Monday, November 17, 2008

I Regret to Inform You

You didn't ask me, but I regret to inform you that I will not be making application for a job with the new Obama Administration.

After careful consideration and long, not-at-all-helpful reaching out to former colleagues, girlfriends, wives, drug dealers, and co-conspirators, it seems unlikely that I would be able to secure the cooperation of all those in my past to help me pass the 63-question test all applicants must submit.

Now please don't think me suspect. I'm sure if I really wanted to I could pass most of these silly questions without difficulty.

There's really just a few that might be tricky:

(4) Please chronologically list activities, other than those listed on your resume or biography, from which you have derived earned income (e.g., self-employment, consulting activities, writing, speaking, royalties and honoraria) for the past ten years.

(8) Briefly describe the most controversial matters you have been involved with during the course of your career.

(10) Writings: Please list and, if readily available, provide a copy of each book, article,
column or publication (including but not limited to any posts or comments on blogs or other websites) you have authored, individually or with others. Please list all aliases or “handles” you have used to communicate on the Internet.

(13) Electronic communications: If you have ever sent an electronic communication, including but not limited to an email, text message or instant message, that could suggest a conflict or interest or be a possible source of embarrassment to you, your family, or the President-Elect if it were made public, please describe.

(14) Diaries: If you keep or have ever kept a diary that contains anything that could suggest a conflict of interest or be a possible source of embarrassment to you, your family, or the President-Elect if it were made public, please describe.

(16) Please list each membership, including any board memberships, you or your spouse have or have had with any political, civic, social, charitable, educational, professional, fraternal, benevolent or religious organization, private club or other membership organization (including any type of tax-exempt organization) during the past ten years. Please include dates of membership and any positions you may have had with the organization.

(20) Other than the entities identified in questions 15-19 above, please provide the names and details of any individuals and organizations with which you or your spouse have been associated with which might present a conflict of interest with your proposed federal office, or have the potential for embarrassment.

(32) Other than from relatives, or from close and longstanding personal friends on occasions such as birthdays or seasonal holidays, have you or your spouse ever received a gift exceeding $50.00 in value? Please identify the donor, the value of the gift, the date received and the circumstances in which the gift was made.

(34) Have you and your spouse filed all required federal, state, local and foreign income tax returns?

(42) Please list any lawsuits you or your spouse have brought as a plaintiff or which were brought against you or your spouse as a defendant or third party, or in which you or your spouse have testified at trial or deposition. Include in this response any arbitrations, mediations, and contested divorce proceedings or other domestic relations matters.

(45) If you have ever been investigated by any law enforcement agency (whether federal, state, military, local, Indian or foreign), arrested for, charged with, or convicted of violating any law, regulation or ordinance (whether federal, state, military, local, Indian or foreign), please identify each such instance and supply details, including: date, place; law enforcement agency; and court.

(46) Have any members of your family or close social or business associates been arrested for, charged with and/or convicted of a crime, other than a minor traffic violation? If so, please identify and describe each such arrest, charge or conviction. Please provide the same information for anyone under your professional supervision, or anyone of your superiors.

(52) With regard to each obligation of child support and/or alimony owed by you or your spouse, please state the following: Have any payments been made late or have there been any lapses in payment? Have any motions or court actions for modification of child support or alimony been filed or instituted? Have any actions or motions to compel payment or initiate collection of late payments and/or past due amounts been filed or threatened? Have any writs of garnishment been
issued? If yes, please provide details.

(57) If applicable, please list the names, addresses and phone number of cohabitants within the last ten years. A cohabitant is a person with whom you share bonds of affection, obligation, or other commitment, as opposed to a person with whom you live for reasons of convenience (roommate).

(58) Please provide the URL address of any websites that feature you in either a personal or professional capacity (e.g., Facebook, My Space, etc.)

(61) Have you had any association with any person, group or business venture that could be used – even unfairly – to impugn or attack your character and qualifications for government service?

(62) Do you know anyone or any organization, either in the private sector or government service, that might take steps, overtly or covertly, fairly or unfairly, to criticize your nomination, including any news organization? If so, please identify and explain the potential basis for criticism.

Jeez! Do you think 17 goofy questions like these should come between me and the chance to work for change that we need? Me either!

But apparently the people in charge are being sticklers about this process and won't let me skip the questions I don't like. It's not fair - getting 46 out of 63 right on a real test would be passing. I could even get a regular government job with that score.

Oh well, I guess that means I'll be staying in NYC for a while longer.

Maybe the second term will be easier to get into.