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Moira Whelan @moira
, 12 tweets, 3 min read Read on Twitter
Well, I suppose I'll add my 2 cents on @RobbieGramer's piece and what everyone is talking about in my old stomping grounds.…
Here's where I always stood on consolidation questions like this: I didn't really care what the org chart looked like, so long as the one we would spend the time, $ and energy to build was better than what we had. And frankly, that's a really high bar.
So the one "for instance" everyone picked on was the video unit in PA and the one in IIP. It surprised me because very smart people often assumed that the same equipment = duplication. Which seemed dumb since it's not like we had an "Office of Computers"
The offices actually had very different functions: one did live shot work, the other long-form edited material. Both were very good. But we ran an experiment and had one do the other's work one day. It was a disaster.
So by putting all of the video cameras in one place, there was no indication that it was going to equal "better". And too often at State, you're led to believe that "different" must mean "better." So do what you're going to do, but realize, this overhaul will take years.
I re-orged 2 offices that got along swimmingly and we just needed to realign 3 positions. It took 2 years. This is a long drawn out process in government. It involves checking it with OPM, Unions, etc. So if you decide to do it, it better be good.
and by "good" I mean: 1) the field sees a difference in how the bureaus are supporting them 2) we have greater impact on our audiences 3) the better run machine is better funded to meet the threats of the landscape: 🇷🇺🇨🇳
But rumor has it, and I fear that this is not the intention. It's worse. It's fear of the building. Politicals don't like that the machine can run without them. They distrust what is happening without their supervision. So this is about control, not bettering US policy.
So they don't intend to stop here. Up next: Regional PD shops, R/PPR, and USAID. All would be incredibly dumb moves.

The fact is that the closer the comms is to policy, the better it is, because the comms is the policy.
Before you 🙄 and think this #publicdiplomacy stuff is not important, remember that at the State Department, your words are your weapons.

So when you mess with the people that speak to the world, you are either strengthening US policy, or weakening it. Motivation is important.
One more point missed is timing. The bulk of this was done while Heather Nauert was acting R. A streamlined decision process of 1 person.
We'll hear more about this because people are scared. But the ? we need to ask is how this benefits US security. Are we putting more foreign language spoxs out there? No? Are we getting better at listening because of it? No? Then it's a glorified power struggle, not a reorg. END
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