Skip to main content

My list of Bush appointees (and staff) is now up to about 1,700 from the State Department and USDA alone, and so far most of the latter is only from 2004 (via the '04 Plum Book), so I clearly have a ways to go.  

But as I collect these names, it occurs to me that I don't yet know anything about the vast majority of these people: That will come at a later stage in the research.  Still, it is philosophically interesting to me, the fact that I find myself becoming familiar with these names - these abstractions not yet tied to any specific person (at least in my own awareness).  In fact, I find that some names have personalities of their own, and I seem to enjoy running into some more than others.  (Can you tell I don't get out much?)

Some names just have a flow to them, or a quirky but appealing texture that gives them some kind of aesthetic value all to themselves.  They're not mere designations for convenience, but characters that suggest something.  I have no idea as yet whether the people behind them have any resemblance to the "feel" of their names - they could be great people with shitty names, or unholy pigs from Satan's asshole with beautiful names.  Given the subject of my inquiry, I have to assume the bulk of them will lean toward the latter regardless of how pleasant I find their names, but for the moment it's fun to play.

Actually, some of them are quite entertaining.  Here are some of the names I find myself taking pleasure in seeing (if you look them up, don't tell me anything about them - I want it to be a surprise when I get to that stage of the research):

Marcia Stephens Bloom Bernicat
Aurelia Erskine Brazeal
Miles Teel Bivins
Gretchen Birkle
Blanquita Walsh Cullum
Eli Whitney Debevoise II
William Stamps Farish III
Rockwell Anthony Schnabel
Constance Albanese Morella
Earl Norfleet Phillips, Jr.
Margaret DeBardeleben Tutwiler

I get a little thrill whenever I run into names like these, because I find them hilarious.  No offense to anyone around here who might have a similar name, of course.

Anyway, I've also been cogitating on giving my project a name.  I already know what the title of the book will be (assuming the ultimate publisher, knock on wood, agrees), but I think the process should have its own name.  Just to indulge my inner 12-year-old, I'm thinking of calling the broader program "Operation ______," like it's some grandiose thing, and giving each stage of the process a name in the format "Project ______."  This would let me call these diaries something more interesting than "Book Project Diary."  

In fact, I've also been wondering if it would be worthwhile to start a website specifically to promote the process, disseminate information, and solicit documents from people who have already gone through the FOIA process.  I suppose I should leave that decision until I actually have something to report other than the random brain farts that flit through my brain when I type funny names.


Previous installments in this series:

Book Project Diary 4: Jackpot
Book Project Diary 3: Carly Fiorina Pals Around With Halliburton Executives (& Other Musings)
Book Project Diary 2: Feeling Like A Schmuck
Book Project Diary 1: Awed By The Magnitude

Originally posted to Troubadour on Wed Feb 24, 2010 at 06:06 PM PST.


Which of these names is funniest?

5%1 votes
5%1 votes
5%1 votes
0%0 votes
22%4 votes
5%1 votes
22%4 votes
0%0 votes
5%1 votes
5%1 votes
0%0 votes
16%3 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
5%1 votes

| 18 votes | Vote | Results

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site