In June of this year, a panel of congressional Democrats
held a hearing into the overspending and contracts involving Halliburton. During
this hearing, testimony was given by some prominent individuals who are close to
Rory Mayberry, who was a supervisor for HalliburtonÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s
subsidiary Kellogg Root and Brown gave video testimony about rancid food being
served to the soldiers in Iraq. Sometimes this food would be a year past its
expiration date. His testimony also included how KR&B would charge the
government for 10,000 meals a day which were never served.
Those are some severe allegations about the Vice
PresidentÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s former company. What has been done about it? Well apparently the
government doesnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢t care about the frivolous spending or the treatment of our
troops because they have done nothing yet.
The government has taken actions on other testimony
however. Bunnatine H. Greenhouse has worked for the Army Corp of Engineers for
over 20 years in the procurement office. During the past several years she was
the top Army official when it came to Army contracts. Now she has been demoted.
During the June hearing she gave testimony that KBR was
given an unusual amount of ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œswayÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â over the terms of its no-bid contract. She
further testified that Don RumsfeldÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s office intervened on the companyÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s behalf.
She summed it up as:
"I can unequivocally state that the abuse related to
contracts awarded to KBR represents the most blatant and improper abuse I
have witnessed during the course of my professional career,"
Lt. Gen. Carl A. Strock, said the administrative record
"clearly demonstrates that Ms. Greenhouse's removal from the S.E.S. is based on
her performance and not in retaliation for any disclosures of alleged
improprieties that she may have made." This is a clear contradiction to her
previous evaluations that rated her performance as superb. Her evaluations did
not start their decline until she became outspoken on the KB&R contracts.
Michael Kohn, Greenhouses attorney, told the
New York Times, ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œShe is being demoted because of her strict adherence to
procurement requirements and the Army's preference to sidestep them when it
suits their needsÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â.
This strikes a serious blow to any government employee who
may consider becoming a ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œwhistle blowerÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â. So how does our government deal with
people who raise concerns or have a less than standard performance per their
standards? Lets look at a few other cases.
Donald Rumsfeld has made error after error in the
execution of the Iraq war. It has cost us more than 10 times the amount he
originally estimated it at and we are in a state of almost quagmire today
because of it. He tried to resign and the President would not accept it. He
keeps his job.
Karl Rove discussed the identity of a covert CIA agent
with a reporter. He retains his employment.
General Shenseki saw a need for several hundred
thousand troops in the Iraq war. He was forced to retire because of this
allegation. We now know his projections were accurate.
Following the trend that this administration has followed,
it can be safely assumed that Ms. GreenhouseÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s allegations are true which is why
she has been disciplined.
It should be no surprise that this occurred, after all Dick
Cheney does hold a salary contract with Halliburton until 2007 and stock options
until 2009. He has to protect his mass fortunes.