“Put nothing in writing, ever”

posted at 4:46 pm on July 9, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Mark Tapscott reports on what should be the defining quote of the Hopenchange Administration.  Climate Czar Carol Browner got a little too much into czar character when she told the Auto Industry Task Force to leave no record of the negotiations, or for that matter, no record of anything at any time.  How many of those who voted for Barack Obama’s campaign figured on hearing this?

Carol Browner, former Clinton administration EPA head and current Obama White House climate czar, instructed auto industry execs “to put nothing in writing, ever” regarding secret negotiations she orchestrated regarding a deal to increase federal Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards.

Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-WI, is demanding a congressional investigation of Browner’s conduct in the CAFE talks, saying in a letter to Rep. Henry Waxman, D-CA, that Browner “intended to leave little or no documentation of the deliberations that lead to stringent new CAFE standards.”

Federal law requires officials to preserve documents concerning significant policy decisions, so instructing participants in a policy negotation concerning a major federal policy change could be viewed as a criminal act.

If this broke federal law, then Congress should demand Browner’s resignation.  Even if it didn’t, the intent of the law is to keep both the people and Congress informed of executive-branch development and enforcement of policy.  Browner’s admonition didn’t intend to keep information from the people, though, but from hostile members of Congress.

Democrats howled when Dick Cheney met in private with energy producers (as well as environmental groups) when developing the Bush administration’s first attempt at energy policy in 2001.  They took the Bush administration to court to release the records of the meetings, and they griped about it for years afterward.  Eventually they strengthened the law on transparency, which directly relates to Browner and the AITF, which exercises unprecedented power over private-sector manufacturers.

If we needed transparency at any time, we need it even more in the Age of Czars, whose power is almost unchallengeable within the system.  The Obama Hope and Change response? “Put nothing in writing, ever.” That must be the new translation of Vero possumus, right?


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Well, the first one could have been an anomoly. This just confirms it. I am happy in that knowledge.

BetseyRoss on July 9, 2009 at 5:20 PM

Good point. Anyway, just one more thing he and I disagree on.

What? Too much?

LastRick on July 9, 2009 at 5:23 PM

The rules are different for Czars the Obamanauts.

conservative pilgrim on July 9, 2009 at 4:49 PM

You’re welcome.

Jaibones on July 9, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Great job, HotAirHeads. We have George III on steroids and all you can do is chase tail.

FU

Limerick on July 9, 2009 at 5:22 PM

It’s breaktime Lim, lighten up.

thomasaur on July 9, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Michelle: “Oh no he di-n’t!! He di-n’t disrespect me!”

PappaMac on July 9, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Caption should read:

Nice shoes.

Thunderstorm129 on July 9, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Good ol’ Sarkozy. Let me show you how to check it out with class.

LastRick on July 9, 2009 at 5:16 PM
Actually, I think Sarko is looking leering at The Precedent making a fool of himself with such an obvious leer.

progressoverpeace on July 9, 2009 at 5:20 PM

Well, Sarko is FRENCH….

HornetSting on July 9, 2009 at 5:25 PM

Actually, I think Sarko is looking at The Precedent making a fool of himself with such an obvious leer.

progressoverpeace on July 9, 2009 at 5:20 PM

“Leer”? When you have to turn around, your head looks down and your mouth drops open, you’re well past “leer”. It’s near cave man-esque, I dare say.

Ed, I think we need an open thread for this. I can’t even remember what I’m supposed to be talking about. Something like scribbling or tsars. Distractions! all of it.

LastRick on July 9, 2009 at 5:26 PM

Hear no, speak no, see no……

csdeven on July 9, 2009 at 5:27 PM

Ed, I think we need an open thread for this. I can’t even remember what I’m supposed to be talking about. Something like scribbling or tsars. Distractions! all of it.

LastRick on July 9, 2009 at 5:26 PM

We’ve been doing this all day, can’t seem to stay on topic…there’s only so many ways you can say…obama sux.

HornetSting on July 9, 2009 at 5:27 PM

How many of those who voted for Barack Obama’s campaign figured on hearing this?

How many of the care?

How many could actually read about it?

Franklyn on July 9, 2009 at 5:28 PM

“Leer”? When you have to turn around, your head looks down and your mouth drops open, you’re well past “leer”. It’s near cave man-esque, I dare say.

LastRick on July 9, 2009 at 5:26 PM

I dare agree.

I think the lady should sue him for making a public spectacle of her with his inabilty to control himself. I’d love to see that suit … just don’t put it in writing.

progressoverpeace on July 9, 2009 at 5:31 PM

We’ve been doing this all day, can’t seem to stay on topic…there’s only so many ways you can say…obama sux.

HornetSting on July 9, 2009 at 5:27 PM

The funny thing, it’s been relatively troll-less today. So, apparently we don’t need any outside reason to be distracted. Just a shot of Obama checking out a skirt and we’re gone. If only someone would get a good Twitter tag going (say #Obamaskirt), we could get a caption contest underway.

LastRick on July 9, 2009 at 5:32 PM

How many of those who voted for Barack Obama’s campaign figured on hearing this?

How many of the care?

How many could actually read about it?

Franklyn on July 9, 2009 at 5:28 PM

How many would even admit voting for Ochimpy?

csdeven on July 9, 2009 at 5:32 PM

That will make a great campaign quote against all Democrats and The Messiah.

Winebabe on July 9, 2009 at 5:33 PM

She did have a nice bahgoinga thang

blatantblue on July 9, 2009 at 5:36 PM

“don’t you think of anything but sex?” – Todd Rundgren

kirkill on July 9, 2009 at 5:36 PM

OOOOH, I love this. I hope they subpoena the auto execs.

And is it unfair of me to assume that this demand that they never write anything down was used for every shady deal that happened between the car czar thugs, GM and Chrysler’s management, and the unions?

Buy Danish on July 9, 2009 at 5:38 PM

Why would Carol Browner be concerned? It’s not as if members of this congress bother to read anything.

Tonus on July 9, 2009 at 5:39 PM

This demand to “write nothing down” would be a great point for GOP Congressmen to use to go after a special prosecutor for Browner. She should be serving 25 years in federal prison for it.

progressoverpeace on July 9, 2009 at 5:40 PM

Since I can no longer fool myself into thinking that this administration is just a figment of my imagination, I have decided that, no matter how outrageous, unlawful, or idiotic, I will now reside in a permanent shock mode. Thank you very much.

betsyz on July 9, 2009 at 5:41 PM

Buy Danish on July 9, 2009 at 5:38 PM

Here we have an perfect example of “resonable cause” for search warrants. Ed puts his pen to paper for what?

I guess I need to just shut the hell up and stay in my place and take in the grand view.

No wonder Miss ‘E’ took her talents elsewhere.

Limerick on July 9, 2009 at 5:41 PM

Somewhere, Chris Matthews is crying over that picture.

MadisonConservative on July 9, 2009 at 5:43 PM

csdeven on July 9, 2009 at 5:27 PM

Just so everyone knows, I was not suggesting that Ochimpy descends from monkeys.

csdeven on July 9, 2009 at 5:49 PM

I will now reside in a permanent shock mode. Thank you very much.

betsyz on July 9, 2009 at 5:41 PM

Drink heavily. It helps.

csdeven on July 9, 2009 at 5:50 PM

Cheney met with energy execs behind closed doors. Obama’s administration meets with auto execs and tells them to not make any written record of anything.

Hope and Same!

Seixon on July 9, 2009 at 5:56 PM

Oboma’s puppeteer (The Daly Machine) is one of the most corrupt political cabals in history. Their total disregard for the law or the truth is inherent in every action they take. Evil of this magnitude can only be a parasite on the American people. Removing this cancer from office will not happen without grave consequences for our country.

volsense on July 9, 2009 at 6:06 PM

Drink heavily. It helps.

csdeven on July 9, 2009 at 5:50 PM

lol

Jeff from WI on July 9, 2009 at 6:10 PM

I feel a Helen Thomas scolding coming on.

Jeff from WI on July 9, 2009 at 6:11 PM

This just in Claude Rains still shocked

LincolntheHun on July 9, 2009 at 4:50 PM

And still dead. Drove past him and the wifey spinning in their graves the other day.

FYI, did you know Claude was a victim of WMDs in WW I?

Del Dolemonte on July 9, 2009 at 6:11 PM

Carol Browner, former Clinton administration EPA head and current Obama White House climate czar, instructed auto industry execs “to put nothing in writing, ever” regarding secret negotiations she orchestrated regarding a deal to increase federal Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards.

Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-WI, is demanding a congressional investigation of Browner’s conduct in the CAFE talks

Hey, good luck with that!

BTW, whatever happened to the days when the coverup was infinitely worse than any possible crime?

Yep, Woodward and Bernstein are going to have a field day with this one!

logis on July 9, 2009 at 6:14 PM

Vero possumus — what’s that? A Cajun side dish?

KS Rex on July 9, 2009 at 6:23 PM

Recall that Browner’s computer records were under subpeona by Congress at the end of the Clinton Administration. On her last day as head of EPA, she had all of the computers in her office, including those under subpeona, wiped of all files, including an over-writing procedure to ensure that no files could be recovered.

gridlock2 on July 9, 2009 at 6:27 PM

/illiterate White House staff

maverick muse on July 9, 2009 at 6:29 PM

/creative contract law that never was

maverick muse on July 9, 2009 at 6:31 PM

Sounds like a job for a Eraser Czar.

JellyToast on July 9, 2009 at 6:57 PM

It’s all good, Arthur Andersen has signed off on the destruction of all documents. Nothing to see here, move along…

-if you got ‘em, load ‘em.

rgranger on July 9, 2009 at 6:59 PM

<blockquote>“We put nothing in writing, ever,” Nichols said. “That was one of the ways we made sure that everyone’s ability to talk freely was protected.”
I’m not saying this substantially changes the larger point. If Nichols and Browner were trying to get around transparency rules, they should be held to account.

But it’s awfully odd that the Examiner can’t correctly identify the source of the key line, when it’s clearly stated in the NY Times artic.

orange on July 9, 2009 at 5:05 PM

“we put nothing in writing” vs “put nothing in writing!”

Nichols is just stating that the agreement was to put nothing in writing. Who would give that command but the Czar??
I still think there should be an investigation and a firing.

journeyintothewhirlwind on July 9, 2009 at 7:12 PM

Stimulus first,
Recovery.org my @$$ next
.
If the Americans wants find more criminals all they have to do is go to Washington DC almost everything that is happening is either anti-american or (illegal) against the U.S. constitutional law.
.
These Smart Power People are fleecing the Americans with straight faces.
.
Now this BS of “PUT NOTHING IN WRITING, EVER!” directive relating to the climate Czar: Carol Browner
.
Everyday this government does is either something stupid or
something that pisses me off.
.
Can’t wait for tomorrow.
.
[ps] They suck!

Americannodash on July 9, 2009 at 8:16 PM

Sorry cons

this is good to stop blackmail of corporate greed
and carbon

Pony

/getalife/g0tmylifeback

blatantblue on July 9, 2009 at 4:49 PM

It’s an odd thing to get nostalgic about, but I kind of miss some of the posts.

Thanks for the flashback!

massrighty on July 9, 2009 at 9:07 PM

Transparency is for those still wedded to the archaic notion of truth.

Power. If you don’t live it, you won’t know it.

spmat on July 9, 2009 at 9:26 PM

Isn’t this the same Bee-atch who deleted e-mails and erased files while head of the EPA….there may have even been some sort of FBI or GAO invenstigation going on. I can’t recall.
Seems to be a pattern, when is somebody going to start prosecuting these bastards?
Wm Jefferson, John Murtha, Charl Rangle, Barney Frank, Maxine Watters, Chris Dodd, …have all had ethics violations and/or criminal accusations hanging over their heads during the last year.

Where is Torquemada when you need him?

zekero on July 9, 2009 at 9:28 PM

Being a czar means never having to say you’re sorry.

PattyJ on July 9, 2009 at 9:33 PM

I NEVER put anything in writing…..I called the X-FILES style of management….

TRUST NO ONE, DENY EVERYTHING

and then use BOOZE, SCHMOOZE and RUMORS OF FALSE NEWS TO SLEAZE YOUR WAY TO THE TOP!!!!

right4life on July 9, 2009 at 9:58 PM

Being a czar means never having to say you’re sorry.

PattyJ on July 9, 2009 at 9:33 PM

Being a Democrat means the press won’t even ask.

Merovign on July 9, 2009 at 10:03 PM

Wait! Apparently there’s been a change of policy: “White House Furthers Its ‘Commitment to Transparency’ By Requiring That Official Meeting Records Be Written on Plastic Wrap, with Invisible Ink” http://www.optoons.blogspot.com/ (July 9 entry)

Mervis Winter on July 9, 2009 at 10:34 PM

I guess The One’s not counting on having a very big Presidential Library.

Guess something in a strip mall would do.

Dr. ZhivBlago on July 10, 2009 at 1:37 AM

Are we talking “Lust in the heart?” My God! This is the Carter Administration.

GunRunner on July 10, 2009 at 1:39 AM

In the Webster dictionary under P.O.S. there’s a picture of Carol Browner. Imagine that.

Griz on July 10, 2009 at 4:53 AM

Uh, ed? You really do need a proof reader, you are slipping up more and more at a regular basis.

Even if it didn’t, the intent of the law is to keep both the people and Congress informed of executive-branch development and enforcement of policy. Browner’s admonition didn’t intend to keep information from the people, though, but from hostile members of Congress.

Congress is the representative of the American people, it is not seperate and elite. It has been obvious since you came over here that you aspire to that rarified self created air in washington. You’ve got a long way to go so as long as you are hanging out with us commoners you might want to try being a little more subtle.

peacenprosperity on July 10, 2009 at 5:53 AM

I sincerely hope Ms Browner is taken from us today in a horrible one car crash.

Too over the top you think?

Jeff from WI on July 10, 2009 at 6:14 AM

Why would Carol Browner be concerned? It’s not as if members of this congress bother to read anything.

Tonus on July 9, 2009 at 5:39 PM

I think her intent was missed completely…. it’s not that she doesn’t want congress to know, it’s that she can say the results/agreement reached/consensus was whatever she and her boss want it to be.

CC

CapedConservative on July 10, 2009 at 9:04 AM

Little chance of this becoming a problem. If it should, and if Ogabe can’t defuse the situation with threats from his lackeys, he can always toss Browner under the bus. She will have lots of company. See, the big-eared freak still wins.

SKYFOX on July 10, 2009 at 9:30 AM

…instructing participants in a policy negotation concerning a major federal policy change could SHOULD be viewed as a criminal act.

FTFY.

Godefroi on July 10, 2009 at 10:35 AM

Change you can believe in.
I believe that are and will commit more criminal acts.
With no records, every one say say ” I DUNNO”
” I didnt do it ”

I am begining to feel sorry for the people that voted for George W obama with the idea that he was going to be different. I am sure alot of them are feeling pretty damn duped.

ColdWarrior57 on July 10, 2009 at 11:06 AM

The name of this political hand-tool should never be mentioned without reference to her destruction of records at the EPA which were the subject of a court protection order.

http://michellemalkin.com/2008/12/12/crooked-carol-browner-obamas-ethically-challenged-energy-czar/

She is apparently well-schooled in the Axelrod-Emmanuel-Obama school of Chicago politics.

novaculus on July 10, 2009 at 12:43 PM

Comment pages: 1 2