OT No-bid Halliburton contracts

Because there was a discussion of this a few weeks ago, I thought this article might be of interest. From CBS news:
(begin quote)
================================================================= New Fuel to Halliburton Fraud Fire CBS News
Wednesday 17 August 2004 When it comes to logistical help for U.S. troops in Iraq, Halliburton is the biggest game in town. Under a wartime contract that's $7 billion and growing, it's serving the needs of 200,000 troops. But the Houston-based conglomerate once headed by Vice President Dick Cheney is neck-deep in allegations of waste and fraud involving millions of taxpayer dollars, reports CBS News Correspondent Sharyl Attkisson. The U.S. Army is threatening to partially withhold payments to Halliburton for the logistical support the company provides for troops in Iraq. The reason: allegations of millions of dollars in over-charges for food, shelter and services. "There was no regard for spending limits," says former employee Marie DeYoung. Some of the most compelling accusations come from people like DeYoung, who worked for Halliburton subsidiary KBR. She recently told Congress that while troops rough it in tents, hundreds of preferred Halliburton KBR employees reside in five-star hotels like the Kempinski in Kuwait with fruit baskets and pressed laundry delivered daily. "It costs $110 to house one KBR employee per day at the Kempinski, while it costs the Army $1.39 per day to bunk a soldier in a leased tent," DeYoung said. "The military requested that Halliburton move into tents, but Halliburton refused." Documents obtained by CBS News show an auditor repeatedly flagged improper fees for soldiers' laundry. At one site, taxpayers reportedly paid $100 for each 15-pound load of wash -- $1 million a month in overcharges. Halliburton insists it doesn't waste money, it saves it. But overcharging is the subject of one federal investigation and there are separate probes for alleged bribery and kickbacks, also for Halliburton's operations in Iran -- a terror-sponsoring nation. Nobody from Halliburton agreed to an interview, but officials have said the criticisms are politically motivated in an election year. Halliburton also "questions the factual nature" of many assertions from the ex-employees, but is looking into them "because we take all allegations seriously." With the tab for the war in Iraq now topping $150 billion, all the investigations could help determine whether some Halliburton employees paid by taxpayers to make life better for soldiers are, instead, putting themselves first. ========================================================================
Sounds familiar. The guys at the back are living large, the guys at the point are getting screwed.
Jim
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I generally don't like Halliburton, however, I have lived on military bases overseas. There are contracts and there are contracts. The ones that were 'given' to TCT - Transport Company of Texas - a.k.a. LBJ and later Daughter replacement were cost plus. They were paid 100% and then made more on top of that. The idea was we the customers on island lived without most of everything. Any help and there were some nice bene's made our lives better. No TV, AFRS radio (missing the T?). When the contract moved from NAVY to ARMY, the Army (one of them)(we have several - ask them) selected a different vendor and it was fixed contract. The Navy was there since taking the island in WW II. Our lives went down hill. Rec was almost shut down.
Now lets look at the '4 star' - been to Asia - Arab 4 star isn't the Ritz! European 4 star isn't the US 4 star!!! Ok - lets say it is a 3 star U.S. and clothes were done and food provided (like hotels do) - the Army has the same - but under a secure boarder and they carry the GUNS, have tanks, and Bradleys..... The Halliburton people don't have a tent city, and don't have the protection.
Contracts that large are almost impossible to know what is going on everywhere - look at Congress itself. I suspect there are those making money on all sides and every vendor is making a buck.
And the contract - they didn't get $7B - that is the upper limit they can charge.
How about that big company that got the construction and building ... ?
Martin
jim rozen wrote:

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Martin Eastburn, Barbara Eastburn
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Halliburton
shelter
daily.
DeYoung
improper
for
overcharging
for
Iran -- a

also
but
to
Just out of curiousity, since you seem to be very concerned about any misuse of taxpayer money with Haliburton, I'd like to hear your perspective on Kerry-Kennedy's little pet project in Boston called "The Big Dig".
Steve.
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First off it seemed like a shame to me that the soldiers in the field were getting short shrift at the expense of a megacorp. That was one of the reasons I pointed out the story. My neighbor is feeding a large number of troops who deploy out into that area and the stories that come back about condions are not that good, and they are getting substandard supplies it seems to me.
The big dig? You need to understand that I lived in Somerville for three years, and contended with the traffic situation in that area regularly. So I'm not suprised that it will take a large project to straighten that region out. I will also bet a coke that by the time they're done, it will be outdated and substandard right away.
The same issue comes up for the bridges across the hudson river regularly. When they finally straighten that one out, it will make the big dig look like tinkertoys in a kid's sandbox. And it will be substandard and outdated upon completion likewise.
Just because some contractor is fleecing the great state of MA on one contract does not make it OK in my book for Haliburton and KBR to bend the troops over and stuff them hard, just cause they're buddies with dubya.
Jim
Jim
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SteveF says...

misuse
A large project?!! Give the Europeans $15 Billion and you get a 31 mile long tunnel connecting two countries under the English Channel. Give it to the Democrats controlling Boston and you get less than 8 miles of tunnel connecting one part of Boston to another. But that's not the real point which is this. When the "megacorp" gets an audit showing an overspending of a couple of million dollars it is front page news because they can link Halliburton to Cheney. Show me ONE recent, nationally televised article about how the Big Dig was 10 BILLION over the initial projected cost and that Kerry was a player in the federal bailout?
Not sure where your neighbor works (clearly not Iraq) or where the CBS reporter got his "facts" but I know some folks who just came back from serving in Iraq with the North Carolina National Guard - 30th Heavy Separate Brigade. The 30th HSB is staying in air conditioned barracks that look like college dorms, eating food which they said is very good and plenty of it in a nice mess hall, and cleaning their own clothes in some washers and dryers in a laundry just like on any other military post. They said they are not aware of any units staying in tents. You can even see the pictures on their web site. When I was a lieutenant in the 2nd Armored Cav sometimes I slept in the snow and sometimes I slept on a 4' x 2' shelf under the radios in my armored personnel carrier. Proper decorum prohibits me from saying what I would tell someone who suggested to me that, as a civilian contractor in a combat zone, I should sleep in a tent in the desert.
The only difference between CBS "News" (and the rest of the liberal TV and print media) and Michael Moore is that Moore has the honesty and integrity to admit that the sole purpose of his grossly biased efforts is to influence the upcoming election.
Steve.
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Yeah, but one of them is france. :(

He feeds troops at camp smith, ny. A fair number of folks going overseas pass through there.
Jim
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