Management

The flood of children from Central America has many political causes, but one thing could have stopped it, and that is a secure border. Government and their selected private corporation botched the job. (Think the “Obamaca” website!)

You don’t remember it, but many government failures ago, back in 2006, the government hired Boeing Corporation(?) to construct a highly technical border electronic system of towers, cameras, sensors, etc. at a cost of $30 Billion. It was called the Secure Border Initiative, and it was a complete failure.

The plan was to monitor 6,000 miles of Canadian and Mexican Borders, and the Boeing component was only a part of the concept, but after the Boeing component, a $30 Billion component failed, the entire concept was scrapped.

There is a common thread arising in governmental failures — management without technical knowledge. Few of my grad students were near geniuses, and none could oversee a major project, but many could be in training to do so given requisite management skills. The problem, as I see it, is that from the top management down many levels, the ” management” can’t read code, and doesn’t understand the documentation of the process.

That being the case, the political and civil service management must take the word of the systems analyst and coders. In highly technical systems, management must be technical. In ANY management system, management can be lied to if they do not have technical oversight.

In this system, managements job is to walk around and ask, how are things going, to which the obvious answer is always, and without exception, “O.K.” — I have written earlier about School Board members who cannot read a budget, so they ask of the very people on the Superintendents staff who developed the budget, “Is that the right number?”

Of course the staff member smiles and says, (smirking) “Yes, Mr. Jones, it is correct.” I believe that school boards should employ a Business grad student who works for the board and can be fired for communicating with the District staff who prepare the budget!

When I took over the Los Angeles TV station, I didn’t tell my staff of my deep computer background, and we had a multi-million dollar computer system whose VP computing, and my IT guy combined almost every day to pull the wool over my eyes, either to get more funding for gold-plating, or to excuse problems.

(In my day, Fast Attack Submarine Commanders must serve as Department Head of EVERY department before assuming Command.)

Problems happen EVERYWHERE that management didn’t come up through the ranks, and is as true in the “Secure(sic) Borders Initiative, in the VA, as it was in Obamacare, as it is in school boards, and, in this case, naturally, of Border security, homeland security and the border.

If you want accountability in a technical sector, let the contract and hire the winning contractor’s nearest competitor to monitor the process!

Management failure is the cause of the many problems we attribute to politics — the border, the VA, Obamacare, and the IRS debacle demonstrate management failure.

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