Oh, goody: More waste, fraud, and abuse from Obama’s Energy Department?

posted at 4:01 pm on October 23, 2012 by Erika Johnsen

Via the WFB, I missed this a few days back, but regular readers will know and understand that Obama’s Department of Energy holds just such a particularly special place in my heart that I couldn’t let it pass by without at least a little comment.

Special agents tasked with protecting the Department of Energy (DOE) have blown the whistle on what they describe as a dangerous culture of “fraud, waste, and abuse” that includes drinking on the job, mismanagement of weapons, falsification of security reports, and “wasteful spending” that reaches all the way to the deputy secretary of energy.

Current and former agents in the DOE’s Office of Special Operations (OSO), which is tasked with protecting the secretary and other senior officials, allege a stunning lapse in security guidelines and procedures intended to deal with a catastrophic situation, according to a recent letter sent to lawmakers and obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.

The agents’ letter exposes a dysfunctional security office marred by corruption.

From wasteful spending habits to agents consuming alcohol on the job, the security officers decry a culture of “mismanagement” and cronyism that has led at least 14 “highly qualified and experienced line agents” to quit their posts in protest over the past several years. …

Read on for more lovely alleged examples of the DOE’s egregious “business culture” (for lack of a better term), and while these still fall into the category of “alleged,” it shouldn’t come as any shock that — gasp — big-government bureaucracies tend to engender this type of corruption and inefficiency on the regular. Public-sector workers enjoy the benefits of more comfy, protective, and sluggish mechanisms than you often find in the private sector, not to mention the seemingly limitless backing of the faceless taxpayer. These types of episodes become more and more rampant as bureaucracies grow, as the tangled webs of bureaucratic inefficiencies pile one atop another without the pesky intrusion of free-market competition to spur them along — and it’s even less surprising in a department that is as immune from economic reality in practice as it is in principle. Too much of the DOE’s daily business consists of trying to distort free-market signals, and now we find that the department itself may be as faulty as the ends it spends our money trying to achieve. Bravo, guys.

President Obama has only added to the rolls of federal employees, and with his incoming avalanche of new environmental regulations, taxes, ObamaCare, and etcetera, we’re slated to just keep right on adding more, our gaping national deficit be damned. It’s stuff like this that really makes you optimistic about the government increasingly trumping the private sector’s role in our lives, doesn’t it?


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