Letter to national geospatial agency

Dear Public Affairs Persons:

After reading through your history home page, (https://www.nga.mil/about/1595956020452_History.html) I have a few comments to make. First of all, the first two and a half lines do not a sentence make. The verbiage is missing a verb.

Further on, the claim that the “nation” created a new agency is silly. A nation is a figment of the imagination. However, I will grant that a better understanding of geography by all our agencies would be helpful.

And who would be “achieving greater insight” as the result of a name change in 2003? Seems like a frivolous idea to me. A governmental agency does not have “customers.” It may have subsidiaries and branches whose public servants are expected to be served. I would suggest that any suggestion to “run government like a business” be discarded. Nor should you have “products” and “services” to dispense.

Finally, we do not need a “plan to address major disasters in the years ahead.” What we need is a plan to PREVENT natural disasters by identifying sensitive locations and keeping significant populations out. While it is true that our governmental entities are designed to be responsive to requests for assistance, that means they need to be prepared to render assistance. We need action, not talk. EMA, for example, needs to be much more familiar with geographic information for above and below ground features.

This page has apparently not been updated in some time. When it is, you might reconsider the use of the term “warfighter” since we have not been in a war for a long time. One wonders to what extent your agency’s work is duplicative of the Pentagon and DARPA, in particular. Building new facilities in St. Louis looks like a boondoggle and seems unlikely to employ many residents of the adjacent community. Could you not have repurposed an old military base?