Well, here we are in Portland, and I was thinking about the fall of Saigon. Lots of people back then, a minority but lot of them, wanted us out of Viet Nam without regard for whatever it might cost in human lives as a consequence. They got their way and people in Viet Nam died. But the self-styled peace protesters got their way and that was the important thing. Consequences no matter how grim and bloody may be ignored if the consequences don't happen to you, personally.
Some of those who got their way and got us out of Viet Nam are still around, and one of them ran for President recently. Here in Portland, he did well.
Also, here in Portland, the city was part of a federal arrangement to investigate possible threats from terrorists. The city contributes two cops to the effort. Those two cops are supervised by the chief of police of course. The cops and the chief, all have security clearances appropriate to their assignments. And this is serious. There may be some reason to think that Oregon, for some unimaginable reason, could be an attractive place for would-be terrorists or jihadists to assemble. They've done it before and some of them pleaded guilty and were convicted.
Our mayor wants us out of that federal task force, altogether. Oh, the authorities hasten to assure us, we will still get the full benefit of federal protective efforts. We just won't contribute anything. It's free. And the feds will still keep the chief of police advised of any possible threats they may come across. After all, the chief has the appropriate security clearance to receive the information and is unlikely to blow any investigation, as some politicians have been known to do to polish their own images in their own psychic mirrors. So, it's gonna be okay for us.
But you might ask, why would the mayor do such a thing? Well, what he says is that he needs to personally supervise the two police officers, just to make sure that they don't stomp on anybody's rights in the process of investigation. (Isn't that what the police chief is for?) And the mayor just cannot do his job of supervising these two lonely police officers because the feds won't tell him things. And they reason they won't tell him things is because he doesn't have the security clearance necessary to receive the information. And they won't give him one!
In my mind, I wonder why not? The cops have the security clearance. Why, it's as if the feds made a judgment that the mayor couldn't be trusted to know what to do with sensitive security information. And in my mind, the mayor's conduct with reference to this issue would confirm such a judgment.
Basically, those mean federales hurt our mayor's feelings by declining to treat him with the same high regard he accords himself.
What does the mayor want? He wants what he wants, which is to insert himself into matters where he has no legal right to be. Legally, he doesn't have the clearance. But he wants what he wants, so if he can't have his way, he wants the whole city out of the task force, without concern for the consequences.
And this, as I mentioned, is Portland. He is going to get his way, I betcha, and oodles and piles of Portland's politically astute citizens are going to line up to congratulate him all over the place for taking a principled stand in favor of, I mean, against, or is it . . . well, anyway, there's some kind of principle involved and we approve ot it.