First, let’s see how the Land of Oz deals with would-be welfare “refugees.”
Serious looking bloke — check. Serious message — check. Serious about border security and immigration — check, and check. (Hat tip, Gerard Vanderleun).
We could use some of that. Instead of a serious bloke in a camouflage uniform (that, unlike our Army, the Diggers have not seen fit to change in a couple of decades), we have an airhead Beltway-nomenklatura lawyer named Sarah Saldana as head of our Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, which she has stripped the “enforcement” clean out of and sunk, as we noted this week, to the bottom of the briny deep of morale with the deft assurance of Gunther Prien in U-47 torpedoing HMS Ark Royal in Scapa Flow.
Here’s Ms Saldana, displaying the limits of ability in one who has been steadily advanced in government and other large organizations by dint of affirmative action, and has lost (or, more probably, never developed) the ability to think like people in the real world have to do.
The video is here. We didn’t embed it because it’s 450 Megabytes. (The DC nomenklatura doesn’t need any stinkin’ compression, they don’t need to mind their bandwidth, they got taxpayer Benjamins like Hog Manor has oak leaves in November)
Some high points:
She says she’s spending some staggering sum (a billion something?) on IT upgrades, but she can’t describe the upgrades, and admits she doesn’t understand them. “I’m a lawyer,” she says, as if that exempts her from non-lawyerly aspects of her job.
Asked why ICE is turning loose scores of thousands of, not mere immigration-technicality violators but recidivist and violent criminals, she first either gets confused, or feigns confusion as an obfuscatory stratagem, and then seems to at once admit it’s happening, deny it’s happening, and casting blame, in a lawyerly conditional, on her predecessors from the previous administration seven years ago, that is, if there is any blame to be cast.
She interrupted Rep. David Young (R-IA) to tell him that she didn’t care what the black letters of the law said, that was subordinate to what the All-Powerful Person of Godhead the President wanted. Homeland Security Today reports:
Young Thursday “had a memorable exchange with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director Sarah Saldaña during a House Committee on Appropriations Homeland Security Subcommittee hearing on the agency’s budget. Saldaña interrupted Young to say agency policy trumps the law, which I think feeds into the larger narrative of management flaws, dysfunction and distrust at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS); it is a disturbing trend,” a Capital [sic] Hill source told Homeland Security Today on background.
HS Today got direct quotes from a floored Young, also:
“I told director Saldaña that if I had policies or directives that were contrary to the law I would understand if my employees did not want to follow them. I would expect them to follow the law first,” Young said. But, “director Saldaña interrupted me to say, ‘That is where you and I probably have a fundamental disagreement.’ She went on to say that she expects those under her to follow her orders, not the law.”
Young said he was surprised by Saldana’s answer and pressed her “further regarding the possible threat that DHS officials might feel is being leveled at them when they are simply trying to obey the law,” the Hill source said.
“We can have policy debates and disagreements, but we must demand better management of our federal government at every level,” Young retorted, noting that, “Reports show that of all the federal agencies, ICE currently ranks last in employee satisfaction. The morale is low, employees up and down the line do not know who they can trust, nor can they rely on the plain letter of the law.”
“America is a nation of laws and I take that very seriously. The culture problems at ICE run very deep, but I think they start at the top,” concluded Young.
Young said he was floored by Saldana’s response because “America was founded on the principle that no person is above the law and I take that very seriously.”
Young said, “When the director of the second largest federal law enforcement agency, and a former US Attorney, believes that officers sworn to defend the Constitution should follow her policies instead of the law, you know there is something deeply wrong.”
Exercises for the reader:
- Can you articulate one reason why ICE morale has hit the seafloor near the Marianas Trench, and begun drilling for more depth?
- Without knowing any more about them than you can infer from this post, is morale in Australian customs and immigration agencies likely to be higher or lower than their American cousins’ is?
- Are the ungodly-expensive IT initiatives at ICE likely to enhance the agency’s communications and its law enforcement mission? Why or why not?