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Report: Up to $60B wasted in war contracting

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posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 11:20 PM
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Report: Up to $60B wasted in war contracting


www.cbsnews.com

As much as $60 billion in U.S. funds has been lost to waste and fraud in Iraq and Afghanistan over the past decade through lax oversight of contractors, poor planning and corruption, an independent panel investigating U.S. wartime spending estimates.
In its final report to Congress, the Commission on Wartime Contracting said the figure could grow as U.S. support for reconstruction projects and programs wanes, leaving both countries to bear the long-term costs of sustaining the schools, medical clinics, barracks, roads and power plants already built with American tax dollars
(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 11:20 PM
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Profiteering is perhaps another way for one to become a war criminal, at least it ought to be. With the trillions of debt I guess 60 billion sounds like a drop in the bucket, but when paid back into the funds it was robbed from it could keep those afloat for quite awhile.


Much of the waste and fraud could have been avoided with better planning and more aggressive oversight, the commission said. To avoid repeating the mistakes in Iraq and Afghanistan, government agencies should overhaul the way they award and manage contracts in war zones, the commission recommended.


Well, that was the whole point, no? Lack of oversight was what was being exploited, along with sweetheart awards to sole contractors. The money goes around and around but doesn't come back here.

www.cbsnews.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 11:26 PM
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reply to post by Erongaricuaro
 


This is gettin nuts...

Before you know it, they will announce 2.3 trillion missing, then the next day no one ever hears a peep about it because something bigger will happen... now where does that sound familiar to me...

I mean im barely making it by with 300 bucks a week income and workin my ass off for it, what the hell, 60 billion just happens to go missing? Definitely isnt a drop in the bucket to people like me, which is alot of people these days
edit on 30-8-2011 by morder1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 11:30 PM
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reply to post by Erongaricuaro
 


This is what Ron Paul has been pointing out.....lets bring the troops home....cut the spending overseas....and take care of our own and let the other countries take care of themselves.



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 11:34 PM
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Is this really a shock to anyone?

"An independent panel investigating...."

The GAO has reporting on this kind of waste and mismanagement for years and years now,, since about 2004. And more recently: Report: Contractor waste in war zones could grow

Hope this "independent panel" saved us some money and started with these reports.


Oh, wait! This is, "the fifth special report from the congressionally chartered panel set up in 2008." Where's the report on their action plans and their effectiveness?

The question once again is, is anyone going to do anything about it? My bet is...no. It be shoved under the rug yet again. Prove me wrong, Washington pukes.

I'm so sick of you and your going through the motions with your little pretenses of doing things to somehow convince us you're actually earning your paycheck.

edit on 8/30/2011 by ~Lucidity because: messed up the link tag



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 12:39 AM
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Okay, your quite right.
I am older so remember more of the on going spend with friends our wars have become.
A simple search came up with this article from years ago.

Haliburton and Chaney


The common person has made several people very very rich over the years.
...While our soliders have died and our families have cried.

edit on 31-8-2011 by MissPoovey because: link did not inset correctly



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 01:03 AM
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reply to post by Erongaricuaro
 


60 Billion over several years or more?

Sure - I'll admit we don't need contractors mowing the damned lawn on bases with 200+ E-5 and below with about 3 or more hours of total down-time ("training" is what it's called). It also doesn't make sense to have contractors come in and rebuild the base that is home to a huge component of the Construction Battalion after a natural disaster (I mean... really?).

That said, we place the military under a microscope and plaster every mismanaged dollar that can be found up as examples of waste in the military.

Medicare wastes 60 billion each year in fraudulent claims. Medicare fraud is the fastest growing crime in America. It takes very little to set up and you can make hundreds of thousands over your set-up overhead in a month and disappear before authorities can track you down.

It's not just military spending we need to be looking at. I'll be the first to offer up examples of waste in the military - but you have to look at the overt abuse present in the entitlement programs we have running. This fixation on the military while medicare is expected to consume 8% of GDP by 2020 is simply asinine. That's double what it represents, today.

I don't mean to sound partisan, here - but the fact of the matter is that military spending is not part of the runaway spending problem. The military only enjoys the 'large' budget it does because of the wars currently being fought (and will eventually draw to a close - though when cannot be known, exactly). The expenses are being managed.

Medicare is expected to more than double in cost while doubling its representation of GDP. That is unheard of. At 8% of GDP, Medicare will be the single largest expenditure of the U.S. government and represent over half of all government spending. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot. We cannot support that kind of lunacy.



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 04:08 AM
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I guess that money is funding corruption of MIC and banks in USA on the back of the taxpayer.



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 07:12 AM
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reply to post by Aim64C
 


Because there are other government money-wasting scams doesn't make the sole-source, open-ended, cost-plus contracting and wasteful war spending any less of an issue. It still is. My military and DoD career gives me the same ambivalence as yours.

It is not the focus of the article but you are correct about waste and abuse going on at various government outlets. I am particularly concerned with America's medical/healthcare industry. That is the most run amok system going in the American system. If it provides any peace of mind to you, with my federal retirement I am locked-in to paying (still) into US health insurance and related "entitlement" systems though I live outside the US and have little expectations of ever using those benefits, yet I pay the premiums.

Mexico is hardly a "giveaway" state with something for everyone, it is rather a Tea Party type's dream state if they were to look at it well enough, low taxes, few benefits, etc. Still, healthcare is very accessible to the average person here. Having US healthcare insurance doesn't hardly mean jack, even with good coverage I still pay more in excess than I pay outright here - and I have an expectation of better care and service here as well. If there is one area that Latin America outshines the US in every aspect it is in medical care that is accessible to the people and IS NOT a socialized system.

You are correct to point that out. US needs a healthcare system overhaul that will likely never happen.



edit on 31-8-2011 by Erongaricuaro because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 07:15 AM
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I don't know what else to say except: End these stupid wars!

...but, if we don't waste 60 billion dollars the terrorists will win



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 07:37 AM
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When they say 'fraud' - do they mean 'bribery'?




posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 08:09 AM
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I realize that I'm sorta at the end of the "enlightened" line regarding this stuff,
but recently a member posted this
www.abovetopsecret.com...
in response to a previous thread
entitled:

High-Stakes Blackmail: "Malefactors of Great Wealth"



in the post linked above the title there, is a video link to
Confessions of an Economic Hitman, (4 part video with John Perkins.) I watched it and then proceeded to look at more about him.

I'm linking to it here for those who may not have seen it.


Originally posted by Aim64C
The military only enjoys the 'large' budget it does because of the wars currently being fought (and will eventually draw to a close - though when cannot be known, exactly).

They will eventually draw to a close? Well, we should hope so. But, I'm beginning to think:
Not.

OP: s/f. Thanks for the info.



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 08:59 AM
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reply to post by Aim64C
 


Your view is a part of the problem. Everyone seeks to either discount waste/fraud as either not that big of a problem or looks to point at other parts of the government that are a greater priority to fix than those they are partial when in fact it is all a problem.

The military spending that this country engages in is a massive problem. Not only is corruption rife within the bidding process with respect to contractors, the revolving door between the military and military contractors is as bad as any other revolving door within the government, Wall Street and Treasury, FDA and HHS to big Pharma, all of them. Great deal. Do your 20 in the military and retire with full pension. Take a job with an contractor that you used to work side by side with when in the military and all you are doing is changing your clothes and come back to the same job making double the cash. It is set up to work that way and the way the military contractors are able to use various levels of security clearance to even be considered for a job makes it almost impossible for someone who was not in the military to qualify for these positions. They have built the revolving door and they were the very first of the revolving doors between the private and public sectors

The challenge with the military (much like domestic security) is that assets that are built or bought tend to be used regardless of their need/usefulness. Happens in corporations and it happens in droves in the military/DOD world. The challenges are of course two fold with this problem when it occurs with the military, the use of those assets often costs US lives and it typically degrades our diplomatic position around the world.

Ron Paul is right on a number of things, but in no area is he more right than foreign and defense policy. The military budget should be cut in half with the plan starting immediately.

We don't need some 700 active installations (that we know about) around the world when we are simultaneously spending billions on weapons that allow you to project force 10K miles away. It is absolutely illogical. We don't need troops in Europe, Korea, Japan or SE Asia out side of perhaps a couple of dozen liasions.

The US military should not be building roads and schools, half of the time to simply have them blown up again and rebuilt. When the Russians had their issues in Chechyna and sent in force, did they stick around and rebuild schools? No. They went home and let the Chechyans fix their own schools. The message? You want your schools intact then don't fool with us. Our rebuilding of war zones after the fact is a joke and has been since Vietnam.

I would guess that the waste/fraud estimates are under estimated by a lot.

What is absolutely criminal - and I mean criminal is that the firms who are ripping off the country like General Dymanics, Northrup Grumman have entire teams of tough bastards who scrutinize every line in every contract they are on the hook for and you better believe that they are getting what they pay for. You better believe that they have performance penalities both on time and quality with every supplier they manage. It is a little known secret that when bidding and winning a large government contract, the supplier puts in place a change management group that administers changes to the initial contract and hits the client with fees to make changes and in some cases ANY change, regardless of the impact. On many large contracts the revenue generated via changing the contracts is larger than the initial contract itself.

At the end, Eisenhower was right and had we taken his advice and placed a governance structure on the military contracting world with tough audit standards with auditors from outside the government with total transparency when ever possible, our military would be far smaller.



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 11:07 AM
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reply to post by Erongaricuaro
 


You know, straight up honest here? I'm actually astounded and, quite frankly, extremely happy and impressed if they've only wasted that much.



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 12:47 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


there is a problem with your statements .

Iraq is US imperialism

Chechnya was destabilised by CIA,but as usual russians whooped CIA's A*** ,like how theey whooped that american stooge leader in Georgia in 9 days when Georgia attempted genocide in South Ossetia .



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 02:42 PM
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Originally posted by USAisdevil
reply to post by dolphinfan
 


there is a problem with your statements .

Iraq is US imperialism

Chechnya was destabilised by CIA,but as usual russians whooped CIA's A*** ,like how theey whooped that american stooge leader in Georgia in 9 days when Georgia attempted genocide in South Ossetia .



Yeah but the Billions the US poured into Georgia made them a US ally.

Even if we did have to screw over Americans out of homes, jobs, healthcare....to have the money to do it.



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 03:45 PM
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reply to post by USAisdevil
 


There is no problem with my statements and we are saying the same thing. Iraq is certainly US imperialism as is Afganistan. I would take it further and suggest that all troops stationed around the world, as well as NATO (which is largely a US force) constitute imperialism, whether they want us there or not.

As far as the Russians go, regardless of what the cause of the unrest was, my point is that they just whoop ass and get out. They don't waste time and money looking to train police forces, paving roads and building schools or any of that nonsense. They're not seeking to help them establish a reasonable system of common law, make micro loans or build a banking system that attracts business and helps deter corruption. You mess with the Russians or the Chinese and the stop you from messing with them. The aftermath is your problem - you should not have messed with them to begin with. The core philosophical difference is the wisdom of the Russians and Chinese to not by into this BS of reciprical warefare, which is the most foolish military convention ever established. Someone slaps the US or an ally and we slap them back, our thought being that we can slap them long enough the business will be over. Were we to have the doctrine that is used by the Russians that should they get slapped they will beat the slapper to a bloody pulp, we would not have these endless engagements we currently have.

If all we're going to do is toss drones at problems and place containment forces place, why do we spend money on these overpowering weapons? Are the Chinese or Russians really going to attack the US? Not even the biggest Neo-Cons believe that.

The US military and defense establishment is a series of solutions looking for problems and like anything else they will find problems and hammer a solution in to justify it.

For folks who claim that were we not to engage the world would be a terrible and unstable place? It already is an unstable place and frankly this notion that for two thousand years maps were redrawn for dozens of reasons that now the collective world, notably via US cash and might are going to do what ever the hell it takes to ensure that maps are not redrawn is in conflict with the natural history of man on this planet. Perhaps maps need to be drawn all over the world. Again, not our problem as long as our legitimate interests are being served or maintained.

Maybe Kuwait should have been in Iraq's hands. Had we allowed Hussein to keep it, who knows what would have happened. You can't tell other than attempt to prove a negative. At the end of the day, as long as he was willing to sell oil by the rules of OPEC which would mean it had no net difference to us economically who cares?



posted on Aug, 31 2011 @ 10:55 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 



Your view is a part of the problem. Everyone seeks to either discount waste/fraud as either not that big of a problem or looks to point at other parts of the government that are a greater priority to fix than those they are partial when in fact it is all a problem.


Excuse me, Sir - but let me make something clear;

The military, over the past fifty years, has never constituted more than 5% of GDP.

Medicare, within a mere twenty, is projected to go from a mere 1% (ten years ago), to 8% - with costs only increasing from there.

From a purely logical standpoint, which segment of spending should take priority?


The military spending that this country engages in is a massive problem. Not only is corruption rife within the bidding process with respect to contractors, the revolving door between the military and military contractors is as bad as any other revolving door within the government, Wall Street and Treasury, FDA and HHS to big Pharma, all of them. Great deal. Do your 20 in the military and retire with full pension. Take a job with an contractor that you used to work side by side with when in the military and all you are doing is changing your clothes and come back to the same job making double the cash. It is set up to work that way and the way the military contractors are able to use various levels of security clearance to even be considered for a job makes it almost impossible for someone who was not in the military to qualify for these positions. They have built the revolving door and they were the very first of the revolving doors between the private and public sectors


There are currently some higher-level discussions going on how to resolve this. The CNRF has talked about it the couple times I've spoken with him. More specifically, it is aimed at the retirement system in the military.

However, you're wanting to penalize people for being smart. If I put in 20 years of service in the military - I'm going to be quite knowledgeable, I'd imagine. I'm generally considered to be the go-to person for "how do I do this?" - I learn, I learn fast, and I learn accurately. Point blank - no one walking in off the street is going to be able to walk in to Raytheon and submit a resume that can compete with mine - they can have a PhD in physics with a focus in radio and detection systems and still pale in comparison to my array of 2 and 4 year degrees backed by platform experience and familiarity with the military climate.

It doesn't matter who you contract to do the job - their positions are going to be filled by a lot of prior-service employees. About the best you can hope to do is place demands upon them that filter out the "along for the ride" variety (there are more of those types in the military than I like - typically the ones that have never worked a civilian job in their life with any kind of performance standard.... the factory I worked in - you went through your proving grounds and bitch/# work with around a 90% attrition rate within the first two weeks - you had to have work ethic).


We don't need some 700 active installations (that we know about) around the world when we are simultaneously spending billions on weapons that allow you to project force 10K miles away. It is absolutely illogical. We don't need troops in Europe, Korea, Japan or SE Asia out side of perhaps a couple of dozen liasions.


This is where you know just enough to be dangerous, but not enough to be competent.

You really need to have in-theater experience to really make any kind of policy recommendations on the matter. That may sound like something of a cop-out, but you really have to see, first hand, a lot of what is going on in these areas before you can really make that kind of decision.

It's not about how much we spend - it's about what we are actually doing in an area. You also have to know a thing or two about military systems and logistics. I'll be frank and say you are an invalid in that regard. A weapon system with a 10,000 mile range does not equate to 10,000 miles of force projection.

What needs to be done in regards to the military is a very long and thorough study of strategic, tactical, and logistic policy drawing on "deckplate" input from the military, as well as in-theater analysts working bi-directionally to gather raw data and feedback on policy suggestions from the committee.

It's not an issue you can attack by saying "we need to cut spending in half. Make it happen." That's not a reasonable approach to the issue, and simply isn't going to happen.



posted on Sep, 1 2011 @ 02:36 AM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


again there are problems . USA messes in other nation's affairs. Russia don't , if someone messes with Russia normally they have their a** handed to them.

USA is creating problems for Russia in eastern europe by attempting to neutralize Russia counterstrike capabilities and messing in Russia's sphere of influence . Expect troubles in your backyard with the constitutionalists ,patriots , Libertarians and Ron Paul supporters in 2012-13 because Russia is backing them in the new civil war in fascist corporate US empire.



posted on Sep, 1 2011 @ 08:53 AM
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reply to post by Aim64C
 


Thanks. More excuse ladden double speak from someone who supports the current foreign policy and military complex. Fine.

It is about time we stopped looking at it from the typical perspective of the military who is full of self interest and completely invested in the status quo. This " you're not in the military, you could'nt possibly understand" nonsense. You're right - people not in the military can't understand why we need thousands of troops in Italy and Germany, two strong economies that have a positive trade balance with the US. I guess the generals are preparing for the Russian hoards to come flowing across Eastern Europe. People not in the military can't understand why we need troops in South Korea, one of the most powerful countries in the world again with a positive trade balance with the US and a country where a large segment of the population does not want us there. Same with Japan.

Now, the military will have all kinds of "strategic reasons" why that investment is necessary. If it is so necessary why don't the Germans, Italians, South Koreans and Japanese pay for it? Why is the US essentially providing free military and intelligence services for wealthy countries? We have an alliance, NATO which half of the members don't support militarily nor financially. The US should be a bit character in NATO, not the driver of it. It is, afterall an alliance designed to ensure European security.

As far as the 700+ military bases. You say we need them. The military says we need them. Fine. Let them go through a facility by facility justification that is transparent (oh, I forgot it can't be transparent because its the military) and see if the American people think we need those facilities. Your credibility is shot when you attempt to justify the need for that many facilities, particularily with the investments in telecommunications connecting dispersed folks in real time. My friend just got off a tour where he was flying drones in Afganistan from Tennessee.

I have no doubt that there are specific jobs in the private sector that can only be filled by people with platform specific knowledge and experience. Frankly not hiring them would be wasteful and foolish. There are many generic positions that do not require it however and the bias should be to fill them outside of the military to gain different perspectives and eliminate the nepotism.

I have great respect for those who serve in the military and a number of family members and friends currently on active duty, so I thank you for your service.

The problem is not with those who serve in the military, it is with the military, DOD and political leadership that have allowed our policies to grow well beyond what is desired by the public as well as in our national interests.

Go ahead and ask 20 people if they think that American's should be on the ground in Afganistan, training people how to be police and 18 of them will say no. The American people don't want this boots on the ground, nation building bs. It is a wasteful exercise. It is a profitable exercise for the defense contractors and that is why we do it. The defense of our country should be about defense, not a jobs program. If you don't think the US military has become a jobs program, read some congressional transcripts when they discuss base closures. They are all about jobs and have little to do with security.

We do have civilian control of the military (at least we used to and are supposed to). The military industrial complex has so many politicians in their pockets that actually the military guides our policy and justifies it under the cloak of "need to know".

Lets deal with real threats, not imagined threats. Should a threat develop into something that endangers our national security, lets put it down as harshly as possible. For example if the Russians massed troops on the border of Poland, does that threaten our national security? No. It threatens Poland's security, not ours. Most of the people in this country have no idea what the hell the military is doing and that is by design. Most people don't agree with the threat assessments either.

The percentage of the budget that is spent on the military is a false number. There are billions of dollars throughout the budget that are spent as a direct result of our military policy. The departments of energy, transportation, state, agriculture are among those who spend money in support of our military policy. That number has become a left pocket/right pocket shell game. Its not what we spend on our military. Its what we spend to support our military policy and that number is huge. Its also purposefully hidden



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