Romney as Secretary of State = Colin Powell as Secretary of State?

With Flynn as National Security Advisor and Pompeo as CIA Director, Romney would be neutralized quickly, it would be an appoint made “for show”.

How can Romney, were he to agree to becoming Secretary of State, avoid, either from the outset or soon thereafter, the fate of Colin Powell in the same position?

I hope, if the offer is made and Romney is interested, he waits to see who the Secretary of Defense is to be along with other members of the new national security apparatus.

I’m a Democrat and did not vote for Romney; that said, I do think he’s sane and decent.  I’m not so sure about the group he may be joining.  He should preserve his reputation as a public servant.

So You Want to Wear a Safety Pin

Are you really ready to wear a safety pin?

What a Witch

rainbow-safety-pin

Great. This is a necessary behavior in the face of the election of the most overtly racist, sexist, xenophobic, anti- gender and sexual minority candidate in the history of the modern United States. You know the rhetoric of his campaign was wrong. It was the very worst thing about America and you want to do what you can to combat the result. Good. Do that.

But don’t do it without a plan. Because the very last thing a tense situation needs is someone full of good intentions but with no knowledge of de-escalation tactics or self-defense. Your intentions are not a tangible shield. If you don’t make a plan, you will get yourself or the person you are trying to defend very killed.

Let’s avoid that.

So make a plan.

Some of you can stop reading now. You have, or know how to make a plan and you don’t need…

View original post 1,105 more words

US Intelligence Community as campaign fact-checker…Not a good idea

“A senior U.S. intelligence official assured NBC News that cybersecurity and the Russian government’s attempts to interfere in the 2016 election have been briefed to, and discussed extensively with, both parties’ candidates, surrogates and leadership, since mid-August. “To profess not to know at this point is willful misrepresentation,” said the official. “The intelligence community has walked a very thin line in not taking sides, but both candidates have all the information they need to be crystal clear.”

Trump Told Russia To Blame for Hacks Long Before Debate – NBC News

For all my grumbles about the US Intelligence Community, I take for granted that it has matchless sources for the information it produces.  In addition to the sources that are secret, it has access to all public information.  That means that what it says it knows is likely to be true, subject only to some very sophisticated states or people who know how to deceive it.  I suspect there are few who can.

I take what it reports, even when it falls short of a full-throated assertion, to be as close to the truth as I am going to find.

Why not use the IC to check facts and correct the record of campaign statements?

Sounds attractive.  None of the fact-checking sites and sources can compete with it.  So why not, at last, know as much of the story behind any campaign statements as we can know to make an informed choice?

This is a bad leak and, as it reads, likely a high-level leak, designed to defend its briefings against any charge that they were insufficient, untimely, or lacking authority.  That’s not an acceptable position for a largely secret community to take.  I understand it, maybe better in this election than I would have in past ones which weren’t as “fact-free” as this one seems to be.  But we can’t have it.

The IC is not there for domestic political use, however useful it might be.  Its purposes are governmental.  We have an interest in truthful campaign assertions; we have an even greater interest in governmental organizations not charged with electoral responsibilities staying out of them.  Preserving their independence of electoral politics is absolutely essential to preserving their value to us no matter who holds public office.

The role of the IC is a part of the government’s role in defense (external and internal) of the nation; neither it nor we are well-served when it publicly defends itself.