Sunday, July 10, 2005

STEPHEN FLYNN IS SERIOUS Stephen Flynn, whose work I discussed here, appeared on MEET THE PRESS earlier today.

As a serious person, Flynn is naturally ignored by the Bush administration. But at least he's been able to muscle his way into the public discussion. Among his stunning observations this morning:

To put the number in context, we've spent about $500 million total on transit security in the United States since 9/11, almost four years. We're spending that every three days in the war in Iraq.
Try kicking that fact around your brain for a few minutes. (Be sure to place your hands over your ears to keep your brain from exploding.)

Later in the interview:

We need to get some balance. The cost of basically upgrading the Coast Guard's ability--and we're talking ships that are 30-plus years old that are breaking down routinely on patrol--is about the cost of a new DDX Destroyer, would pay for the next three years. The Navy's new DDX Destroyer would pay for the Coast Guard capability for the next three years. In terms of not getting a balance between national security and homeland security, we're not even close yet because we're really just fighting the last war.
Don't believe the hype: When it comes to the boring, difficult work of bolstering our nation's homeland security apparatus, 9/11 changed almost nothing for the Bush administration. They've chosen to spend their political capital elsewhere.

CONTRAPOSITIVE is edited by Dan Aibel. Dan's a playwright. He lives in New York City.