[Addendum: Demoting this guy is one step. He (and the other guy) probably still have security clearance access.]

Many moons ago (alright, winters then), I was issued a security clearance. A long, long time ago; entering into the military.  The process is not much different than what this infographic shows (I found this online. If the owners of it have a problem with my using it, they can simply comment to me to remove it – in which case, I’ll just put a link to it.)


There are two major differences with this and reality. 1) The military doesn’t issue one unless the job requires it; 2) The first step shown rarely happens anymore. No – rarely doesn’t capture the situation. How about hardly ever? Today’s cleared personnel are either lifers who didn’t get caught in sequestration (unlike myself), or they are newbies straight out of school / the military.

Okay, sour grapes. I got over it. Then, two stories come out that emphasize the utter worthlessness of a clearance. The first, Ivanka Trump’s appointment to a new, non-executive White House position. Now, I wanted to be absolutely sure of the usage of this word in a sentence, so I first went to the Mirriam-Webster definition. And I found an even further definition for English learners – just in case the President was, you know, mentally deficient.

Learner’s definition of NEPOTISM
[noncount] disapproving
: the unfair practice by a powerful person of giving jobs and other favors to relatives
Fine, it’s stated that it was an unpaid position. But! She’ll need a clearance, to be involved with discussions at the executive level? Well then, pay for it yourself. It’s only around $40-50K per person. Got her husband a paid gig; got the government to cover that clearance. Pocket change for a billionaire. Maybe you can get a family rate from the DSS. I mean, after the Clinton’s, nobody should be surprised by anything the First Family does.
So, RHIP. Oh, but wait. There’s more! This story, of a discredited general, who the Army wants to allow to keep his clearances. This sentence sums it up quite nicely:
Maintaining a security clearance is ultimately a must for retired troops who want to be hired by defense contractors. USA Today reports that in many cases, it can be a prerequisite to hiring.
Basically, they’re asking to cover one’s own as he rotates through into corporate life. Now, in my extensive experience in associating with cleared people, I’ve found that the investigators will waive off a lot of sins, once the accused admit their sins. Mind, if you’re outright guilty of (and of a lower caste) a security violation, they toss you down a very deep, dark hole where no-one will ever see you again. Social sins, eh. A wink’s as good as a nod to a blind bat, eh?
Summary: Like every American industry before it, even the military-industrial complex can suffer from short-sightedness. While the news reports wail and moan about government not helping industry, and industry not helping government; there’ll be an entire sub-specie of worker, ex-worker actually, that’s just shaking their collective head at the rampant stupidity (that’s always been there – truthfully) that continues.