The fault in our czars

At a meeting Thursday night, President Obama suggested that in order to effectively tackle the Ebola issue in the United States, he would “appoint an additional person… just to make sure that we are crossing all the t’s and dotting all the i’s going forward.” By Friday morning, the media had dubbed Ron Klain, Obama’s chosen appointee, the Ebola Czar.

At first blush an Ebola Czar, or any czar really, invokes an image of a cruel and omnipotent character parading around in heavy velvet robes, and carrying a jeweled scepter. Not an obvious choice for someone to manage a national healthcare crisis. But take a look under that robe and you’ll find that “‘czar” — at least in the context of American politics — is a relatively meaningless term,…

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