The Lady Speaks

Gov’t Too Poor to Give FBI Agents email?

Wow – just when we’re being told how strong America is, how wonderful, how filled with hope and joy and $30,000 debt for every man, woman, and child in the country – we get some more…um…good news.

From CNN:

Budget constraints are forcing some FBI agents to operate without e-mail accounts, according to the agency’s top official in New York.

‘As ridiculous as this might sound, we have real money issues right now, and the government is reluctant to give all agents and analysts dot-gov accounts,’ Mark Mershon said when asked about the gap at a New York Daily News editorial board meeting.

[snip]

FBI officials in Washington denied that cost-cutting was putting agents at a disadvantage.

Spokeswoman Cathy Milhoan said e-mail addresses are still being assigned, adding that the city bureau’s 2,000 employees would all have accounts by the end of the year.

Mershon, the assistant director in charge of the agency’s New York City office, also said that 100 city agents have been given Internet-ready phones such as BlackBerry devices.

[snip]

Senator Charles Schumer called for better access to technology for agents.

‘The FBI should have the tools it needs to fight terrorism and crime in the 21st century, most of all in New York City, and one of the most effective means of communications is e-mail and the Internet,’ he said.

‘FBI agents not having e-mail or Internet access is much too much a pre-9/11 mentality.’

Kudos to Sen. Schumer for the excellent snark. One has to wonder about a government that raises its debt ceiling again, but can’t afford email accounts. Maybe the FBI should go directly to China instead and ask if that country would be willing to cover the bill in exchange for some FBI-IOUs?

Heck, go ahead! I give the FBI my permission to add another million or two to the current debt being incurred in the name of the next generation.

*Sci-Fi fan side note: Agents with Blackberries?! Can you imagine Fox Mulder getting his tips and inside info….on a Blackberry? Calling Scully…on his Blackberry? *shudder*

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March 21, 2006 - Posted by | Government, Homeland Security, Law Enforcement

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