Knight Of The Mind

I'll do my best to present a philosophical and generally conservative look at current events and life, the universe and everything. Readers are invited to take all that's posted herein with a grain of salt. or if they prefer, a grain of salt, a slice of lime and a shot of tequila.

Location: Alexandria, Virginia, United States

Greetings and welcome. My name is Steve, I'm 35 years old and I work for the US Army as an Operations Research Analyst. Hence my blog title Knight Of The Mind.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

TOP SECRET!, but no big deal....

Gradually, I manage to calm down.  It seems a large number of the powerful and mighty of DC are not too concerned about the absolute mockery that Sandy Berger has made of our government's information classification system.  This system is no joke.  It recently bit a personal friend of mine, who I'll call Frank, right on the kiester.
I was fortunate enough to be able to offer Frank a temporary GS-9 job that he would be good at doing.  I had seen Frank's work before and could vouch for the fact that it was worthy of tax-payer dollars.  Also, Frank was at loose ends.  He worked part-time for the Government on a variety of projects.
All was cool and Frank was ready to get started, when we found that he had an indescretion on his record dating back to 1995.  It seems that he had gone out partying, burned down a bowl of something other than pipe tobacco and got his Secret Clearance revoked by Sam's Army.
As a result of this youthful act of exhuberant stupidity, Frank could not review classified Army paperwork, could not use Government IT systems, could not set foot in the same compound as an experimental military weapon system without a chaparone and got himself fired from a good-paying temporary job 9 years after his last known violation.  Pretty Draconian stuff. 
When it happened, I felt like utter garbage.  I shook my head, accepted the injustice of it and chalked it up to having to live in a post 9-11 world.  I figured safe was better than dead from terror and gave Frank his walking papers.
Now, fast-forward to 20 July, 2004.  Kerry campaign aide Sandy Berger walks into The National Archives to review highly secretive, Top Secret documents.  He decides these documents don't make him or his patrons look like Dudley Do-Right of The Mounties.  He precedes to start cramming documents into his, jacket, his socks, his pants and his brief-case.  He's like Moe in a demented Three Stooges Episode
If Watergate was a 3rd rate burglary, this inept pilferage makes J. Gordon Liddy look like one of Ali-Baba's trained thieves.   This episode only becomes truely disgusting when viewed against the backdrop of what happens to normal human beings who run afoul of the US Government security rules and regulations. 
The Secret and Top Secret clearances become a talisman of reliability to people who want to work in technical fields for the military or for other parts of the US Government.  You really are as good as the government perceives your word to be.  I'd end up like poor Frank if I pulled a Sandy Berger over at my installation's technical library. 
Sandy Berger should be permanently untouchable.  He should be an outcaste among governemnt professionals.  It makes us all really realize that there are two Americas.  It's time for the Inside The Beltway America of Kerry-Deadwards Wonkocrats to start playing by a few of the rules. 


As you may or may not already be aware, members of the Watcher's Council hold a vote every week on what they consider to be the most link-worthy pieces of writing around... per the Watcher's instructions, I am submitting one of my own posts for consideration in the upcoming nominations process.
Here is the most recent winning council post, here is the most recent winning non-council post, here is the list of results for the latest vote, and here is the initial posting of all the nominees that were voted on.

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