MOMENTUM BUILDS FOR GOSS AS DCI
Despite an outburst of partisan snarkiness from the left-wing of the blogosphere, including from the normally mild-mannered Kevin Drum
, Porter Goss has moved solidly ahead for confirmation as DCI, even among Congressional Democrats
The complaints about the potential of Porter Goss being too " political " to render objective advice is specious. Anyone who knows anything about Washington politics is fully aware that successful exercise of high level administrative office in a Federal bureaucracy requires exceptional political skills. Whether an appointee was formerly elected to office has nothing to do with that. It's hard to make the argument that his predecessors at DCI like Tenet, Casey and Dulles did not have political awareness - in fact I'm hard pressed to think of a more inane, counterproductive, characteristic in an intelligence chief than an obtuse disinterest in political realities. What in the hell do these critics think an intelligence agency is about ? Or what constitutes " intelligence " ?
The question of whether or not a DCI can be " political " and still give the president objective advice begs the question of how good the DCI's political judgement is if they intentionally give the president the bad advice. In the desire to prevent a DCI as courtier we forget that access to the president - and the political power that flows from that proximity - is the only way the DCI can remediate the shortcomings of the CIA, much less the Intelligence Community.