Let us speak further of yesterday’s post about the bizarre Dept. of Homeland Security reallocation of funds, whereby NYC and DC have had their funding slashed, and places like Omaha, Montana, and Kentucky have made out like bandits.Now, Michael Chertoff, head of DHS and the guy who should have taken the bullet for the Katrina fiasco, said that anti-terrorism funds were going to be apportioned on a risk-based basis. He lied. As an administrator, he’s completely useless. The Bush appointee who actually oversaw this latest apportionment fiasco is one Tracy Henke. Tapped has been hot on the trail of that story and I can’t improve on their coverage, so go have a look. These are all short posts:
You’ll Never Take Omaha! Our Twilight Zone GovernmentNow, you may be wondering how Henke and her sub-minions came up with those brainless funding allocations. One of our readers, who signs perself “Red,” has had a look at the numbers (they’re linked from my previous post) and figured it out. By all means go and read Red’s explanation in full. Meanwhile, here’s the meat of it:
Bush Appointee Located
Henke DHS Controversy Not a First
Even Lieberman Was Hinky on Henke
But How Many Toilets Are There?
Good work, Red. Thanks for the off-the-cuff illumination.
All they’ve bothered to do is count up the total number of ‘assets’. There’s no differentiation at all. A neighborhood Post Office in Staten Island is weighted the same as Mt. Sinai hospital. Any of 4,000 ‘Commercial Assets’ is as heavy a loss to the country as Chase Manhattan. There are two nuclear plants listed, but any of 111 other energy facilities is just as much in need of protection.
I don’t even begin to know what to make of this. Is it deliberate? Assigning the same value to every post office, medical facility, and electrical plant in the country is certainly one way of seeing to it that that the pork dollars flow to to those who need them least. On the other hand, if they were going to try and cheat, you’d think they’d have at least bothered to hire someone who knows the rules of the game. More than anything else, this looks like the work of another “Heckuva Job” Brown, who not only doesn’t know or care how to do his job, but hasn’t bothered to discover that there are other people out there who do.
Like Red says, this is a case where an important piece of work was turned over to someone (that is, Terry Henke) who has no idea what she’s doing, and on top of that doesn’t know that she doesn’t know what she’s doing. Henke’s deeply flawed work was then passed on up the line, which suggests that the people responsible for oversight in her department are either just as incompetent as she is, or aren’t bothering to do their jobs. (Clark Kent Ervin, DHS’s first Inspector General, would say yes to both.)
This generates two questions with potentially scary answers.
First, on what basis was Terry Henke hired in the first place? If DHS didn’t hire her to do the job she ostensbly holds, what did they hire her to do?
Second, how many other Bush-era appointees are as incompetent as Chertoff, Brown, and Henke, and how much damage are they doing even as we speak?
Majikthise has totted up some of the protection-worthy distinguished heritage sites that NYC doesn’t have any of. Go look. It’s a fine list. (And thank you, Stephen Frug, for pointing it out.)