A Nov. 4 WorldNetDaily article states that because of "high-paying government jobs and billions in defense and homeland security contracts" -- which the article attacks as "Beltway bandits" -- "11 of the 25 wealthiest counties in America – including the Top 3 – are now in the Washington area." At the top of the list is "Fairfax County, Va., which last year topped $100,000 in median household income – the first U.S. county to do so – thanks to Uncle Sam awarding employers there an astonishing $13 billion in new federal contracts."
Unmentioned is the fact that WND editor Joseph Farah lives in Centreville, Va., which is located in ... Fairfax County. And we would be shocked if he wasn't beating the average county income.
(What is it about the ConWeb and high-rent areas? In addition to Farah's "fatcat" Fairfax County lifestyle, NewsMax and Christopher Ruddy are kickin' it in West Palm Beach.)
The article serves up a muddled message. It's eager to tsk-tsk that "Virginia, Maryland and D.C. grabbed a whopping 40% of the total $10.2 billion in contracts DHS awarded that year" -- a misleadingly worded claim, since it's actually companies located in those jurisdictions and not the jurisdiction itself that receives that money. Underlying all of this is the unspoken suggestion that companies who seek government business shouldn't be located near the seat of federal government -- a strange thing to suggest.
Again, the poster child for this is Farah. When he moved from Oregon to Washington in 2002, he stated his reason for doing so: "Now, as our business grows, we feel the time is right to become more visible – to take advantage of the opportunities to appear on television, to network with other like-minded colleagues, to make travel more feasible."
In other words, he's no different from the companies seeking government contracts who have located in the Washington area to take advantage of opportunities, to network with other like-minded colleagues, to make travel more feasible. We thought that was a good thing for Americans to aspire to do.
If it's good enough for Farah, why isn't it good enough for the so-called "Beltway bandits"?