She Said She Wouldn’t – But She Did!

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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cartoon hacking government websites

I wrote a post on July 3rd posing the question “Are government bureaucrats capable of looking after data they collect about us?” (if you want to read it click here.)

The question was, of course, rhetorical, because we all know that the stupid bureaucrats the government employs aren’t capable of looking after anything.

The figure I quoted in that post, about the number of people whose data had been hacked, was 18 million which was a lot higher than the first government admission that 4.5 million records had been hacked. Now however the figure is well in excess of 21 million. It probably won’t stop there.

opm director Katherine Archuleta

The Office of Personnel Management was responsible for losing the confidential information and there have been calls from both Republicans and Democrats for the chief bureaucrat of the OPM, Ms Katherine Archuleta, to do the decent thing and resign.

But as we also know there is no decency in stupid bureaucrats, only self-delusion and arrogance. They are too dumb to do their jobs and too stupid to realize it.

Thus for as long as she could, Archuleta clung on in there, rejecting bipartisan calls for her to resign. She said she had no plans to step down. Worse than that she said she was “committed to continuing her work for the agency”.

I read that to mean more incompetence, more lies and more denial, and more trying to cling on to a position which she is clearly not fit to hold. For example she pig-headedly refused to shut down servers identified by the US Inspector General as unsafe.

Despite all the evidence to the contrary, the White House, headed by another incompetent, President Barack Obama, continued to express confidence in the leadership of Ms Archuleta.

However, as the size of the security gaff became greater and greater so did the pressure on chief bureaucrat Archuleta. As the numbers of missing records continued to climb almost daily, the result was inevitable.

Although Archuleta continued to say she had “no intention of resigning and would stay on to sort out the mess” – she handed in her resignation. The President – who supported her and who had complete confidence in her – accepted it immediately.

It was either that or be fired. Everyone knew it but her.

The announcement came along with further emerging details about the pathetic level of security within the OPM. Many of its servers are apparently so antiquated they can’t run encryption and modern security software. Two-factor authentication is almost unheard of and seldom used. In fact things are so bad that the agency isn’t even sure how many computer networks it has!!!

One incompetent bureaucrat down.

Hopefully many more to follow.

opm data loss

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SNAFU

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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snafu

It’s never pretty when some smart ass says I told you so.

But never mind that.

“I told you so.”

There I said it.

I wrote a post “The Only Way Is Up, Unless It’s Sideways” (if you want to read it click here) that all the logic in my head told me that contrary to the Fed’s threats to raise interest rates in June they wouldn’t.

They didn’t.

Gloat, gloat.

Mind you, although I’m taking all the credit that’s going, it wasn’t that hard to figure out. Despite that it did seem to be beyond most of the ‘financial advisors’ who just swallow whatever government crap that’s going and act accordingly – and usually lose money.

So it wasn’t a great surprise to me when on Friday past, after an announcement from the Bureau of Labor Statistics that reported 280,000 jobs created in May, the promised interest-rate hike expectations have moved back to this September. My guess is still that interest rates will remain near zero for considerably longer than that. (I explained my reasoning in that other post just referred to.)

SNAFU they say in the army.

For those who don’t know, SNAFU means ‘situation normal, all f***ed up’, because that’s how it always seems in the military. Usually however they muddle through because they can always count on being bailed out by the government.

With the government it’s different. There’s no one to bail them out.

US-Gross-National-Debt-1972-2014-B

The American economy, which is currently built around a staggeringly enormous debt of $18 trillion, is slowing.

Add to that equation sluggish economic recovery on the back of a collossal and prolonged printing of money by the Fed — Quantitative Easing, they called it.

And you do not have a sound enough foundation to support raising interest rates.

Some wiser voices in the Fed – maybe just a wise voice – realize the whole thing is out of control. The Fed has hinted, prodded and sometimes just asked plainly for the government to stop reckless spending habits. But the government hasn’t tightened its belt, nor doesn’t seem likely to.

dollar bill stash

What this really means is that a hike in interest rates too soon or too fast risks not only a market crash, but also a catastrophic mess for the government — and as I said in  my previous article on the subject 2016 is an election year so there probably won’t be much boat rocking going on.

Stay tuned for what happens in September, I still have some humble pie in the freezer if I need it.

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