Thursday, October 02, 2014

The Secret Service

I know the rule: "never attribute to malice what is adequately explained by stupidity." But when the disastrous choice is made time after time, with virtually no intervening successes, even the most generous soul starts to wonder if there's malice behind the smiles.

The latest Secret Service fiascoes are reassuring. Despots are typically careful of their safety. Turning off alarms, dialing down the rules of engagement to gentle/delicate, and installing guards on the basis of political correctness rather than competence have predictable consequences—predictable to any but the terminally stupid. Even if someone besides the President is calling the shots, that person would have to be foolish to forget that their access to the throne depends on the safety of the king. So: stupidity.


Assistant Village Idiot said...

H Ross Perot stated that if elected president, he would send them home, as they made presidents less safe. Of all the alternative JFK-assassination theories, the one that suggests he was accidentally killed by a Secret Service agent drawing his gun in response to the first shot is the only one that ever made the slightest sense to me.

Mark Reiff said...

It's not so much that there are no intervening successes, it's that we don't hear about successes. Most of security is based on deterrence. If the Secret Service is successful at keeping 99% of Bad Actors from taking a shot at their protectee, simply by making it look like a fools errand, how would the public at large ever know?