Take no chances

Do Whatever It Takes, We’ll Punish You Later at Strategy Page is about how political revenge inhibits necessary national defense. When those who are on the front lines become more concerned about covering their backsides than they do their front, when their major danger is not the enemy in front but the ‘friends’ in the rear, the nation has a problem.

What worries more thoughtful politicians is that, if you can be prosecuted for things that opposition politicians believed, mostly as a matter of faith, why get involved at all? This is all part of an ideological battle that has been going on over espionage and intelligence work since World War II. Lots of myths were turned into facts, and ideology became more important than the truth.

The CIA lost its soul, it’s heart, and most of its guts, in the late 1970s. Lots of brains are left, with big budgets to buy all manner of neat technology. But the bosses live in fear of grandstanding politicians and headline hungry journalists. … It now serves mainly to draw fire, while other organizations get the job done.

This also happens in business. When employees are not confident in company support they will stick to the ‘tried and true’ and avoid anything that might have risk. What that means to business is stasis and decay. In matters of national defense, the stakes are vastly higher.

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