Trump! Trump! Trump!

A breath of fresh air!

A man who speaks his mind!

A man of conviction—whoa—wait a minute…

 

These three comments typify those which have flooded internet message boards since early last Summer. While I nodded to myself over most of those I’ve read everywhere, the last one stopped me cold.

You can say a lot of things about why Trump is wildly popular; but “a man of conviction” is absolutely not one of them.

The big reasons Trump is popular are clear:

First, he believes in America, and obviously loves his fellow Americans.

Second, he believes in winning.

 

Ever since President Reagan left the White House 27 years ago, there has not been a single Republican who has proudly (and boastfully) projected these two qualities. Except for Jesse Helms, every congressman, senator, governor and presidential candidate has always tip-toed through the minefield of interviews with the two national overlords of public opinion: the New York Times and the Washington Post.

Because of these two publishers’ clout in manipulating what is broadcast on the Nightly News, every Republican has spent these past three decades hunched over in fear of being targeted as an enemy of what those two papers find distasteful, wrong, or bad about America. Once challenged, they never fight back. Americans have noticed this persistently cowardly presentation of what they believe, and have spent election after election fighting when their candidates won’t.

Trump does the direct opposite. He bashes the News Media. He talks back to a reporter who tries to talk down to him, and he plays the TV Media like an expert violinist. Americans have noticed, and enthusiastically support him because of it.

My favorite Trump success is his daily stabs at political correctness. Watching reporters and pundits clutch their chests in fabricated outrage is becoming my favorite entertainment!

But Trump should be running as a Democrat. He believes in big government, has funded and voted for liberal causes his entire career, and is VERY shaky on his belief in private property and more important, his constitutional perception of eminent domain.

Watch the Pixar movie “Up!” The first 15 minutes are taken directly from a case where Trump sued an old lady in 1993 to force her out of her home in Atlantic City, New Jersey so he could build a giant new building. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vera_Coking).

He beat her too. Does anybody think that case won’t come up in the General Election?

Worse than that, he continues to demonstrate his comfort with Huge Government.

Just this morning he told ABC News that while ObamaCare “is a disaster!” he would fix it: with a different government program that works. We’ve been watching them tinker with Big Government Healthcare in Europe for 60 years now. It doesn’t ever get any better, just more expensive. But because he “cares about people”, Trump’s health-care-bureaucracy will be more efficient than Obama’s. Does anyone who has ever filled out all those government-required-forms at the hospital really believe that?

If Trump ran as a Democrat, he would have quickly eliminated Clinton as a viable candidate last September. He would have kept Sanders in the race just to make him look stupid. He would be drawing 85% of Democrat voters, with gushing praise from the Democrat Party’s pundits. Instead, he has sparked their sheep-like wrath, because with Democrats it’s always tribe above everything else.  He would also have at least 40% of Republican voters, because of his unabashed candor. Unlike any candidate in either party, he has drawn support from blue collar workers, the chronically underemployed, and even blacks.

Who was the last politician who achieved such broad support?

But as a Republican, no one knows who he really is, because he has never supported any constitutional cause, either with his money or his mouth.

As one Republican supporter explained: “We like him because talks American!”

Except for Herman Cain, Sarah Palin and Ben Carson, who else has done that?

The other reason Trump is popular is because Congress has ceded most of its power to huge federal agencies to do its job.  Read the soon-to-be-published book Bureaucratic Bombs to see how bureaucrats spend their time writing rules to micromanage the lives of everyday Americans; something forbidden in the Constitution. Will Trump accelerate this trend like Obama, or will he halt the arbitrary bureaucracy, call it what it is and eliminate this “rulemaking”, as bureaucrats like to call it.

I’ll bet he will do just as Obama taught him: continue to bypass Congress, write Executive Orders to get what he wants done, and then go on The View and blame “those stupid congressmen” for not understanding what Americans really want.

We’ve spent the last 7 years watching this game. When Trump continues to do the same thing, we will be firmly down a road which permanently makes Congress a secondary force to the power of the President.

And let’s not forget the end game here: getting Ted Cruz and Rand Paul appointed to the Supreme Court.

These two men are powerful advocates for The United States Constitution, and will be passionate defenders of it against the anti-Constitutionalists now serving on the bench.  Does anyone in America really think Trump will appoint a pro-Constitution justice to the Supreme Court?

I like Trump—a lot. I absolutely love his chutzpa!

But we’ve seen this movie before—three times, in fact.

There have been popular uprisings around the United States over the past two decades. The first time was in Minnesota. People were so frustrated at their unresponsive state government that they elected an outsider and complete political novice, Jesse Ventura.

The second uprising was in California, when they elected Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The third was in New York City. Not so much a popular uprising so much as a manipulation of the “conservative” label. Billionaire Michael Bloomberg got himself elected by being the only candidate on the Republican side of the ballot, and then flooding the city with campaign cash.

But in all three cases, the well-known-celebrity talked a great can-do speech swimming in common sense. Once elected, all three forgot what they promised, and were complete disasters.

Like Trump, Ventura trash-talked his opponents, and ended up a loud-mouthed embarrassment.

Like Trump, Schwarzenegger was a well-known celebrity who, once elected, caved to the unending stampede of liberal rants and union demands. He was a lame-duck eunuch halfway through his first year in office.

And Bloomberg—my goodness. He spent his entire term micromanaging New York: you couldn’t own a gun, couldn’t smoke, shouldn’t drink soda, shouldn’t use salt, shouldn’t drive a car…

Meanwhile, he pretty much ignored constitutional voting violations all over his jurisdiction, yet jumped to the TV every time there was a terrorist attack so he could blame Americans.

People got sick of Ventura’s public tantrums real fast; of Schwarzenegger’s tough guy image even faster; and of Bloomberg’s micromanaging in a New York Minute.

How it starts is how it goes, and I see Trump as the billionaire blend of all three of these men. Each one is famous, rich and loud.

And not one has a conviction in his body.

–The Beltway Bandit

 

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America’s Presidential DreamTeam

After watching this political game for over a year now, it is finally time for people to cast votes. The Iowa Caucus assembles to vote this weekend. And from there, the State Primaries begin at a breath-taking speed.

The one blessing of watching the numerous candidates over the last year is that we get many opportunities to see how each one behaves in interviews, on the stump, and in person when they think no camera is watching.

We get to see how easily one gets mad, how calm another stays when shouted at, and how another can come up with a pithy response to the most insulting question.

The most amusing is watching Mrs. Clinton, a candidate who has been running for this specific job since 2006. She still has no ability or interest in talking to regular folks!

The year gave us a healthy opportunity to see how each one of these candidates would act when the door to the Oval Office is closed, when they must sit there and make decisions or make a calm call to a belligerent foreign leader.

_________________

The past seven months have been a delightful surprise as Trump popped up from nowhere; then Carson became a shooting star; and then Fiorina appeared to earn a fresh breath of opportunity after a hearty debate performance.

But best of all, we learned one thing: the Republicans have a very deep bench, and the Democrats have nobody.

The Republicans have several governors, senators and business leaders, many of whom are under 50 years old. They have a black, two Hispanics and (until recently) an Indian running.

We all know Trump is a billionaire, but nobody knows that Clinton is worth over a $100 million dollars. Everybody knows that the Democrat Party is the party of minorities, but the Republican Party has all the minorities running for president.

The Democrats have a white woman in her late 60s, a white man in his mid-70s, and another white man in his mid-50s. None of the three has ever thought creatively on any issue of national importance.

__________________

So, drawn directly from the Republican Party’s deep bench, here is the Presidential Dream Team:

President: Ben Carson

Secretary of State: Carly Fiorina

Attorney General: Ted Cruz

Secretary of Defense: Chris Christie

Secretary of Treasury:  Rand Paul

Presidential Press Spokesman: Mike Huckabee

First Supreme Court Pick: Ted Cruz

Second Supreme Court Pick: Rick Santorum

Since all other Cabinet-level departments aren’t constitutional, we’ll skip all of them for now. It seems that except for the aggressive and belligerently anti-constitutional EPA, not one of these agencies does anything more than just keep doing the same thing over and over and over. They spend trillions of dollars every year, but no more Americans are working than there were 15 years ago, the nation is far less safe than it was 25 years ago, and kids don’t learn more than they did 50 years ago.

If Carson is smart, he should take all the other candidates (including former candidates Governors Walker and Jindall) and create a brain trust to eliminate as many of those cabinet agencies as possible. They should be tasked to reduce the size of the federal workforce by a third by the end of 2019. Read the soon-to-be-published book Bureaucratic Bombs. You’ll be shocked at the way much of our government workforce wastes their time.

If Carson is really smart, he’ll pick Allen West as his running mate. Just think: The Washington Media would go haywire. How would they write all their political stories trashing Republicans when BOTH slots on the ticket are successful black Americans? After spending the last 7 years openly calling everyone who doesn’t agree with Obama a racist, they would spend all of next Fall in a panic trying to come up with their typically insidious angle of attack.

Better still, how would the Democrat Nominee attack this ticket? As of this writing, they will either face Sanders, a proud European Socialist; or Clinton, a protégé of Sanders beliefs, but still money-grubbing enough to keep her mouth shut about it until elected. Both potential nominees are old, void of both enthusiasm and intellectual vigor, and worst of all, lack any affection for the American people.

Carson’s bold move will offer our nation two strong men who believe in America, who fluidly talk about their love of and pride in America, and who are strong role models of the American Dream for young men and women across the country.

Best of all, it would shatter the minority coalition that The Media has created for the Democrat Party over the last 40 years. Even when the Carson/West ticket steals only 3% of the black and other minority vote, it will draw in all the Tea Party and Evangelical voting blocks which stayed home in 2012. The two men will also jolt all the bitterly disenfranchised people who are crying out for a president who believes in America, and who believes in Americans.

_______________

So let’s put details onto our Presidential Dream Team:

President: Ben Carson.

He is an adult who speaks with wisdom, and is a powerful antidote to the last 7 years of the social and racial poison which has been injected into our culture. Our nation has been wounded by our current leader, who has spent his entire term trashing everything positive about our heritage and our people. Ben Carson has the reputation, the calm presence, and the wisdom to heal the bleeding racial and social sores which Obama has spent his entire term tearing open. Americans looks up to Carson with respect, because we crave a real man who can positively talk about something beyond himself.

 

Secretary of State: Carly Fiorina.

She is thoughtful and considerate–and believes in America. She will be a proud and unapologetic proponent and spokesman for the United States. She would be an advocate for the interests of the United States, not of the United Nations. She studies the issues, thinks before she speaks, and understands how military power affects diplomacy and vise-versa. She also comprehends all the moving parts to a situation.

 

Attorney General: Ted Cruz.

One of our two current advocates for the Constitution. On January 20, 2017, he will go down to the basement of the Justice Department and find the copy of the Constitution, dust it off, and repost it on the wall of the building’s main lobby.  He would recommend judges who believe in America, and also begin enforcing all the laws which Obama, Holder and Lynch have ignored or “re-considered”.

 

Secretary of Defense: Chris Christie.

He believes in victory. He understands the importance of a fierce American military presence around the world.

 

Secretary of Treasury:  Rand Paul.

The other current advocate for the Constitution. This man believes in the constitutional authority of the Treasury to protect and stabilize our currency, not to manipulate the economy and society. He is a fervent defender of Sound Money, and knows we must stop these ridiculous annual deficits and need to pay off our National Debt. He will rebuild international faith in The Dollar. He will renew the concept we used to call “Sound as a Dollar”.

 

Presidential Press Spokesman: Mike Huckabee.

He is superb on his feet, understands policy, an excellent speaker off-the-cuff, is intensely loyal to the party, remains calm, and best of all, always speaks with a smile. He would be a powerful weapon against the venomous Washington Press Corps.

 

First Supreme Court Pick: Ted Cruz.

Once appointed, he would be the energetic and articulate heir to Justice Scalia. He will explain why the Constitution matters. He will be in the perfect seat to give a 20-year-long national class on the grandeur of the Constitution.

 

Second Supreme Court Pick: Rick Santorum.

Once appointed, he would be an advocate for the American Family and an excellent teammate to Justice Cruz.

 

Walker/Jindall/Kasich/Perry Brain Trust.

These men have done impressive and creative work as governors in their states. They have managed budgets that were out of control when they assumed office, and in some cases have controlled the cash-gobbling impulses of their bureaucracies. Carson should request their talents to begin to severely shrink the federal bureaucracy, and to dismantle the Arbitrary Administrative State which smothers our liberties.

 

Vice President West.

This office has been squandered time and again. Vice President West can be an advisor to Secretary of Defense Christie as an advocate for the enlisted man, and for the importance of crushing an enemy once engaged. But his greater mission should be to visit—every week— poor areas and especially the Inner Cities in America to advocate for what a great country these children live in. With a 50% unemployment rate for black males under 30, West is the direct opposite example to their current national icon. Allen West is a natural advocate for all the good that America stands for. Young Americans deserve his and President Carson’s message.

–The Beltway Bandit

_____________

 

P.S:        “WHAT—no Trump?!”

I’ll explain that in the next post…

 

Advertising the Obvious

Ever notice stupid ads on TV or radio?

Although masked under a rapidly mumbled closing line of “brought to you by the Ad Council…” these ads are really paid for by YOU.

This is the kind of obvious stuff your government wastes their money promoting:

Advertising the Forest

“The Chief of the United States Forest Service says people should celebrate Earth Day by getting out of the house.”

No kidding?!

Did you get a college degree to come up with that wisdom?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BGnZQzCbTX8

…and look at how many people watched this dynamic government-agency-self-promoting video: 2,412 in a nation of 350 million people!

Of course, writing the video, assembling a video crew to drive outside of the Forest Service’s air-conditioned office building in Downtown Washington and trekking all the way to A Real Forest to film the video, and then scheduling a meeting with Chief Tom Tidwell to interview him about all the good works he and his teammates in The Forest Service are doing is really expensive. Then they had to record the interview, go back to a studio and edit the interview for time and pithy wisdom from Chief Tom, and then edit the interview together with footage of The Great Outdoors.

This takes lots of people and lots and lots of tax money. All to tell you something you already know how to do: go outside.

And then there’s the ubiquitous radio advertisement promoting The Forest: a manager assembles his forest-animal-workers in an early-morning-meeting  to impress their human visitors. He talks to a bird to make sure she’s ready to sing; to a river to make sure he’s ready to show off; to a tree which cleverly responds that he’s still not going anywhere; and to a turtle, who is always late for their daily pep talk. It’s a whacky crew, that’s for sure:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PYtUPQoAOOc

While this ad is heard everywhere on radio stations across America in the middle of the night when nobody is awake, the YouTube edition has earned a whopping 555 views with no comments. Betcha that almost all of the views are from employees of the United States Forest Service.

Advertising the Horrors of Radon

Although there is still no evidence anywhere that Radon Gas has ever killed anyone, the federal government spends money promoting the “fact” that it is a major threat to people everywhere. Radon is a natural radioactive vapor which seeps out of the ground in microscopic amounts almost everywhere in the United States. Local governments desperate to find missions to justify their existence, such as the Montgomery County Council in suburban Maryland, pass laws requiring Radon Testing in every house on sale or for rent. They even require each homeowner to install radon-exhaust-pipes from under their basement slab or crawlspace just to make sure nobody ever gets sick from this elusive toxin. But in the 15 years they have required this expensive test and equipment, they have never condemned a house for occupancy because of elevated radon levels. But they get to charge each homeowner a big fee and then pat themselves on the backs for saving lives of people who have never been sick. And thus far, there has never been a single case of this natural gas poisoning anyone or anything, even the squirrels, rabbits and deer which sleep on the ground where this horrid threat is seeping up onto them.

Be that as it may, the US Department of Health and Human Services created a radio ad—and an insipid song—to remind us to be wary of this ever-present and odorless threat to our very existence.

The original threatening ad is here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PYtUPQoAOOc

The fun starts at 1:04, but the first half of the video is a great historical record of how we’ve been brow-beaten into recycling for over a quarter-century now…

After you watch it, can you believe you didn’t know how poisonous is this nefarious odorless gas called Radon? Have you ever met anyone who was hospitalized for Radon Poisoning? or perhaps, undergoing extensive treatment for Radon Cancer?

Of course not… because like most things the government wastes your money pondering, it is completely made up.

And how about this classic Radon Ad. It’s even more ridiculous:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZDYHj3pIp7c

Although this ad can be heard throughout the middle-of-the-night hours on radio all across America, look at the number of youtube views: 417.  That means that outside of the federal bureaucracy, no one beyond the mothers of the six toddlers in this ad has watched it.

Creating Crises

These government-paid-for-advertisements cover Hunger: “1 out of 5 kids struggles with hunger…”. They also promote Autism Awareness, Bullying, Clean Water, Recycling, Wearing Seatbelts, Healthy Lunches for School Kids, Retirement Savings, ObamaCare, Smoking, Drunk Driving, Healthy Smiles, and even Girl-on-Girl Violence.

Really??

These ad campaigns are another reflection of what the federal bureaucracy really thinks of the people who pay all those taxes to them: they think Americans are stupid. Too stupid to know how to wear seatbelts, not laugh at autistic kids, eat healthy meals or how to go to a dentist.

The bureaucrats must think that Americans are really a bunch of illiterate people who just hiked out of the mountains, and never saw a bathroom, a phone, or a car before.

Every one of these advertised topics is on The News all the time, so why do we need government agencies to create ridiculous ads promoting the issue? Because their chief purpose in life is to justify the existence of that agency promoting that issue. And since each federal agency has more money to spend than they know what to do with, they can spend it advertising their main cause! The IRS is a perfect example of this. As detailed in the upcoming book “Bureaucratic Bombs!” the IRS has their own in-house video studio, where they record ads and ‘team building” videos for all those IRS agents.

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/taxpayer-money-finances-irs-star-trek-parody/

Why again does the IRS need their own recording studio??

Heck: even the Food & Drug Administration has a ”Center for Tobacco Products”. Their sole purpose is to study the effects of smoking and to create advertising campaigns to tell people not to smoke. Can someone please tell me who in the Western World born after 1950 does not know that smoking is bad for you? Yet the FDA has over a hundred full-time-employees (who each get 2-full-weeks’ vacation, 10 paid federal holidays, 8-paid sick-days and a continuously accruing pension) whose job it is to do just that. Once I asked one of their staff if the bureau’s title meant that they were for or against tobacco…?

Most of the above mentioned topics are ads created “in association with the Ad Council”. Watch a few here…

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=ad+council+social+responsibility+campaigns+

This ‘council’ turns out to be a group which appears to be funded solely by the Federal government, although research shows that they are VERY good at hiding who pays their bills, how they get their funding, and how they spend their money. But the only time you ever hear their name is  very rapidly at the end of an ad sponsored by the USDA, or the Department of Homeland Security, or the US Treasury… The list of federal sponsors is endless.

But the most ludicrous part of the campaigns is the cost. Businesses which try to advertise on TV or radio know how eye-poppingly expensive it is. That is why almost all the ads you see are from huge companies with incredibly big advertising budgets. Companies know that if you want to advertise your car, your restaurant, or your plumbing company, that you need to advertise when people are watching TV or listening to the radio. Those “prime times” for radio are between 6 and 9 in the morning, and from 4 to 7 in the evening; it’s called “Drive Time”. For TV, those times are from 6 to 8 in the morning and from 6 to 11:30 at night. TV and radio stations are smart enough to charge a company a ton of money to run their advertisement JUST ONCE during those time periods.  The only companies which advertise in the other time slots just don’t have enough money to spend on ads to show off their products during Prime Time.

Interestingly, almost all of the “Ad Council” or “Public Service Announcement” ads occur in the middle of the night, or in those times when there are almost no viewers or listeners.  That way, those Creative teams responsible for advertising recycling, diversity-awareness, healthy-eating, drunk-driving, and going-outside, can report back to their bosses in Washington that yes, their ad campaign ran on 1,200 stations, and they are proud to have gotten the cheapest advertising rates. At that point, they click up a PowerPoint presentation bragging about their tight budgets, the success of their campaign, and justifying the continuing existence of their program.

And look at the end of the “Ad Council” link above. Not to nit-pick, but why is the Federal Bureaucracy concerned with social responsibility? Why not concern themselves with their agency Mission Statement, or–God forbid–their fiduciary responsibility…?

But my favorite Federally-Sponsored-Ad is this one.

The Department of Homeland Security advertises snooping on your neighbor or fellow commuter without calling it Terror Watch because if we call it Terror Watch somebody somewhere might be offended, so we call it the impossible-to-remember and really-hard-to-say “If You See Something Say Something”.

http://www.dhs.gov/video/if-you-see-something-say-something%E2%84%A2-video-drop-30-second-public-service-announcement

This is classic Federal Bureaucracy: they assemble a team to create an advertising campaign to tell Americans what they already know.

There are suspicious people moving freely around the country, and we need to watch out for them. And then if you see somebody who acts or looks suspicious, you should report that person. But as all things in Washington, they have to be politically correct. They can’t mention Hispanic gangs like MS-13, or terror groups like ISIS or al-Queda, so they have to write an advertisement that is sooo bland that nobody will pay attention to it. But once the ad is written, filmed and recorded and sent out via the Ad Council to TV and radio stations all over the country for broadcast, the team that assembled the ad can say, “Hey, we did OUR part to keep America safe!” And believe me, they are the first ones to say it after an event like the Boston Bombings or the San Bernadino Murders.

The best example of this is what happened in the San Bernadino murders on December 2, 2015. The husband-and-wife-murder-team spent many evenings at their home assembling weapons and explosives to prepare for their attack. Their next-door-neighbor saw a lot of suspicious activity, as she watched “middle eastern men” go to and fro through the night, many nights in a row.

After the murderers killed 14 and maimed another 22, the police interviewed the neighbors in an attempt to connect the dots. This poor neighbor admitted she “had seen something” but didn’t “say something.” When asked why, she said she didn’t want to be accused of being politically incorrect by calling the police on an obviously ethnic couple.

So there ya go!

We have a murder spree which scars a whole town. But at least the Homeland Security Bureaucrats in Washington can go to work the next morning and report that their “If You See Something Say Something” ad ran on 1,200 radio stations at 4:15 in the morning when nobody is listening to the radio, and at 2:07 am all across America on hundreds of local cable stations when no one is watching TV. They also have billboards posted on public buses all over the major metropolitan areas in America.

And when it comes time for a bonus at the end of the fiscal year, those Creative Team Members will all receive bonuses in their paychecks for saying confidently that their Ad Campaign is working. Even though their entire campaign only tells people stuff they already know–the obvious.

–The Beltway Bandit

 

 

 

Don’t Worry: It’s No Problem!

This is a sad example of how the Washington Bureaucracy really works:

72 DHS Employees on Terrorist Watch List

December 6, 2015 4:12 pm

At least 72 employees at the Department of Homeland Security are listed on the U.S. terrorist watch list, according to a Democratic lawmaker.

Rep. Stephen Lynch (D., Mass.) disclosed that a congressional investigation recently found that at least 72 people working at DHS also “were on the terrorist watch list.”

This story, published by The Washington Free Beacon, was broadcast on most of the major TV and radio news networks on that same day and evening during their regular 6 o’clock news and  11 o’clock news wrap-up shows. 

And then, guess what–NOTHING HAPPENED.

No Congressmen ran to the microphones and demanded these employees be fired. The President didn’t run to a microphone and announce that these government employees would be suspended until an investigation was completed. And nobody in the Washington Press Corps–not an investigative journalist, not any reporter whose beat is the Department of Homeland Security–nobody announced they would begin an undercover investigation to find out how potential terrorists got jobs in what is supposed to be “The Defense Department” for threats inside the United States.

Everybody in power, including the News Media, ignored the story.

Now imagine if a newspaper had published a story reporting that 72 employees of Exxon were on the Terror Watch List? Or if 72 employees of Koch Industries were on the Terror Watch List? The news would explode on the front page of the Washington Post and New York Times. It would make the cover of Time magazine, and 60 Minutes would postpone their regularly scheduled show for the next Sunday and rush an hour-long-special into production to voice its alarm that Americans would dare employ 72 people on the Terror Watch  List.

But….

Since the 72 work for the Federal Government, the story is shrugged off–even by the Secretary of Homeland Security, Jeh Johnson.

The sad part is that no one asked what these employees do all day. Do they work as TSA agents, groping children or old men in wheel chairs, while simultaneously ignoring others who might be smuggling an explosive past their $150,000 scanners?

Do they work in Port Security in Baltimore, or Los Angeles, or New York City, assuring that no dirty nuclear materials are being off-loaded onto one of our nation’s largest docks ?

Are they the ones who man the phones at the “If You See Something Say Something!” Hotline? What if someone calls in with a terror-plot tip, and one of those employees “accidentally” hangs up on  the caller, then blames the disconnect on Verizon?

Do these employees work in the DHS Cyber Center, where they can tip off other people on the Terror Watch List that they might be under surveillance?

Or do they work as Diversity &  Inclusion Specialists in the “Special Emphasis Programs” office in DHS’s Diversity Training Office inside the DHS Office for Civil Rights, assuring that other Terror-Watch-List-Members also have an equal opportunity to work at the Department of Homeland Security?

Of course, we’ll never know, because as with almost all things that happen in the Federal Bureaucracy which spark alarm, the news was shrugged off with a yawn, and the News Media shifted right back into important stories about the Kardashians,  and where the Obamas planned to dine during their upcoming Christmas vacation.

Amusingly, only one publication responded to this bombshell news story: Government Executive magazine, at GovExec.com. In a classic CYA article to protect the federal workforce, journalist Eric Katz explained it as an error reported by Congressman Lynch based on confusion during a congressional hearing. The 72 were not federal employees, but federal contractors who worked at Homeland Security.

So there.

Problem solved. Since the 72 people on the Terror Watch List weren’t actually working for the government, what’s the problem?

Of course,there was no follow up on whether those contractors were investigated, reassigned, suspended, or God forbid–fired.

This is another example of how no matter what the event, a federal agency is never accountable to anyone–not even to the President or to Congress.

The soon to be published book Bureaucratic Bombs explains these events and this mindset in entertaining detail.

But in the meantime, let us all pray that none of these 72 people who spend their work days with official government ID badges somewhere inside the labyrinth known as the Department of Homeland Security don’t end up on the evening news for a more deadly reason.

–The Beltway Bandit