But their Facebook pages told investigators a starkly different story, according to an indictment and other court papers.

Former police officers who had told government doctors they were too mentally scarred to leave home had posted photographs of themselves fishing, riding motorcycles, driving water scooters, flying helicopters and playing basketball.

“The brazenness is shocking,” Cyrus R. Vance Jr., the Manhattan district attorney, said on Tuesday.

The online photos, along with intercepted phone calls and the testimony of undercover officers, were evidence of what officials said was the largest fraud ever perpetrated against the Social Security disability system, a scheme stretching back to 1988 in which as many as 1,000 people — many of them officers and firefighters already collecting pensions from the city — were suspected to have bilked the federal government out of an estimated $400 million."

Summing Up 

To coin an admittedly awkward but descriptive phrase, "It's the bureaucratic government culture and the freebie entitlement mentality it has created, Stupid!"

And that's largely the fault of huge, intrusive, poorly run and inappropriate government programs, regulations and the overall government knows best bureaucratic approach originally intended and approved by We the People to aid those in need of help.

Our taxpayers willingly provide the money to do the job, but too much of that provided is being squandered and mismanaged by those in charge of disbursing it properly. Too often they don't even try to do the right thing.

So here's perhaps a better and certainly a shorter description of what ails us: It's the bureaucrats, Stupid!

We the People are providing more than enough money to do the right things for those in need of our support. Too much of our money is being wasted or misspent by unproductive government officials.

The plain fact is that We the People just aren't getting anywhere near what would be an adequate "return on our investment." In fact, our "public servants" aren't even making the effort to handle our money as if it were entrusted to them to be used in a fiduciary manner.

Too many government programs are merely jobs programs for government workers, including schools, and are not "serving" the intended beneficiaries or benefiting society and therefore the taxpayers and We the People.

The customers, aka the genuinely poor and disabled, and financial sponsors and providers, aka the taxpayers, are merely spectators and bystanders, and often innocent ones at that.

This all has to change, of course, but for that to happen, We the People need to first get mad as hell.

When that takes place, the poor will become able, the truly disabled will be helped, and the taxpayers will be getting our money's worth.

As a result, the greatest country on earth will become even greater.

That's my take.

Thanks. Bob.