Saturday, October 04, 2014

Update on the Obama security breach at the CDC

Matthew Continetti of the Washington Free Beacon says that it's time to panic:
Incompetent government + corrupt elite = disaster
I dunno. There has been an awful lot of incompetence and elite corruption during the 50+ years I've been stomping around this planet. One gets used to it. Why panic now, when incompetence and corruption are the only two political constants this world has to offer?

Although Continetti's argument is a little hard to follow, he seems to think that the intrusion into the White House and the CDC elevator incident are signs that we are all going to die of Ebola. That line of reasoning will make perfect sense to the fans of Alex Jones.

On the other hand, I too am intrigued by the security breaches that have surrounded our president in recent days. My advice: Don't hit the panic button -- do some research.

While investigating this matter yesterday, I had nearly persuaded myself that G4S/Wackenhut was the "private security firm" which had hired that strange guard (an armed three-time convict) who shared an elevator ride with Barack Obama during his visit to the CDC. But then a reader suggested an obvious step: Looking up the contractor via the Federal Procurement Data System. Like, duh. Why didn't I think of that?

Turns out the main security contractor with the CDC in Atlanta is Culpepper & Associates Security Services, Inc.  They feature a photo of the CDC offices on their website.

Too bad. I really wanted to write about Wackenhut, which has such a rich history of spooky weirdness -- including ties to CIA, FBI, the John Birch Society, and lord-knows-what-else. Culpepper & Associates, by contrast, seems to have a much more mundane and uninteresting history.

True, the founder, Louis Culpepper, does have "intelligence operative" on his resume, but I wouldn't make too much of that. Apparently, he was graduated from college in 1977 and became the chief security honcho for the Air Force in 1984. A swift rise! He says that he started his security firm with a $200 credit card advance. It has grown quite a bit since then -- the international arm of his company has done security work in Iraq and Afghanistan. The client which receives the most prominent mention on the website is the Clinton Library.

All told, Culpepper seems to be on the up-and-up. Still, this part is cute:
Culpepper & Associates Security Services, Inc. (CASS), specializes in providing the private and government sectors with uniformed security guards, plain-clothes security officers who are investigated, screened for job suitability, and drug-tested.
Mr. Culpepper: If you are reading this post, would you care to say a few words about Elevator Guy? How deeply did you investigate him?
Comments:
So what did we learn? We learned that a small group of men, unarmed but perhaps carry knives, could sprint across the White House Lawn and get to the entrance before secret service could react. Amazing.

The guy who was arrested is actually a hero for exposing such lunacy before more talented individuals attempted it.

Obama should give him a medal.
 
Aren't there any government-set standards, whether voluntary or compulsory, in the US 'private security industry'? I mean something like the badging done by the Security Industry Authority in Britain. Or would that be viewed as tantamount to Bolshevism or telling the mob what to do?

From a document that Culpepper and Associates seem to require at least some of their staff to sign:

" I also authorize and request every person, firm, company, corporation, government agency, court, law enforcement agency, and any other entity having control or possession of any information pertaining to me or my background to furnish same to CULPEPPER & ASSOCIATES SECURITY SERVICES, INC"

They also say specifically:

"The background checks performed by the Company include a criminal background check and checking the National Sex Offender Registry."
 
Alessandro, you are right. One loon with a folding knife isn't going to harm a President protected by armed guards. In a sense, Omar did this country a favor.

But then you think of those dudes on the roof of the White House... Why DIDN'T they see anything?

b.: Clearly "mistakes were made." CASS must have felt they could trust that guy.
 
I doubt it's against CASS's policy to employ someone who's got convictions for violence.

Is it against Secret Service policy to let such a person tote a gun in a lift (elevator) with the president?

If so, do they leave it up to the private company concerned to ensure that it complies?


 
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