The column is the usual conservative-speak about guv'ment spending/waste, blah-blah-blah with a bit of environmental snark thrown in.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates raised eyebrows and ruffled feathers Aug. 9 when he announced plans to shut down Joint Forces Command, a headquarters in southeastern Virginia at which more than 6,000 military personnel, civilians and defense contractors work.But wait, I thought that the guv'ment didn't create jobs (we hear that all the frickin time from conservatives) but closing down this HQ will result in the loss of jobs? Huh.
The closure will devastate the economies of the Norfolk-Virginia Beach-Hampton Roads area, so Mr. Gates' announcement brought the predictable squeals from Virginia's politicians.
In any event, Jack's thoughts on the closing:
There is something that doesn't seem right about cutting defense spending when we're in the midst of two wars. But even though I look askance at how the administration circumvented the rules with regard to base closing, I can't be critical of the decision itself.So he's OK with the closing, just not how it was done. By the way what rules were circumvented? Jack doesn't say. Wouldn't it be a big story if, say, the Office of the Secretary of Defense had "circumvented the rules" in order to reduce the military budget?
If that was the case, where's the uproar about it?
You can see some of the other proposed "Efficiencies Initiatives" the SecDef has proposed here.
The environmental snark comes about in discussing the Delta Smelt (Hypomesus transpacificus) - which has been considered endangered since 1994. Its place in Jack's discussion seems, well, out of place. What does it have to do with a military base closing (a closing, that Jack agrees with).
Can't really wrap my head around Jack's column this week, sorry.
Go read Ed, instead.