Halliburton Under Fire, Finally

Halliburton’s standard treatment of the US govt as a Golden Goose whose treasury it could loot at will, what with the Vice President having once been its CEO and getting the contracts without having to bid along with a blank check and all the other seemingless endless perks, like total non-oversight, is at last coming in for a beating at the hands of the Pentagon Audit Agency and its own ex-employees.

The Pentagon’s Defense Contract Audit Agency found that Halliburton’s system of billing the government for billions of dollars in contracts was “inadequate in part,” failing to follow the company’s internal procedures or even to determine whether subcontractors had performed work.At the same time, four former Halliburton employees issued signed statements charging that the company had routinely wasted money. Among other things, they said the company had paid $45 apiece for cases of soda and $100 per bag of laundry, and had abandoned nearly new, $85,000 trucks in the desert for lack of spare parts.

“There was this whole thought process that we can spend whatever we want to because the government won’t crack down in the first year of a war,” said Marie deYoung, a former logistics officer with the company.

Trust me, the ‘first year of a war’ bit is totally irrelevant: Halliburton has a long history of acting this way even when there’s no war to excuse it. They have been regularly accused of outrageous overcharging, ‘questionable’ accounting practices, lack of oversight of subcontractors and their own people, and lack of accountability. There isn’t a damn thing new here. Some of us pointed out that history when the Veep’s office handed his ex-employer a $$Billion$$ worth of govt contracts on the Golden Platter of a no-bid process that pointedly excluded more comepetent, reputable firms before they’d even had a chance to make their case.

But when the Vice president of the United States used to be your CEO and still gets a cut of your profits, you don’t figure you have to worry about little shit like curtailing the level of your theft. In fact that’s a good reason to steal even more than usual. So they did.

This is your corporate-owned-and-operated govt in action. Hope you enjoy it.

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