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June 15, 2004

Halliburton Rips Off Taxpayers

Speaking of Halliburton, if NASA hands over operations to corporate subcontractors, here is the kind of ripoffs we can expect:

# Lodged 100 workers at a five-star hotel in Kuwait for a total of $10,000 a day while the Pentagon wanted them to stay in tents, like soldiers, at $139 a night.

# Abandoned $85,000 trucks because of flat tires and minor problems.

# Paid $100 to have a 15-pound bag of laundry cleaned as part of a million-dollar laundry contract in peaceful Kuwait. The price for cleaning the same amount of laundry in war-torn Iraq was $28.

# Spent $1.50 a can to buy 37,200 cans of soda in Kuwait, about 24 times higher than the contract price.

# Knowingly paid subcontractors twice for the same bill.

BTW check out the link, which is from FreeRepublic.com, where the conservatives actually try to excuse these ripoffs. They can't even do the math on why tents are less expensive than five-star hotels.

They make one interesting point:

The difference between the US Army and Halliburton is that Halliburton's employees can quit if they don't like the accomodations. Halliburton has to do something to make people willing to work in hostile territory.

Companies like Halliburton had to threw money around all the time-- one effect was to keep the workforce happy under very severe working conditions.

Which sounds like a great reason not to subcontract out the work. Soldiers are there out of patriotism. There is no reason they should have to work side by side with opportunistic contractors making piles of money at theirs and their fellow taxpayers' expense.

Posted by Nathan at June 15, 2004 08:35 AM