Feeds

Congress moots intelligence overhaul bill

Another layer of federal bureaucracy

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

The intelligence overhaul bill that the 9/11 Commission inspired, and the President says he wants, but has done little to promote, might just squeak through Congress this week.

After passing the Senate, it got tied up in the House last week due to Republican intransigence. The idea of placing another layer of federal bureaucracy over the various military, paramilitary, and civilian agencies involved in intel and national security has struck some conservatives as a recipe for monumental intelligence foul-ups. The idea of shifting some military support organizations, like the National Security Agency (NSA), for example, to civilian control, likewise strikes several members as bogus.

Supporters of the legislation point out that unless someone has overall authority, it will be impossible to force these agencies to work and play well with others. Someone has got to ensure that information gets to those most in need of it and most able to use it, as quickly as possible. No one argues with that; the question is whether another federal bureaucracy is the way to get it done.

This weekend, the President used his weekly radio address to lobby for the bill. Of course, he had no choice. After campaigning on a platform of, essentially, "vote for us or terrorists will kill you," he is in no position to reject any major package with counterterrorist airs, however ill conceived it might be.

"The many elements of our intelligence community must function seamlessly, with an overriding mission: to protect America from attack by terrorists or outlaw regimes," the President said. He characterized the bill as "a strong new law [that will] make America more secure".

And if his last-minute appeal fails, no one can say he didn't take a swing at it. ®

Related stories

All terror attacks use false passports, claims Interpol chief
ID scheme, IT the key to Blunkett's new terror laws
How good is UK.gov at its own security agenda?

Bridging the IT gap between rising business demands and ageing tools

More from The Register

next story
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.