What can be said about the federal agencies caught in decadent scandals? The Secret Service, traditionally known for its probity and integirty, has 11 agents who were in Columbia arranging for the president’s security for a summit meeting getting caught with 21 prostitutes. The General Services Administration, which handles procurement for the federal government, procured a Las Vegas resort to host a lavish retreat to the tune of $823,000 in taxpayer money. (And it is coming out that this is not the first time the GSA hosted that kind of junket, as the link above.)
The most ludicrous comment I’ve come across is that the GSA has been trying to emulate the private sector, insinuating that private companies do this sort of thing all the time and that this is what we get for trying to privatize government functions.
It is true that private companies also sometimes blow fortunes on this sort of thing, but that’s between them and their shareholders. But let’s draw a lesson here for everyone. What bothers me more than the indulgence in expensive food and drink is how lame the expensive programming was. A mind-reader who doubles as a motivational speaker (cost: $3,200 plus expenses). A team-building exercise in which everyone broke into small groups to assemble a bicycle (cost: $73,000).
Can we just all agree to stop paying for motivational speakers? And could we cut out all team-building exercises? That includes falling back into someone’s arms and doing things with ropes.
Would not all of you who have been subjected to such things whether you are from the private or the public or the church sector, agree that these are ALWAYS worthless and a waste of time and money? And that they are invariably excruciating to endure and unutterably LAME?