Everybody works for somebody, including the President

Apr 21, 2004 03:45 · 224 words · 2 minute read

A fascinating article talking about Bob Woodward’s new book about the Bush presidency and his cabinet. The following comes in the context of Bush trying to provoke his cabinet members, without letting on that that’s what he’s doing:

President Bush: “I do not need to explain why I say things. — That’s the interesting thing about being the President. — Maybe somebody needs to explain to me why they say something, but I don’t feel like I owe anybody an explanation.”

This is how he interacts with his most trusted advisors. Personally, I don’t think this is very good management style, but that’s just me. More interestingly, it seems like this is the attitude that he has toward the American public in general. I get this impression from all of the secrecy and the “trust me, I have things under control, just don’t ask me questions” sort of attitude.

Everyone works for someone. The CEO of a corporation has to answer to the board and the shareholders. The President of the United States has to answer to the laws of this country and to the voters that gave him his job.

Just as people have been clamoring for more transparency in corporations, there are a fair number of people who are calling for more transparency in government. I hope we get it this November.