Trump Regime

Rex Tillerson Privatized the State Department

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

When former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson hollowed out the State Department and fired dozens of careers officials, I assumed it was because Republicans don't really believe in diplomacy or career expertise. Maybe he just wanted to purge anyone who may dissent.

One or more of those things could be true, but it appears he did believe in expertise. Private expertise.

Now that Tillerson has been fired, the vaunted "Redesign" initiative he launched faces an uncertain future, but at least one clear legacy: around $12 million dollars spent just for private consultants who in some cases charged the State Department more than $300 an hour. [...]

As many as 90 consultants worked on the project, according to one document. Many of the consultants have spent extensive time at the State Department, meeting with top officials, collecting and analyzing data, creating PowerPoint presentations and leading group discussions with skeptical employees.

Tillerson fired the career officials that would have performed these duties and replaced them with more expensive consultants.

Now that I think about it, this makes sense. Tillerson was a corporate oil man and this is exactly what a corporation would do.

The number one rule of corporate management is 'if it ain't broke, break it.'

  • muselet

    Diplomats and career employees of the State Department are so damn’ inflexible! about everything. They pigheadedly refuse to implement The Dear Leader’s vision of Murca winning! and instead cling to outdated notions of knowledge and diplomacy and an understanding of the actual world.

    It’s really hard to do snark that’s more outrageous than reality.

    Hiring consultants at colossal hourlies to conduct group discussions! and collect and analyze data!—in other words, shuffle pieces of paper and inundate workers with bafflegab—is, as you say, exactly what a corporation would do.

    This is not normal.


    • Tony Lavely

      Don’t forget the PowerPoint slides. And the children! Will no one think of the children?
      Sorry, got carried away.

  • I’m not so sure it’s a corporate mentality as it is the Republican grift mentality–all those consultants were probably his buddies.

    • muselet

      I had that same thought, but corporate consultants seem like nonpartisan scum.


  • Badgerite

    Tillerson privatized the State Department and then got his ass canned because trump only wants one thing and that is to do as he pleases and have no one oppose him. Or criticize him. Or hold him accountable in any way for the disasters he is creating. POS. I don’t know what Tillerson thought he was doing. But that is what he was doing. Gutting expertise so no one in a position of authority would oppose stupid shit trump wants to do. Cohen got the same treatment.

    • gescove

      Perhaps we can just call POSOTUS rather than POTUS. Clumsier, but more accurate.

  • ninjaf

    Well, it’s just tax dollars. Not like they’re spending real money, anyway.