| UPDATE: More rumors reached my ears. I feel like I'm going in circles here but for what it's worth, I think it's wise to keep the heat on the USDA until we have confirmation whether the rumors are true or not. (Or perhaps, we'll talk them out of these bad appointments and then we'll never know...)
You know how they say when you assume you make an ass out of you and me? Well, I hate the cliche, but perhaps that's what happens when you listen to rumors. I've heard two sets of rumors. One set says that food safety appointments may happen this week. The other set says that at least the USDA Food Safety post is NOT happening this week (i.e stop worrying).
A friend tells me that sources on Capitol Hill believe that someone - perhaps Michael Osterholm - will be appointed to lead FSIS this week, and that Michael Taylor may become a special White House "food safety dude." I've posted here already about why I oppose these appointments, and I think that's relevant. Whether or not they are being considered at present, it's not a bad idea to get the word out about what these two are about and why we don't want them in charge of our food supply. (Besides - no rumors say that the Michael Taylor appointment won't happen, although rumor has it Taylor has said he won't take the job if it's offered... and THAT is a rumor I absolutely don't believe.)
A second source - a very reliable source, to my judgment - tells me with 100% certainty there will NOT be a USDA food safety appointment this week, and that Osterholm is NOT the near-definite choice for the job. I believe this source - and goodness, I hope it's right.
So there's two sets of rumors and I don't know who's correct. Obviously believing either one leaves me with a possibility of ending up with egg on my face. Currently, I'd prefer to take the more cautious approach and to continue to post information on why Osterholm and Taylor aren't good picks for any government job. If they are being considered, then my opposition will be in the open. If they aren't being considered, well... great. I'll be the first to thank and congratulate Vilsack and Obama once they appoint someone who will keep our food supply safe.