The Obama CDC


Many of the science based bureaucracies have undergone welcome change under the Obama administration. It sounds like the CDC is one of them.

Gone are the nonscientific managers whom Dr. Gerberding sprinkled throughout the agency’s top ranks. Gone is a layer of bureaucracy, agency officials said. Gone, too, are the captain’s chairs with cup holders from a conference room so fancy that agency managers dubbed it the Crown Room.

In their place, Dr. Frieden has restored not only much of the agency’s previous organizational structure and scientific managers, but also its drab furniture. And he has brought something new: a frenetic sense of urgency.

The C.D.C. is considered one of the world’s premier public health agencies, responsible for tracking the spread of infectious disease, distributing vaccines and monitoring the causes of sickness and deaths. About three-quarters of its $10 billion annual budget is given out in grants to places like state and local health departments, which collectively lost 16,000 positions last year, according to a recent public health survey, making those grants that much more important.

via Scientist at Work – Dr. Thomas R. Frieden – At C.D.C., Obama’s Appointee Wields a Big Broom –

It sounds like the Bush Administration burrowed some “nonscientific managers” aka partisan actors to keep the CDC in line with the neo-con policy of starving non-defense government agencies of resources until rendered impotent and to align their goals with trickle down corporate interests over public good.