Friday, May 15, 2009

More for CPSC and against Nord

Nancy Nord is the acting head of the CPSC, and as the videos from the briefing yesterday showed, she is doing as good a job there as anyone possibly could with the hand she has been dealt by Congress. She is not the enemy, and she is not week.

But so many out there in media land seem to miss no opportunity to criticize her and the work she is doing. Now that Obama has picked his choice for her replacement, many are at it again. Yesterday's Sun Sentinel is another example: "Obama's pick for product safety chief holds promise, but has big task ahead"

The article starts by lauding Obama's pick, Tenenbaum, which is fine; we're all entitled to our opinion. But it doesn't stop there. It goes on to criticize how the CPSC has fallen down on the job. It does give some of the blame to Congress, but only in regards to the financial issues it has had: "who decimated its budget and staff in an era of advanced globalization."

But then the author goes on to blame Nancy Nord for the current problems at the CPSC: "But much of the blame falls on an uninspired, meek leadership that refused to require more from manufacturers and fight for consumer interests."

I beg to disagree. Nancy Nord is fighting hard for consumer interests, as she tries to help us keep the countless small businesses going that Congress has jeopardized with the CPSIA. Congress has tied her hands with the legislation they passed last summer, and then blamed her for the mess that has ensued. This author can no more make that Nord's fault than Congress can!

But I think the most telling and truthful portion of the article is at the end: "Tenenbaum would have...a golden opportunity, too, to create a sea change in the culture and effectiveness of a critical agency that has the potential to reach into every American's home through the products it regulates."

If that doesn't inspire us to keep on Congress to get CPSIA fixed, and sooner rather than later, I guess not much will!

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