Rot in the Secret Service Humiliates Country

April 15, 2012

What happened in Cartagena with a dozen Secret Service agents reflects a deep-seated and pervasive rot infecting that organization which, more than any other in America, is expected to set the highest possible standard of personal and professional integrity.

This may turn out to be a political issue – the scandal occurred under President Obama’s “watch.”  After all – does anyone doubt it – if it had occurred while Bush 43 was President, he’d be blamed (he may yet be blamed, if any of those involved had been assigned or promoted under Bush’s term of office, since it’s never Obama’s fault).  So it may be Obama appointees who allowed the rot to creep into the Secret Service.

But this blog isn’t about politics.  Since the days of President Lincoln, the security of the President has been entrusted to men and women who were expected to be above reproach.  They were heroes, even before they performed – their job description involved voluntarily taking a bullet for the President (no matter how noble or how execrable that particular President was), and if that’s not heroic, what is?

And, for reasons which should be apparent, these men and women have been expected to live lives above reproach.  After all, as Secret Service historian Ronald Kessler, author of “In the President’s Secret Service,” notes in a New York Post article (http://www.nypost.com/p/news/international/ho_lombia_twist_4oMCMx8CRfOyJhODIuCcfM#ixzz1s8usGFZv), actions like those involved with $47-a-night prostitutes in Cartagena, were mostly married men who, by their actions, were subject to blackmail, which could have jeopardized the President’s safety.

We Americans have demanded much of our Secret Service agents – bravery “above and beyond,” moral rectitude, long hours and – adding insult to injury – “government” pay scales which hardly reward them for their sacrifices. Yet there has never been any shortage of volunteers, and no shortage of heroic men and women who were willing to devote their careers and their lives to a largely thankless, necessary task.

Yet somehow this morally and professionally upright organization has succumbed to an internal rot.  What happened in Cartagena can only be viewed as the tip of a very nasty iceberg.

It is frankly inconceivable that a dozen married men – including, according to press reports, a supervisory agent – all assigned to do advance security work for a Presidential trip to a part of the world not noted for its stability could just spontaneously decide to get drunk and get a bunch of whores to come party with them.  That kind of off-the-cuff behavior might apply to a group of fraternity brothers on Spring Break, but not a dozen men – chosen to protect the President from among a group of the most honorable and upright agents in government service.  It is just not possible that this action spontaneous  – nor, is it possible to believe that this was the first time, or (necessarily) even the worst time.  It was just the time they were caught.

Because of the way agents are assigned to such trips, it is also inconceivable that these dozen men were the only ones in the agency prone to such incredible mis-behavior while on assignment.

Bottom line – this reflects a deep-seated rot within the Secret Service, one that must be expunged.  And unless Obama personally – or someone appointed by Obama and personally loyal to him – was responsible for this egregious behavior, we cannot afford to allow this to become a political issue.  It is certainly embarrassing to Obama right now, and that alone makes it tempting to those who believe (as I do) that Obama represents his own kind of deep-seated rot on the soul of America.  But unless he’s responsible, the absolute integrity of the Secret Services is too important to America – and to Republican candidates and future Presidents – is just too vital to our country’s future for this to become a political football.  All Americans must demand that the rot be investigated – and rooted out – so that all Americans can trust that OUR President (no matter whom is in the Oval Office) is protected, and that the integrity and honor of OUR country is preserved.

I see no other possibility than deep-seated rot, and no other course of action than a cleansing and non-partisan investigation, followed by a vigorous clean-sweep housecleaning of the Secret Service.

 

Ned Barnett – Nevada Conservative

 


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