Fish stinks from the head down…
Darrell Issa’s leading role in the IRS investigation may have come to a close — he lost his chairmanship of the House Oversight Committee to term limits — but there is plenty of work left for his successor, Jason Chaffetz of Utah. None of these criminals has been punished; the maddening fact is that Lois Lerner is enjoying a six-figure pension at the expense of the very taxpayers against whom she conducted a corrupt political jihad. And even if that happy day should come when Lerner et al. are given one-way bus tickets to Florence, Colo., or some other suitable destination, Chaffetz and his colleagues still would have a tremendous amount of work to do; if Issa’s time has taught us anything, it is that the federal agencies are in thrall to a culture of criminality, and that the most significant crime in the agencies’ repertoire is the obstruction of federal investigations.
Earlier this year, 47 inspectors general — the officials charged with fighting corruption, waste, and wrongdoing in federal agencies — sent a letter to Issa’s committee complaining that organizations ranging from the EPA to the Justice Department were impeding their investigations by withholding information — despite the fact that federal law specifically forbids withholding that information. These are not a bunch of Republican operatives trying to score a few political points: Those 47 inspectors general comprise more than half of all such officials, and many who signed the letter were appointed by President Barack Obama. Their complaint is that the federal agencies treat them more or less like they do . . . members of Congress: thwarting them, withholding documents, obstruction investigations.