1210 In the Name of National Security
A police car pulls over a motorist for speeding. “You know how fast you were going, son?” “Yes, officer I was going 79 miles an hour in a 55 mph zone, but I was doing it as a matter of national security.” “Oh,” says the cop “I wish you had told us earlier. Sorry to bother you, sir. Have a nice day.”
“I can’t discuss Watergate with you reporters because it’s a matter of national security.” -- R.M. Nixon
The first paragraph is a flight of fancy. The second actually happened.
All this to say that national security has long been the cover for the end product of a bull’s lunch.
Throwing a tarp over misdeeds and trickery is nothing new. But now they can cloak it in the mantle of high tech and do whatever they’re doing out of the public eye. Not that the public much cares.
And in the age of deregulation, expect the national security excuse to be privatized. “No, sir. We can’t tell you when we’ll get our next shipment of cilantro. It’s a matter of national security.”
“Airline passenger complaint statistics? We can’t give you that information. National security, and all.”
“Auto crash tests results? No way, man, we don’t want the terrorists to know which cars to buy or steal.”
And in family matters:
“Which one of you broke this bowl?” “We’re sorry mom, but that’s on a need to know basis. Matter of national security.”
“You were out bowling? Why do you smell of perfume? Is that lipstick on your collar?” “I’m sorry, dear. I can’t talk about that. National security.”
“Who made this mess on the kitchen floor.” “Arf arf. Woof. (translation... well, you know.)
If even a dog can use national security as cover for using the floor as a bathroom. Barkey malarkey.
--A day or so after the New York Times unloaded the Boston Globe on Red Sox owner John Henry, the Washington Post unloaded itself on Jeff Bezos, founder of amazon.com. Bezos -- like any new owner -- says he’s not going to fool with what the paper means to its readers both in and out of government. Still a good deal because the Graham family no longer has ink in its veins.
--So have the sales of the Globe and the Post paved the way for Mike Bloomberg to buy the New York Times when he’s out of work after the first of the year. No one’s saying for sure. There are as many reasons for him to buy or not buy, but if he wants to, he’s certainly able to.
--Australia’s Anthony Weiner is Peter Dowling, now former chairman of the ethics committee who sent a x-rated picture of himself to a woman claiming to be his mistress. Dowling did the right thing by resigning. Are you listening, Anthony?
Note to readers: I have been sufficiently drawn and quartered for leaving Ted Williams out of my list of Boston Red Sox greats and including Bucky Dent. (Wessay #1209.) Omitting Williams was a dumb oversight. I remain committed to leaving Dent on the list. Major league baseball stirs passions and produces “experts” beyond any other team sport, largely because there’s plenty of downtime between the top of the first and the bottom of the ninth or tenth or 15th to contemplate and discuss.
An amateur who is not an expert is likely to infuriate someone over something.
I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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© WJR 2013