The PoliBlog

The Collective
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
By Dr. Steven Taylor

From Thoreau of Unqualified Offerings:

I’m going to make a prediction: If the war czar is destined to be as successful as the drug czar, then jihadists will soon be setting off bombs in our cities with impunity.

Sadly, that’s about right.

(And really, why do we keep appointing “Czars”?)

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Filed under: US Politics, War on Drugs | |


  1. ‘…why do we keep appointing “Czars”?’ I know this is a rhetorical question, I just want to point out that I think the term ‘czar’ originated when President Nixon named William Simon “Energy Czar” during the energy crunch of the 1970’s … just about the same time that we started appending ‘gate’ to any scandals (as in Watergate)!

    Comment by Peter Bakke — Wednesday, May 16, 2007 @ 10:13 am

  2. Czargate!

    Indeed, yes, it is a time-worn tradition.

    Comment by Dr. Steven Taylor — Wednesday, May 16, 2007 @ 10:14 am

  3. I’m wondering why he took the job. It seems to carry no power (unless he can back down Gates, Rice, Cheney and a bunch of 4-star generals), just responsibility.

    Comment by Barry — Wednesday, May 16, 2007 @ 12:09 pm

  4. I’ve wondered about the czar thing as well (and I’ve found it funny that it’s not “drug tsar”). I don’t remember the czar being considered any more aggressive than other royalty (aside from Peter the Great).

    Of course “I’m going to appoint a drug king to handle this” just doesn’t send the same message. Maybe a President with German heritage can propose a “war kaiser,” a Hispanic President can suggest an “energy rey” and a less-cultured President can just say a “drug emperor.” Even those don’t have quite the ring.

    Comment by Max Lybbert — Wednesday, May 16, 2007 @ 6:34 pm

  5. Indeed.

    Comment by Dr. Steven Taylor — Wednesday, May 16, 2007 @ 7:14 pm

  6. Steven,

    I thought we had a Commander in Chief or something or other. Why do we need one more person who has no authority or cannot make decisions? Don’t we have a Secretary of Defense? A President? Can this get any more surreal?

    Plus, why the affinity with Tsarist Russia? The Romanovs did not end up that well off, if I remember correctly.

    Comment by Alan Cross — Wednesday, May 16, 2007 @ 11:10 pm

  7. Alan,

    I’m with you: I don’t get it either.


    Comment by Dr. Steven Taylor — Thursday, May 17, 2007 @ 6:35 am

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