Following her raising national security concerns, Tricia Newbold claims her supervisor began to humiliate her — she has a rare form of dwarfism.
"Mr. Kline repeatedly altered her office environment… such as physically elevating personnel security files out of her reach."
— Tim Mak (@timkmak) April 1, 2019
Betty Cracker already posted about the risks of this potential security breach, but seriously — this is the kind of petty, venal abuse we used to mock when it happened in poverty-stricken, desperate authoritarian states:
… … Ms. Newbold’s decision to accuse her own office of rampant mismanagement of the security clearances of at least 25 employees came after months of what she characterized as personal discrimination and professional retaliation from Carl Kline, the office’s former director, after she spent roughly a year trying to raise issues internally.
In a White House where aggressive leak investigations are conducted in service of President Trump, who has aides sign nondisclosure agreements, Ms. Newbold’s account represents the rarest of developments: a damning on-the-record account from a current employee inside his ranks…
Described as both “no nonsense” and “intense” by people who have interacted with her during the clearance process, Ms. Newbold has served under four presidential administrations, beginning with the Clinton White House in 2000. Eventually she worked her way up to adjudications manager, a job that required her to help make determinations about the security clearances of administration employees. Her office is filled with holdovers from other administrations, and it is meant to be nonpartisan.
Yet in the Trump administration the office was filled with people who had little experience in vetting employees in the interest of national security, Ms. Newbold said in a nine-hour deposition with the House Committee on Oversight and Reform last week.
Ms. Newbold told the committee that at least two senior administration officials had been granted security clearances — which gave them access to classified information — despite possible disqualifying issues. She also told the committee that she had compiled a list of at least 25 individuals, including contractors and senior advisers, who had a “wide range” of disqualifying information, including drug use, financial problems and criminal conduct…
Surely the ‘Party of National Security’ will speak up about this travesty!…
In a response memo, Republicans say the whistleblower's complaints are "overblown" because "only 4-5" of people granted clearance over her objections had "very serious" security issues. ¯\_(?)_/¯
The full GOP memo: https://t.co/Lk3iOSEEZR pic.twitter.com/wJe4QocnxZ
— Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) April 1, 2019
Tricia Newbold is also not doing any press, according to her lawyer.
Her lawyer says that she's in fear for her job — she is still working in the White House — and does not think it will help
Her attorney also says she had been moved off security adjudication manager role
— Tim Mak (@timkmak) April 1, 2019
Professor of international relations Stephen M. Walt, at Foreign Policy, “America’s Corruption Is a National Security Threat”:
… [C]orruption is inherently inefficient. Instead of resources going where they are most needed, they get diverted into bribes, payoffs, kickbacks, and other shady arrangements. And when the wealthy and powerful use connections to get jobs or contracts (or to get their kids into college), that means that more deserving and talented people get excluded and less qualified people end up in positions of authority. The more common such practices become, the more honest and law-abiding people will be tempted to follow suit just to keep up. And once corruption becomes endemic in a society, rooting it out becomes difficult if not impossible.
Corruption and other forms of elite malfeasance also nourish populist anger. When elites go to great lengths to game the system and are increasingly seen as out of touch and unaccountable, it is hardly surprising that ordinary people who have been playing by the rules become so angry that they will put their faith in anyone who promises to shake up the system. Such sentiments help explain the otherwise surprising popularity of a candidate like Bernie Sanders or the rapid rise of straight-talking politicians like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Ironically, it also played a key role in Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, which proved that if you can fake integrity, you’ve got it made.
Over the longer term, rising corruption threatens America’s soft power, and especially its reputation for competence. Other countries are more likely to follow America’s lead when they believe the core institutions of U.S. society are run by people who know what they are doing, and when foreign governments have confidence that the information provided by U.S. officials is accurate. But when grifters rule the roost and privileged elites use their current positions to hog even more for themselves, their offspring, and their cronies, our core institutions will function poorly and other states will lose confidence in our ability to deliver as promised.
To be sure, the United States still ranks relatively low on most indices of corruption, and it is a far cry from those unfortunate places where corrupt practices are almost a way of life. But we Americans are not nearly as pure as we pretend, or as concerned about the problem as we ought to be. And as long as Donald J. Trump is alligator-in-chief, life in the swamp will go on as before.
WARREN FOR PRESIDENT 2020:
New:@ewarren will introduce a bill requiring presidential divestment.
“Corruption has always been the central stain of this presidency," Warren tells me.
Trump corruption is natural post-Mueller focal point, given all that's been uncovered.
— Greg Sargent (@ThePlumLineGS) March 27, 2019
… Warren has just introduced in the Senate a sweeping measure called the Presidential Conflicts of Interest Act, which requires the president, vice president and their close family members to divest in all financial interests that create conflicts of interest and place them in a blind trust.
The bill would also bar presidential appointees from participating in matters involving the president’s financial interests and would require the president and major-party presidential nominees to release three years of tax returns…
Every time I think the administration can’t go any lower, they find a way. Good for Ms. Newbold for hanging in and collecting receipts until the Democrats took the house. It can’t be comfortable for her to still be in the WH. I’d be very surprised if moving files and bells to where she can’t reach them was the only thing they did.
God, the republicans are just a bunch of fucking scumbags, it is almost unbelievable. Almost.
I’m surprised that the Trumpsters waited for an employee to cross them in some, justifiable, way before they started the harassment. But some call me cynical.
Edit: and the GOP wing of a House committee can’t let the WH fight this loser of a fight. What a bunch of abject Trumpster flunkies.
Not just a threat in government. I can think of several regulated utilities that have the same problem, and can’t run themselves. “Country Club Management”
??? Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) ??
I’m sure the Republicans would respond similarly if this had happened during a Democratic administration, right? I mean, 4-5 individuals with serious security issues getting clearances isn’t a big deal, right?
Fuck these people. They rely on cultural issues and voter suppression to win elections and they have the fucking gall to claim to be the “Party of National Security”?
I want a reporter or Dem MOC to ask these assholes point blank to their faces the above. I want them to own being Trump’s virtual slaves
Wow! It’s like racism doesn’t exist!
But it does have a connection. Racists see corruption where we don’t. They start from the assumption that white men are inherently better, and so seeing minorities succeed registers as corruption. I mean, nobody but a white man can possibly win fairly, right?
And on our side, that fucker Sanders has been preaching the message that the corruption that makes left-leaners angry is actually inside the Democratic Party.
EDIT – @??? Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) ??:
The people for whom ‘national security’ is a big deal in how they vote are the people who define it as bluster, bullying, and treating brown people as the Enemy. That includes most pundits.
Anyone who claims to be an “originalist” should loudly support Sen. Warren’s bill. The Framers were extremely concerned with corruption (meaning abuse of power and profiting from public office, not just simple bribery.)
But of course they won’t, because so-called “originalism” is just thinly disguised argument from authority, “the Framers would agree with me so I win.”
Honestly, I think the President should get his/her salary as a lifetime tax-free benefit, and a 100% tax rate for every dollar over that number. No gifts over the existing federal limit. Raise the salary with inflation so the president can live a comfortable life, but not get wealthy. Take some other job if you want to get rich.
Maybe in this case, but they’ve been driving good people out of government service since day one.
I personally know multiple senior-level federal employees who are hanging on even though this maladministration is deliberately making their lives miserable because they believe in their work and don’t want to abandon their employees and colleagues.
@Frankensteinbeck: Basically it means being willing to kill people without justification and not feel bad about it. Are you willing to overthrow a government and kill a million people to save $.30 on gas? Then you care about national security.
Danny Sjursen at Tom Dispatch has a few words to say, on the rot, now that he’s taken early retirement,
“Citing ‘Conscience Shocking’ Conduct, Federal Judge Reinstates Former Gov. Snyder in Flint Water Lawsuit
City residents, said the judge, “could have taken protective measures, if only they had known what the Governor knew. Instead, the Governor misled them into assuming that nothing was wrong.”
DPRK News Service
Duke basketball team includes functioning university as support staff.
DPRK News Service
Recent loss by Duke basketball team blamed on inadequate support from university.
@??? Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) ??:
I think most people also underestimate the compliant role of mainstream media. If a democratic president gave five dangerous folks clearance it wouldn’t just be endlessly flogged on Fox—it would be the lead story on every channel.
Last night I watched the new Roger Ailes documentary and by the end I was apoplectic with rage—he purposely set out to game the system for republicans and the people with the power to nip that shit in the bud sat back and let the right-wing lie machine metastasize.
@hervevillechaizelounge: The elimination of The Fairness Doctrine allowed FOX to operate with one sided, ie right wing, news. Aisles weaponized it and Sinclair is spreading it further. Before the end of The Fairness Doctrine if one side was covered in the news the other side got equal time. It wasn’t perfect but it wasn’t corrupt and propaganda to its core.
David Frum quote (approx) If the GOP can’t win they will destroy democracy.
Seems like Occam’s Razor to me.
I agree the end of the Fairness Doctrine was deadly and Bill Clinton’s deregulation via the Telecommunications Act in 1996 was also disastrous.
The post-truth predicament we’re in now was inevitable.
I’m enraged people back then let this shit happen. Did no one realize allowing right-wing lies to proliferate was a bad idea?
They really are loathsome people???
Just pure trash
My almost-daily comment (although I usually refer only to the Traitor-in-Chief):
One day. Just ONE fucking day where I don’t have to read or hear about the corruption, evil, and general dickishness/asshole-ishness from this maladministration.