During the Democrat Presidential winnowing circus last fall, now-Vice President Joe Biden told an audience that the Presidency was no place for "on the job training" when referring to the man who is now his boss.
Neither is the presidential cabinet.
Yesterday, Obama Administration Energy Secretary Steven Chu held a question and answer forum with reporters where, according to the Wall Street Journal, he said he is still learning about what the U.S. position on oil policy should be. Among Secretary Chu's other pearls of substantive policy wonk wisdom were the following.
"I'm not the administration."
Regarding OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries):
"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."
Mr. Chu went on to state his preferences in such matters, noting that "his time would be better focused ‘on the issues that I have control over,' such as increasing U.S. funding of alternative energy technologies."
According to the Journal, "when approached by reporters after a speech to a group of energy regulators, Mr. Chu declined to offer an opinion on whether OPEC should cut production, saying" that,
"is not in my domain."
On such questions about oil policy, he the said he feels:
"like I've been dumped into the deep end of the pool."
Apparently Mr. Chu's lack of knowledge about the fact oil is actually not only imported but used in America directly corresponds to the his belief that the primary focus of U.S. energy policy:
"should be making our country energy independent through investments in efficiency and renewable energy."
Mr. Chu then went on to say that "he wasn't prepared to explain in detail how the Obama administration intends to fulfill a pledge to double within three years the amount of wind, solar and geothermal generating capacity in the U.S." - which account for a whopping 1% of America's electrical backstop.
Feeling more confident about President Obama's ability to choose and appoint the best and the brightest? Bzzz. Zap.