Last night, DOE whistleblower Joe Carson sent the following message about Tom Devine, legal director of the Government Accountability Project:
Nobody, and I mean nobody, is saying that Carson is wrong, or that I was wrong in my contentions against Devine, either. But almost nobody is willing to buck the system and publicly support Carson’s efforts to resolve these issues or my and others’ efforts to enfranchise whistleblowers in legislative advocacy. What do they say, behind closed doors? Here are a few categories of responses:
Those who privately acknowledge the validity of Carson’s concerns but do nothing about it: In this category fall FAA whistleblower and FAA Whistleblowers Alliance director Gabe Bruno and TSA whistleblower Robert MacLean. Bruno is loathe to “alienate” GAP because it can help whistleblowers, including FAA whistleblowers, achieve the 2% success rate at the MSPB. MacLean is Devine’s client. Neither have done much, if anything, to advance Carson’s concerns.
Those who defend Devine on the grounds that he’s a good guy who helped them with their cases, but say nothing about miscellaneous concerns about Devine: Marine Corps whistleblower Franz Gayl and White House whistleblower Gordon Hamel, who were represented by Devine in their cases.
Those who defend GAP but say nothing about concerns about Devine: NSA whistleblower Thomas Drake.
Those who impart advice about advocacy tactics, civility, respect, etc. but say nothing about concerns about Devine: PHS whistleblower Don Soeken, FAA whistleblower Gabe Bruno, and Emory whistleblower James Murtagh.
These are serious issues. We can’t afford to waste time with power games and whisper campaigns because of a sense of indebtedness to Tom Devine. For people who themselves spoke out against wrongdoing and wanted to be heard on the merits, it’s highly hypocritical to dismiss or consciously ignore allegations of wrongdoing within the community on the basis of personal loyalty or fear of upsetting the status quo. Carson is correct: there won’t be peace in the community until these issues are addressed and resolved.