Former U.S. intelligence officials like John Brennan garner lucrative employment in the private sector based on their ability to maintain their government security clearances. Peter Schweizer and Seamus Bruner from the Government Accountability Institute explain this in an op-ed in the New York Post, detailing the revelations in Bruner’s new book,Compromised: How Money and Politics Drive FBI Corruption.
Schweizer and Bruner write:
Former CIA Director John Brennan’s temper tantrum over the revocation of his security clearance has inadvertently pointed a spotlight at one of the Swamp’s favorite get-rich-quick tricks: the national intelligence contractor hustle.
On Aug. 20, President Trump escalated his attack on Brennan. “Everybody wants to keep their Security Clearance, it’s worth great prestige and big dollars, even board seats, and that is why certain people are coming forward to protect Brennan,” Trump said.
The president’s point is valid: Maintaining access to top-secret or classified information is how former intelligence officials like Brennan, James Clapper, James Comey and others command millions of dollars from the private sector. A security clearance reportedly yields a salary of up to 15 percent higher compared to the salaries of individuals without clearances for the same position.
For the more than 4 million private-sector individuals holding clearances, the secretive private intelligence industry is a massive ecosystem, ripe for concealed cronyism.