Soap Bubble Rights: Devine, '80 in 2 W. Post Stories Today
Thursday, August 22, 2013
Posted by: Joe Libertelli
Responding to a DC Circuit Court of Appeals decision that allows federal agencies to define a huge number of positions as "sensitive" and, therefore, susceptible to loss of standard workplace as well as whistleblower protections, Tom Devine, '80, was quoted in two Washington Post articles today.
Josh Hicks' "Federal court curbs appeal rights for ‘sensitive’ defense jobs" news story quoted Devine twice and ended with this quote from Tom: "A bureaucracy where it is only safe to be a national security ‘yes man’ is a clear and present danger to freedom for all Americans.”
Joe Davidson, in his Federal Diary column, wrote, "Generally, there are laws to protect federal workers against arbitrary dismissals and other actions. But under this ruling, (Devine says) if an agency "says the worker is ‘ineligible for a sensitive job,’ all those rights turn into a soap bubble.”
"Devine said the court backed the Obama administration’s argument that the MSPB cannot review or overturn an agency’s decision to take disciplinary or adverse action against an employee in a sensitive position. Meanwhile, he added, the administration is proposing regulations that would make nearly all federal jobs eligible for a sensitive designation."