Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Faulty Towers

This wouldn't be the first time
Things have gone astray

Now you've thrown it all away

--Cuts Like a Knife,
Bryan Adams

Wake me up before you go-go

Don't leave me hanging on like a yo-yo

--Wake Me Up, Before You Go Go


The AP recently reported,

"The Obama administration blocked efforts by government scientists to tell the public just how bad the Gulf Oil Spill could become and committed other missteps that raised questions about its competence and candor during the crisis, according to a commission appointed by the president to investigate the disaster" (Panel: Gov't blocked scientists on spill Estimate).

What are charitably called
questions of competence have become de riguer when discussing the U.S. government's response to any urgent situation, from the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq to Hurricane Katrina. "Who could have imagined" is the new mantra, as though prior planning and intelligence has no place in our nation's largest undertakings. Organizations like the CIA and FEMA are just token/rogue operations, take your pick, superannuated by incompetence and lack of candor.

Being on-point is just so demodé in the age of Family Guy, et. al. (the topic of our next essy, BTB.)

Things just aren't as transparent as they could be. What about things like George Bush's plan to privatize Social Security by investing funds in personal stock market issues? What if the tools taxpayers had swallowed that hook? Would they have had any other option?
Do we feel better imagining that government is lax, or that it is plum venal? Or, do we even consider these matters, presuming them to be the provenance of those more knowledgeable?

Competence and candor have been dropped from the rolls as deserters (DFR),
and they don't seem to be making a hasty comeback.

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