Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Bureacratic Brilliance

I hope you're not counting on bureacrats to keep you safe. Never trust the decisions of people that see your community as a figure on a page.

Even a figure with the name "New York City."

the Washington Post offers Exibit A:
"The two cities attacked on Sept. 11, 2001, will receive far less antiterrorism money under plans unveiled today by the Department of Homeland Security, which has designated more money for many smaller cities throughout the country.

Washington and New York will receive 40 percent less in urban grant money compared to last year, with Washington dropping from $77 million to $46 million and New York falling from $207 million to $124 million, DHS officials said. The combined total means that the two areas bear almost the entire brunt of a $120 million cut in the overall budget for the program, the statistics show.

The announcement sparked another round of heated complaints from many lawmakers and local officials about the DHS grant process, which has weathered criticism from cities large and small for an allegedly haphazard and unfair distribution plan.

D.C. Mayor Anthony A. Williams (D) said he was 'disappointed' by the decision.

'I think it's short-sighted for the federal government to cut funds this way. We remain a target area,' Williams said at his weekly press briefing in the John A. Wilson Building, about three blocks from the White House.

'My own guess is, with the demands, there had to be some reductions somewhere, but I don't think this was the place to make those reductions,' he said.

That view was echoed by New York officials. 'It's absolutely indefensible, it's disgraceful. As far as I'm concerned the Department of Homeland Security and the administration have declared war on New York,' Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.), chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee told the Associated Press. 'It's a knife in the back to New York and I'm going to do everything I can to make them very sorry they made this decision.'"
Representative King's hyperventilation aside, The DHS' new allocations defy common sense. Syracuse may face the threat of terrorist attack; it's not at the same risk as New York. The citizens of Fairlawn deserve some funding for anti-terrorism initiatives; they don't deserve such funding at Washington D.C.'s expense.

Can the lunatics that run the DHC please take their collective heads out of their red-taped myopia and confront reality? This kind of bungling will not convince a single American that they've learned anything from their mishandling of Katrina relief. It only reinforces the sad truth:

we can't trust bureacracies to keep us safe.