Past Features

March 16, 2017 -- March 15, 2017  
President Trump's Border Wall Won't Be a Wall
    The latest twist in the Homeland Security solicitation for a border wall: It doesn't need to be a wall.
    The federal government has once again extended its timeline for accepting bids to design and build a prototype for the border wall with Mexico. The latest update to the federal presolicitation, which U.S. Customs and Border Protection first released back in February, marks a change in course for the project as well.
    The updated notice indicates some mission drift at the Department of Homeland Security. Now, the agency is asking for two designs: one for a wall, and one for not-a-wall.
    On Tuesday, CBP updated its presolicitation to put off the deadline for a formal request for proposals (previously set for today). The notice gave new instructions for companies interested in building President Donald Trump's border wall. There are now two tracts --- “one focused on concrete designs, and one focused on other designs.” [...]
    That’s not to say that the proposal for a border wall is dead on arrival. It's possible that it could be scaled down to the level of project, or range of projects, achievable by a smaller firm that would not be stung by a divestment movement. “We think it'll be a mishmash,” Michael Burke, the CEO for the multinational design-build firm AECOM, told CityLab. “Somebody will build something.” [...]

Glenn Spencer -- March 16
All is forgiven
  The decision by the Trump Administration to open the design for a border 'wall' to include 'not a wall' has opened the process for real solutions to the border problem.
    It has taken the shackles off American industry.
    Throughout it was understood that the call for a wall was sort of like saying "A mighty fortress is our God." The wall was a metaphorical device.
    I took candidate Trump seriously, but not literally (although I admit to being nervous for a while).
    Now comes the really hard part of making sausage --- a law --- and a budget - that can pass.
    As we move ahead, all is forgiven.