I don’t feel able to rise to the occasion. For one thing, this is Fairfax County, second richest in the nation by median household income. That’s not honest wealth, either: Fairfax is a dormitory county for Washington, D.C. (as is the richest U.S. county, next-door Loudon). This is the land of the tax-eaters, the region Peggy Noonan wrote about so eloquently back in 2008:
To drive through the suburbs of Northern Virginia is to marvel still at the widespread wealth, the mansions and mini-mansions that did not exist a quarter-century ago and that now thicken the woods and hills. It used to be sleepy here; it used to be horse farms … The other night, the big houses were strung with glittering white Christmas lights … heading toward Great Falls, we saw a house with a big glass-walled living room that faced the street, and below it a glass-walled entrance room, and each had its own brightly decorated tree. “Two Christmas trees,” murmured a companion, and it captured the air of prosperity and solid well-being of the area. It reminded me: Government is our most reliable current and future growth industry, and the near suburbs of the capital are where those who run it, work it, lobby it, feed off it and finagle it live. “You have to go farther out to see the foreclosure signs,” said a friend.
So this guy, who’s probably a GS-12 married to a GS-9 or some such, living in the heart of Bureaucratopia, has encountered some annoying bureaucracy? Color me not surprised.
And then, just look at the darn thing! It looks like … well, a federal bureaucrat’s notion of a treehouse. That thing is a treehouse like a federal “job” is a job, like a Homeland Security initiative makes us secure, like the federal Department of Education ever educated anyone. Treehouse? Hell, it’s not even dangerous.