Friday, February 27, 2009

Today's Potshot

President Barack Obama furrowing his brow before Congress:

I intend to hold these banks fully accountable for the assistance they receive, and this time, they will have to clearly demonstrate how taxpayer dollars result in more lending for the American taxpayer. This time, CEOs won’t be able to use taxpayer money to pad their paychecks or buy fancy drapes or disappear on a private jet. Those days are over.

Byron York reporting in the DC Examiner:

It didn't make most of the papers or the TV newscasts, but Desiree Rogers, the new White House social secretary, caused a bit of a stir recently when she appeared at New York's Fashion Week shows, sitting next to Vogue Editor Anna Wintour as she took in the latest from designers Carolina Herrera and Donna Karan.


At first, it wasn't clear whether Rogers was hanging with the fashionistas as part of her official White House duties or not. Then New York magazine quoted a White House aide saying, "Desiree was in New York on a fact-finding mission. She's acting as a cultural liaison for the White House; she's researching fashion and music."


I asked whether the first lady considered Rogers' hitting the fashion shows a little frivolous, given the seriousness of our times. "I think you're assigning a value judgment to the fashion industry," I was told. "She doesn't think it is frivolous at all."


Rogers was also treated to lunch at the chic Four Seasons by the interior decorator Michael Smith. You might have heard Smith's name because he was the man chosen by the now-departed Merrill Lynch Chief Executive Officer John Thain to handle Thain’s notorious $1.2 million office redecoration project. President Barack Obama condemned that sort of excess, but then hired none other than Michael Smith to spruce up the White House. And then Smith honored Rogers at the Four Seasons.