Has there ever been a better example of failure laundering?
Why the U.S. Still Can't Track Visitors Who Overstay Their VisasCharleton Ogburn understood this problem a half-century ago:
Five years before 9/11, it passed legislation requiring the government to put this kind of “Entry-Exit” biometric identity-capture system in place by 2001. That was followed by renewed mandates after the attacks. Each congressional directive, which had the force of law, resulted in promises by the government to get the system in place by deadlines that were never met, with each failure followed by an announcement of an entirely new initiative (requiring a new acronym).
Sadly, politicians, journalists, and voters still get distracted by the shiny objects which pass as "news" and almost no one cares about what happens after a law is passed.
We trained hard, but it seemed that every time we were beginning to form up into teams we would be reorganized. Presumably the plans for our employment were being changed. I was to learn later in life that, perhaps because we are so good at organizing, we tend as a nation to meet any new situation by reorganizing; and a wonderful method it can be for creating the illusion of progress while producing confusion, inefficiency and demoralization.
This same problem can be found lurking behind every big corporate scandal.
One way journalists could win back the public's trust is to actually do the job they claim they do.