Thursday, May 14, 2009

Comment on The Belmont Club,
"Notes from all around"


The game is called “kicking the can down the road.” It has been done so often that the Times’ Editors do not have to wake up before filing the piece. Any program can be criticized as not meeting some threats or facing a vulnerability. It can then be subject to some litigation that inflates costs. The same goes for special interest group agitation. That can be used to attack the program both for heartless indifference to some interest unrelated to the purpose of the program and also to ridicule the program as a wasteful captive of special interests if it responds to the blackmail. If the program is kept lean then it is vulnerable to emerging enemy technologies. If it is made robust then it is to valuable to ever use and is therefor a complete waste. If the program cost needs to be cut then they call for reducing the number of units authorized. If the number of units to be purchased drops then the cost per unit is declared to have “soared” and the whole program will be declared “an expensive boondogle.” A program is cut to fund a better alternative, which is then subject to the same process of delay and cost inflation and cuts in the numbers planned. Something will be found wrong with the trucks for Iraq proposed. The Times will discover they are not needed after the submarines are cut.

Essentially the same technique has been used to destroy the nuclear power industry in America. The agents who have spent decades perfecting these maneuvers are now expanding to discredit and destroy other industries. The pharmaceutical firms are under increasing attack.

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