Sing, Sing, Sing!

The following excerpts were taken from an article submitted by Barton Gellman and Greg Miller in the September issue of National Security.

“The $ 52.6 billion ‘black budget’ for fiscal 2013, obtained by the Washington Post from former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, maps a bureaucratic and operational landscape that has never been subject to public scrutiny. Although the government has annually released its overall level of intelligence spending since 2007, it has not divulged how it uses the money or how it performs against the goals set by the president and Congress.

“The 178-page budget summary for the National Intelligence Program details the successes, failures and objectives of the 16 spy agencies that make up the U.S. intelligence community, which has 107,035 employees …

“Among the notable revelations in the budget summary:

– Spending by the CIA has surged past that of every other spy agency, with $ 14.7 billion in requested funding for 2013. The figure vastly exceeds outside estimates and is nearly 50 percent above that of the National Security Agency, which conducts eavesdropping operations and has long been considered the behemoth of the community …

– Long before Snowden’s leaks, the U.S. intelligence community worried about ‘anomalous behavior’ by employees and contractors with access to classified material. The NSA planned to ward off a ‘potential insider compromise of sensitive information’ by re-investigating at least 4,000 people this year who hold high-level security clearances …” –

A “black budget” of $ 52.6 billion – “16 spy agencies” – and “107,035 employees”?? And $ 14.7 billion just for the CIA? Intelligence? What intelligence? The nuts are really running the asylum.

That enormous amount of money and those 107,035 employees don’t generate one thin dime of income to taxpaying Americans. Not one person in that bunch of spies is concerned with job creation for the unemployed, or a beneficial “multiplier effect”, for that matter.

$ 52.6 billion would bail out this country if it could be directed to revitalizing shipyards and building the container ship we’ve patented. We’d have no competition. We’d be doing exactly what FDR did when he abruptly ended the Great Depression by setting up the Emergency Shipbuilding Programs back in the 1930s.

We’d be building about 2,000 of these ships every year in our shipyards, and the “multiplier effect” would entail the creation of some 40 million new jobs.

We’d be singing “Happy Days are here again” – again.