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Monday, November 15, 2004

And Never Is Heard...A Discouraging Word

I've never really been one to hibernate. Anyone who's been around me knows what a light sleeper I am anyway.

Looks like there's going to be a loyalty purge at the CIA.
Having more Republican Party hacks serving in sensitive intelligence positions makes some people feel safer I guess.

One thing for sure - the White House won't hear much of anything it doesn't want to hear anymore. That pesky "reality-based community" takes another one on the chin.

The worst part about all this is not even that the White House has a specific agenda. It's that the well is being poisoned. A civil service system that has served our nation well for over a century is being replaced piece-by-piece with the late and unlamented spoils system. We saw it with the debate over the Department of Homeland Security in 2002, and it looks like we're seeing again here with the intelligence community.

Just as candor is important in giving effective legal advice,it's crucial when it comes to intelligence as well, as this report evidences.

The choice words from the above-cited piece -
It is also the author's view that in these episodes Agency officers performed their greatest service when they maintained CIA's professional intelligence integrity without regard to whether candor would or would not prove congenial to their DCIs and to policymaking consumers. To the degree that CIA officers withheld or modified their judgments, they were not only distorting intelligence but also undercutting CIA's very raison d'etre."

I'm reminded of that Simpsons episode where Monty Burns goes bankrupt because he was getting poor business advice from his yes-men advisors. Except that it's not nearly as funny.


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