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October 16, 2002

The Enronization of the Army

More Union-Busting by Bush administration through outsourcing and privatization in the Army. Former Enron official and now-Army Secretary Thomas White is seeking to turn the army into a candy store for private contractors, replacing hundreds of thousands of employees with more "efficient"-- read low-wage -- privately contracted company jobs.

We should be very afraid at a program run by a former Enron official described as "part of White’s transformation effort, which is intended to make the Army more efficient by adopting the business practices of corporations."

The unfortunate fact is that this is probably accurate-- a bunch of subsidiary businesses will get rich and the main "company", the military, will pay inflated prices in the corporate shell game established.

To be fair, this is just an acceleration of a privatization of military employment that has been going on for years, but this massive new campaign in combination with the administration's more general assault on federal workers rights just highlights the corporate control of our government.

If anyone thinks such privatization is about saving money for taxpayers, they should think again. See this Congressional testimony here and here by Bobby L. Harnage, National President of the American Federation of Government Employees.

The reality is that most contracts are not competitive and overpriced in a range of ways that benefit the profits of the contracting companies, while screwing both workers and the taxpayers.

Posted by Nathan at October 16, 2002 08:15 AM

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Reading this, it strikes me that the fabled Cabinet of CEOs seems to hail from companies that, it turns out, aren't doing so well: White's Enron and Cheney's Haliburton, for example. Thinking about that doesn't exactly fill me with confidence in the businesslike way these guys are proposing to run the country at this volatile moment.

Posted by: Ardinger at October 16, 2002 04:34 PM

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