Obama’s energy secretary surprised to learn he’s in charge of oil policy

posted at 7:11 pm on February 20, 2009 by Allahpundit

Like Treacher says, the difference between Obama and Jesus is that Jesus knew how to assemble a cabinet.

At a forum with reporters on Thursday, the head of the department that has traditionally taken the lead on global oil-market policy, was asked what message the Obama administration had for the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries at its meeting next month.

“I’m not the administration,” the Cabinet secretary replied. “I will be speaking and learning more about this in order to figure out what the U.S. position should be and what the president’s position is.”…

The day before, reporters asked him about OPEC output levels after a speech to a group of utility regulators. He responded that the issue was “not in my domain.”

He confessed later to, er, “naivete.” File this away in the “Confidence Boosters” drawer along with Krauthammer’s piece today on The One’s early foreign-policy wobbles and that WaPo story from a few days ago about how Geithner, given two months to prepare a financial rescue plan, had to scrap the whole thing at the last minute and go a different route. Exit question: At least the Transportation Department has its eye on the ball, right?


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Park your cars – tune up your bikes.
So much for the survival of GM.

izoneguy on February 20, 2009 at 7:13 PM

Chu was just happy to learn that he didn’t have to take dictation and answer phones for his new job.

progressoverpeace on February 20, 2009 at 7:14 PM

We are so screwed

Defector01 on February 20, 2009 at 7:15 PM

Lord, we’re in for it.

emailnuevo on February 20, 2009 at 7:16 PM

This guy was always on the watch list of people who werent exactly ready to lead whole departments of the federal government…so this sort of slip up should be no surprise.

Again, this sort of thing will happen when democrats win elections. Democrats as a party have not spent much time leading the country in the modern era, and as a result have a much smaller bureaucratic base from which to draw talent.

That doesnt excuse this mind you, but it is the reality of the situation.

ernesto on February 20, 2009 at 7:16 PM

Just goes to show you that being a Nobel winning physicist doesn’t necessarily make you smart.

Guess when you have a clown at the top, the lesser clowns have to fill the other billets.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 7:18 PM

We have a president who has no clue what he is supposed to do, we have a head of the CIA who has no intellegence background, only makes sense that the rest of the keystone cabinet is clueless.

To quote Defector01…We are so screwed.

ihasurnominashun on February 20, 2009 at 7:19 PM

“naivete.”

Well………..

………. that pretty much sums up Mr. Teleprompter and his entire Administration.

This is all a big joke…….. right? I mean please tell me that the United States of America isn’t being run by a bunch of people who just like to dress up in suits and stand in front of cameras?

Seven Percent Solution on February 20, 2009 at 7:19 PM

During the election cycle I was genuinely afraid that if Obama was elected he’d govern as a radical Marxist. I had no clue that the reality would be far worse – he’s an incompetent moron who has no clue how to govern anything other than a political aspiration.

peski on February 20, 2009 at 7:21 PM

Good lord . . . we’re doomed.

rplat on February 20, 2009 at 7:21 PM

Maybe GWB really did hide the Orb of Confusion in the White House somewhere.

BobMbx on February 20, 2009 at 7:21 PM

Actually, oil won’t be in his domain once we make the great leap forward to green energy.

myrenovations on February 20, 2009 at 7:21 PM

I mean please tell me that the United States of America isn’t being run by a bunch of people who just like to dress up in suits and stand in front of cameras?

Seven Percent Solution on February 20, 2009 at 7:19 PM

Well, ok…. I won’t tell you.

peski on February 20, 2009 at 7:22 PM

Chu must be Obama’s covert China connection.

darwin on February 20, 2009 at 7:23 PM

Actually, oil won’t be in his domain once we make the great leap forward to green energy.

myrenovations on February 20, 2009 at 7:21 PM

That’s a pretty astute comment. He’s probably been told by the inner circle that oil is none of his business because it’s a political topic, not an energy source.

peski on February 20, 2009 at 7:23 PM

At least Los Alamos won’t lose any laptops on his watch.

Christien on February 20, 2009 at 7:24 PM

Just goes to show you that being a Nobel winning physicist doesn’t necessarily make you smart.

Guess when you have a clown at the top, the lesser clowns have to fill the other billets.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 7:18 PM

Two words on Nobel

Al

Gore..

And, as an added bonus..4 words on the Grammys.

Milli-Vanilli

Al

Gore..

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 7:24 PM

the appointment was about appeasing the nutroots who convinced themselves that we need “reality based” scientists in positions of power. Apparently understanding oil policy is a little to real.

rob verdi on February 20, 2009 at 7:24 PM

ihasurnominashun ,
your comment made me laugh, then I realized the implications and stopped.

rob verdi on February 20, 2009 at 7:25 PM

When is this liberal garbage going to reach the point when Americans kick the losers out of Washington???

lanesmerge on February 20, 2009 at 7:26 PM

Funny thing about Dr. Chu…he won a Nobel Prize for laser cooling research, yet his apparent strong point is molecular biology, and he is one of the major spokesmen in academia for alternative energy.

OK. Sort of says that silly old oil is just not all that important anymore.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 7:26 PM

I am soooooooooooooo IMPRESSED with the quality of The Chosen One’s cabinet.

When the economy crashes everyone of them, from the president down, will be able to say “That’s not my domain”.

Chu’s agenda is ‘green energy’. He’s not interested in anything else, and he’s not going to push anything else, other than ‘cap and trade’ on traditional energy sources in order to drive their prices up. Then ‘green’, although still higher in cost, will be proclaimed the new ‘standard’.

And our economy will be fucked for years because of it.

GarandFan on February 20, 2009 at 7:26 PM

Like Treacher says, the difference between Obama and Jesus is that Jesus knew how to assemble a cabinet.

Yah, look how Judas turned out :)

peter_griffin on February 20, 2009 at 7:27 PM

This is the same guy who said last week that the California agriculture industry may dry up and did not know if California cities would be able to continue to exist.

Alarming how green these appointee’s really are.

I never thought I would see my American government run by true wannabes.

FireBlogger on February 20, 2009 at 7:27 PM

In this case, Osama Obama bit off more than he can Chu….

MrScribbler on February 20, 2009 at 7:28 PM

Fantastic! A neophyte Cabinet member and alleged smart guy didn’t bother to read the freakin’ job description? Here’s tip, Einstein: next time find out what the responsibilities are before you accept the position.

Worst Cabinet Evah!

trubble on February 20, 2009 at 7:28 PM

Just goes to show you that being a Nobel winning physicist doesn’t necessarily make you smart.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 7:18 PM

Sure it does — about physics. But scientists, like many others, are specialists. Einstein would have made a lousy President.

Splunge on February 20, 2009 at 7:28 PM

Rove has said it best. They are “winging it.”

kevinkristy on February 20, 2009 at 7:28 PM

The day before, reporters asked him about OPEC output levels after a speech to a group of utility regulators. He responded that the issue was “not in my domain.”

Well, if he doesn’t want to get his hands greasy, he can call on Palin.

What a pussy.

Cody1991 on February 20, 2009 at 7:29 PM

We’ll have to wait until Rahm sticks his hand up Chu’s um…back and tells us what’s what. It will be brilliant, and Rahm’s lips will never move.

Laura in Maryland on February 20, 2009 at 7:29 PM

next thing you know people in this admin will say pig farmers are more dangerous then Al Qaeda. Oh wait……

rob verdi on February 20, 2009 at 7:29 PM

Just goes to show you that being a Nobel winning physicist doesn’t necessarily make you smart.

Guess when you have a clown at the top, the lesser clowns have to fill the other billets.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 7:18 PM

It makes you smart in your area of expertise, not necessarily in others. I am sure you would rather have Joe the Plumber ….

peter_griffin on February 20, 2009 at 7:30 PM

Lot of headline -> blog motion lately. Is it becoming a mandatory testing ground?

kc8ukw on February 20, 2009 at 7:30 PM

He confessed later to, er, “naivete.”

I’ll say.

Aronne on February 20, 2009 at 7:30 PM

Best cabinet ever from the smarderest prezident ever.

Could we please go back to having a dumb guy in charge? The smart ones f*ck it up too much.

jukin on February 20, 2009 at 7:31 PM

change = failure
change = incompetence
change = fecklessness
change = breakdown
change = corruption

Hey he never promised improvement, just change.

Mojave Mark on February 20, 2009 at 7:33 PM

Sure it does — about physics. But scientists, like many others, are specialists. Einstein would have made a lousy President.

Splunge on February 20, 2009 at 7:28 PM

Well, I saw that show about him a couple of month’s ago. He was kind of a dick. Ahead of his time, intelligent…but kind of a pacifistic douche all the same.

Your point would be??

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 7:34 PM

I second,,or maybe it is now thirding,,,”we are so screwed”"

retiredeagle on February 20, 2009 at 7:35 PM

peter_griffin on February 20, 2009 at 7:30 PM

No. I’d much rather have persons with relevant successful experience in related industry, or business, and so forth, with the added obligation of having had to be responsible for budgets and payrolls as a responsible leader of a large entity running the various Cabinet posts.

Appointing people, such as Dr. Chu, to a major strategic and defense position such as Energy at a crucial period in our history merely because he espouses “green” energy…well, says a lot more about the President who appointed Chu than it says about Chu, which, based on his recent comments, isn’t all that inspiring.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 7:35 PM

BO and his nancy-girls. None of them have a testosterone level that registers – anywhere.

Unreal.

Cody1991 on February 20, 2009 at 7:36 PM

Rove has said it best. They are “winging it.”

kevinkristy on February 20, 2009 at 7:28 PM

They really are.

The Obama Administration…what a joke.

JetBoy on February 20, 2009 at 7:36 PM

Your point would be??

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 7:34 PM

I didn’t think it was that abstruse a point: that there is no need to impugn someone’s intelligence and competence at the job they’re good at, while pointing out that they’re crappy at the one they’re doing now.

Splunge on February 20, 2009 at 7:36 PM

The less these morons are capable of accomplishing, the better off we all shall be.

T J Green on February 20, 2009 at 7:37 PM

I read it, it’s not origial with me but I agree. Let’s get some farmers and ranchers into DC, clean house and set term limits. These current people are clueless. We need real people running this government, people who understand what it’s like to work and scratch out a living, not these eliteists.

ORrighty on February 20, 2009 at 7:37 PM

He could be right. If you look at how Hugo Chavez does it, the cabinet secretarys do nothing, it’s the czars that pull the strings.

tarpon on February 20, 2009 at 7:39 PM

OMG

Streecar on February 20, 2009 at 7:39 PM

It makes you smart in your area of expertise, not necessarily in others. I am sure you would rather have Joe the Plumber ….

peter_griffin on February 20, 2009 at 7:30 PM

Wow…that makes a whole bunch of sense. Lemme see…Rain Man was really smart in the area of counting cards…I KNOW!!! Let’s make him Secretary of Defense!!!!

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 7:39 PM

Chu will be another unmitigated disaster for this country. Like the rest of this clown posse, Chu has the feevah and violates the Harry Callahan maxim on self knowledge.

Is it racist to call this the watermellon administration ( green on the outside, red on the inside)?

moxie_neanderthal on February 20, 2009 at 7:40 PM

I didn’t think it was that abstruse a point: that there is no need to impugn someone’s intelligence and competence at the job they’re good at, while pointing out that they’re crappy at the one they’re doing now.

Splunge on February 20, 2009 at 7:36 PM

Hang on a sec…I gotta go look a couple of those words up….

BRB…

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 7:42 PM

Energy=oil….whodathunkit?

milwife88 on February 20, 2009 at 7:42 PM

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 7:42 PM

Thanks I needed that … LMAO

ORrighty on February 20, 2009 at 7:43 PM

Oh c’mon. Is his cabinet ethnically diverse? Because that’s what’s really important, not silly things like competence.

clearbluesky on February 20, 2009 at 7:45 PM

I was told today by someone in a position to know that the chief regulator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac was not included in the development of the Administration’s loan modification and plan and does not support it. He spoke today in opposition to the bankruptcy cramdown legislation. Obama’s people don’t trust him because he was appointed by Bush and they can’t get rid of him because he has a 6-year term. At the press conference he wasn’t there and Geithner was completely unable to answer any questions about Fannie and Freddie.

This really is the Not Ready For Prime Time Players.

rockmom on February 20, 2009 at 7:45 PM

Holy mother of God and all her wacky nephews. We are indeed screwed.

TheQuestion on February 20, 2009 at 7:45 PM

Hey but at least Hillary has OPEC covered.. what with Bill and all.. and those .. umm.. stipends..

Jason Gillman on February 20, 2009 at 7:47 PM

DUHHHHH! The democrat party is such a JOKE!!! They do not have a clue the backlash that’s coming!!

build the wall on February 20, 2009 at 7:48 PM

If we can just hold on for another 1429 days…we might be able to salvage something of this Nation.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 7:48 PM

Boy king with children court…

Where are the trolls?

Entelechy on February 20, 2009 at 7:49 PM

Since I know nothing about Chu, I googled him. Here’s the quote from the first adoring, hyper-enthusiastic article I found, and am I impressed! Whew.

Chu has recently become intensely concerned about the challenge of global warming, and is serious about doing something to fix things. He and Craig Venter are teaming up to make microorganisms that turn carbon dioxide into strawberry ice cream, or something like that.

(Emphasis mine, but the quote otherwise is dead accurate)

Dear Mr. Obama, said the little 7 year-old, could you “please make it rain candy?” No dear, but how’s about some micro-orgasmic strawberry ice cream?

Except, of course, where will they manage to find that pesky, eeeevilll carbon dioxide?

marybel on February 20, 2009 at 7:49 PM

The irony of him being in charge of transportation is not lost on me.

SouthernGent on February 20, 2009 at 7:51 PM

build the wall on February 20, 2009 at 7:48 PM

One can only hope. By the way, how we doing with that fence (wall) on the southern border? You want to stimulate the economy by adding new jobs? Build the Farkin Fence (wall).

ORrighty on February 20, 2009 at 7:52 PM

rockmom on February 20, 2009 at 7:45 PM

Very, very interesting.

Thanks.

Cody1991 on February 20, 2009 at 7:53 PM

Entelechy on February 20, 2009 at 7:49 PM

Thank you for a time of repose and relaxation.

ORrighty on February 20, 2009 at 7:55 PM

Cody1991 on February 20, 2009 at 7:53 PM

rockmom knows her some financin’…I kid you not…

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 7:55 PM

All of this must have to do with some grand conspiracy. There has to be a concerted effort underway to make us believe they are stupid. Any ideas why?

Joe Caps on February 20, 2009 at 7:56 PM

Joe Caps on February 20, 2009 at 7:56 PM

To distract America from their intended Supreme Court nominations?

Cabinet Secretaries are a dime a dozen (unlike Senators who apparently, according to Blagoyevich, are a bit more expensive) but Supreme Court appointments…those have effects that can last for decades. Dr. Chu at Energy is almost a comical interlude…but a couple of Obamatron Supreme Court Justices…that’s where the real damage will come.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 8:00 PM

Actually, oil won’t be in his domain once we make the great leap forward to green energy.

myrenovations on February 20, 2009 at 7:21 PM

Good LORD I hope you forgot ‘/sarc’.

If not, you need to know we are so EFF’d!

ammon_of_cs on February 20, 2009 at 8:01 PM

Seems Obama’s cabinet level appointees are no better or worse than Bush’s. Meet the new boss, same as the ole boss……

paulsur on February 20, 2009 at 8:04 PM

I don’t suppose that when carbon dioxide is regulated as a pollutant Chu will lead by example and voluntarily stop polluting.

moxie_neanderthal on February 20, 2009 at 8:04 PM

But he has a nobel prize! In Physics! That instantly makes him a fantastic manager of a massive organization!

NOBEL PRIZE.

Tacitus_SGL on February 20, 2009 at 8:05 PM

myrenovations on February 20, 2009 at 7:21 PM

“…great leap forward?”

That last Great Leap Forward, 1958-61, was a real whizbang of a success, wasn’t it? 20-40 million deaths along the way, too.

Great choice of words…intended or otherwise…to associate with the Obama Administration.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 8:08 PM

I’ve come to the conclusion that we have some Cabal running the country…. and its NOT the Cabinet…

Obama has been on the road every day, making speeches… he has NOT been in the White House running the Government, or creating policy… so it begs the question, who is?

We keep hearng about boards, and studying issues… even issues where he took positions during the election… and the media seems to be OK with it…

This is getting scarier all the time.

Romeo13 on February 20, 2009 at 8:08 PM

rockmom knows her some financin’…I kid you not…

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 7:55 PM

Yep. I was in the mortgage bus. myself. I’m surprised the meltdown didn’t occur much earlier.

PS Are you in Wyoming?

Cody1991 on February 20, 2009 at 8:09 PM

O/T:

This just in….

“There’s not gonna be any more spending programs; the folks won’t stand for it”……..Bill (i’m a idiot) O’reilly.

Rovin on February 20, 2009 at 8:12 PM

Intended.

myrenovations on February 20, 2009 at 8:13 PM

Cody1991 on February 20, 2009 at 8:09 PM

No, I’m on temporary assignment in Minnesota.

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 8:14 PM

Seems Obama’s cabinet level appointees are no better or worse than Bush’s. Meet the new boss, same as the ole boss……

paulsur on February 20, 2009 at 8:04 PM

Read much? Obama’s team is much, much worse. Not even in the same league of badness. Obama’s clown posse is attempting to fundamentally change the direction of this nation and redefine the historical relationship between the individual and the state. In so doing, this gang seeks to strip autonomy and resources from the individual and give it to the collective. We’re watching the emergence of a soft tyranny. Fascism with a smile.

moxie_neanderthal on February 20, 2009 at 8:15 PM

myrenovations on February 20, 2009 at 8:13 PM

Well played, sir.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 8:15 PM

I will be speaking and learning more about this in order to figure out what the U.S. position should be and what the president’s position is.

 
Just like one of them to ‘be speaking’ when he should be listening and learning. But of course, he will keep his word and keep speaking… and say more dumb things along the way.
 
This guy may end up being real fun to watch.
  

ElRonaldo on February 20, 2009 at 8:17 PM

Seems Obama’s cabinet level appointees are no better or worse than Bush’s. Meet the new boss, same as the ole boss……

paulsur on February 20, 2009 at 8:04 PM

Yeah, remember that time right after Norton took over the Bush Interior Department and was asked about Native Americans and she said it wasn’t part of her domain? No?

myrenovations on February 20, 2009 at 8:18 PM

Couldn’t they at least get some 4th grade students to provide ON THE JOB TRAINING for them?

TN Mom on February 20, 2009 at 8:22 PM

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 8:14 PM

The reason I asked is because I’m thinking about moving to WY.

Cody1991 on February 20, 2009 at 8:24 PM

The day before, reporters asked him about OPEC output levels after a speech to a group of utility regulators. He responded that the issue was “not in my domain.”

Above his pay grade?

“Oil is for use on sandwiches and salads, dummies. It’s called 5 dollar foot-longs at Subway. Get with the program.”
-Energy Secretary Steven Chu

unwashed minion on February 20, 2009 at 8:25 PM

Sheesh…. And they said Palin had no experience….

ssa_in_az on February 20, 2009 at 8:33 PM

Dayem. Just dayem.

-Dave

Dave R. on February 20, 2009 at 8:33 PM

Wow…that makes a whole bunch of sense. Lemme see…Rain Man was really smart in the area of counting cards…I KNOW!!! Let’s make him Secretary of Defense!!!!

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 7:39 PM

Wouldn’t Labor be better? Or is “counting” not similar enough to “checking”?

malclave on February 20, 2009 at 8:35 PM

Obama…just resign. Please? Give it over to the grownups ok?

johnnyU on February 20, 2009 at 8:36 PM

At least the Transportation Department has its eye on the ball, right?

I wouldn’t be so sure. Obama’s Cabinet members don’t seem to astute. Here’s a headline on FoxNews website

“Homeland Security secretary says Mexican violence hasn’t crossed border”

Really, Ms. Napolitano? And you live in what state? AZ?

Would anyone from the border states like to weigh in on this.

DrStock on February 20, 2009 at 8:36 PM

Under the Obama Reign, our use of oil will become obsolete. So Chu doesn’t need to be bothered with part of his job.

varnson on February 20, 2009 at 8:39 PM

Energy Secretary Steven Chu may be a Nobel laureate Ph.D. in physics

California’s farms and vineyards could vanish by the end of the century, and its major cities could be in jeopardy, if Americans do not act to slow the advance of global warming, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu said Tuesday. “I don’t think the American public has gripped in its gut what could happen,” he said. “We’re looking at a scenario where there’s no more agriculture in California.” And, he added, “I don’t actually see how they can keep their cities going” either.

The only way I can think of to reconcile his being a a Nobel laureate Ph.D. in physics and yet a complete loon is that somewhere along the way at job he held as a physicist he was exposed to way too much radiation.

MB4 on February 20, 2009 at 8:41 PM

What, did he think he was Secretary of Red Bull? God help us all.

Laura in Maryland on February 20, 2009 at 8:42 PM

Under the Obama Reign, our use of oil will become obsolete. So Chu doesn’t need to be bothered with part of his job.

varnson on February 20, 2009 at 8:39 PM

Buy guns, gold and horses.

MB4 on February 20, 2009 at 8:44 PM

MB4 on February 20, 2009 at 8:44 PM

And beer…gotta have beer. And Jack Daniels…and Jim Beam…and Johnny Walker and the rest of the posse ‘cuz we are certainly going to need it.

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 8:46 PM

I live in AZ and I was very happy than to get rid of “Crappy Nappy” as the Gov. but at the same time scared to death to have her as SHS. I personally felt like she was the “Gov of the Illegals in AZ” as opposed to “Gov of AZ”.

She fit’s right in with the Obummer administration.

ssa_in_az on February 20, 2009 at 8:51 PM

Wow…that makes a whole bunch of sense. Lemme see…Rain Man was really smart in the area of counting cards…I KNOW!!! Let’s make him Secretary of Defense!!!!

BigWyo on February 20, 2009 at 7:39 PM

Wow, that sounds like making someone who headed the Arabian Horses foundation the head of FEMA, which of course can’t ever happen. Oh wait …

peter_griffin on February 20, 2009 at 8:55 PM

Buy guns, gold and horses.

MB4 on February 20, 2009 at 8:44 PM

The gold will only be worthwhile after the dust settles. I’m sure the one will do a gold grab a-la FDR before this is all over. Ammo otoh can be bartered for food and vice versa. Horses are a good idea if you’ve got the room but require a lot of care. Chickens and rabbits are both fairly low maintenance, easy to care for, prolific reproducers and they’re tasty.

Oldnuke on February 20, 2009 at 8:59 PM

Wow, that sounds like making someone who headed made the Arabian Horses foundation the head of FEMA, which of course can’t ever happen. Oh wait …

peter_griffin on February 20, 2009 at 8:55 PM

Fixed typo.

peter_griffin on February 20, 2009 at 9:02 PM

coldwarrior on February 20, 2009 at 8:46 PM

My family has a long history in the distilling business. None licensed though :-)

Oldnuke on February 20, 2009 at 9:03 PM

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