I never said it was “surprising”
but that’s NOT the job. That’s how the job was filled. But that’s not the job. They’re not meant to be minions. They’re designed to be ADVISORS. The ideas is *supposed* to be that they are domain experts put in position to manage departments under the executive branch that president isn’t (and shouldn’t be) a domain expert on. The same way it’s supposed to work in any organization, actually. The domain expert on education is supposed to run studies and analyze data and come up with best practices suggestions which they go to the chief executive with for approval and funding and then implement them. The domain expert on energy is supposed to do the same thing for their department. The Joint chiefs are supposed to do this for the military. etc. etc. etc.
The same thing happens in companies, really. If I’m veep engineering or chief technologist, it is my job to figure out what my resources my department needs to best fulfill its mission. And then I work together the budget and I go to get it approved by the CEO. There may be business concerns that mean I can’t get my budget approved or that my needs get pushed down the priority chain in favor of the needs of the advertising department or the accounting department. The CEO decides that. And fine. This is why we have meetings.
What is the WRONG thing to do is for the CEO with not technical experience to decide “I want this company to build software in COBOL. And they should be using Commodore 64s to do it!” So then he hires a woman who also has no technical experience but is the sister of a dude who gave him a nice birthday present once, to be the new chief technologist and enforce his Commodore 64 and COBOL agenda. And then her way of doing that, is to go out and give speeches to customers explaining that “the problem with Java is that there was this one programmer who wasn’t using semicolons correctly in his Turbo PASCAL code and it didn’t compile. So therefore Java sucks. COBOL all the way. And ummm… Commodore 64s… I dunno… just because! AmIRite!!!! Also, can we get some guns up in this place? Because I’m really worried about bear attacks.”
Because that’s literally what happened here.