Could You Fill Out This Job Application?

"If you have ever sent an electronic communication, including but not limited to an e-mail, text message or instant message, 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."So asks question 13 of the questionnaire for potential top-ranking Obama administration officials. The mind reels.The seven-page, 63-question intrusive and extensive list of queries, first obtained by the New York Times and confirmed as legitimate by the Obama Transition Team, offers a revealing glimpse into both the Obama team's determination not to repeat the mistakes of its predecessors (Any nanny issues? Any discriminatory club memberships?) as well as the new era on which Obama will lead ("Please provide the URL address of any Web sites that feature you in either a personal or professional capacity, e.g. Facebook, My Space, etc.").Applicants are asked if they or any immediate family members own a gun, if they have ever been charged with sexual harassment or malpractice, if they have ever had any alimony or child support issues, "any writs of garnishment," or any bankruptcy problems. Ever been investigated, arrested for, charged with, convicted of violating any law, regulation or ordinance? How about your spouse? Your child? ("You may exclude traffic offenses for which the fine was less than $50.")Have you, your spouse, or any member of your immediate family ever worked with a financial, banking, insurance or mortgage institution currently the subject of federal government intervention as part of the financial meltdown? "This question includes but is not limited to, the following: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, AIG, and Washington Mutual."What about gifts? "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 received."Net worth, tax returns, loans, trusts, real estate. The questionnaire attempts to leave no stone unturned. Provide a copy of every book, article, column or publication you have authored, any speeches you have given, any testimony delivered, any resume you've issued. "Please list all aliases or 'handles' you have used to communicate on the Internet.""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."Crikey!- jpt

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