Great news: Sequester doesn't stop DHS Bagpipe Corps

Remember when the sequester — which reduced federal spending by a whopping 2.3% annually after a 27% increase since 2007 — meant the end of all services and a baton to the kneecap of the US economy? White House tours got canceled, and Cabinet Secretaries went on television to warn about layoffs and furloughs.  DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano told voters that the reduction in funds would mean fewer TSA agents and much longer waits to get groped in airports, a truly frightening thought.


Thank goodness, though, that it doesn’t mean any cutbacks to Napolitano’s bagpipe corps. DHS just opened a bid request for “Bagpipe and Drum Supplies” for its Customs and Border Protection division (via Twitchy):

This is a combined synopsis/solicitation for commercial items prepared in accordance with the format in FAR Subpart 12.6, as supplemented with additional information included in this notice.The solicitation number is PR20074261 and is issued as an invitation for bids (IFB), unless otherwise indicated herein.The solicitation document and incorporated provisions and clauses are those in effect through Federal Acquisition Circular FAC 2005-66. The associated North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) code for this procurement is 339992 with a small business size standard of 500.00 employees.This requirement is a [ Small Business ] set-aside and only qualified offerors may submit bids.The solicitation pricing on will start on the date this solicitation is posted and will end on 2013-04-17 11:30:00.0 Eastern Time or as otherwise displayed at Destination shall be Washington, DC 20229

The DHS Customs and Border Protection requires the following items, Brand Name or Equal, to the following:
LI 001: Carbon Bagpipe Drone Reed Set, 5, EA;
LI 002: Bagpipe Chanter Reeds-Easy, 12, EA;
LI 003: Bagpipe Chanter Reeds-Medium, 12, EA;
LI 004: Deluxe Bagpipe Bag Covers w/ Non-slip Grap Patch and Zipper, 5, EA;
LI 005: Drone Cords, 5, EA;
LI 006: Highland Bagpipe Tuner and Metronome with cases, 2, EA;
LI 007: Combination Tuner and Metronome, 6, EA;
LI 008: Black Polypenco Bagpipes w/ cases, 10, EA;
LI 009: Polypenco Bagpipe Chanter, 10, EA;
LI 010: Bellows Blown Blackwood Smallpipes in “A” w/ cases, 4, EA;
LI 011: Black waxed bagpipe hemp, 4, EA;
LI 012: Real Beeswax, 4, EA;
LI 013: Long Polypenco Practice Chanters, 10, EA;
LI 014: Bagpipe Tutor Book – VOL 1 C.O.P., 10, EA;
LI 015: Practice Chanter Reed, 10, EA;
LI 016: Rol of Pipe Bag Tie-In cord, 2, EA;
LI 017: Tapered Reamer, 1, EA;
LI 018: PiobMaster 2.3 CD ROM-Bagpipe music writing software, 1, EA;
LI 019: Pipe Band Base Drum Carrier, 2, EA;
LI 020: Folding Bass Drum Stand, 1, EA;
LI 021: Inverness Rain Cape, 14, EA;
LI 022: Glengarry Plain, 15, EA;
LI 023: Snare Drum Stand, 4, EA;
LI 024: Pipe Band Snare Drums-Black, 4, EA;
LI 025: Snare Carrier-Silver, 4, EA;
LI 026: 16″ x 12″ Pipe Band Tenor Drum, 4, EA;
LI 027: 18″ Bodhran Pack w/ Beater, 4, EA;
LI 028: Deluxe triple function drum sling, 2, EA;
LI 029: Heavy Duty Tenor Drum leg rest, 2, EA;
LI 030: Drum-Mount Snare Drum stick bag, 4, EA;
LI 031: Heavy Duty Drum Key, 2, EA;
LI 032: Short Black Classic Tenor Mallets, 3, EA;
LI 033: Black Bass Beaters, 2, EA;
LI 034: TyFry Tenor Tutor Tenor Instruction DVD/CDROM, 1, EA;
LI 035: Snare Stick Set, 10, EA;
LI 036: Square Tenor/Snare Drum Case, 5, EA;
LI 037: Spats Canvas-White, 20, EA;
LI 038: Hose-Blue, 14, EA;
LI 039: Flashes-Red, 14, EA;
LI 040: Leather Day Sporrans-Black, 14, EA;
LI 041: Horsehair Sporrans, 14, EA;
LI 042: Sgian Dubhs, 14, EA;
LI 043: Shipping/Handling/Delivery, 1, EA;


Twenty pairs of spats, eh?  Say, that would look pretty darned cool next to an X-ray machine, or at least it would make the gropefest at airports look a little classier.  High hats and Arrow collars, white spats and fifteen dollars, spending every dime for a wonderful time!

Roll Call’s Jonathan Strong can’t quite believe it:!/j_strong/status/322164922890989568

Hey, maybe this is a new deterrent for the Border Patrol. Instead of a wall, we just play bagpipe music until illegal immigrants — excuse me, undocumented Democrats — give up in utter despair and go back home.  It kept the English out of Scotland for a few centuries, I think.

Small wonder that Gallup’s latest poll shows that half of Americans have no opinion on the sequester, and that the percentage of respondents believing it to be bad has remained constant:

Americans’ views of the budget sequestration have changed little since the cuts went into effect more than a month ago, despite the increased discussion of the effect on government employees and the decisions on the part of some officials to voluntarily return part of their pay as a result. Currently, 49% of Americans do not know enough to say if the sequestration budget cuts have been good for the country, and 57% say the same about the effect on themselves personally — both little changed from a month ago. Of those with an opinion, more say the cuts have been bad rather than good.


At the beginning of March, the good/bad/indifferent quotient overall was 18/30/51; today, it’s 18/31/49, essentially identical.  When asked about personal impact in March, it was 17/26/55, and now it’s 14/25/57.  Perhaps if they’re forced to listen to the DHS Bagpipe Ensemble, those numbers might change significantly, but so far Sequestrageddon has been a huge flop, and this is one reason why no one takes government-cuts hysteria seriously.

That’s the bad news. The good news? This shows that you can’t stop the music, not even with heinous government-spending cuts:

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