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"The only reason I'm reading them is that I have to sign them and am worried about embarrassing myself"

The National Journal's Yochi Dreazen interviews Ashton Carter, the Pentagon's top hardware guy. The best bit:

NJ: You've pointed out that the Pentagon spends millions of dollars and tens of thousands of hours producing reports that few people read or need. What is it like, as the man on top, to be the recipient of so many of those reports?

Carter: On Saturday afternoons when I sit in here and these big reports come in, I sometimes wonder if I'm the only human being who will ever read them. They were asked for long ago, and whoever asked for them has forgotten that he asked for them. The only reason I'm reading them is that I have to sign them and am worried about embarrassing myself. If you read many of them, you wonder if anyone read them before they sent them to me. It's illustrative of how we allow processes to accrete.

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