Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Bureaucrat reads fellow bureaucrat's report, Concludes 'independent' report unnecessary

Under heat from Congress after the ProPublica/PBS expose on the TSA's scanner-related practices, Pistole said he would consider having an independent study of scanner safety conducted. But, then, fellow DHS bureaucrat (TSA is part of DHS), Charles Edwards, said the scanners meet all of the standards they are supposed to meet. Shockingly, Pistole agreed, and now he says there is no reason to figure out if it is safe to irradiate 100% of the flying American public (as they are planning to do within the next few years). Edwards' role in DHS is described on the DHS website as follows:
The [Office of Inspector General] serves as an independent and objective inspection, audit, and investigative body to promote effectiveness, efficiency, and economy in the Department of Homeland Security's programs and operations, and to prevent and detect fraud, abuse, mismanagement, and waste in such programs and operations.
Even if you believe that a bureaucrat paid a salary by the very department that is the epitome of the police state can be "independent and objective," there is still a glaring problem here. Nowhere in the mission of the DHS Inspector General does it say that he is to "prevent and detect" health and safety issues. This guys job is to make sure that all the t's are crossed and all the i's are dotted on the procedural and maintenance forms for these scanners. And this is pretty much what he said he did. He is not checking to see if these machines can adversely affect the health of individuals - particularly the frail. It's not his job and he did not say that he audited that aspect of the scanners.