An article in the NYT designed to show the public how much better the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms could be if Gun rights groups and Conservatives would just allow them to have more funding and less legal restrictions
Then they go on to throw one more white wash on the Fast and Furious debacle, I guess just to make sure Obama still knows how much they love him.
After talking about how the NRA convinced Congress that the Director of such a farce of an agency should be Senate confirmed and have some Congressional oversight. (After looking at F&F, maybe they were on to something, someone needed to be monitoring these idiots.) But now they can't get anyone approved to the position.
The bureau’s struggles are epitomized by its lack of a full-time director since Congress, prodded by the N.R.A., decided that the position should require Senate confirmation. That leadership vacuum, Mr. Bealefeld and others said, has inevitably depleted morale and kept the agency from developing a coherent agenda.
Well now what do you do when morale is low and you have no coherent agenda? Why you siphon off guns to Mexico. Then we can make those people give us the power that we want. Oh wait you say that the guns only got to Mexico because they just weren't quick enough?
Mr. Gottlieb said the “low point” came with the bungled gun trafficking investigation known as Operation Fast and Furious, in which A.T.F. agents, in an effort to trace guns to a network based in Arizona, did not quickly intervene as the weapons were smuggled over the border to Mexico. Last Wednesday, in a development that may inflame the controversy further, Mr. Grassley sent letters to Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. and the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General demanding an investigation and requesting more information about why a gun bought by an A.T.F. agent involved in Operation Fast and Furious was found at the scene of a homicide in Mexico.
I'm sorry we here at The Handbook must have missed an important memo. When did any of this operation ever become about tracking a network in Arizona? Wasn't it explicitly stated that the point was to be able to find the straw buyers in AZ and then track them over the border? Which would put the network in Mexico, unless my geography is bad.
Of course they weren't trying to find anyone to arrest they just wanted to be able to prove the 90% myth by forcing it to be true.
Of course they also talk about how hamstrung the A.T.F. is because they have no national database of gun owners, and they just can't figure out why you pesky gun clingers can't see how much better that would be. I mean it's not like any other country has ever used a national database to confiscate all the guns there. Oh, wait, you say they have. Oops.
My personal recommendation is that if the department is so maligned and mistreated (they only get 1.1 billion to waste) why don't we just shut it down. Seems like we might lower the gun crime in Mexico if they didn't exist.
Cross post at The Handbook.