FAA personnel dragged away to help with Cash For Clunkers

How much of a royal, 1st class, gold plated, government screw up has the Cash for Clunkers program been?

1. Dealers are not being reimbursed for the program fast enough - if at all.

2. Applications are being rejected and no reason is given.

3. The program is helping foreign auto manufacturers more than our domestic companies.

4. The program's website keeps crashing due to poor planning.

5. And now comes word that in order to help with the tens of thousands of applications for reimbursement, the Obama administration has tapped FAA air traffic control personnel to temporarily help process the Cash for Clunker forms.

Won't that affect air traffic safety? "All is well" the government assures us:

Employees of the FAA's air-traffic-control unit were asked to help, but the Transportation Department stressed Friday that essential safety personnel were not diverted from their duties.

A total of 1,200 workers, including about 300 contractors from Citigroup, the financial services giant, are now working seven days a week to review applications and reimburse auto dealers for rebates advanced to customers, officials said.

The department tripled its program staff to 1,100 last week, and recently added another 100 headquarters employees...

The National Automobile Dealers Association, which had endorsed the move, urged the Obama administration late Friday to extend the deadline because the program's Web site was crashing.

It shouldn't surprise us that Citigroup employees are pitching in. After all, the company is now government owned and the feds can do anything they want with any employee who works for the former privately own financial services giant.

But what does this show about the priorities of the Obama administration? Even if taking away the FAA employees  did not directly compromise safety, someone else now has to do their jobs at the agency. One wonders if that would put an undue burden on other, more safety sensitive employees.

The wouldn't tell us even if it did.

It started as something of a joke but now can be asked in earnest; are these the guys you want running health care in America?

Hat Tip: Hot Air

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