Speaking today to the Senate Intelligence Committee, NSA chief Admiral Michael Rogers claimed that a potential government shutdown was a threat to nationality security, on the grounds that the NSA might lose employees to private sectors if it happens.
Rogers claimed that NSA employees are so great that they could easily get much better jobs outside of the NSA, and that many are likely to do so if they believe the shutdown is going to threaten their pay, meaning the agency could lose significant numbers of workers.
At the core, Rogers’ complaints largely echo those of other government agency chiefs, who are opposed to the shutdown because they don’t want to see their agency’s funding threatened, or worse yet see them shut down for a period of time long enough that the public realizes that what they’re doing isn’t really missed when it’s gone.
That’s the real “threat” to the NSA, in particular, with so much of their activity done entirely in secret, and the public only having the government’s word for it that what the NSA is doing is actually important. That question could quickly be brought to the fore with a shutdown, and particularly with all the objectionable things the NSA is known to do, their “value” is already a subject of debate.
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