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BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupation

Bobert 28 Jun 04 - 06:30 PM
GUEST,Frankham 28 Jun 04 - 04:23 PM
GUEST 28 Jun 04 - 01:38 PM
GUEST,Bill 17 Dec 03 - 09:36 AM
Bobert 17 Dec 03 - 09:14 AM
GUEST,Teribus 17 Dec 03 - 04:26 AM
Bobert 16 Dec 03 - 07:06 PM
GUEST,Frank 16 Dec 03 - 04:28 PM
Don Firth 16 Dec 03 - 03:57 PM
Peace 16 Dec 03 - 10:44 AM
GUEST,Teribus 16 Dec 03 - 02:25 AM
GUEST,pdc 16 Dec 03 - 01:20 AM
Peace 16 Dec 03 - 12:05 AM
Bobert 14 Dec 03 - 12:02 AM
GUEST,pdc 13 Dec 03 - 11:12 PM
Bobert 13 Dec 03 - 08:05 PM
Amos 13 Dec 03 - 07:40 PM
Gareth 13 Dec 03 - 07:16 PM
Bobert 13 Dec 03 - 06:58 PM
Don Firth 13 Dec 03 - 02:58 PM
Gareth 13 Dec 03 - 02:33 PM
Don Firth 13 Dec 03 - 01:55 PM
Gareth 13 Dec 03 - 07:14 AM
Bobert 12 Dec 03 - 10:25 PM
Don Firth 12 Dec 03 - 08:13 PM
kendall 12 Dec 03 - 07:55 PM
kendall 12 Dec 03 - 07:51 PM
Peace 12 Dec 03 - 07:31 PM
Gareth 12 Dec 03 - 07:14 PM
Bobert 12 Dec 03 - 06:34 PM
Little Hawk 12 Dec 03 - 05:03 PM
Don Firth 12 Dec 03 - 02:56 PM
Don Firth 12 Dec 03 - 02:51 PM
GUEST,Teribus 12 Dec 03 - 01:52 AM
GUEST,Teribus 12 Dec 03 - 01:04 AM
Little Hawk 11 Dec 03 - 11:50 PM
Don Firth 11 Dec 03 - 11:04 PM
Bobert 11 Dec 03 - 07:29 PM
Amos 11 Dec 03 - 07:14 PM
Don Firth 11 Dec 03 - 06:50 PM
GUEST,pdc 11 Dec 03 - 06:44 PM
Don Firth 11 Dec 03 - 12:39 PM
GUEST,Teribus 11 Dec 03 - 12:10 AM
Bobert 10 Dec 03 - 11:56 PM
Amos 10 Dec 03 - 11:21 PM
Bobert 10 Dec 03 - 10:37 PM
Metchosin 10 Dec 03 - 10:28 PM
Don Firth 10 Dec 03 - 10:19 PM
GUEST,Teribus 10 Dec 03 - 08:13 PM
Little Hawk 10 Dec 03 - 03:53 PM
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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupation
From: Bobert
Date: 28 Jun 04 - 06:30 PM

Ah, no, Teribus, we aren't getting ready to have an election "nexr year", or this one for that matter. We are getting ready to have a sham. The votes are to be counted electronicly with no paper trail by Diebold, whoes CEO has promised to return Bush to the White House.

Meanwhile, America is so gerimandered that 90% of the contests are predetermined...

Now if you call that democracy, you missed a few finer points of the elements needed to have a successful democracy. Throw in Tom Jefferson's warning that democracy was dependent on an informed electorate and given the manipulation of *inform*ation and I'd argue that, at least in the US, democracy is broke and it wouldn't appear that the rulers have any incentive to fix it...

Now, as fir yer "wina few, lose a few" attitude toward establishment of democracgies you argue that the British expiriement in thde 20's failed because they didn't have the right Ieaqis involved. What makes you think that the US has done any better?

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupation
From: GUEST,Frankham
Date: 28 Jun 04 - 04:23 PM

The only positive that I can think of is that it enables the American public to consider what gains they have from this war.
It is becoming increasingly clear that there are really none.

If it brings into question whether democracy can be institued in a foreign land by military occupation, then maybe this is something.

The problem basically as I see it is this. The Insurgents are increasingly the Iraqi people. The common unifying "enemy" are American soldiers. Bremmer's dictates will not be followed. To enforce a government (nation building) by another country is a prescription for dictatorship. Alawi is already being called by some a "strong man". (Last use of the term was for Noriega who the US initially supported).

If this picture is made clear to Americans, then that is a positive.

Frank


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupation
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Jun 04 - 01:38 PM

If there wezre not teroorists, in other words resistance, America will alreday be in Syria putting an useful democracy ghost...In any war there is a aggressive state and an agressed state...


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Bill
Date: 17 Dec 03 - 09:36 AM

teribus, some GUEST is posting under your name and rambling on and on interminably to almost no purpose at all. I think you ought to do something about it. At least log in and issue an official denial. People are going to think you've totally lost it.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 17 Dec 03 - 09:14 AM

Actually, T-Bird, I was a "war profiteer" want-to-be. I didn't take any draws while I was working with Tradetech since I still owned my rental car business and could draw off of it to live. Yeah, I was hoping to get a big paycheck because we closed out our nuts and bolts procurments and invested it in a project that sunk (pun intended): the Sequoia! Oh, what a mistake! The idea was for the Kuwaitis to purchase the presidential boat from the Sequoia Foundation and present it to Bush the Elder as a way of sayin' thank you. We had contacts in the White House and Daddy Bush was receptive. We had variouys minister in Kuwait who were strong-arming various folks over there and everything looked to be in place... BTW, you can blow $2M in a heartbeat in Kuwait with 2 and 3 guys over there workin' a deal. One thing fir sure is that you have to apply lots of grease to Kuwatis ($$$) to get their attention. We had days where we'd be spendin' $20,000 to keep things going... Well, to make a long story short and less painful... The kuwaitis were just blowing smoke and after 3 months of winin' & dinin' & greasin' 'em this venture ran out of money an' I'm sure that there's a bunch of Kuwaits to this very day are still laughin' about it...

My poor brother even used his house as collateral for a loan toward the end and ended up having to sell the house to pay off the loan.

So, I'll admit to once trying to profit indirectly from the war but ended up with working fir a year for nuthin'... And the lessons learned, ahhhh, well, lots... But the one that relates to this discussion is that the bigger the company the more grease avilable to weasel one's company into the deal... i.e. Halliburton...


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 17 Dec 03 - 04:26 AM

Good heavens Bobert - Were you really a war profiteer!!!

"I disagree with you, Teribus, that Halliburton is the only company that can put out oil fires or fix pipe lines. There are many..."

I agree with you Bobert there are many (but not that many) companies who can put out oil fires or fix pipelines - but how many of those at the time had an existing contract with the US Government?

Don,

Thanks for that post and link very interesting, sort of falls into step perfectly with the second point in my post that you didn't quote - "2. That management, or oversight of contracts by the military is poor."

As to overspending, unaccounted for funding - not in the least bit surprised - and that is not restricted to the US armed forces. We have had some absolute howlers in the UK (RN Diving Ship HMS Challenger and Nimrod AEW aircraft being two of the most entertaining examples) "illegally incomplete, inept, chaotic", the illegally incomplete can fall into the category of someone being pressured by weight of work into signing off a pile of returns attesting to their accuracy without actually checking them. I would doubt it that it is deliberate theft. But what you said, backed up by the article on Spinney is perfectly true. What is equally true is that it is a problem that on the face of it seems very easy to rectify but which in practice is extremely complex.

In procurement for the armed forces of any country there are four distinct groups involved, those who identify the need for whatever is required, those paying for it, those who will use it and those who will maintain it. As I have better acquainted with this from a UK perspective I will try to demonstrate how the wheels tend to come of the cart.

Identifying the Requirement:
Usually done by a Joint Service Committee, the army needs a new tank, Navy a new Aircraft Carrier, RAF a new aircraft. This committee then appoints a group to define what this piece of kit has to do and where, then draw up a specification.

Those Paying:
Take this specification and go out to tender for provision of what ever is needed - they obviously want to pay as little as possible so betwen the committee above and this crowd some cheese-paring. Contract is awarded and prototype is built and trialed (not talking Aircraft Carriers here)

In the meantime the committee is asked if such and such a piece of new kit can do something outwith what was originally expected of it. The request is evaluated and an alteration is made to the specification.

Those who will use it:
Take part in trials, they come up with short-comings, specification gets changed again

Those who maintain it:
What is an essential feature for those using the kit may impose nightmares for those who have to maintain it (English Electric Lightning interceptor was a classic example of this design conflift). As they have to be maintained some form of compromise is reached and the specification is changed again.

All those changes cost an immense amount of money. A topical example in the UK at the moment is the new carrier for the RN originally 66,000 tons, size reduced to 40,000 tons to save money - that change in design cost a fortune and not one plate of steel has been cut yet. They are inherently inefficient because they a responding to a situation that is constantly changing - in other words a contractors dream.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 07:06 PM

Frank and Don got here before me, T, but I would like to add just a little bit of personal experience here... Let's rewind back to Bush I's war with Iraq.

I was workin' for my brother's firm, TradeTech, which was a procurment company. We were sellin' lots of different kind of stuff to the Kuwaiti's. Then I get this tender for "dymethal cloride" (sp) which is used in assistin' folks in finding gas leaks. Problem is, that back then there was just one company in either Denmark (or Belgium?) that was producing it and every procurment company in the world ended up there that morning... Including, I'm sure Halliburton. The point is this. Halliburton doesn't produce anything like dymethyl cloride. It's basicly a construction company that does pipe fitting and other construction related stuff. Texas must have a 1000 such companies. Seems back when I was writing proposals, I spent a lot of time with Texas firms when it came to anything related to pipes, valves, etc. But there were lots of big firms doing this stuff....

I disagree with you, Tetibus, that Halliburton is the only company that can put out oil fires or fix pipe lines. There are many... If you like, and you agree to admit you're wrong on this one, I'll dig out my old files and provide you with names of a few that we represented...

BTW, Tradeteck's gross profits in the year after the Persain Gulf War, were in the $2M range and that was achieved from the labors of just 5 of us. Three here and 2 in Kuwait...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Frank
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 04:28 PM

"Bobert are you, or are you not about to have an election in the United States of America next year? In that election who is entitled to vote? Who is entitled to stand?"

Teribus this is a good question since we didn't really have an election in 2000. The Renquist Supreme Court decided it for us.

And....the Marshall Plan is the Bush Plan in reverse. Maybe Bush will privatize foreign aid and bring Arthur Andersen as an accountant. :)
(I hope I'm kidding.)

And are we to understand that Halliburton is crying poor? How much does Cheney make now? Is he on the payroll? And what kind of great things are they doing in Iraq right now?

The good thing about this occupatio is that maybe the sleeping Americans will wake up and find out how they've been screwed by this administration.

Frank


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 03:57 PM

". . . the Pentagon and the military in general have been pleased with the services provided."

Well, that's not really all that surprising, Teribus, when you consider that attempts to audit Pentagon spending within recent years have failed because of illegally incomplete and/or incredibly inept (or both) accounting practices within the Pentagon. For the past several of years, the Pentagon has been held exempt from its legally required annual financial report to Congress because of the hopelessly chaotic state of its financial record-keeping.

It seems that they can't account for one trillion, one hundred billion dollars worth of taxpayers' money and what it may or may not have been spent for. That's trillion, with a "T." Since Americans and Brits use somewhat different terms for these amounts, to avoid confusion, here is the figure written out numerically:

$1,100,000,000,000

And this does not include the trillions of dollars of taxpayers' money that they can account for.

Once again, Teribus, educate yourself.

I can't help but think of what all else that kind of money could buy . . . such as funding top-quality education, establishing universal health care, funding research into renewable energy sources, environmental programs, programs to alleviate poverty and homelessness, funding for the arts . . . all of those things that the politicians say we can't afford.

The reason the richest nation in the world can't afford the basic requirements of a civilized country is that all the money that could fund the programs that other, smaller, less wealthy countries do is winding up in individuals' bank accounts in Switzerland and the Cayman Islands. Individuals like Dick Cheney, Kenneth Lay, et al.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 10:44 AM

Hey, pdc,

What's happ'nin? You seemed somewhat down in your post. Just the blues? Remember, the blues ain't nothin' but a good wo/man feelin' bad! Hope things are OK.

Brucie


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 02:25 AM

Hi Don,

Thanks for the link which seems to be fairly clear that:

1. Brown & Root, latterly Halliburton and their subsidiary KBR have a long track record of doing work for the US Armed Forces through Pentagon contracts, dating back to 1940. Taking those 63 years of association, the Pentagon and the military in general have been pleased with the services provided.

2. That management, or oversight of contracts by the military is poor.

I daresay your comparison of fuel prices locally did factor in transportation costs. But I would venture to suggest that the situation is somewhat different - delivering fuel locally within the United States of America, and delivering fuel in a war zone (I think the supplier lost something like 7 trucks, one driver killed, others injured).

Reports on this over hear include comments by GAO officials confirming that they did not believe that KBR had profitted unduly from the deal, or that the deal had been brokered with the intention of making increased profit. They also reported that this particular contract was short term (less than 3 months) which was why the price quoted for fuel from Turkey could not be applied, the $1.18 price being for a minimum 12 month supply contract.

Bobert, go back and read what I said with regard to Halliburton - the contract under discussion at that time was the contract to extinguish oil-field fires and to repair war damage to Iraqi oil installations - i.e. the first contract awarded. Do not try and transfer what I specifically said about that to cover anything else.

As to having to consult web sites regarding contracts Bobert. It is a matter of record and fact that the current Frame Agreement Contract that Halliburton holds with the Pentagon was won against competitive tender. Therefore if any subsequent work that fell within the remit of that Frame Agreement came up and it was not given to Halliburton, then Halliburton would be in a position to sue the Pentagon for breach of contract.

Just quoting the figures does not portray the full picture. On that I will give you an example. This was a contract to be awarded by an integrated management organisation. On what was to be installed the manufacturer was decided by product characteristics, the manufacturer offered a supply and install proposal, which on examination contained some 57 qualifications, 39 of which had identifiable potential schedule impact that they could not quantify and 27 of which had identifiable commercial impact that they would not quantify. From our side of that integrated management organisation we stated that to award the installation contract under such circumstances would be like presenting this supplier with a blank cheque. That suppliers installation cost was rationalised at 240 million. We pressed for and got the job put out to competitive tender, the supplier came back with an installation cost of 150 million, the contract was awarded to another contractor whose price was 75 million.

When the job was finally finished, total installation cost came in at 190 million. Sounds like someone took a real bath in doing the work going by the figures. Similarly looking at the figures, it looks as though the evaluation team who awarded the contract got things badly wrong. That is what the figures suggest, but what those figures cannot do is provide reasons for the escalation in contract price.

The reasons in this particular instance related to Company (Integrated Management Organisation) delays and resultant changes, that caused the installation contractor to effectively install the items twice, forced him to change his installation spread and methodology (hence he had to re-engineer the job) and forced an installation window at a time of the year when weather would cause delay compared to the time of year for installation stipulated at time of contract award - 98% of the escalation in price was driven by the customer, purely by circumstance, 1.6% of the escalation was caused by product supplier induced changes, 0.4% was generated by the installation contractor. The installation contractor did an absolutely superb job - installation contractor was Brown & Root Energy Services (Halliburton)

From experience over this side of the pond, the Government and particularly the military, are notorious for setting specifications for work, awarding contracts for the work - then introducing changes - its the changes that escalate the costs, and they have nothing whatsoever to do with the contractor.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 01:20 AM

My prediction, now that Saddam Hussein has been caught, is not a happy one. Now that the Iraqi people need not fear his return, I believe there will be an increase in tribalism, with ancient enemies (with modern weapons) fighting for power, or land, or just to settle old blood feuds -- in other words, I predict a descent into a bloodbath that the US can't handle. When the US pulls out, it will get worse. Yugoslavia writ large. The only hope I can see for preventing that is if the US puts in another strongman, and we all know how that turned out the last time they did so.

Sorry for the bleak outlook, but it's late, I'm tired, and I have very little faith in the sanity of the human race at this moment.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 12:05 AM

The good thing about the Iraq occupation is that it will lead to the capture of Saddam Hussein, alive.

(What, that happened already? Nah, no one will check the date of this post.)

Anyway, that's MY prediction.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 14 Dec 03 - 12:02 AM

Yep, that is the new Bush doctrine.... If ya got caught and they got pics, then just cop tp it.... Sad commentary.......

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 11:12 PM

What a wonderful idea! From now on, anyone caught thieving, robbing, stealing, or committing any other kind of larceny in the US will simply give the money back, and that will be the end of it. No jail, no accountability, no penalties -- just return the money. Mm-hmm, a new high in public politics has just been reached.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 08:05 PM

Yo, Gareth...

The only one "caught out" here is Dick Cheney's Halliburton. No me...

If you'll recall, I protested loudly and often about Halliburton being awarded contratcs as a *single bidder* and woarned that this smacked of corruption... But Teribus and other (perhaps you, I don't remember) came to Halliburton'sand Cheneny's defense.

"Well, Halliburton is the only company that can do these jobs!" was what we heard over and over.

Well, danged, Gareth, it was construction and oil line stuff. There are lots of folks doing that that ain't Halliburton...

Then I pointed out that Dick Cheney was still being compensated to the tune of $1.4M a year by Halliburton. But Teribus says some thing to the effect that "Hey, this is deferred income and doesn't matter..." 'er something very close to that... Heck, he'll be by later to say that I'm on drugs 'cause I miseed a word or two... But, bottom line, Cheney is gettin' $1.4M a year from Halliburton and Hallibutron got the contract *without* having any competition to have to bid against...

Fast forward to last week:

Auditors within the *Defense Department*, not the White House, not the G.A.O. but the *Defense Department* discovered the overcharges for fuel deliveries to the tune of at least $61M, which ain't chump change.....

Now fast forward to the *White House* being *notified* by the Defense Department of the over charges and you have Bush spin folks burning the midnight oil trying to figure out how to respond, especially given the fact that the initial contract sniffs heavily of favoritism and cronyism. Well, when at dawn, after a night's full of PR spinfolk spinning various mythological explanations so as to not reopen the original protest of Halliburton getting the contract without having to compete... And...

...ahhhh, what they came up with was a short statement that Bush would be given to deliver:

"Well, if anyone has over charged us they'll have to pay it back..."

Yeah, sometimes even the Bush folks just find the, ahhhh, truth to be the best way out and this was one of those occasions...

Why, because the Defense Department had Halliburton "dead to rights" and there was abosolutely *NO* wiggle room...

I do give credit to the Bush folks on this one in recognizing that a bigger and bettter lie isn't always the best way out of a jam...

Now, Gareth, if you can find any illogic in this explanation of events then I mean it. Send me some of what you are smokin'...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Amos
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 07:40 PM

Bush is currently clawing for the high ground and distancing himself from th wrong-doing discovered. This implies he was not conscious of any such arrangement when it was originally committed.

However it is unlikely that he was as unaware as he can claim. The ability to build deniability into things is covered in the second week of Lowlife 101, according to what I have seen.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 07:16 PM

Bobert you have been caught out - Don't duck and weave.

You can't have it both ways 0- Either Cheney et al thru Bush Jnr have set up Haliburton to rip the US of A taxpayer off legally through a contract enforcable at Law,

or

They have been called to account, by the organs of the US of A government, and will have to refund the money.

Pray, which is correct?

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 06:58 PM

And, Part B...?

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 02:58 PM

And. . . ?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 02:33 PM

The inconsistancy Don, is in post after post claiming that "Boss Hogg" had perverted the law and constitution to make this grand scale theft possible and unstopable, and within the law.

Then screaming "that's proof" when they get caught.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 01:55 PM

Gareth, the two points are totally consistent. Just because the Resident in the White House has full knowledge and approves of his buddies ripping off the taxpayers doesn't make the off-ripping legal or ethical (unless you are positing the "divine right of kings" for American presidents). What that means is that Bush was complicit. The fact that they got caught at it means the Bush et al have got to spin like tops if they're going to pull this one out of the fire.

1. They were rifling the cookie jar.
2. They got caught.

Where, exactly, is the logical inconsistency?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 07:14 AM

Don, Haven't you made my point again.

Bobert's Proposition 1. Haliburton is gouging the Taxpayer, with the full knowledge and approval of the White House.

Bobert's proposition No.2 Auditors etc. have caught Haliburton "bang to rights".

Logic - If No 1 is correct, then there was no irregularity to report.

Methinks there may well be a case for a "clawback".

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 10:25 PM

Yeah, Gareth, I can't understand yer logic, or lack thereof, either....

But, whatever yer smokin', please forward me a pinch fir my Xmas bowl...

An' further more, I never even involved the Wes Ginny Slide Rule on this one since it was a no-brainer.... Ahhhh, not that the WVSR has a brain? But, hey, ask the WVSL an' I'm sure it'd say it's me with no brain...

Bottom line, no matter, is that the Bush administration is *so*, ahhhh, *caught* that Bush ain't even gonna use the spinmasters on this one. They told him that there weren't no lies they couold come up with and that he was gonna have to tell the truth!!! Now, that's a first!!!.....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 08:13 PM

Gareth, as you dump on Bobert and his West Virginny slide rule, I can't follow your line of thinking. In the meantime,

Background.

Excerpts from just released article in the Washington Post:
WASHINGTON — Defense Department auditors have discovered that a Halliburton subsidiary may have overcharged the government $61 million on a contract to supply fuel for Iraq, a Pentagon official said yesterday. In another contract to operate U.S. military mess halls, Halliburton, which was headed by Dick Cheney before he became vice president, would have been overpaid $67 million if auditors hadn't questioned the arrangement, officials said, citing findings of a draft audit.
###
On the gas contract, Halliburton subsidiary KBR (Kellogg, Brown & Root), has been charging the U.S. government $2.27 a gallon to deliver gasoline from Kuwait, while another similar contract for gas from Turkey is charging only $1.18, the official said . . . On the contract to operate mess halls, the official said that Halliburton told the Pentagon its subcontractor price would be $220 million. But auditors examining Halliburton's operations found that at that time, the company already had awarded a subcontract under which the cost was actually $67 million lower than that.
###
Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., who has taken the lead in questioning the Halliburton contracts, said in a statement that the draft report "confirms what we've known for months. Halliburton has been gouging taxpayers and the White House has been letting them get away with it."
###
Cheney was defense secretary from 1989 until 1993, and then was chief executive at Halliburton from 1995 until 2000, when he resigned to join George W. Bush on the 2000 Republican ticket. The two contracts in question are among the biggest the U.S. government has let for operations in postwar Iraq. They are open-ended arrangements under which about $5 billion has been spent so far, one of the Pentagon officials said.
Still listening to the radio. Rumsfeld just came on with a sound-bite about the Halliburton audit and he's dancing as fast as he can, but he ain't no Fred Astaire.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 07:55 PM

also, the fact that Teribus is not an American doesn't bother me. I'm a liberal, and, even though I think he is wrong, I still respect his opinion. I've never learned anything from someone who agrees with me.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 07:51 PM

Even resident Bush can no longer stand the stench. He admitted that we are being brabbed on fuel prices.
And Halliburton is providing filthy kitchens and spoiled food to the soldiers. Profiteering scumbags.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 07:31 PM

Gareth: What IS a West Virginia slide rule? I'm curious. Never heard the expression before. (I haven't bought any bridges lately, so don't yank my leg too hard, OK?)


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 07:14 PM

Hey Bobert - There is an inconsistancy in yer posts.

First of all yer claim that Haliburton has a license/agreement to rip off the US of A taxpayer with the government's permission.

And Secondly yer is claiming that the Auditors have spotted this theft, and are now taking action to recover the money concerned.

Logic

If your furst argument is true then the second falls.

If on the otherhand yer second arguement is true then yer furst is false.

May I respectfully suggest that you stop trying to logic chop Teribus and spend a tad more time dealling with yer own inconsistancies.

And if yer really wanted to impress you might spend a little time on the technicallities of organizing ter removing Bush Jnr in yer forthcoming elections.

Remember, as Joe Hill was reputed to have said, "Don't weep, Organize"

Hell Mun, it don't require a West Virgi' Slide Rule to show that.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 06:34 PM

Yo, T.... You might wanta put a delay button on yer "post" key since you're swinging at one curve ball after another... The Halliburton audit reports are coming at a furious rate tonight on all the news networks... Even Bush has suggested publicly that Halliburton is going to have to give this money back.

Takes me back to our discussions of several months ago on this very subject. Seems I, and others, made the point over and over that not opening the bidding to other firms was not a good idea. Yet, you defended, as per usual, and in lockstep I might add, the Bush administartions insistence to forge ahead. Damn the torpedos. Well, one of 'em has lodged itself in in this policy...

Now, we know how much you love to argue and carry on but if you're going to stick with *yer man* on this one ya' better have a life jacket handy...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 05:03 PM

Hell, my father stayed in business for almost 20 years, while losing money the whole time! He just lost it gradually. Other people have done it for even longer periods than that before the bubble finally burst. The way you do it is by:

1. consuming your inheritance and personal savings bit by bit

2. borrowing other people's money and going deeper and deeper into debt

3. losing your money slowly enough that it isn't really all that noticeable on any given day

4. using credit irresponsibly and going deeper into debt

This, in fact, is what any number of goverments have done and are doing on a regular basis...while getting their public to foot the bill through taxes and inflation...and currency that is in truth almost worthless. The whole prevailing social System encourages the ordinary public to do this too, by offering them every possible temptation to "buy now, pay later" with credit, and live at a level they cannot really afford.

It's massive irresponsibility from the top down, and it rests on a few basic assumptions:

1. the main rewards in life are material (untrue)

2. money buys happiness (untrue)

3. he who has the most toys is the happiest boy (untrue)

4. people will respect and love you if you've got a lot of expensive stuff (untrue)

5. MORE is always better (grossly untrue)

Add to that a little religious declaration like: "The sole purpose of business is profit." and you've got a population that no longer has the vaguest idea what life is really about. A population of drugged serfs. Such people will never find a way to fill their loneliness till they dump that MBA religion and find a saner one, that honours life itself instead of material wealth.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 02:56 PM

By the way, Turkey offered to supply the U.S. military with fuel for $1.18 a gallon, but were turned down.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 02:51 PM

Well said, Little Hawk. Very well said!

Yes, Teribus, "The legitimate and honorable purpose of business is to provide goods and/or services to its customers, and to provide work and a living wage for its employees," is what I said and I stand by it. Other than the entire concept, I don't see the exact nit you're trying to pick. Perhaps I should have added all sorts of qualifications to the statement, such as "profit, of course, is a necessary concomitant of carrying out the legitimate and honorable purpose of business, which is to provide goods. . . ." and so on, but it was assumed that any intelligent person would suss that out for themselves. If you're losing money, you aren't going to stay in business for long.

By the way, there are about five gas stations within a mile of where I live. Gas is pretty close to being as expensive as it has ever been, and the stations are charging around $1.85 per (U.S.) gallon (that works out to about $0.49 per liter). And that includes several mark-ups along the line. At $2.70 a gallon, somebody is making a helluva profit out of the American taxpayer by selling gasoline to the military. Considering that Halliburton is as close to a vertical monopoly as the law allows (actually, a bit more than the law allows, but let's face it, they have friends at Court), they would be making a lot more profit per gallon than Texaco, who supplies the nearest station to where I live. And, yes, I am factoring in transportation costs.

If you're not just trying to yank people's chains and you truly believe that "the sole purpose of business is profit," remind me never to do business with you.

Fantastic! This just coming over the radio as I type this!! —

Audit: Hallibuton Overcharged U.S. in Iraq. The Department of Defense has just completed a preliminary audit of Halliburton's charges to the military and are starting to ask some tough questions. They claim that there is substantial evidence that Halliburton has overcharged the military $61,000,000 so far for fuel. The Army Corps of Engineers did not want to accept Halliburton in the first place, and as a result of the Defense Department's preliminary audit, they are currently reviewing bids from other suppliers. Other services who ordinarily supply the military with fuel for under a dollar a gallon had been cut out, and are continuing to ask why the contract was awarded to Halliburton. Halliburton is also being audited regarding possible overcharges of $220,000,000 for operating food services for the military. Halliburton has a history of overcharging the military and has been penalized several times in the past. Question: Why were they awarded a no-bid contract with that kind of history?

Not my opinion. Fact. Explain that away, Teribus!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 01:52 AM

$2.70 a gallon delivered, lets see Bobert, taking it as read that they were selling by the US gallon. That price works out at around 71 cents a litre, which at todays exchange rate comes to 40 pence per litre. If that is the case Bobert they can come and rip me off any day - price per litre we are usually used to paying over this side of the pond $1.46.

According to reports on this Halliburton got ripped off as much as the US Government. Main client US - Prime contractor Halliburton - subsidiary of Halliburton's - supplier of fuel. Short term contract to supply fuel, the supplier did not have enough trucks of his own to deliver and had to hire in. Guys who made the killing - the fuel supplier and the guy who hired him the trucks.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 01:04 AM

""The legitimate and honorable purpose of business is to provide goods and/or services to its customers, and to provide work and a living wage for its employees."

Don Firth

That is the sentence that started this of pdc.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 11:50 PM

My God, teribus... LOL! You cling to a logical absurdity like a pit bull clinging to his favourite bone.

Let me paraphrase your statement: "the sole purpose of business is profit."

Ahem***   "The sole purpose of living is injesting water."

Wrong! But it follows the same logical line. Without drinking water you will die. You cannot continue living for more than a very short time without drinking water, and you cannot continue a running a normal profit-based "business" very long without making money (unless you have a huge pile of it to waste).

What does that have to do with purpose, and how is it a "sole" reason? Well, it's only one of many purposes, and many reasons. You also need to breathe air, eat food, find shelter, stay warm, exercise your body, occupy your mind and emotions, and so on...

Here's what your original statement might better say, in order to be factual:

"One of the necessary requirements of running a successful (and let's assume, legal) business is to make money."

ONE of them. There are numerous other necessary requirements too...like learning the trade, getting an education, obeying the law, being efficient, getting up in the morning, not alienating your customers, balancing the books, being honest, communicating effectively, not running around naked in the streets on your coffee break, and so on.

So, if what they teach in an MBA course is that business has a "sole purpose" and that that purpose is profit, then what they are teaching is a fundamentalist religion, not a science, and a VERY primitive religion at that...based on nothing more than an illogical statement of blind and exclusive faith, intended to brainwash the brethren and prepare them for a life of deluded fantasy in a moral abyss of their own creation. (Sounds like the life of Dilbert, doesn't it?)

Neither life, love, art, government nor business have a sole purpose...but rather a million different purposes, and what kind of human being you are will determine what purposes you choose.

Money is a tool, teribus. It was invented to facilitate the exchange of goods and services. A tool is not a purpose in itself, it is a means toward achieving a purpose. The real purpose is to enhance, encourage, and improve life in every way possible, and become better, wiser people in so doing.

And profit? Profit is an arbitrary concept especially beloved by those in societies where many or most people are too immature to do things simply because they are, in themselves, good things to do...and must be spurred on by a "carrot" suspended in front of their nose in the form of money. It is also a very handy way of establishing a privileged few at the top, and a disadvantaged many who can be easily controlled by that few through their god, their chosen deity...money.

You're espousing a material religion, teribus, not a real thinking philosophy. I don't go to that church nor accept its Holy Writ as gospel.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 11:04 PM

Good question, Bobert. I can understand Doug (although I can't understand Doug), but I'm curious about why someone who doesn't live in the United States seems to feel compelled to jump on everything that doesn't reflect glory on Bush and his associates as if s/he's either a member of the Bush League or is running for office as a Republican. Also, where does our Disciple of Thor and Odin find the time to go through every post word by word in search of nits to pick and then write volumes in the picking of them?

Interesting to debate with, but I do sorta wonder. . . .

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 07:29 PM

To bad, T-Bird, that yer not watchin' the news being aired in the US tonight about how Halliburton is ripping off the governemnt, charging $2.70 a gallon for the gas used in their vehilcles in Iraq back to the American taxpayers...

And, you can pull up any danged liein' website you want to about Halliburton having to compete fir bids but you are apparently unaware that during the debates in out Congress, which were carried live in the radio, over the $87B for Iraq, that many, many congress people brought it up and the Repubs never once, that I heard, countered. And I listened to at least 2 days worth of the hearing's while rehabin' a house... Word fir word. You'd think, as you say, that if contacts had been assigned on a competitive basis, that after a PR onslaught by Dems about the issue at least one danged Repub would have said something. Buy they didn't!!!... Hmmmmm, Part 6,483....

But the real question I have fir ya, T, is why if you don't even live in the US you feel so compelled to defend every stupid thing our Resident does? Yeah, answer me that one...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Amos
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 07:14 PM

Teribus:

The fallacy here is the proposition that because profit is essential to what businesses must do , it is therefore the purpose of what businesses do.

That is illogical, and even sophomoric. "If not p, then not g" is not the same as saying "G=P" (goal and profit, respectably). You can't make a goal if you don't run, in soccer, but it is not correct to say that the team that runs the most wins.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 06:50 PM

Touché!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 06:44 PM

Teribus, if the sole purpose of business is to make a profit, then why exclude drug pushers and kidnappers?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 12:39 PM

You still don't get it, do you, Teribus? Is it missing synapses or a refusal to think?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 12:10 AM

Thanks in part for that Amos.

Business/money and the car/petrol thing is a poor analogy.

I think we were all under the impression that we were talking about legitimate business enterprises so references to drug pushers and kidnappers don't enter the equation.

All the wonderful things that Don, et al have said a business should do. Make a list of them as Little Hawk did. If your business does not make a profit you can do none of them. Therefore, it follows naturally that the sole aim of the business must be to make a profit.

Oil prices go up 30% overnight eh Bobert - incentive to use less of it then.

On Cheney you are wrong

On Halliburton and competitive tendering you are wrong. They did win a competitive tender, it was for a frame agreement contract to do work for the US military, and it was awarded in either 1997 or 1998.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 11:56 PM

Well, danged, Amos. I have to agree with everything you said but yer typin' an' spellin' is gettin' more and more Wes Ginnian evry day. Seems like that shine I mailed ya is doing it's shine thing quite nicely...

Jus' funnin'.... Good to see some folkx let their hair down....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Amos
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 11:21 PM

FOlks, I yam here to tell you that the favorite refrain in MBA courses in our age is the notion that businesses only exist to turn a profit, and making money is the be-all and end-all, summum bonum and raison d'etre of a business.

Now it is obvious that a business needs to make money like a car needs gas. But the purpose of a car is not to take in gas, now is it? So let us not be sillyhere. Businesses must make money to continue t exist but they also have a purpose in the lives of those concerned -- to bring about better survival, improve the futures of those participating, and contribute to the civilization in some way.

These wisenheimers who preach money as the purpose of business have their tailbones wrapped around their neckbones. Thew notion that a business that makes money is by definition a successful business is just ridiculous. By this line of reasoning, a drug pusher is a successful businessman, and so is someone who kidnaps babies and sells them.

This, too, is the kind of "CEO_think" that informs the MBAs in DC just now. It is not about decency or practicality. It's about dough. This is short-sightedness incarnate.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 10:37 PM

And I'll repeat it also, T-Bird. There's profit, then there's obsene profit and there's illegal profit. I don't think anyone here would have any problem with *profit* but most have a problem with obsene profit and probably 99% with illegal profit.

Okay, what is obsene profit? Well, a good example is what the US oil companies do routinely to the American people. Heck, they'lol use just about any reason to jack up prices over night by 30%... That is obsene.

As ifr illegal profits, all one has to do is folloe Dick Cheney. Halliburton is as fine an exampl;e as can be found. Halliburton pays Dick Cheney $1.4M a year and gets a lion's share of contracts in Iraq without having to bid against competitors. That, under any other administration, would be prosecuted by the Justice Department. But not under these guys....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Metchosin
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 10:28 PM

"The sole purpose (of a business) can only ever be profit - without it you do not have a business" to which I will add,"..- you have a hobby."

Hmmm....hobby?....I think I'll pass that on to my Physician, Teribus, the next time I see him.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 10:19 PM

Kendall is right. "On a dead man's door, you can knock forever."

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 08:13 PM

I'll repeat it:

"The sole purpose (of a business) can only ever be profit - without it you do not have a business" to which I will add, "..- you have a hobby."

Intersting to note LH that the first six of your ten points relate directly to profit/success, and means of measuring it.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 03:53 PM

You're just loyal to your side of the argument, teribus, that's all...like a soldier is loyal to his side in war. But this is not a war, this is a search for understanding.

It doesn't matter who "wins".

Now, I simply cannot believe that you really think that "profit is the sole purpose of business". I think you are merely repeating a well known piece of jargon that sounds surperficially good in your ears, but without thinking about it that much.

There are so many purposes to business. Here are a few:

1. to survive in society by earning an income
2. to gain a sense of accomplishment and self-worth by doing something useful in life
3. to gain the respect of other people by not being a parasite who does nothing
4. to meet one's own expectations of a life well-lived, and the expectations of one's parents, etc....etc...(all of which is deeply ingrained in most people by the time they are 15 years old or less)
5. to make enough money to survive decently
6. if 5 has been achieved, making enough money to survive better than that, and enjoying some leisure time.
7. realizing your dreams in life! (and that has to do with a whole lot more than money...)
8. doing something you enjoy and find meaningful!
9. doing something that improves your community and your world!
10. And about a hundred other things...(sigh)

Now, if you can't admit to that, then you are just overly wedded toward winning the argument, and believe me, buddy, it doesn't matter a tinker's damn who wins the bloody argument. A month from now, who will care? It's trivial.

I have worked in the public sector and in the private sector. One thing I liked about the public sector was this: achieving the work ITSELF was the objective, rather than making a profit. This tended to produce a more idealistic viewpoint on the part of management and staff (in many cases) and a less competitive and more relaxed, friendly atmosphere. It was a service, not a search for cash.

I've also enjoyed working in the private sector, making a profit, and I appreciate the individual freedom and creativity that one finds there if one is so inclined.

Either way is fine with me.

It would be possible to run an entirely effective society without a profit motive, if one grew up with a different set of assumptions about life (such as: life depends on everyone having enough of what they need and being happy and healthy). Again, I say, either way is fine with me.

If I thought that profit was the sole purpose of business, I would probably have become a lawyer, an M.D., a drug pusher, or a pornography seller...and done something I have little or no liking or inclination for, but just go where the BIG money is.

And that would be living death to me.

How much money is enough, teribus? That is the question that people addicted to profit for profit's sake alone never seem to consider asking themselves.

- LH


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