The word on the street and not just Wall Street, Barack Obama is hiring, and according to senior Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett, the president-elect is, quote, "picking brains from all different perspectives." Here's some advice on how to get a plumb position in the Obama administration from our humorous Brian Unger in today's Unger Report.

BRIAN UNGER: From the looks of it, anyone can get a job over there at the White House, even if you talk smack about the boss. Really, a Secretary Clinton or McCain? Some describe Obama's hiring philosophy in terms of Abraham Lincoln's team of rivals, as historian Doris Kearns Goodwin entitled her 2005 book about the 16th president. Or, in terms of Michael Corleone's keep your friends close but your enemies closer, as Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola wrote in "The Godfather Part II."

For those of us outside the beltway, the office of the president-elect has an expression of interest form on its website, All right, this website is designed to help people apply for positions in the Obama-Biden administration. Some positions will require Senate confirmation, while others will not. Oh, that sounds messy and very time consuming.

First name, Brian. Last name, Unger, Los Angeles, California. Phone number - please do not give out my cell number and have Barack call me after seven. Most recent employer, NPR. Position or status, shaky, tenuous one, angry listener email, away from being fired. What position do you desire? Ambassador to France or spy or spy working in France.

Q and A section - how would you solve the credit crisis? I would appoint a credit czar, of course. I would loan American Express $3.5 billion but at 21 percent interest and make those wieners pay it back in full at the end of the month. Let's see here. How would you solve the mortgage crisis? Oh gee. Appoint mortgage czar. How would you end the war in Iraq? Leave goodbye note on Iraqi cabinet. Joke. LOL. And submit.

Finally, some advice on interviewing with President-elect Obama. Dress professionally in conservative clothing. Wear sensible shoes - he likes Cole Han - minimal jewelry, no perfume or cologne, just smell like freedom. Bring a resume, references, and a breath mint. Turn your cell phone off. Get there early. Do a trial run to the White House but don't jump the fence. Remain as calm as possible. Ask questions and get his business card so you have the correct spelling when you send Obama a thank-you note later. And lastly, be flexible. If you want to be secretary of state, be willing to settle for motor pool coordinator, and above all, don't high five the president-elect in the hallway. Good luck. Yes, you can. And that is today's Unger report. I'm Brian Unger.

BRAND: Humor from Brian Unger, a regular Monday feature on Day to Day.

Copyright © 2008 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio.



Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor

Support comes from