With oil prices rising in recent months this issue has taken on new urgency.
And this is not just the era of wealthy cabinet members. One third of this senate are millionaires and 10 of the major presidential candidates also had financial fortunes in the millions. If wealth is a prerequisite of political office, it appears that poverty is often a hallmark of political apathy.
Charles Lewis of the Center for Public Integrity said: "There is a perception of wealthy folks running the government and those who are not wealthy not participating in government."
Of the 100 million Americans who do not vote, the overwhelming majority are lower middle class or poor.
Genetically Modified Cabinet
John Vidal Thursday February 1, 2001 The Guardian newspaper (UK)
When Bill Clinton was president, it was an open secret that his government favoured agricultural biotechnology and actively promoted it as a potential US global money-spinner.
But the strength of the genetically modified food lobby in George Bush's new cabinet, and its links with the GM global leader, Monsanto, are greater than anything that came before, it has emerged.
The secretaries of defence, health and agriculture, the attorney general and the chairman of the House agriculture committee all have links with the firm or the wider industry.
The most active GM advocate is expected to be John Ashcroft, the proposed attorney general, who received $10,000 (£6,800) from Monsanto in the recent elections, the most the company gave to any congressional candidate. Mr Ashcroft led calls to the Clinton administration to promote GM crops in developing countries and to persuade Europe to accept them.
If the appointment of Tommy Thompson, the former governor of Wisconsin, as secretary of health and human services is confirmed, he will be given overall responsibility for food safety, pharmaceuticals and the Food and Drug Administration, which licenses biotechnology in the US.
Mr Thompson is a GM supporter and has accepted money for his campaigns from Monsanto. He used state funds to set up a £200m biotech zone and was one of 13 state governors to launch a campaign, partly funded by Monsanto, to persuade Americans of the benefits of GM crops. Ann Veneman, the new agriculture secretary, was a director of the GM company Calgene, now owned by Monsanto, and has been active in world trade talks which would favour US companies exporting GM crops to developing countries.
Donald Rumsfeld, the defence secretary, was president of Searle Pharmaceuticals when it was bought by Monsanto.
Larry Combest, a Texas Republican who will chair the powerful House of Representatives agriculture committee, received $2,000 from Monsanto in last year's elections. He is known as a strong supporter of GM food.
Clarence Thomas, the judge whose vote for Mr Bush in the supreme court helped decide the election, was a Monsanto lawyer from 1977 to 1979. His views on GM are not known.
Charles Lewis, director of the Centre for Public Integrity, said: "It looks like Monsanto and the biotechnology industry has the potential to bring undue influence on the new government."
A spokesman for the charity Christian Aid said: "This does not bode well. We should be proceeding cautiously with GM. We fear even greater pressure on poor countries to introduce the technology, to the detriment of poor farmers and consumers who may further lose control of their food security."
Loren Wassel, Monsanto's director of public relations, declined to comment yesterday.
Dr. W. David Hager to head up the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee.
PRESIDENTIAL APPOINTMENT Whether you're Right or Left on the issue
women's reproductive rights, please consider the following...
President Bush has announced his plan to select Dr. W. David Hager to head
up the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Reproductive Health Drugs
Advisory Committee. The committee has not met for more than two years,
during which time its charter has lapsed. As a result, the Bush
Administration is tasked with filling all eleven positions with new members.
This position does not require Congressional approval. The FDA's
Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee makes crucial decisions on
matters relating to drugs used in the practice of obstetrics, gynecology and
related specialties, including hormone therapy, contraception, treatment for
infertility, and medical alternatives to surgical procedures for
sterilization and pregnancy termination.
Dr. Hager's views of reproductive health care are far outside the mainstream
of setback for reproductive technology. Dr. Hager is a practicing OB/GYN
who describes himself as "pro-life" and refuses to prescribe contraceptives
to unmarried women. Hager is the author of "As Jesus Cared for Women:
Restoring Women Then and Now."
The book blends biblical accounts of Christ healing women with case studies
from Hager's practice. In the book Dr. Hager wrote with his wife, entitled
"Stress and the Woman's Body," he suggests that women who suffer from
premenstrual syndrome should seek help from reading the bible and praying.
As an editor and contributing author of "The reproduction Revolution: A
Christian Appraisal of Sexuality, reproductive Technologies and the Family,"
Dr. Hager appears to have endorsed the medically inaccurate assertion that
the common birth control pill is an abortifacient. Hagar's mission is
religiously motivated. He has an ardent interest in revoking approval for
mifepristone (formerly known as RU-486) as a safe and early form of medical
Hagar recently assisted the Christian Medical Association in a "citizen's
petition" which calls upon the FDA to revoke its approval of mifepristone in
the name of women's health. Hager's desire to overturn mifepristone's
approval on religious grounds rather than scientific merit would halt the
development of mifepristone as a treatment for numerous medical conditions
disproportionately affecting women, including breast cancer, uterine cancer,
uterine fibroid tumors, psychotic depression, bipolar depression and
Women rely on the FDA to ensure their access to safe and effective drugs for
reproductive health care including products that prevent pregnancy.
For some women, such as those with certain types of diabetes and those
undergoing treatment for cancer pregnancy can be a life-threatening
condition. We are concerned that Dr. Hager's strong religious beliefs may
color his assessment of technologies that are necessary to protect women's
lives or to preserve and promote women's health.
Hager's track record of using religious beliefs to guide his medical
decision-making makes him a dangerous and inappropriate candidate to serve
as chair of this committee. Critical drug public policy and research must
not be held hostage by antiabortion politics.
Members of this important panel should be appointed on the basis of science
and medicine, rather than politics and religion. American women deserve no
Received via email on 2-11-03