Template talk:Obama Administration personnel

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This needs lines or borders or something to reign in all the free-flying text.—Markles 20:32, 2 December 2008 (UTC)

How's it now, at border="1" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0"? Just tips me hat but then 〜on thoght bows deeply 23:47, 2 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Much better.—Markles 01:16, 3 December 2008 (UTC)

Too many lines[edit]

I hate all the lines that have no information. They make the presentation excessively busy. take a look at how un-busy this below is. -- Yellowdesk (talk) 04:07, 4 December 2008 (UTC)

I went ahead and boldly applied your just suggested edit, Yellowdesk; see here: Template:Obama appointees and staff&diff=255782446&oldid=255779359. Thx. Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 04:35, 4 December 2008 (UTC)


Does it have to be this big?—Markles 01:16, 3 December 2008 (UTC)

When you say size, if you're referring to the template's width, I did make a navigation box out of it, as is now posted at the bottom of individual Administration(-to-be) members' bios (for example, see Jon Favreau (speechwriter)); however I guess such a navbar could open up to a one-columned sidebar that would only cover up half the screen, just as well. Just say the word. Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 02:23, 3 December 2008 (UTC)
  • OK. That's fine. I see what you mean. Meanwhile, I reduced the title font size, but there's still something not right…—Markles 02:40, 3 December 2008 (UTC)


Why can't a standard {{Navbox}} be used?—Markles 02:40, 3 December 2008 (UTC)

It could be. (The coding would have to be done like this, though):
list1 = Advisor to the President >br< Public liaison >br< Assistant for Intergovernmental Affairs >br< Secretary of State >br< Position 3 >br< Position 4 ...
list2 = Valerie Jarrett >br< &-nbsp; >br< &-nbsp; >br< Hillary >br< Person 3 >br< Person 4 ...
Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 03:11, 3 December 2008 (UTC)
  • That's awful. I mean can a larger Navbox include a couple smaller regular boxes? —Markles 03:15, 3 December 2008 (UTC)∂
No, because a Navbox can't make sense of the "regular" table's coding.
However, a Navbox does include list1-through-list6 -- sooooo if, say, a child Navbox were to be nested at each list1-through-list6 of a parent Navbox ...


list1 = Public liaison {-} Jarrett
list2 = Assistant to the President for Intergovernmental Affairs
list3 = Advisor to the President
list4 = Secretary of State {-} Hillary


list2 ... (etc)
-- this would accomodate 36 lines of text. Then -- if each of these 36 lists had Navboxes nested inside them, there'd be 216 total. I'm thinking of trying it(!) Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 03:32, 3 December 2008 (UTC)
Hey, Markles -- thx for the suggestion re converting the "navigation box" into an actual, well, Navbox.
I made one here: Template:Navbox- Obama appointees and staff. (However, note that in order for me to do so, I had to convert this template's markup from a Wikitable to that found in Wikitemplate:Table. Which was of course necessary because the Wikitable's meaning for "pipes" ("|" "|") was ideosyncratic from the Navbox's! Which Template:Table gets around via its converting all wikitable double pipes into "{-{!!}-}s.") Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 03:54, 4 December 2008 (UTC)

Is the code broken when it's defaulted to collapse and then opened in any article, check out James L. Jones. I'd fix it but it's beyond me. Grsz11 05:30, 4 December 2008 (UTC)

It's now fixed. In my browser, anyway. Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 08:21, 4 December 2008 (UTC)

Office of the President Elect[edit]

There is no such thing as the "Office" of the president elect in the federal government, and so removed on the bottom of the table the word Office. Now it states that the nominee has yet to be announced by the President-Elect. Dimigw (talk) 00:07, 11 December 2008 (UTC)

The website belays that. Therequiembellishere (talk) 03:27, 11 December 2008 (UTC)
The website has no barring on federal law. There is no such thing as an official "office" of the president elect. No where in the constitution is it said that there is this branch within the transition. In fact, the creation of this "office" is a violation of 18 USC Sec. 713. The president elect is appointing the people, not the office. It can be said however that they were announced by the President-Elect transition team. (talk) 18:33, 11 December 2008 (UTC)
What nonsense. 18 USC Sec. 713 is about unauthorized use of the likenesses of the great seal of the United States, the seals of the President and Vice President, the seal of the United States Senate, the seal of the United States House of Representatives, and the seal of the United States Congress. And the Presidential Transition Act of 1963 establishes in law the orderly transfer, the establishment of office for transition and the use of the term President-elect. This is braying at the moon. Lestatdelc (talk) 20:16, 11 December 2008 (UTC)

Should be collapsed[edit]

Kudos to everybody who's worked on this project. However, after encountering this template in all its expanded glory on a couple of smaller articles, I'm not happy about that being the default setting. It's one of the very largest templates I've ever laid eyes on, and scrolling down to the bottom of the page was pretty annoying -- I thought it would never end... (Seriously, it's literally twice as long as those articles.) So unless there's a really strong case to be made for leaving it as is, I really feel that the default should be changed to "collapsed". Cgingold (talk) 15:16, 19 December 2008 (UTC)

Green tickY Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 20:07, 20 December 2008 (UTC)

Split proposal[edit]

This template has had an interesting history. It started life as a sidebar, having all of the then announced positions in the Obama Administration [1]. It eventually got transcluded to the bottom of dozens of articles [2] and was then promptly converted into an appropriate navbox format [3]. I think along the way we tried to make this template do too many things. In particular, something so large and unwieldy doesn't work well as a navbox for the entire administration (of which there will be many more Presidential appointments). I suggest that if we continue using this as a navbox, we split it, re-formatting the current template as an in-article table only. The most obvious way to split it is into three pieces: a cabinet navbox, an executive office navbox, and a VP's office navbox. Thoughts?--chaser - t 23:11, 22 December 2008 (UTC)

Since the banner at the bottom of the bios is collapsed and only opens when someone wants to look at it, I see no problem with the template's current length. However, when its length becomes truly unwieldy, a suggested, alternative fix would be to cause only the most pertinent section to be uncollapsed/shown upon initially expanding the topmost navigation banner, leaving the remaining, less pertinent sections collapsed(?)
Also, the advantage of having only one table both in the article and in the navigation template rather than tables that are in part duplicates of each other is that anytime additions are to be made, they only need to be done once instead of twice or more.
→ An added note -- At the bottom of the bios of cabinet-level nominees (eg see here: Peter R. Orszag#References), the template hides completely its cabinet-level section. Actually, this is due to the fact that there already is in existence a competing Obama Cabinet/Cabinet Level navigation banner and this alternative banner is placed just above the Obama Administration Personnel one. (I removed the section bar that said "Cabinet-level (show)" altogether because IMO having a topmost section banner "Cabinet-level" with its section collapsed directly over the expanded sections below would be misleading.) In any case, the encoding I'm proposing would obviously effect the opposite -- expanding one pertinent section and collapsing any others. Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 15:08, 23 December 2008 (UTC)
Mea culpa.... It just occurs to me that what chaser is proposing is not to stack four navigation banners (one each for the current template's Cabinet-level, Executive Office of the President, Office of the VP, and Other sections) all together at the bottom of each designate's bio, but rather for us simply to farm out the material from each of the four sections into its own make child template, all of which would then be nested together within one omnibus, parent template: viz., "Obama Administration personnel," of course. This indeed would provide an efficient platform to encode our having only one, contextually most-pertinent section uncollapsed whenever a reader clicks the parent nav banner's "show" button and IMO may well eventually need to be done if/when the chart gets too unwieldy. (Which I suppose is now, in chaser's opinion!...) Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 18:19, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
I'm not sure if it's yet clear. I'm suggesting a separate navbox exclusively for each group. The Cabinet already has one. Up until a few days ago, Hillary Clinton's article only had the Cabinet navbox. I propose similar treatment for everyone in the administration. So her article would just have the Cabinet template and a "see also" for the administration. Valerie Jarret, Greg Craig, etc. would just have templates for the Executive Office. And so on for people in Biden's Office. I don't know what to do with the "other" category except to drop them. As to the omnibus template, I'm suggesting only using that in the transition article, as a table (its current use).--chaser - t 18:36, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
Thanks, chaser, for explaining more fully.
However, FWIW, my own thought are that since a "see also" line equals one line of text followed by a linespace whereas a navigation banner equals a compact bar out of the way at the very bottom of an article's page, there would actually be zero gain of textual compression from either method, with the use of a nav banner's breaking the tie through its in addition providing the advantage of saving a reader from having to scroll down and search for the chart s/he's looking for after s/he gets to a "see also"-linked destination article. And as for the idea of having duplicate charts in the Transition article and the proposed, various sub-templates, this would require that contributors make duplicate additions or corrections to the data, for a substantial increase in editing labor. Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 19:24, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
Not if you transclude the smaller navboxes into this big table. Then you just have to update the smaller navboxes and the table updates automatically as soon as you purge the cache. See something similar I did here. The reason I want to do this is not to reduce bloat, but to provide relevant, concise navigational aids to our readers.--chaser - t 19:38, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
chaser, I made an edit so that when the navbox's "show" button is clicked it opens to a stacked formation of four, collapsed subheads, inviting the reader to open anyone the reader believes is most pertinent. But if you'd like to tinker with the coding you're welcome to jump in with the rest of us. Once again, I'm not averse to sub-templates, especially as long as contributors can access them together for easy editing -- most likely from a main template or, barring that, I suppose from the "Transition" article. Anyway, I would like to step aside from commenting about now and wait for others to weigh in, should any materialize. Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 20:14, 24 December 2008 (UTC)

Explaining this is too difficult. You have to see it. Look at Alyssa Mastromonaco and Susan Rice to see what I'm suggesting. I've tentatively changed both articles.--chaser - t 20:44, 24 December 2008 (UTC)

I had already understood, chaser, that this was exactly what you had meant.
You know, traditionally the point of navigation templates has been to provide a wide compendium of a vast array of article links, not provide a boiled-down and carefully selected series of just a handful of links (such as, for example, would be provided at the upper left of a summary-style biography, providing easy navigation to the series's constituent subarticles).
Some of the current template's sections are fairly arbitrary and no doubt will eventually become separated out into yet further sections, such as the National Security Council. In a related point, we see, looking at Secretary-designate Clinton's deputy-designates, their names are now listed in the Executive Office of the President, not State Department; so, alas, yet scheme provides no links to these selections of hers from her article, only links to her fellow cabinet members. So, I guess to repeat my main contention: the ulimate purpose of bottom-of-the-page navigation aids to to help people quickly access things they're interested in finding by providing a wide range of related subjects that are linked to. Right? In any case, I continue to believe that for use as a transitional catch-all editing device, the present arrangement provides maximum navigation among articles for readers along with better ease of access for contributors' wishing to add or edit names; but again, that's just my 2 cents. Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 21:09, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
Let's discuss this again later. The President makes thousands of appointments, so once more of them are done we should have a better idea of how to split this up and (I expect) the necessity of doing so will have become more pressing.--chaser - t 21:37, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
(P/s I went to your well-wrought SCOTUS article/list but was unable to access, after even a few tries, its first constituent template. Maybe you should condider encoding Tnavbars into it?) :^) Just tips me hat but then 〜on thought bows deeply 21:09, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
There's no template. I was just trying to direct you to a list to show something similar.--chaser - t 21:37, 24 December 2008 (UTC)

Cabinet vs Administration[edit]

They are not the same thing. The Cabinet does not work in the White House, and are not part of the White House staff. They work at their Departments. I think we need to simplify everything but eliminating the Cabinet and Cabinet level box from this template, as it is duplicate of Template:Obama cabinet. Grsz11 21:07, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

I don't think the cabinet part should be removed from the template. It is much cleaner and takes up a lot less space that the full-blown cabinet template. See discussion at Template talk:Obama cabinet#Duplicated template?.
Which one looks cleaner to you?
It takes up less space now, but in the future the wider one will be the way to go. Grsz11 05:07, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
You only put up the child template. That isn't the whole thing. In order to compare, you have to compare both full templates. Grsz11 05:14, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
I think the longer template will make more sense when/if cabinet members get replaced. The smaller, more compact template will just show the current cabinet. ~ PaulT+/C 05:06, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
It's an incredible waste of space to use the large template on every Cabinet member's article when half of that navbox has nothing to do with them. There needs to be separation. Combining Administration and Cabinet needlessly expands the boxes and the articles. The Cabinet members get a Cabinet box, the Admin members get an Admin box, not each gets both. Grsz11 05:10, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

Why did you change the template? You can specifically call the cabinet template on pages where just that template is appropriate, as I did above and you changed and I will post again below:

You can also exclude the cabinet from the {{Obama Administration personnel}} template by calling the hideCabinet=yes parameter. ~ PaulT+/C 05:20, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

Not really, then it has no descriptive title. It's then also the same as Template:Current U.S. Cabinet. Grsz11 05:21, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
Are you serious? that template just has the last names and omits the names of the positions...
Not even close to the other templates we are discussing. ~ PaulT+/C 05:27, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

I still think that the best option is an Administration template and a Cabinet template. Presidency of Barack Obama gets both, the Cabinet members get theirs, and the Administration members the other. But adding a hundred irrelevant names to Hillary Clinton just clutters it up. Grsz11 14:28, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

Courtesy section break[edit]

I don't disagree. I just think that the cabinet child template of the administration template is much better than the stand-alone obama cabinet template. The only qualm that I have with the child template is, as you pointed out, the title. But that can easily be changed with an additional if statement around the title. ~ PaulT+/C 18:58, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
Note, I just added an alternate title when the child template is used standalone. ~ PaulT+/C 19:09, 23 January 2009 (UTC)