A nice word about a government official

It seems that the popularity of politicians and government officials are at an all-time low. Here is one exception:

At the risk of saying something nice about a high-ranking government official, may I note what’s been going on lately at the Pentagon?

When I asked the new Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, on Face the Nation, how he found out about the awful treatment that some of our wounded veterans were getting, he told me he read it in The Washington Post and was so shocked he called the reporters and thanked them. Then he called in the high-ranking officials responsible and fired them.

It also turns out he has disbanded some of those bogus intelligence-gathering operations created by his predecessor. He has shut down a government spin office.

He has argued behind the scenes to close down Guantanamo prison because its notoriety is undermining American credibility.

And get this: When Congress asked what he wanted to do with former Defense Secretary Rumsfeld’s plan to build a $100 million courthouse to hold trials at Guantanamo, he said, “That is ridiculous.” And then he canceled the program.

He’s also getting rave reviews from Congress because, as one Democratic senator told me, “He doesn’t always agree with me, but he actually seems to listen.”

Now, here’s my question: I wonder if he could find time to run by the Justice Department some afternoon? Congress and the White House are butting heads over who can say what about it, but isn’t all that just a waste of time? Don’t we already know about all we need to know about this mess?

Either nobody was running the store, or if somebody was, they were putting politics ahead of the law and should be fired. Gates seems to know how to handle that sort of thing. I think I’d send him over there

Of course the above commentary begs the question: why on earth didn’t George W. Bush fire Secretary Rumsfeld?

From Bob Schieffer’s Take.


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