Our federal government is overflowing with folks who've made careers out of "public service." Lucky us, eh?
So dedicated are they to carrying out their work on our behalf, in fact, that foreign-service employees in the State Department not long ago refused to take posts in Iraq. They claimed, among other things, that safety was their concern.One suspects that like so many deeply entrenched public, er, servants, these folks' safety worries run a distant second to their interest in ensuring that certain policies fail - particularly if those policies are reflections of the Bush administration.
A State Department employee described by Time as a "veteran diplomat" told his peers - and the media - that foreign service workers shouldn't be forced to serve in posts where they don't necessarily believe in the mission. Volunteers, we've discovered, nearly always fill foreign-service assignments.
Only "public" servants could get away with something this absurd, of course. Imagine people working for a private company that actually had to worry about payrolls and profits telling their boss that they weren't going on a sales call because the neighborhood gave them the willies, and they didn't believe in the mission.
What we expect of public employers in this morass is remarkable, to say the least. In fact, it's easy to argue that public employers are actually working for the inmates, as it were. So is it any surprise that the National Security Division within the Department of Justice would recommend launching a criminal investigation into the destruction of the CIA's videotapes of al-Qaida interrogations? Hardly.
One suspects that Justice, like every other federal government department, is brimming with "veterans" - read: folks living well for a long time courtesy of your tax dollars - ready to serve their own agendas.The problem facing the Democratic Congress and the folks in Justice who are sharpening their axes and shining up their platters is that apparently a few adults have been left to work in our Central Intelligence Agency.
We don't know what was on the videotapes, though it's not hard to picture blindfolds and a lot of water. Nor is it difficult to imagine how such tapes could be used as propaganda by al-Qaida and similar organizations to recruit more members of the religion of peace to perform heinous acts of murder - against Americans.
What is hard to figure, in today's ultrasensitive, I'm-OK-you're-a-pain-in-the-butt environment, is how the fellows who destroyed the tapes have survived the dumbing-down of our intelligence community.
We pay folks to fight a war - while we shop - and try to protect us, and then, when they succeed, we line them up in front of a firing squad.These people shouldn't face an inquisition. They should get medals.