Fw: TRICKY DICK: I AM NOT A CROOK!

cyeats cyeats at SPAMmindspring.com
Sat Aug 19 09:44:50 MDT 2000



----- Original Message -----
From: Slag Heap <centraltulsa at cs.comnot4junk>
Newsgroups: alt.politics.socialism
Sent: Saturday, August 19, 2000 1:08 AM
Subject: TRICKY DICK: I AM NOT A CROOK!


> TRICKY DICK: I AM NOT A CROOK!
>
> CEO Cheney: "Pass GO! Collect $20,000,000.00!"
>
> "Bush-Cheney is the arms industry's dream team. Bush tried to give
>
> Lockheed Martin a contract to run the Texas welfare system. Lockheed
>
> Martin VP Bruce Jackson, a finance chair of the Bush for President
>
> campaign, was heard to brag at a conference last year that he would be
>
> in a position to 'write the Republican platform' on defense. Under
>
> Cheney, Halliburton went from 73rd to 18th on the Pentagon's top
>
> contractors list.  Cheney's wife, Lynne, serves on Lockheed Martin's
>
> board, a service for which she receives $120,000 in compensation."
>
>
>
> --WILLIAM HARTUNG, Senior research fellow at the
>
> World Policy Institute and author of the recent report
>
> "Lockheed Martin and the GOP: Profiteering and Pork
>
> Barrel Politics with a Purpose," hartung at newschool.edu,
>
> <A HREF="http://www.worldpolicy.org/projects/arms/">
>
> http://www.worldpolicy.org/projects/arms/</A>
>
> ----------
>
> Cheney's Multi-Million Dollar Revolving Door
>
>
>
> As Bush Sr.'s secretary of defense, Dick Cheney steered
>
> millions of dollars in government business to a private
>
> military contractor -- whose parent company just happened
>
> to give him a high-paying job after he left the government.
>
>
>
> --by Robert Bryce
>
> August 2, 2000
>
>
>
> Ever since George W. Bush named him as a running
>
> mate, Dick Cheney has been all smiles. And why not?
>
> Cheney has led a charmed life. His political career
>
> included stints in the White House, Congress and the
>
> Defense Department. Then he went into the private
>
> sector and got rich.
>
>
>
> But just how Cheney got rich deserves some scrutiny. As
>
> secretary of defense, Cheney oversaw one of the largest
>
> privatization efforts in the history of the Pentagon,
>
> steering millions of military dollars to civilian contractors.
>
> Two and a half years after Cheney left his federal job, he
>
> began cashing in on the very contracts that he helped
>
> initiate.
>
>
>
> In 1992, the Pentagon, then under Cheney's direction,
>
> paid Texas-based Brown & Root Services $3.9 million to
>
> produce a classified report detailing how private
>
> companies -- like itself -- could help provide logistics for
>
> American troops in potential war zones around the world.
>
> BRS specializes in such work; from 1962 to 1972, for
>
> instance, the company worked in the former South
>
> Vietnam building roads, landing strips, harbors, and
>
> military bases. Later in 1992, the Pentagon gave the
>
> company an additional $5 million to update its report.
>
> That same year, BRS won a massive, five-year logistics
>
> contract from the US Army Corps of Engineers to work
>
> alongside American GIs in places like Zaire, Haiti,
>
> Somalia, Kosovo, the Balkans, and Saudi Arabia.
>
>
>
> After Bill Clinton's election cost Cheney his government job, he
>
> wound up in 1995 as CEO of Halliburton Company, the
>
> Dallas-based oil services giant -- which just happens to own
>
> Brown & Root Services. Since then, Cheney has collected more
>
> than $10 million in salary and stock payments from the
>
> company. In addition, he is currently the company's
>
> largest individual shareholder, holding stock and options
>
> worth another $40 million. Those holdings have
>
> undoubtedly been made more valuable by the ever-more
>
> lucrative contracts BRS continues to score with the Pentagon.
>
>
>
> Between 1992 and 1999, the Pentagon paid BRS more
>
> than $1.2 billion for its work in trouble spots around the
>
> globe. In May of 1999, the US Army Corps of Engineers
>
> re-enlisted the company's help in the Balkans, giving it a
>
> new five-year contract worth $731 million.
>
>
>
> To critics, this all adds up to classic revolving-door
>
> politics: Cheney's work for Halliburton, they say, has
>
> allowed him to improperly profit off of actions he took
>
> and contacts he made while in government.
>
>
>
> "Over the years, we've tried to slow the revolving door to
>
> make sure decision makers don't benefit from decisions
>
> they make while they are in office," said Tom Smith, the
>
> Texas state director of Public Citizen, a non-profit
>
> consumer group. "You have to question whose interests
>
> Cheney is looking after, and whether privatization has
>
> really benefited the Department of Defense, or the
>
> defense contractors like Brown & Root."
>
>
>
> Although the US military has long relied on contractors
>
> for various services, the issue for some observers is the
>
> possibility that Cheney used his contacts within
>
> government to enrich himself. "We are talking about
>
> nepotism of the highest order and profiteering at the
>
> expense of the US taxpayers," says Pratap Chatterjee, a
>
> radio journalist who has followed Halliburton for several years.
>
>
>
> Chatterjee points out that BRS gets a one percent profit
>
> guarantee on their logistics contracts and that in Somalia,
>
> the company was given another eight percentage points
>
> for meeting various incentive clauses in their contract.
>
> "Compare that with average corporate profit percentages,
>
> which are about three percent," he said.
>
>
>
> Moreover, while there are advantages to using private
>
> companies to do soldiers' work, BRS has run into
>
> significant criticism for the way it has carried out some of
>
> its military missions.
>
>
>
> The company has drawn praise for allowing more American
>
> soldiers to carry M-16's instead of spatulas. "It doesn't take a
>
> soldier to do what Brown & Root does for the Army," explains Jan
>
> Finegan, a spokesperson for the Army Materiel Command, who
>
> points out that the active-duty force of the US military has
>
> declined by about 25 percent over the past decade. Hiring a
>
> private contractor to take out the garbage, do the laundry and take
>
> care of the dining halls "frees soldiers up to do what they are
>
> trained to do," she said.
>
>
>
> BRS also saves money by hiring local workers whenever
>
> possible. But that doesn't always turn out happily. In
>
> 1994, at the end of its engagement in Somalia, where
>
> American troops had attempted to quell endemic civil
>
> strife, BRS dismissed the Somali workers it had hired.
>
> The disenchanted workers then staged a protest at the
>
> United Nations compound in Mogadishu, until they were
>
> scattered by UN troops armed with batons and tear gas.
>
> Three people were reportedly injured in the melee.
>
>
>
> In 1996, in Hungary, where BRS had set up shop to
>
> support American troops stationed in the former
>
> Yugoslavia, the company ran into more controversy.
>
> Shortly after American forces moved in, Hungarian
>
> officials ruled that BRS was subject to the country's
>
> value-added tax, and that company employees were
>
> subject to Hungarian income tax, just like any other
>
> private corporation. The Pentagon, however, insisted that
>
> the company was part of the American military and
>
> therefore exempt from the tax. Ultimately, BRS did pay
>
> the Hungarian government $18 million in taxes -- for
>
> which it was reimbursed by the US government. The
>
> company was also accused of sexual harassment by
>
> several female workers who claimed that BRS employees
>
> had fondled and propositioned them.
>
>
>
> Nonetheless, BRS, which has 20,000 employees
>
> worldwide, continues to pull in major government deals.
>
> The company recently won a $100 million contract from
>
> the US State Department to upgrade security at its
>
> embassies. It also holds a long-term contract with the
>
> British military to operate the Devonport Royal Naval
>
> Dockyard, the UK's sole refitting and refueling location
>
> for nuclear powered submarines.
>
>
>
> Nine years ago, Dick Cheney was overseeing the
>
> military's performance in the Gulf War. Since then, he
>
> has made millions running a business that provides
>
> services to that same military. That business, incidentally,
>
> has contributed a quarter-million dollars to the Republican
>
> cause so far this election cycle. And now, Cheney and
>
> Bush are the odds-on favorites to take the White House.
>
>
>
> Is this politics as usual? Or is it business as usual? In
>
> Cheney's case, it's difficult to tell the difference.
>
>
>
> [article was accessed at:
>
> <A HREF="http://mojones.com/news_wire/cheney.html">
>
> "http://mojones.com/news_wire/cheney.html"]</A>
>
> ----------
>
> "Whenever I took that helicopter ride from Andrews Air Force Base to
>
> the Pentagon, we always flew over Arlington National Cemetery, and I
>
> always thought to myself, 'Boy, I'm glad I got those five deferments,
>
> or one of those gravestones might have been mine.'"
>
>
>
> --Poignant words from Cheney
>
> ----------
>






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