The Most Subversive Quote Ever to Appear in Politico
It comes in the course of a good Laura Rozen story about the differences in style and results between embattled Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair and CIA Director Leon Panetta:
Paul Pillar, a former senior CIA official and National Intelligence Council senior officer, said it’s no surprise that Panetta turned out to be a savvy inside player, given his “Washington street experience.”
But such analysis “overstresses the men and the personalities,” Pillar said. “That is to say, it misses some of the intractable illogic of the DNI position.” A position, he said, that “never had the full authority to move personnel around” or budgetary authority over the 16 intelligence agencies the DNI nominally oversees.
Wait, you mean not everything in politics or policy is reducible to a clash of personalities? Structures, institutions and their interplay determine a great deal about governance? That’s crazy!