Former Director of Investigations
Whistleblowers are the Congress' most important allies in the war against Executive Branch corruption, waste, fraud, and abuse, yet they face enormous risks. I hear from many whistleblowers who are seeking assistance and justice from the U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC) and the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). I am sad to report that very few of the whistleblowers I hear from find the help they need from these agencies.
At the last meeting of the Royalty Policy Committee on April 26, 2006, there was some discussion of the deteriorating relationship between the Minerals Management Service (MMS) and the State and Tribal Royalty Audit Committee (STRAC). Since that meeting, the relationship has deteriorated further.
Congress should create penalties for those who retaliate against whistleblowers who communicate with Congress. Laws like the Lloyd LaFollette Act which protect disclosures to Congress by government employees are toothless without enforcement.
The 9/11 attacks spawned a movement of national security whistleblowers who came forward to expose the weaknesses in America’s defenses. Despite their patriotic motivations, many government security professionals have been systematically ignored and targeted by bureaucrats who would rather cover up their failure to properly secure America’s aviation system, ports, intelligence community, borders and nuclear facilities. In this comprehensive report, POGO details weaknesses in the whistleblower protection system and offers numerous ways to strengthen those protections and our national security.
If you missed 60 Minutes this week, the good news is you can still watch their feature segment online. The topic is the Coast Guard's so-far disastrous Integrated Deepwater System program, and 60 Minutes interviews two of the whistleblowers, Michael DeKort and Captain Kevin Jarvis, who first exposed the program's failures. The situation began in 2002, when the Coast Guard awarded Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman a contract to manage Deepwater’s then-$17 billion program to modernize the Coast Guard’s aging fleet. And by "manage," we mean to literally manage.
Scott Bloch is the "Mike Brown" of the government's whistleblower protection agency, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel.