Friday, March 9, 2012

I am Back

After a long break, I am back. 

I hope there are still readers out there.
If anybody is still reading, let me give an abbreviated version of what’s happened. After 34 years, I am out of the Foreign Service. It got intolerable. I was up for two ambassadorial nominations but got screwed out of them by the Department, in particular by some career officers who have made it a point to make sure that out-spoken conservative FSOs do not get embassies. By the way, this is not a phenomenon unique to me or to the Obama mis-administration. This goes on under Republican presidencies, too. The State Department bureaucracy is very much a mental bee hive: independent thought is not encouraged. You must conform to the hive. The hive does not respond to the President or to the national interest; the hive takes care of itself. 
That’s enough of that. 

I am not going to whine about it anymore, and don’t want to get into the details, but that’s what’s happened. 
So, now I am retired, and feel less and less inclined to remain anonymous. I will be writing about foreign affairs, political, and economic issues. I hope there’s still some interest. If there isn’t, I will do it as writing therapy.


  1. Glad to see you're back.

  2. Welcome back! And sorry to hear about your troubles. But happy that it means you'll be blogging again. Always enjoyed reading your perspective in the past.

  3. i always enjoy what you have to say.

  4. Anonymous or not, it is good to see you back. I for one was beginning to wonder.
    I hope you take the time to share your insight into current as well as past matters.

  5. I have been waiting for months for you to come back. I'm looking forward to your posts.

    Too bad about being screwed over. I salute your 34 years as a Foreign Service Officer.

  6. Welcome back to the diploblogosphere. It would have been a pleasure to have continued serving with you.

  7. Have been checking for your return frequently over the past months. Enjoy your insight. Welcome back

  8. orale holmes!!

    Yes I remember Diplomad round one the original blog

    You've been sorely missed.
    Thank You for your service.
    Welcome Back!

  10. Welcome back! I will now relink you to my blog. I hope sometime in the future you will give us you candid thoughts about Hillary's tenure at Foggy Bottom.

  11. Glad you're back, and thank you for your service!

  12. I'm still here, thanks for returning.

  13. I'd lost hope. Every time I came here, more and more infrequently, I thought you were gone forever; perhaps put upon by those more senior to yourself, and were now rotting in some iron maiden somewhere. Now, I weep virtual tears of joy at your safe and most welcomed return!

  14. Welcome back.

    I thought they were posting you in a place you couldn't express yourself. I'm surprised you lasted this long after DiploMad 1.

    Retirement is great. You can say what you want without fear of reprisal. And Chad or Burkina Faso probably weren't the best ambassadorships anyway. So do your articles, and do your damage. You write with passion. And you do it for a good cause.

    Please, please put your Diplomad 1 archives up. Your reporting from Indonesia was the greatest put-down of the efficious UN folks I have seen. Hope you saved them.

  15. Welcome back, DiploMad 2.0 - you've been missed!
    So Go To IT - we can't wait.

  16. Welcome back. I appreciate your writing about the strange world you inhabit.

  17. Welcome back!
    I feel your pain. I, too, after nearly 23 years, retired at the end of 2011. Couldn't take the Dept bureaucracy anymore, or the increasing distasteful policies I had to advocate. Should have been promoted at least 5 years ago, had my staff cut by 50%, no travel money, couldn't get a day of leave for almost a year, lost airfares twice when I had to cancel personal trips b/c of VIP visits.
    But the Dept keeps on giving! The Retirement Office is the most incompetent bunch imaginable. Monthly annuity miscalculated by $200/mo; didn't send the paperwork to Charleston Finance Center, so didn't get paid..., still not sure if my life/health insurance premiums got paid.
    The good news is that I don't miss working at all.
    Can't wait to read your posts.

  18. Wow! You're back! I will once again be able to enjoy your insights and musings. Hope you have more writing time not that you're retired.

  19. I've been waiting patiently for you to come back to continue writing what I feel, all the more so as Barry is gearing up to keep the one serious job he's ever had By Any Means Necessary.


  20. I'm very happy to see you are back. I'm going to have to do some catch up reading, though, as I only found out today from Instapundit that you have returned.

    Keep writing.

  21. Just found out today you are back. Too bad was taken by a squatter.

    The tales of the HPVE from the first Diplomad blog make Diplomad 2.0 required reading.

    From the web archive:
    1/7/2005: The "Turd" World And The High Priest Vulture Elite

  22. Screwed out of ambassadorships? You sound like you have the very sense of entitlement that you decry in others. For 34 years, you sucked at the teat that you now insult, getting free overseas housing, years of language training on generous per diem, and a retirement salary that most Foreign Service Officers, who retire at lower ranks than you did, are envious of. As a Foreign Service Officer with 21 years in myself, I would guess that after 34 years - an unusually long career for State diplomats - you have upwards of $1 million in your Thrift Savings Plan and are pulling in $70K in pension (for life) plus social security (I'm looking at retiring with $250K in TSP and a pension of $35K a year). You did very well for yourself, apparently having no problems balancing your morals with working for an organization that you despise. Or did you only come to despise it when you didn't get an ambassadorship that most of us realize we will never achieve? (Other readers: being "up for two ambassadorships" means that you were on a list of approximately five names for consideration for each, hardly any certainty for eventual appointment; of thousands of Foreign Service Officers, there are just over 120 ambassadors at a time.)

    I do acknowledge the dysfunctionality of a lot of the State Department, particularly in how the hierarchical organization works, but I suspect that you yourself were part of the bullying culture that you now find objectionable.

  23. Like many others, I had nearly given up on you - glad you are blogging again!