Stars may be aligning for transparency legislation -
House Republicans and Senate Democrats may finally have found something on which they are both so exercised about that they may actually get together and do something: transparency. Republican anger and distrust over lost IRS emails, bipartisan upset over secret National Security Agency surveillance and concerns about the White House’s failure…
Report: Retaliation by Supervisors Common at VA -
A pharmacy supervisor at the VA was placed on leave after complaining about errors and delays in delivering medications to patients at a hospital in Palo Alto, California. In Pennsylvania, a doctor was removed from clinical work after complaining that on-call doctors were refusing to go to a VA…
ISOO Report to the President
The Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO), established in 1978, is responsible to the President for overseeing the Government-wide security classification program, and receives policy and program guidance from the National Security Council. ISOO has been part of the National Archives and Records Administration since 1995. You can learn more about ISOO at www.archives.gov/isoo
The 34th Annual Report to the President covering 2013 was released earlier this month.
Read the full post on the AOTUS blog.
A $398 billion project for 2,443 F-35s (that’s the cost for the initial purchase; upkeep could run over a trillion dollars) that don’t actually work can be officially called a boondoggle. So why is Congress still committed to the F-35?
The answer lies with Lockheed Martin’s suave contracting strategy. What the company has done is incorporate subcontractors all over America (across forty-five states, in fact) into the process of manufacturing the F-35, keeping Congress more invested in funneling tax payer dollars to certain favored constituents than in offering said taxpayers a functioning plane. As former Pentagon acquisitions official Thomas Christie told Foreign Policy earlier this month, “An upfront question with any program is: How many congressional districts is it in?”
The F-35 is in being built in a lot of congressional districts. Which explains why the dysfunctional plane has its own caucus in Congress, creatively named the Joint Strike Fighter Caucus.
Boondoggles like these are more than just examples of Congressional incompetence, or even of corporate greed. They illustrate something very fundamental about how our government works: its primary function, at this point, is to funnel public money to corporations. As the last thirty years of America’s economic history as shown us, this grand transaction doesn’t necessarily equate to more jobs or rising salaries or a stronger middle class.
And unfortunately, in this instance, it doesn’t even mean that we get what we paid for. —
Blackwater and the “Subservient” State Department -
The recent revelation of a Blackwater employee’s death threat to a State Department official is further evidence of the government’s subservience to contractors.
Chinese Hackers Pursue Key Data on U.S. Workers -
"Chinese hackers in March broke into the computer networks of the United States government agency that houses the personal information of all federal employees, according to senior American officials. They appeared to be targeting the files on tens of thousands of employees who have applied for top-secret security clearances."
President Obama Can (and Should) Embrace the FOIA Improvements Act -
On June 24, Sens. Patrick J. Leahy, D-Vt., and John Cornyn, R-Texas, unveiled the FOIA Improvement Act of 2014, a bill that would deal with some of the long-standing issues the public faces when trying to use the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to obtain government records. The common-sense reforms included in the bill are changes that President Obama can, and should, embrace in order to meet his goal of unprecedented levels of openness in government.
The IRS isn’t the only agency with an e-mail problem -
Quite simply, from a recordkeeping perspective, federal agencies have no idea how to manage their e-mail.
CIA and Congress Clash Over Classified Report on Interrogation Program - WSJ -
""I am neither Democrat nor Republican nor ideological," he told a Wall Street Journal reporter recently over a 7:15 a.m. meeting at CIA headquarters. "I’m an equal opportunity offender."
Partly as a result, relations between the CIA and Congress are more fraught than at any point in the past decade. The source of the tension is the Senate intelligence committee’s classified report on the CIA’s controversial post-9/11 interrogation program—and the agency’s response to it.”
C-27A Shining Example of the Billions Wasted in Afghanistan -
The $486 million G222 aircraft program demonstrates how wasteful and dubious American efforts at equipping the Afghan Air Force have been to date.