Bush = toughness -- and don't you dare dispute that, even if you have facts at your disposal:
U.S. Park Police Chief Teresa C. Chambers was put on leave shortly after expressing concern that her department is understaffed. Her bosses are angry that she didn't keep the rest of us from knowing that. They're forgetting that a public official's first obligation is to the public - especially when safety is an issue.
Chambers, the park service's first woman chief and former Durham, N.C., police chief, gave interviews about a new Interior Department requirement that more park police officers guard the Washington Monument and several memorials. It means fewer officers to patrol other parks and parkways in the Washington, D.C., area. The result, she said: more accidents on the Baltimore-Washington Parkway and homeless people and drug dealers in city parks, the Washington Post reported.
Chambers also said that her department budget fell short $12 million this year, and $8 million additional is needed next year. The Park Service deputy director has said her comments broke two federal rules: one prohibiting an official in her position from "lobbying," the other banning an official from talking about budget proposals before they're complete.
Self-serving rules, both of them.
They're designed to protect bureaucratic interests. They tell government managers to keep quiet. It took guts for Chambers to speak out anyway.
--editorial in the Des Moines Register
AP notes that "Vacancies on the force have left it 15 percent below its authorized strength."
Chambers's predecessor, who served from 1991 until 2001, has said he "also publicly complained about money and staffing but was never reprimanded" and that he "was never told by his superiors to avoid discussing such subjects with the media." But his term didn't overlap with that of the Steely-Eyed Flight-Suit Man Whose Administration's Absolute Devotion To Our Safety Cannot Be Questioned.