Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

January 10, 2014

Friday Free Forum

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Philip J. Palin on January 10, 2014

In 1975 this was the second day of the winter cyclonic event that dropped over 2 feet of snow across the Upper Midwest and spawned forty-five tornadoes across the South.  On  January 10 this included an F-4 in Mississippi that killed nine.

This morning up to 300,000 residents of Charleston, West Virginia and nine nearby counties are being told not to drink, cook, wash or bathe using tap water.  A chemical spill in the Elk River has contaminated the water system.  Flushing and fire suppression are still possible.

On this day last year bomb blasts in Pakistan killed 130 and injured many more.

What’s on your mind related to homeland security?

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Comment by J. Fred Muggs

January 10, 2014 @ 9:13 am

If Representative King’s assertion is correct, what does this mean for the homeland security enterprise? Is it possible that homeland security not being included in the top 50 national priority issues is actually a good thing and should be viewed as the natural evolution of an activity borne out of overreaction to the perception of a constant state of imminent threat? JFM

Jan. 9, 2014 – 7:10 p.m.

King: Homeland Security Not Part of American Political Debate

By Rob Margetta, CQ Staff
After the 2010 midterm elections, Republican Rep. Peter T. King expected the homeland security debate in Washington to return to what he says was its normal state: right versus left. What surprised him, he says now, was the arrival of a new class of tea party and libertarian-minded Republicans critical of agencies and programs he’s spent the past decade-plus overseeing.

“That wing of the Republican Party has been extremely almost hostile to what I think needs to be done,” the New York Republican said at a Thursday event hosted by the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Law and Homeland Security.

While King, who spent years as the top GOP member on the House Homeland Security Committee and now heads its Subcommittee on Counterterrorism, has been a frequent critic of actions taken by the Department of Homeland Security and its components, he’s now butting heads with a group from his own party that he says would like to see entities like DHS and the Transportation Security Administration eliminated.

Furthermore, he said, even new members elected in the 2010 members who aren’t outright looking to abolish parts of DHS aren’t concerned about homeland security as an issue, or willing to fight for funding to address it.

“If you had a list of 50 priorities, homeland security would not be on it. … It’s not part of the American political debate right now.”

King hasn’t been shy about clashing with tea party favorites on security and intelligence issues — last Sunday, he said during a Fox News interview that Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., doesn’t deserve to be in the Senate because of way he’s argued against National Security Agency surveillance programs.

Comment by William R. Cumming

January 10, 2014 @ 10:54 am

MONKEY BUSINESS: Government reorganization is about who owns which contractors! So ask the questions which departments and agencies other than DHS own more of DHS contractors?

Comment by William R. Cumming

January 10, 2014 @ 11:07 am

Prior to 1978 and the existence of weather satellites [not for the record these do more to protect the Homeland than most NRO satellited] scuttle butt was that cyclonic storms did not form in the Northern Hemisphere! But in February 1978 a NOREASTER formed that devastated the Massachusetts coast and ended the Governorship of Michael Dukakis! A NOAA weather satellite happened to overhead of the storm and took pictures. SURPRISE, SURPRISE!

The NOAA pictures revealed a large cyclonic storm that looked exactly like a major hurricane, eyewall and all! The storm had never been near the equator!

Comment by William R. Cumming

January 10, 2014 @ 6:01 pm

Whatever the outcome for Republicans in this fall elections to Congress [and I continue to predict Republican control of both Houses come late January 2015] sentiment is growing in the TEA Party to terminate DHS! Largely as an economy measure not a policy measure!

Comment by William R. Cumming

January 10, 2014 @ 8:32 pm


I was finally able to talk to a live FEMA employee telephonically who actually had met Jock Menzies!
And low and behold he works in FEMA logistics! Not that I doubted for a minute his [Jock’s] impact given the tributes on this blog!

One FEMA problem [perhaps a problem wider in the world] is that expertise was only one person thick! The retirement or death of that employee ended a necessary effort.

Bureaucracies are really not supposed to rest on the
competence or brilliance of single individuals but rather the joint efforts of the collective!

Perhaps am wrong but I have long viewed the arenas of Public Safety, EM, and even HS as multidisciplinary even though Public Administration should be one principal focus.

Leadership of oneself can be difficult but competent leadership of large public organizations is extremely complex and difficult. Amateurs not welcome!

Washington believes far too much IMO on star power and not the needed skills to govern!

Comment by Christopher Tingus

January 12, 2014 @ 1:15 pm

On this Friday Free Forum,

I ran across the following and quite forward in addressing Homeland Security and just why this failed White House will continue to cause much consternation among those more astute re foreign policy and US commitment!


Christopher Tingus
Harwich (Cape Cod), MA 02645

Comment by Christopher Tingus

January 16, 2014 @ 9:40 am

Messrs. (Matt) Taylor and (Fred) Jensen: Thank you to you and your teams of enlightened individuals, all God’s children, inherent with such inspiration still capable of imagining and dreaming and committed in such diligent and focused effort to achieve and encourage us all to do the same despite a global governing which is evolving seeking to encapsulate such and stymie any such exploration and achievement….march on with such fervor as the universes which God has created for us are awaiting your identification affording the enrichment of Life here on planet earth! Bravo!

christopher.tingus@gmail.com (Harwich – Cape Cod, Massachusetts 02645)


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