Friday, April 13, 2007

Self-destruction via e-mail/Bad fake soldier, no armor

The longer they operate, the further they get from the truth or reality.

The attorney firings and misplaced e-mail

Background: Clinton was lambasted because his staff were using White House computers for campaign purposes. This was considered a violation of the Hatch Act (passed in the 30s), which prohibits using Federal funds and equipment for anything other than Federal business. So the Republican National Committee fixed the problem by issuing laptops to political operatives working as staffers in the White House. This way they could use the RNCs laptops to do political work from the same office they're doing their actual work.

How not to violate the Hatch Act, as thought up by Republicans. "Clinton did it!" Not like this he didn't.

Now the fun begins. These political operatives include people like Karl Rove, Scooter Libby, Alberto Gonzales' staff, etc. So, while they're supposed to be governing, what they're really worried about is whether or not they're going to get elected. Again.

How many Federal work hours were spent writing e-mails about campaign strategies?

And were these laptops used to communicate outside of the standard channels, so no one would know what was being talked about?

I mean, why not use an anonymous system when what you're doing would otherwise be possibly put on public display, and perhaps give someone grounds for legal action against you? Like, oh, impeachment?

Giving the word mercenary a bad name

Al Franken (a massive ego, but funny when he gets it right) has a theory about all of this: the current Republican party believes that government is bad in pretty much all of its forms. So they get elected, and do a really terrible job of it, thus proving that government is bad.

But the way they've done this is to privately contract out many things that the government should be doing. Private enterprise only thinks about making money, and government is only concerned about not spending too much money, and currently they're even ignoring that particular pose. If the Dems can lower spending, and raise taxes at the same time, we might find ourselves living in the land of fiscal responsibility, but it's gonna take a while. Meanwhile, we've privately contracted out Veteran's health care, construction projects the Army Corps of Engineers should be doing, the rebuilding of Iraq, tracking the expenses of rebuilding Iraq (to a one-person firm with no previous experience of this sort of work - neat-o), and even military work. No, not cooking and s**t-burning and all that - soldiering!

Yes, we have approximately the same number of mercenary fighters in Iraq and Afghanistan as we do actual American soldiers. The company's name is Blackwater. They make maybe $350 a day, and we are billed for $950/day. Meanwhile, our soldiers pull down about half what the contractors are paid, and are usually in much more hazardous duty. Except, of course, that Blackwater is trying to fight this on the cheap (more profit that way), and so their soldiers go out sometimes even less well-protected than ours. And ours are chronically short on body armor, on vehicle armor, even on bullets.

Can anyone tell me when a private enterprise has done a better job of a huuuuuuuuge project? Imagine if the internet had been begun by Comcast.

No more interventions, until the next one...

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