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Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014

Cronies All

Posted Tuesday, September 29, 2009, at 8:42 AM

Furtherance of militaristic policies and resistance to oversight are at least partially due to the crossover of high-ranking persons between civilian, military and bureaucratic jobs--cronyism. The list includes former Secretary of State George P. Schultz, a past president and director of the Betchel Corporation that received contracts for rebuilding Iraq after the 2003 invasion. Former Secretary of Defense, the late Casper Weinberger, was a vice president, director and general counsel for Betchel.

Along with seven other retired generals, former Army chief of staff General Carl Vuono founded Defense Department contractor MPRI in 1987. One of his partners boasted, "We have got more generals here per square foot than in the Pentagon."

Former Air Force chief of staff, General Ron Fogelman had a consulting firm with defense industry clients including Boeing, FMC, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and RSL Electronics. Air Force General John Handy, head of U.S. Transportation Command, retired and became a director of American Roll-On Roll-Off Carrier and American Auto Logistics.

Richard Perle, chair of the Bush administration's Defense Policy Board, is currently managing partner of Trireme, L.P., a company in which he has tried to get Saudi Arabian businessmen to invest millions of dollars. The Center for Public Integrity has reported that at least nine former members of the 30-person civilian Defense Policy Board were executives, lobbyists or board members of companies doing business with the Pentagon that profited from the advice to invade Iraq.

Paul Wolfowitz was Deputy Secretary of Defense and a chief advocate of the 2003 invasion. He went on to become president of the World Bank Group in 2005 but was forced out of that office after two years. In 2008, he was working on issues of international economic development at the American Enterprise Institute and then found his way back into the Bush administration as chair of an advisory panel on arms control and disarmament at the State Department.

But the most flagrant and disturbing example of crossover cronyism was the relationship between former vice president Dick Cheney and Halliburton. When Cheney was Secretary of Defense in 1991 he gave the Halliburton Company contracts to rebuild facilities in Kuwait and Iraq; he was chairman and chief executive officer of Halliburton from 1995 to 2000; he left for the vice presidency in 2000 with a $34 million severance package of stock options and deferred salary that as of 2004 was still being paid. In the 2000s, Halliburton and its subsidiary, KBR, Inc., were given contracts to build holding cells, construct and run military bases, plan for oil well firefighting, do Hurricane Katrina cleanup work and build internment camps, among others. Some contracts were either awarded without bids or were open ended.

The savings if all persons and transactions regarding the defense of our country existed in the clear light of day are incalculable--Jim Frost.


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with all the things going on you would think when the price of crude oil would drop like it did dickinson country would think of the people of its county. all they think of is making money. only about 15 miles from here gas is .15 cents cheaper.what about the little person trying to make a living.We try very hard but it does not help when gas prices are out of control

-- Posted by fishbone52 on Tue, Aug 24, 2010, at 6:51 PM


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Berkley Bedell--Retirement from the U.S. Congress in 1987, neither dulled my interest in the well-being of the people of the United States nor my worries about our governance. I began work in 2006 on a book outlining the country's problems and offering solutions. Jim Frost--I share Berkley's concerns and in 2007 began the job of researching, editing and assisting with writing his book. By early 2009, after finally weathering George W. Bush and recognizing how much the past eight wasted years have set the world back, our focus changed. We had seen no meaningful progress in the efforts to stem the threat of nuclear weapons, reverse global warming, preserve natural resources, reduce military spending, fight disease and hunger, improve health care, deal with the increasing gulf between rich people and poor people, establish a workable economic system, or clean up the political process. For us, these three things became self-evident: First, the problems are global; the U.S. cannot by itself control or solve them. Second, the perfect storm of worldwide catastrophe is already upon us; what must be said cannot wait. Third, in seeking solutions, the problems must be put before as many people as possible as quickly as possible. This blog is the result. There will be much more. We invite you to participate.
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