Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

November 22, 2013

Friday Free Forum

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Philip J. Palin on November 22, 2013

On this date in 1800 an estimated 6.0 to 7.0 earthquake damaged structures across Southern California.

On this date in 2006 the CAI chemical plant in Danvers Massachusetts exploded.  The blast was heard over 50 miles away and over 300 proximate structures, in a mostly residential neighborhood, were damaged.  There were, however, only minor injuries.

On this date in 1963 President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas.

What’s on your mind related to homeland security?

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Comment by William R. Cumming

November 22, 2013 @ 8:22 am

The right answers:

1. Do the benefits exceed the costs of the GWOT now?

Yes for the civil agencies and no for DoD and its components. See Paul Kennedy’s THE RISE AND FALL OF THE GREAT POWERS.

2. Does the HS enterprise as currently constituted make sense on any basis and if so how?

It makes some sense but only if you believe that DHS is largely a law enforcement agency. It makes almost no sense if you believe international criminal elements and their financing are a large component of terrorism.

3. Have [correction: should] the non-HS programs, functions, and activities now housed in DHS remain so?

Almost 50% of the DHS budget has no role in the HS enterprise and the BUR was never really accomlished.

4. Should federal disaster relief become a formula or block grant based on objective criterind or continue to be “free”?

FEMA is not a social service agency but with the collapse of certain other federal programs, functions and activities FEMA is under pressure to become the federal safety net post-disaster and FEMA hides states and their local governments negligence in allowing unwise locational decisions.
A block grant should be the preferred approach conditioned on reductions for repetitive disasters.

5. Should all radiological protection and prevention missions be removed from DHS?

6. Should the 72 FUSION CENTERS be eliminated?

7. Should the HS scientific and engineering effort of DHS be upgraded?

8. Should border security, customs, and immigration issues be removed from DHS and consolidated into an independent stand-alone Executive Branch agency?

9. Should there be a statutory restriction on long service retired military in DHS?

10. Should there be a standard of 25 years and out for all of DHS retirement?

Comment by William R. Cumming

November 22, 2013 @ 8:48 am


5. Should all radiological protection and prevention missions be removed from DHS?

The fiction that federal departments and agencies both protect and prevent problems at their own radiological facilities and in their radiological programs, functions, and activities should be closely examined. Nuclear safety and surety issues demand HRO to ensure public health and safety. No portion of DHS dealing with radiological health and safety issues is an HRO!

6. Should the 72 FUSION CENTERS be eliminated?

NO! but they should report and be funded by the FBI!

7. Should the HS scientific and engineering effort of DHS be upgraded?

YES! But only after reexamination of it HS role in all federal R&D!

8. Should border security, customs, and immigration issues be removed from DHS and consolidated into an independent stand-alone Executive Branch agency?

The current organization in DHS makes almost no sense. But DHS is too politicized to correct flaws.
Border issues need to be at the purview of a Director like that of the FBI. Long term. And outside DHS.

9. Should there be a statutory restriction on long service retired military in DHS?

The real question here is the degree of militarization appropriate for DHS? And each of its components has different needs for those bringing to the table military skills and culture.

10. Should there be a standard of 25 years and out for all of DHS retirement?

Few understand that a majority of those in DHS can retire after 20 years of service now. There are many jobs in DHS with high stress but line-of-duty death rates do not reveal a need for twenty year retirements for most.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 22, 2013 @ 10:51 am

On my mind – re Homeland Security – this date 50 years since that tragic day…


Comment by bellavita

November 22, 2013 @ 11:07 am

Ok, I finally agree on something with Mr. Tingus. Fifty years ago today I was on a subway back to Brooklyn, NY after just having enlisted in the Air Force. While I was on the train, I saw a girl sobbing. I looked around the car and several other people were crying. Then the words moved around the car. “The President’s been shot.” I got off at the next stop and headed for the street to find out what was going on. No idea where I was, but people were gathered near a taxi cab’s radio, listening to the news. “The President’s been shot.”

I continue to wonder if that event split our history into a path we need not have gone down. A question with no answer.

Comment by William R. Cumming

November 22, 2013 @ 12:16 pm

The anniversary of the killing of JFK was a turning tpoint in American history. In Robert Caro’s 4th volume on the life of LBJ he fails to state outright that LBJ would not have been on the ticket in 1964!

Bobby Baker indicted the day JFK killed!

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 23, 2013 @ 6:19 am

On this Friday’s Open Forum, of much significance to me only, much about the following:


My response only to a ever dangerous scenario to soon take place and no question this once great nation is in much peril for its failure to challenge Tehran, the same I refer to as the “Brutes of Tehran” with so much blood of our youth on their hands, the same hands which were so willing to kill an innocent and beautiful Persian woman standing w/simple protest:

1 Peter 5:8 – Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

While I have seemingly displeased numerous who take offense to my strong opposition to Barry Obama who I feel should have been under House arrest for suspicion in breach of faith at the “Benghazi Massacre” as well as the illustrious Ms. Hillary and truly feeling contrary to the 41% of fellow Americans who do not much appreciate my referring to Barry Obama as nothing more than a Chicago city street organizer w/little or no management acumen and is simply fulfilling his pledge not to Constitution but rather to his Father, Hussein Obama and his Kenyan anti-Christian and anti-colonianlist pals and that while Homeland Security discussion can encompass many issues and should very well account for everyone willing to share their opinion even if contrary, yet it is my strong belief as an elder who is no longer worried about the distant future for unless we have a strong populace who is not so manipulated by playing the race card for after all it is White America who voted in this half white man so often depicted as the first Black President as this nation’s less than 20% African-American population certainly did not reelect Barry Obama for a second term on its own….and unless we have a strong executive branch fully committed to the Judeo-Christian ideals of this nation, we are at much peril and that is my opinion and long held believe and while I much value the astute comments of Mr. Bellavita and others on this public blog and I am directly referenced so…. well, again,as an elder in my last inning, I remind you that in the last few months alone, Germany has sold more weapons into the Middle East that in all the past year and that it is Germany who is creating the new Confederate of Middle East States in ally to Germany’s intent to surround Tehran and as in 1890, 1914, 1939 and again today, especially with a weakened America so deceitfully done, Germany will most assuredly bring us to War!

So on this Friday’s open forum only as I am aware that numerous dislike my commentary otherwise, however only to Open Forum, yes, I strongly believe our Electric Grid and other infrastructure is very vulnerable and we shall see this tested this new year and yes, we certainly lost our innocence that day in November when from that day onwards, a waning American spirit has now left us open economically with a spirally deficit unimpeded by many on both sides of the aisle and we have a nation so split ideologically that We are in much peril.

God Bless us all for unless we are prepared with strong arsenal in hand to protect our once great Democracy and we hold all accountable who trample on our Constitution with this first and foremost Barry Obama as he makes a mockery of our executive and judicial branches, it is not criticism and dislike of Mr. Tingus which concerns me, but a nation so Blessed with such diversity and riches in intellect and innovative spirit and a government hell bent on stripping such from the individual and it is You who are in peril for again as an elder in my last inning, I wave adieu and with well wishes to all who will see that our Homeland Security is besieged from within….God Bless you!

As Samuel Adams (1775) stated, “No People will tamely surrender their Liberties, nor can they be easily subdued, when knowledge is wide spread and Virtue is preserved. On the Contrary, when People are unwisely ignorant, and debauched in their Manners, they will sink under their own weight without Aid of foreign invaders….

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 23, 2013 @ 10:56 pm

…and now War for certain looms ahead as now all the corrupt can engage business w/Tehran while the “Brutes of Tehran” replay 1939! God Bless us all!


Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 24, 2013 @ 5:30 am

All are keeping a sharp look-out in front, but none suspects that the danger may be creeping up from behind.”
? J.M. Barrie, Peter and Wendy

Watch Tehran as it has now seen the lack of willingness to protect Democracy for its past travesties are dismissed so readily and the ketchup has now been allowed out of the bottle never to be capped again for more pressure should have been placed on the “Brutes of Tehran” and now instead, again following closely in the footsteps of a failed Statesmanship of Ms. Hillary, Kerry can ask as well, “what does it matter” however unfortunately for us all, just wait a bit more and you will see just why it all mattered and why Homeland Security is much in jeopardy! Diplomacy w/Tehran…what a sham!

God Bless us all!

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April 1, 2014 @ 5:19 pm

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