CONE OF SILENCE: EPA Spends $25K To Build “Secure And Soundproof” Communications Booth For Scott Pruitt

The Washington Post reports:

The Environmental Protection Agency is spending nearly $25,000 to construct a secure, soundproof communications booth in the office of Administrator Scott Pruitt, according to government contracting records.

The agency signed a $24,570 contract earlier this summer with Acoustical Solutions, a Richmond-based company, for a “privacy booth for the administrator.” The company sells and installs an array of sound-dampening and privacy products, from ceiling baffles to full-scale enclosures like the one purchased by the EPA. The project’s scheduled completion date is Oct. 9, according to the contract.

Typically, such soundproof booths are used to conduct hearing tests. But the EPA sought a customized version — one that eventually would cost almost several times more than a typical model — that Pruitt can use to communicate without fear of being monitored.

  • bkmn

    Phone sex

    • Halou

      Loud masturbating.

  • Gustav2

    You know, he has to protect himself from the EPA staff:

    “I got 30 percent of the crew that’s not loyal to the flag,” the news agency reported the secretary as saying. Zinke, a former Navy SEAL, fell back on military jargon to show how he intended to bring them in line, saying it’s necessary to “push the generals where the fight is.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/09/26/zinke-says-a-third-of-interiors-staff-is-disloyal-to-trump-and-promises-huge-changes/?utm_term=.4f344e7a7f3a

  • Fifth-and-a-Half Element
  • The_Wretched

    Pruitt is batpoopies. Geez. Private planes, huge security details, sound proof booths, what’s next? Shoe phones and zip line escape lines from his house? A fully stocked bomb shelter under his house? EPA secret island HQ?

    • Gustav2

      Ollie North in charge of the EPA.

    • Halou

      All at taxpayer expense, because how else is a multi-millionaire supposed to lavishly pander to his own paranoia?

  • Halou

    I doubt that’s going to stop any leaks of emails and phone call transcripts. Even the subject of face to face meetings are more ofen than not brought to the attention of law enforcement authorities by one of the people involved in the affair.

  • bambinoitaliano

    I’m surprise the shit gibbon didn’t unload the soundproof booth from his Miss Universe pageant to the EPA for a premium.

  • HZ81

    Jesus, are his oil company buds buying burner phones to talk to him now?

    • Tawreos

      In this administration I doubt they would go through that much effort.

  • boobert

    In “2001” the computer read lips ! lol

  • Ragnar Lothbrok
    • boobert

      Jared has his in the Russian embassy.

    • The_Wretched

      On one hand, attrny 2lrnemail. On the other, it’s entirely possible that Jared has sent similar idiotic emails in the past….and about such activities.

      • Ragnar Lothbrok

        I’m not certain it is real. But was tweeted by Jonathon Snow. 4 hours ago. He hasn’t deleted it.

        • The_Wretched

          It works as humor too if it turns out to be a faked exchange.

        • Reality.Bites

          If I were a Trump lawyer there’s nothing a Trump could tell me they’d done of a self-incriminating nature that I wouldn’t believe them capable of.

          I can really only fault the lawyer for being imprudent in verifying who he was speaking to, but not for believing Jared had pornmail.

    • gaycuckhubby

      Obviously it wasn’t Jared.
      not enough cuckold porn

  • Tawreos

    Who the hell does the EPA need to talk to that needs to remain this damn secure?

    • clay

      They have some (little) responsibility for environmental terrorism– but that’s primarily in Homeland Security. Anything he’s working on that needed higher security would be in coordination with other Agencies/Administrations and he could go to the more secure office.

  • jmax

    Because the goal of this administration is to govern in secrecy so we don’t know what hit us.

    • Halou

      A cow and table tea?

  • Anastasia Beaverhousen

    Oh, honey, let’s just put ’em in a cone of shame and get it over with.

  • Between this and the 24/7 18 person security detail, methinks Pruitt is showing us all his particular Trump admin-qualifying psychological defect is “paranoid personality disorder.”

    • Mnuchin and Price of course = Kleptomania.

  • bambinoitaliano
    • The_Wretched

      Did Pruitt also include the $10k multiple media surround projection option?

    • JackFknTwist

      Let’s get this guy.

    • Clive Johnson

      It’s understandable. When we have scientific evidence that allowing X will predictably cause some number of deaths or health problems, and a conservative hack goes ahead and does X anyway, you can appreciate the upset.

  • Paula

    that Pruitt can use to communicate without fear of being monitored.

    Wanna’ bet, Scottie?

  • Frostbite

    One has to wonder what the head of the EPA is doing that it needs to be done in such secrecy?!?!?!

    • The_Wretched

      State / Intel / Military etc, EPA is not.

    • boatboy_srq

      Revoking protections and permitting toxins in the environment isn’t what most people would expect the EPA to do. And they can’t get away with calling it the Environmental Destruction Agency JUST yet.

    • CanuckDon

      Fap-proof walls.

      • bambinoitaliano

        When will it be available? Asking for certain senator from Texas.

      • gaycuckhubby

        Where do I sign up?

      • Frostbite

        Fap Loud and Proud!

    • -M-

      Maybe we should ask Governor Bentley.

    • William

      Selling the country to Monsanto.

      • Nowhereman

        I thought that was already a done deal.

        • JosefaGNewby

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        • LauraJHarris

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      • Mark

        And Bayer….

      • narutomania

        Oh, listen to you: sowing the seeds of discontent!

        (shnicker)

    • bambinoitaliano

      You’ll never know which hurricane will take a peek.

    • The_Wretched

      Knowingly letting Flint drink dangerous water?

    • kirby7771

      He’s working tirelessly to destroy the Agency. So Trump is keeping at least one campaign promise. I wish Meuller would work a little faster.

    • Chris Gardner

      Relay messages from Trump to Russian spies?

    • Andymac3

      I think it is to muffle his laughter while he calls Bannon as he destroys the agency from within.

  • gaycuckhubby

    Wtf?
    I guess it makes sense for the most corrupt Administration in recent history to be paranoid but this is Bonkers

  • Halou

    Can it be locked from the outside?

  • bambinoitaliano

    Hey Donald! I got a sound proof booth you might be interested in. It’s limited edition. Hurry! https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/c88cb74ffe1bc5f320f4fc933c46ad7d8a3ec6c5cc047d6ecebfbbed6049e3fb.png

    • Harveyrabbit

      I could build a soundproof box for a lot less than that.

      • bambinoitaliano

        Yeah but you know our traitor in chief love his gold trimming.

      • The_Wretched

        I might have one already in the basement. For purposes. No gold trim though.

    • Tomcat

      Presidential to say the least.

      • clay

        Perfect for state viewings.

    • Daveed_WOW

      aw. just like Chairman Mao.

    • Ray Taylor

      Perfect for underground viewing.

      • bambinoitaliano

        Six feet of soil is an additional layer of sound proof.

  • EdmondWherever

    And then they’ll foolishly keep a microwave oven/camera in there, defeating the whole purpose.

  • gaycuckhubby
  • -M-

    Whyyyy? It’s not the CIA and he has an office.
    🤦🏻‍♂️

  • Cuberly
    • bambinoitaliano

      Hello darkness my old friend……

  • boatboy_srq

    The paranoia would be delicious if the potential damage weren’t so horrific.

  • Tomcat

    Got to keep those crooked oil company deals secret from Americans.

  • Tomcat

    How did we survive so long without one of those? Oh yeah, we had honest people in the EPA.

  • liondon#iamnotatraitor

    Maybe he farts alot.

    • Xuuths

      Then he would welcome other noises to hide his flatulence, not silence to bring it to everyone’s attention.

      • jmax

        Why would he hide his flatulence? I’m guessing he loves the smell of his own farts.

        • liondon#iamnotatraitor

          Epoctophilia.

  • Bob Conti

    It’s like Kirk from The Final Frontier (truly the duddiest of them all): “Why does God … need a starship?”

    • Reality.Bites

      I think a bigger question is why do officers in today’s armed forces often retire relatively young but Starfleet doesn’t let you out till you’re at least 80?

      • The_Wretched

        Starfleet officers take a while to train up and they have a much longer life expectancy (except when they die violently).

        • Plus they all want to be admirals eventually so they can become the utter assholes the admirals they reported to throughout their careers all were.

        • Bad Tom

          Unless you end up in a dreaded Red Shirt.
          Then your life expectancy is about 16 minutes.

          • Silver Badger

            But they do send a fruit basket and a nice card to your mom.

      • Bob Conti

        80s the new 65, apparently.

  • fuzzybits
    • clay

      — why Roman Catholics are glad Jesus wasn’t stoned to death?

  • William
  • Renfield

    I think they have them where he’s going, called Solitary Confinement.

  • Cuberly

    OT: So Russia weaponizes Facebook ineptitude. Now it wants that degree of manipulation or it’s own citizens with little to no chance of discovery.

    https://twitter.com/thehill/status/912770511041687556

    • Tomcat

      Hey facebook, ban Russia first.

  • Tomcat

    Bankrupting of America by the Trump Family.

    • Friday

      And the polluting of it by the Koch Bros.

    • Ray Taylor

      Only thing our pretender knows how to do.

  • Uncle Mark

    Is it airtight with no ventilation? ‘Cause I’d be fine with that

  • Tomcat

    Loose lips sink republicans.

    • William

      Just ask Larry Craig.

      • Silver Badger

        Is he Janet’s little boy?

    • Mikey

      they also give pretty lousy blowjobs.

      • nocadrummer

        But guys who can take their teeth out…
        Well, that’s another story.

  • Tomcat

    He is going to love death then. Can’t hear anything.

  • Captain Jack

    We need Hal the computer to read their lips ..

    • Nowhereman

      That was the creepiest scene I’ve ever seen in a movie. Call me paranoid, but the first thing I do when I get a new laptop is to put a piece of tape over the camera lens.

      • Tomcat

        Me too.

        • Tomcat

          And I use a microwave cover on it too.

          • clay

            Did you cover your microwave’s camera?

      • Bad Tom

        The guy who hired me at NIKSUN was VP of Software Forensics. He always did the exact same thing. He also refuses to have any sort of online connection to his bank account.

        • Lumpy Gaga

          I have one and exactly one bank account accessible via online tools: A “burner” checking account which I keep a low balance in, for the occasional money transfer and such as.

          • Daveed_WOW

            “such as” has been my favorite phrase since 2007.

            https://youtu.be/lj3iNxZ8Dww

            Don’t judge me. My perfect date would be April 25th. And I want harsher penalties for parole violators.

          • Bad Tom

            My current CEO does the same thing. He is almost as paranoid as James (VP of SF) was. He also won’t load any apps into his phone.

            I won’t use any of those password vault apps. It’s like collecting all your keys in one place, so thieves know where to look for all the goodies. No browser gets to keep any important passwords for me.

            I also maintain a paper-only “airgap” password list with truly random passwords. It is immune to hacking. Even our professional pen tester thinks so.

            I won’t connect my phone to email anymore; there’s a new mode of social engineering hack where blackhats scam your mobile carrier into resetting your phone to one they own. Then if you’ve synced your phone with the cloud and connected your email to your phone, the blackhats can reset the passwords on all your financial accounts using standard password reset procedures.

            You can lose everything while you set helpless watching your shit be stolen. NO THANKS!
            ——-
            Paranoia can destroy ya.
            Unless you aren’t paranoid enough.

        • Silver Badger

          I once had someone try to steal my identity, but when they got a good look at it they gave it back and sent me $10.00.

      • Friday

        Yeah, I always do that and disable the mikes. Just makes sense: *I* don’t need the things so why leave them where someone else could for some sketchy reason? (Really I wish they’d kept making those little keyboard lights instead of putting those things on everything. 🙂 )

  • Nowhereman

    Tell me again–who does he work for? Who owns this country? I know–silly question.

    • Tomcat

      Koch Brothers!

  • Tomcat

    OT: getting a lot of emails from lifelock lately, thanks Equifax.
    Nothing like companies that keep all of our info helping other companies that keep all our information. I hope all these companies go belly up for their shit.

    • Lumpy Gaga

      Received an unsolicited CC replacement from Capital One after EquifaxGate.

      They said that a vendor I did business with on the card suffered a breach.

      Now, I’d only had THAT CapOne card for a few months — after someone tried to buy a sofa from Macy’s with its predecessor and have the merch shipped to Yonkers.

      I use this card exclusively for online monthly subs (music, Netflix, etc.). I hope that whoever the recurring security idiot(s) are finally get slapped.

  • Tomcat

    I don’t need to hear anything to know he is going to screw Americans.
    Comes with the job.

    • Furface

      Actually comes with the man; the agency and its mission are honorable.

  • bambinoitaliano

    This is funny if its not so tragic. The entire government except the shit gibbon is beating around the bush trying to contain the leak. And they already know who it is. They are employing all methods short of putting a giant glass dome over that blabber mouth. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/376360bcd56234c843abd7a488be884363b7cd1310ac62dada5a9741a316700b.jpg

  • Tulle Christensen

    Look it is simple, he does not want his plans to recreated the Cuyahoga River fire for its 50th anniversary in 2019 to get out

  • bkmn

    Mueller probably already has a warrant to wiretap the whole Cabinet at this point in time.

  • Ham

    Someone needs to seriously sit him down and ask him what he thinks “Environmental Protection” actually is.

    • The_Wretched

      The environment isn’t protected until the rivers catch fire again.

      • -M-

        It’ll be cheaper to let them defend themselves. 🔥💥

    • bkmn

      He knows the environment needs protection from him.

    • clay

      He’s protecting himself from the environment.

  • bambinoitaliano
    • I once had a Brittany Spaniel who knew how to use tools to get what he wanted.

      • Silver Badger

        A very good doberlady friend of mine used to open the ‘fridge when she thought no one was looking to help her self. She really liked coconut cream pie.

        • Reality.Bites

          Harrumph! If she was really smart she’d open the freezer to get some ice cream to go with it!

          • Silver Badger

            Ice cream made her fillings hurt.

        • yes b’y

          My golden retriever Bubba discovered my oven’s warming drawer. After he stole the roast, he then ran around the house with it unfurling and dragging on the newly cleaned carpet, which was bad enough but I was worried that he would eat it(he was allergic to beef) or the string would wrap around his intestines. The little bugger.

          • Silver Badger

            Real meat gave my doberlady explosive diarrhea. Someone tried to rob us once and gave her hamburger to distract her. This was a mistake for both us and the thief. She was pretty good at multi tasking.

      • Daveed_WOW

        My friend’s Rhodesian Ridgebacks could open the broiler and retrieve a whole pound of hot brautwurst. They could not open the fridge, but nothing was safe on top of it. They also loved to attack plastic bottles of Wesson oil. Because it’s delicious apparently. Those teeth make little holes in the bottle. Hours of fun.

  • Lazycrockett
    • Refugay

      So she wants a 3-way?

    • “Rick Santorum tells me” = probably not what she actually said.

      Frothy: “So would you be up for trying again next year?”
      Murkowski: “Sure, whatever, just not again this year for god’s sake. Enough already.”

  • That_Looks_Delicious

    Top secret intel from allies? Blab it to the Russians.
    Securing our elections or voting systems? less than zero, negative money.
    The EPA?! Secure and soundproof communications booths. If there is one department that should be as transparent as possible, it’s the EPA.

    What bizarro planet am I living on?

  • JWC

    Oh . It just begs to ask . What is Pruitt discussing that cannot be heard If its about America, its America’s business. If its not he should not n be discussing it anyway This whole idea has an extremely bad smell and is highly suspect

  • Richard B

    Hmmmm, I wonder what the EPA chief has to hide to be maintaining a large around the clock 24 x 7 security staff and now, installing a soundproof room. Steve Bannon stated in a recent interview that Donald Trump picked his cabinet to destroy their offices. I think there is evidence that is exactly the case with Scott Pruitt and the EPA.
    SAD

  • Shorter Pruitt: “I’m terrified Mother Nature will find me. And then righteously kill me for what I’m doing to the planet.”

  • Ernest Endevor

    Did he also get a decoder ring? And X-ray glasses?

  • Gigi

    So much for fiscal responsibility.

    • So much for an elected government transparent and accountable to the citizens of the country they rule.

      • Gigi

        When have we ever had that?

  • Lazycrockett
    • Sam_Handwich

      i usually sing along in a different key

      • Lazycrockett

        Hon thats called a hummer.

      • That_Looks_Delicious

        This just reminded me of the Roseanne Barr rendition. Hadn’t thought about that in years. *shivers*

        • Lazycrockett

          You get a comedian to perform, she performs in a comedic manner and you get mad. WTF did you expect.

          • That_Looks_Delicious

            She is probably the only person in the whole world who sings worse than I do.

          • Ray Taylor

            No, no I sing worse.

      • CottonBlimp

        I dress up like Cher and lipsync.

      • boatboy_srq

        Francis, Scott, or both?

    • DreadPikathulhu

      They stand because that’s when they get up to go to the refrigerator to get another beer.

      • clay

        I was thinking “It’s instinctual to be silent when relieving oneself”.

    • PickyPecker

      It plays on TV? Oh, right. Sportsball. Don’t watch it here.

      • Silver Badger

        I had my TV surgically altered so it wouldn’t receive sportsball.

    • Cuberly

      What total bullshit.

    • Clive Johnson

      I don’t believe that for a second.

    • Reality.Bites

      I admit that I usually stop what I’m doing, if alone, but I don’t stand.

      And of course I mean for my anthem, not yours.

  • Sam_Handwich

    o/t

    oh my, experimental 280 character tweets
    https://twitter.com/jack/status/912784057863245824

    • Lazycrockett

      Cmon 2000 word essays!!!

      • Lumpy Gaga

        That “Menz iz OPPRESSED” guy from Google can’t wait.

    • Lazycrockett

      If only there was a way to correct a misspelled word or phrase that I didn’t read over before pressing enter………………………….

      • All the morons over at Twitterland arguing *against* an edit button somehow think it would be allowed forever and not have like a 2-5 minute max window of availability.

        • Just that much would make a huge difference.

        • Lazycrockett

          Is that their reasoning??? I know of at least 2 sites I visit on the regular where you have a limited amount of time to edit a comment. WTF.

          • Yeah, saw several saying shit like, “OMG! What if someone fucked with a famous and popular tweet?! What about hacked accounts?!!! OMG!!1one!”

          • The_Wretched

            It cuts down on retcons and database writing / pushing updates.

  • shellback

    I look forward to a hacker exposing his dirty little secrets to the world.

  • gaycuckhubby
  • Texndoc

    There was a portable version that in today’s dollars probably goes for 5-6 thousand instead of 25. Ah Mel Brooks you were and are an original. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/7bc1c0a89ba8c9a0db1bdac3ce70fa8d49451dd46164f4ec68265800648fd7ba.png

    • Ray Taylor

      Hmm! A spit exchange.

  • Joe in PA

    Can you imagine the howls of protest if a democrat did this? Sigh.

  • OdieDenCO

    so pruitt is sitting in this sound proof booth so he can’t be monitored, does he realize he will need a communication device that will breach the booth’s “security” to converse with anybody outside the booth? Just what exactly is he afraid of divulging? It’s the EPA not the CIA! Fail!

    • Friday

      He’s afraid of the resistance from the rest of the agency he’s trying to subvert and destroy and undo the public trust mission thereof.

  • justme

    Well we wouldn’t want him hearing what the world is thinking around hi,,
    can’t have any distractions now that his charter planes have been revoked..

  • Friday

    Gotta wonder what environmental fuckery he’s planning that he’s that afraid of whistleblowers.

    • Elsewhere1010

      The Mall of the Grand Canyon.

      • Furface

        That’s after the landfill lease to Goomba Bros. cartage of the Bronx. Gotta have a solid substrate for the mall.

  • rednekokie

    When you are determined to rupture the budget with unnecessary items which cost 5 times what they should, be sure to hire a politician from Oklahoma. They really know how to do that.
    If you don’t believe me, come visit this sorry state.

    • Helen Damnation™

      Sorry, no visit from me. I’ve got relatives there, and they are hard-core Trumpsters.

  • M Jackson

    Turn the thing up to High and make him like that guinea pig in American Horror Story last week.

  • Stubenville

    The cone of silence!

  • Steve Smith

    For a few dollars extra you could get Acoustical Solutions to make it airtight, and put a lock on the outside.

    • And it would be worth it to build several of the same for the DT and his minions.

  • Ken M

    Any chance for a double lock, on the outside? 😉

    • JAKvirginia

      Easy. Private meeting inside, welding class outside.

      • Ken M

        “No one’s heard from him for a week.”

  • Er, is this standard protocol? I honestly don’t know, seems excessively paranoid to me. Surely cybersecurity is the name of the game nowadays, not listening devices?

    • Friday

      He obviously doesn’t want any staff that actually care about their jobs to whistleblow on his dirty dealings in environmental destruction, they had an ‘anti-leaking’ program going, too.

      • Ha! So it really is just paranoia… good grief.

  • J Ascher

    Paranoia, much, Secy. Pruitt?

  • Bob Conti

    We used to just create baffling with egg cartons nailed to the wall. If it was good enough for Hawaii Public Radio… https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bf38a09647abb7915a66778684daaa1e064ec848e6fcd7bbbb75cdc6dbc05314.jpg

    • That reminds me of Laugh In!

  • Nowhereman

    I’ll bet the Russians have already hacked into it.

  • Danieruw
  • Danieruw

    Couldn’t they just get one of these soundproof booths? drumpf can probably give them a contact…
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bd5dd92a0a9e1367eacbbc3acc69608abb64f5a93bb32da0c64193f381303e63.jpg

  • leastyebejudged

    You’d think that with TWO MILLION fracking wells in the USA to monitor they’d be too busy to waste money like this. Oh, right, congress has prevented them from doing that.

  • ColdCountry

    The paranoia is strong in this one.

  • What is he trying to hide?

  • Scout

    This is where they can have their Russian meetings.

  • JohnInCA

    Um, yeah. This is basically a “we can talk classified material” booth. It’s more expensive to do a whole conference room.

    • Helen Damnation™

      Why would “EPA” speak be classified?

      • Homo Erectus

        How else can you negotiate bribes without being overheard?

      • JohnInCA

        The Roswell cover-up, obviously.

        More seriously, it’s pretty easy for things to be “Secret”, especially in the aggregate. Whether it’s because the sources of the information were secret (anything a submarine picks up, for example), or maybe the researchers published conclusions/results but not the raw data, or reviewing possible agreements and plans and so-on.

  • Jukesgrrl

    WTF?!

  • JosefaGNewby

    Google is paying 97$ per hour,with weekly payouts.You can also avail this.
    On tuesday I got a great new Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $11752 this last four weeks..with-out any doubt it’s the most-comfortable job I have ever done .. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
    !dw186:
    ➽➽
    ➽➽;➽➽ http://GoogleOnlineEasyMiniTechJobsOpportunities/easy/jobs ★✫★★✫★✫★★✫★✫★★✫★✫★★✫★✫★★✫★✫★★✫★✫★★✫★✫★★✫★✫★★✫★✫★★✫★✫:::::!dw186l..,…

  • Ginger Snap

    But healthcare, food and housing for all is a waste of government money. I fucking hate my country now.

  • Just wait — next they’ll add on private air and water supplies.

  • Vinny DeFeo

    Is this the same guy who’s taking agents out of the field for bodyguards? What is his problem?

  • Chitown Kev

    of course, the cone of silence never worked