Friday, February 02, 2007

White House “Welcomes” Accountability?

After our President’s six years in office, a White House official shocked the world with his statements.

"There cannot be enough accountability in the federal government," said Clay Johnson, deputy director of the Office and Management and Budget, which supervises executive branch agencies. "There is very little today. Very little real accountability."

Hmmmm, that seems to contradict much of Mr. Johnson’s prior Ask the White House talk. What happened to “the Federal government is developing the management skills it needs to be held accountable for delivering high levels of service” and “the President’s Management Agenda (PMA) is a clear and focused strategy for improving the effectiveness of the Federal government”?

After stating “very little real accountability” exists, Mr. Johnson spoke to looming Congressional oversight.

"We want things to work better and it begins with an honest, candid, transparent assessment of what we know now. And out of that comes the fact that a lot of really good things are going on here."

As a blogger for nearly two years, I have found the White House anything but honest, candid, or transparent despite the President’s longtime promises of such. (The OMB highlighted their transparency efforts in 2004.) President Bush wants to hold accountable schools, corporate executives, other countries, and public officials of other countries.

Accountability expert Clay had some fun interaction with Fed Chief Ben Bernanke in that “Ask the White House” session. Mr. Johnson produced one of his “management truths”.

I say that you can't have results without accountability, and you can't have accountability without a lot of transparency and candor about what we're trying to accomplish and how we're performing relative to our goals.

“No results without accountability” combined with “very little real accountability” equals very little real results. This explains why the Bush administration never answered my often submitted questions.

“Why did the White House’s Hurricane Katrina Lessons Learned report omit any mention of the hospital with the largest patient death toll? Why did The Carlyle Group’s LifeCare Hospitals 24 patient deaths receive not one citation in the President’s report? Does it help the company defend any looming civil suits by having the federal government silent on the issue?”

Isn’t the government accountable to individual citizens as well as the Democratic controlled Congress? According to Mr. Johnson, no they are not…

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