Porter Goss Amazed at CIA Chief Workload

CIA chief ‘amazed’ at workload (CNN)

In a rare public appearance Wednesday, CIA Director Porter Goss said he is overwhelmed by the many duties of his job, including devoting five hours out of every day to prepare for and deliver intelligence briefings to President Bush. “The jobs I’m being asked to do, the five hats that I wear, are too much for this mortal,” Goss said. “I’m a little amazed at the workload.”

Goss praised Bush’s choice for the new job of national intelligence director, John Negroponte. The career diplomat, who is expected to be confirmed by the Senate, will take over several of the duties currently assigned to Goss, including the presidential briefing.

This highlights an oft-neglected issue in the creation of the NID post. It’s not just that having the CIA Director also wear the Director of Central Intelligence hat created conflicts but it ensures that both jobs get suboptimal attention. It makes little sense for the CIA head to spend a third of his day getting ready to brief the president. On the other hand, it’s a perfectly logical function for a NID, whose job it is to amalgamate the intelligence collected by the various agencies.

Specialization and division of labor are generally a good idea.

James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.