August 30, 2010

Wasted Billions In Iraq

alan_parsons_project.jpg
even worse than that

us wasted billions in iraq.jpg


In March 2004, the Corps of Engineers awarded a $40 million contract to global construction and engineering firm Parsons Corp. to design and build a prison for 3,600 inmates, along with educational and vocational facilities. Work was set to finish in November 2005.

But violence was escalating in the area, home to a volatile mix of Sunni and Shiite extremists. The project started six months late and continued to fall behind schedule, according to a report by the inspector general.

The U.S. government pulled the plug on Parsons in June 2006, citing "continued schedule slips and ... massive cost overruns," but later awarded three more contracts to other companies. Pasadena, Calif.-based Parsons said it did its best under difficult and violent circumstances.

Citing security concerns, the U.S. finally abandoned the project in June 2007 and handed over the unfinished facility to Iraq's Justice Ministry.




Wait a second:



controversial parsons.PNG
but where are the projects?



parsons projects.jpg

and if:

army cancels.PNG
then



parsons financial.PNG

did they get the money anyway?

---

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Comments

...what?... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 3:37 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

...what?

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 4 (6 votes cast)
I feel really stupid, but I... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 3:47 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

I feel really stupid, but I need some help understanding this post.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 4 (6 votes cast)
Same here. Huh?... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 3:53 PM | Posted by Me too: | Reply

Same here. Huh?

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 4 (6 votes cast)
So you are saying that ther... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 4:56 PM | Posted by GT: | Reply

So you are saying that there is a lot of money that was "spent" yet is unaccounted for. Basically the numbers don't add up.

If that is the case, where did the missing money get funneled to?

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 4 (4 votes cast)
Who knows? Good luck tryin... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 4:56 PM | Posted by Knives: | Reply

Who knows? Good luck trying to reconcile corporate balance sheets with reality.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 1 (3 votes cast)
The bad news is that the wa... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 5:32 PM | Posted by JMiller: | Reply

The bad news is that the waste on rebuilding is less than 1% of the cost of the war to date (over $700B), and also less than 1% of our military-industrial complex subsidy for even just a single year (over $650B). Our failure to build infrastructure appears to match its relative fiscal priority to the maintenance of our imperialistic capabilities. I'm not a hippie, I've just freshly re-read Eisenhower's rhetoric on this kind of thing... http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article9743.htm

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I'm not sure of your intent... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 8:26 PM | Posted by David: | Reply

I'm not sure of your intent with the unsourced info at minimal display, but this might help you in terms of the big picture when it comes to Parsons:

Contracts 2001-July 1, 2004: $5,286,136,252 Ranked #2 by total contract value
http://projects.publicintegrity.org/wow/resources.aspx?act=total

Contracts 2004-2006: $579,265,450 Ranked #10 by total contract value. See here for itemized list: http://projects.publicintegrity.org/WOWII/Database.aspx?act=contractor_details&duns=030866545&contractor_name=Parsons%20Corp

The data comes from the General Service Administration's Federal Procurement Data System.

Good luck!

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 3 (3 votes cast)
How to export brand America... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 8:39 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

How to export brand America:

Step one: wage war

Step two: build prisons

Step three: allow the locals to lock 'em up

Step four: pull out

Oops. Those last two steps need to be reversed.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 0 (2 votes cast)
Generally, government contr... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 8:59 PM | Posted by xon: | Reply

Generally, government contracts are awarded 20-35% up front (to cover start-up costs)(and to pay the executives their bonuses first. . .), another big chunk, sometimes up to 65% after 3-6 months, and the remainder on completion. So, after about 6 months of preliminary work, the bulk of the contract has been paid.

Also, all government contracts are terminable at will by the government, without much in the way of recourse. So, the contractors know to structure the contract to compensate for the uncertainty.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 2 (2 votes cast)
How insane would it be if t... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 9:31 PM | Posted by EH: | Reply

How insane would it be if that $700B had been given to schools? Can you imagine, almost a trillion dollars to education? I'm pretty sure the nation would implode.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 6 (14 votes cast)
Is being murdered while you... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 9:37 PM | Posted by Jack Coupal: | Reply

Is being murdered while you are doing your construction project built into the contract pricing?

other than in Detroit and Chicago, I mean...

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 2 (8 votes cast)
I need a job. Or some of th... (Below threshold)

August 30, 2010 10:09 PM | Posted by Young In America: | Reply

I need a job. Or some of that money for my student loan debt. fck.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 3 (3 votes cast)
Back off Chicago, man. We d... (Below threshold)

August 31, 2010 12:11 AM | Posted, in reply to Jack Coupal's comment, by Cubs Fan: | Reply

Back off Chicago, man. We don't murder the workers until after the project's done.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 6 (6 votes cast)
It would be more accurate t... (Below threshold)

August 31, 2010 8:48 AM | Posted by someone: | Reply

It would be more accurate to say that the terrorists wasted billions.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: -5 (5 votes cast)
As distressing as the waste... (Below threshold)

August 31, 2010 1:16 PM | Posted by Aron: | Reply

As distressing as the waste may be, you've got me way too obsessed at how much my eye just started itching to worry about anything else.
Goddamn: that picture is just painful to look at.

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It would be more accurate t... (Below threshold)

August 31, 2010 1:24 PM | Posted, in reply to someone's comment, by EH: | Reply

It would be more accurate to say that the US Government is using terrorists as an excuse to waste billions.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 3 (5 votes cast)
Hi,Its your blog, so... (Below threshold)

August 31, 2010 2:20 PM | Posted by salinger: | Reply

Hi,
Its your blog, so all your choice ofcourse :P, but could you please avoid long strings of non-psychological posts.(There is no smiley for request/beg, is there?).
A lot of your readers love you for your psychological posts.
Thanks.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: -2 (6 votes cast)
Love The Alan Parson's refe... (Below threshold)

August 31, 2010 5:06 PM | Posted by Pink Flod: | Reply

Love The Alan Parson's reference, brings back memories most of which I can't remember. :-)

I gather you intend this to be "was the money wasted, or did the money go exactly where it was intended to go?" post, in which case I'll give you then answer: the money went exactly where it was intended to go." No recession at Parsons, for sure.

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Noam Chomskymanufact... (Below threshold)

August 31, 2010 9:29 PM | Posted by Soooo MAD!!!: | Reply

Noam Chomsky
manufacturing consent

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Your site is amazing.I am v... (Below threshold)

August 31, 2010 11:04 PM | Posted by louis vuitton handbags: | Reply

Your site is amazing.I am very impressed to see this,i want to come back for visiting your site.Keep doing Good as well as you can..

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the sad thing is i believe ... (Below threshold)

September 1, 2010 11:07 AM | Posted by medsvstherapy: | Reply

the sad thing is i believe they really tried to run this business venture in a way to not cause too much ptsd, since that leads to bad press and long-term costs.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: -2 (2 votes cast)
the sad thing is i believe ... (Below threshold)

September 1, 2010 11:09 AM | Posted by medsvstherapy: | Reply

the sad thing is i believe they really tried to run this business venture in a way to not cause too much ptsd, since that leads to bad press and long-term costs. it is a challenge to predict how a war will affect the soldiers. just like we are always prepared for the previous war (euro = trenches, korea = cold, VN = rainfog, GW = sand), we are always psychologically prepared for the previous war.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: -1 (3 votes cast)
reminds me of something i'd... (Below threshold)

September 1, 2010 11:28 AM | Posted by randy: | Reply

reminds me of something i'd read in the NYT a year or two back, there was a delivery of USD cash to Iraq, which was the biggest batch of paper currency EVER to be printed, or delivered...i'm a bit hazy on the details but this is eseentially correct. the story went on to say that there were literally piles of USD laying around in Iraq, people were pulling up with wheelbarrows and pickup trucks and carting the fucking money away. i suppose half of it was bribes for local warlords, and some significant amount of the cash was flat out stolen by contractors and other sleezeballs.

by the way, your site does this annoying thing, you should fix it. when i type my name and email to comment, then tab through...it shoots be back up to the top of the page instead of putting my cursor into the comments box. pretty annoying.

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No, the sad thing is Parson... (Below threshold)

September 1, 2010 12:19 PM | Posted, in reply to medsvstherapy's comment, by David: | Reply

No, the sad thing is Parsons was an incompetent, greedy corporation which could not honor it's contracts.

"What has happened in Iraq is just disgraceful," says Jeffrey H. Smith, a former Central Intelligence Agency general counsel during the Clinton Administration who now represents military contractors in private law practice.

Instances of military outsourcing gone bad in Iraq are now legion. For example, Parsons Global Services Inc. of Pasadena, Calif., lost its contract to build 150 health centers after it completed just six centers and collected $190 million -- $30 million over the project's budget.

ALL of Parsons contracts subsequently were fodder for investigation by the U.S. Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction. It's interesting you would jump to their defense with absolutely no information to back up your apologetics. I'll close with this:

Maj. Gen. William H. McCoy Jr., commander of the corps' Gulf Region Division, said that the "loss of business for Parsons in Iraq may not be over [as] a broad review of Parsons' work in Iraq had turned up problems in sector after sector. According to news releases on the Parsons Web site, the company has received contracts worth as much as $4 billion in Iraq ... for building and refurbishing scores of police stations, border forts, fire stations, courthouses, prisons and Iraqi government buildings. 'We found overruns in almost every case,' General McCoy said.
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David - we may have a misun... (Below threshold)

September 2, 2010 8:37 AM | Posted, in reply to David's comment, by medsvstherapy: | Reply

David - we may have a misunderstanding. By "they" I meant the department of Defense. By "business venture," I meant the nation's economically driven effort to stabilize oil supplies, and foster some military-industrial swag on the side. Parson is just one of the many companies getting the swag.

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The govt gives out barrels ... (Below threshold)

September 2, 2010 8:39 AM | Posted by medsvstherapy: | Reply

The govt gives out barrels of money, then never checks up to see if the grantees are doing anything responsible with it? I thought that was what the NIH was for.

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Really WW1, WW2, Korea, Vie... (Below threshold)

September 2, 2010 12:15 PM | Posted, in reply to medsvstherapy's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

Really WW1, WW2, Korea, Vietnam and Iraq = death of friends and narrow misses for yourself, which is what causes PTSD. Only so much preparation is possible for the soldiers.

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Definitively. So why are Bu... (Below threshold)

September 3, 2010 9:40 AM | Posted, in reply to someone's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

Definitively. So why are Bush and his cronies not in prison?

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You might be surprised to l... (Below threshold)

September 4, 2010 4:07 AM | Posted, in reply to EH's comment, by Dave: | Reply

You might be surprised to learn how much is actually spent on schools (K-12) in this country. About $560 billion in 2006-2007, according to the DOE.

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Sure, now imagine that that... (Below threshold)

September 4, 2010 12:50 PM | Posted, in reply to Dave's comment, by EH: | Reply

Sure, now imagine that that figure was more than doubled.

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Imagine if we could have ta... (Below threshold)

September 4, 2010 12:54 PM | Posted by David: | Reply

Imagine if we could have take the over 1 trillion dollars spent on the Iraqi war and done something with it ... here. For our people.

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OK, I'm imagining it now. I... (Below threshold)

September 5, 2010 6:01 AM | Posted, in reply to EH's comment, by Dave: | Reply

OK, I'm imagining it now. I see even-more generous pensions for public school teachers and administrators, and also some nice construction deals for politically-connected contractors expanding or refurbishing schools. I don't see any material difference in graduation rates, dropout rates, average intelligence of students, etc.

Vote up Vote down Report this comment Score: 2 (2 votes cast)
Salinger-They're A... (Below threshold)

September 11, 2010 12:24 PM | Posted, in reply to salinger's comment, by Ted: | Reply

Salinger-

They're ALL psychological posts.

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