FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
In the nine years since the September 11 terror attacks, the U.S. intelligence community has become so large that it's unmanageable, redundant and inefficient. Not unlike the rest of the federal government.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/07/19/art.top.secret.jpg caption="A 'Top Secret' page from the U.S. congressional report on the 9/11 terror attacks."]
The Washington Post reports on a stunning two-year investigation of a so-called top secret America that's hidden from the public and lacking in real oversight.
With such a sprawling bureaucracy, it's no wonder they couldn't put together the dots in recent attacks - including the shooting at Fort Hood and the attempted Christmas day airline bombing in Detroit.
The government is pushing back against the Washington Post report. The national intelligence director says they provide oversight and work constantly to reduce inefficiencies and redundancies. What would you expect him to say?
A top Obama official adds that they're looking at inefficiencies "and remember, we have prevented attacks." Who does that sound like?
Here’s my question to you: How effective can U.S. intelligence be with nearly 1,300 government organizations and 2,000 private companies working in 10,000 locations?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
John in Hurricane, West Virginia writes:
Jack, I am a retired federal agent and I'd have to say I really don't think the traveling public is one bit safer today than they were before 9/11. It is a good example of throwing money and manpower at a problem no one seems to understand is "perception of threat" more than the threat itself. The terrorists have already accomplished one of their major goals to cause the United States to spend billions of dollars to protect itself against the perception of a threat.
Kevin in Chester Springs, Pennsylvania writes:
U.S. Intelligence can neither be very effective nor very efficient with so many agencies essentially all looking at same potential security risks. Although I have no doubt redundancy in government is the accepted norm, over 1,300 organizations does seem to be a bit of a stretch, even for the feds.
Probably not very effective, Jack, if that's indeed how big it has grown. And you are right, we had trouble with the recent events you mentioned and couldn't connect the dots that lead up to 9/11 in the first place. Bigger isn't necessarily better. Better is better.
Kyle in Pennsylvania writes:
Jack, This makes absolute sense if you recall what the Bush administration declared war on after 9/11: Terror. With such a nebulous, unwieldy "enemy," a system that is just as cumbersome was bound to be built to fight it.
Michael in Alexandria, Virginia writes:
The entire organization is not effective, although I am sure there are components which are. I think the last thing anyone wants, of course, is a really effective covert intelligence apparatus that includes within its purview spying on Americans. Thank God for government inefficiency.
Lucas in Herndon, Virginia writes:
The effectiveness of the intelligence community of over a 1,000 government agencies is like a gas-guzzling SUV: all it's doing is just sucking us dry of our taxpayer money.
Dave in Altoona, Pennsylvania writes:
I'm looking for a better job, Jack. Are they hiring at the Department of Redundancy Department?