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Sunday, January 14, 2007

WHAT THE AMERICAN PUBLIC MUST KNOW ABOUT THE PENTAGON

The Department of Defense, headquartered in the Pentagon, is one of the most massive organizations on the planet, with net annual operating costs of $635 billion, assets worth $1.3 trillion, liabilities of $1.9 trillion and more that 2.9 million military and civilian personnel as of fiscal year 2005.

It is difficult to convey the complexity of the way DOD works to someone who has not experienced it. This is a massive machine with so many departments and so much beaurocracy that no president, including Bush totally understands it.

Presidents, Congressmen, Cabinet Members and Appointees project a knowledgeable demeanor but they are spouting what they are told by career people who never go away and who train their replacements carefully. These are military and civil servants with enormous collective power, armed with the Federal Acquisition Regulation, Defense Industrial Security Manuals, compartmentalized classification structures and "Rice Bowls" which are never mixed.

Our society has slowly given this power structure its momentum which is constant and extraordinarily tough to bend. The cost to the average American is exhorbitant in terms of real dollars and bad decisions. Every major power structure member in the Pentagon's many Washington Offices and Field locations in the US and Overseas has a counterpart in Defense Industry Corporate America. That collective body has undergone major consolidation in the last 10 years. What used to be a broad base of competitive firms is now a few huge monoliths, such as Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and Boeing.

Government oversight committees are carefully stroked. Men like Sam Nunn and others who were around for years in military and policy oversight roles have been cajoled, given into on occasion but kept in the dark about the real status of things until it is too late to do anything but what the establishment wants. This still continues - with increasing high technology and potential for abuse.

Please examine the following link to the Bill Moyers interview with Franklin C. Spinney. It provides very specific information from a whistle blower who is still blowing his whistle (Look him up in your browser and you get lots of feedback) Frank spent the same amount of time as I did in the Military Industrial Complex (MIC) but in government quarters. His job in government was a similar role to mine in defense companies. Frank's emphasis in this testimony is on the money the machine costs us. It is compelling and it is noteworthy that he was still a staff analyst at the Pentagon when he gave this speech. I still can't figure out how he got his superior's permission to say such blunt things. He was extremely highly respected and is now retired.

http://www.pbs.org/now/transcript/transcript_spinney.html


The brick wall I often refer to is the Pentagon's own arrogance. It will implode by it's own volition, go broke, or so drastically let down the American people that it will fall in shambles. Rest assured the day of the implosion is coming. The machine is out of control.

If you are interested in a view of the inside of the Pentagon procurement process from Vietnam to Iraq please check the posting at this blog entitled, "Odyssey of Armaments"

http://rosecoveredglasses.blogspot.com/2006/11/odyssey-of-armaments.html

On the same subject, you may also be interested in the following post from the "Project On Government Oversight", observing it's 25th Anniversary:

http://pogo.org/

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Ken. Long time no see. I don't doubt what you say at all, especially on the procurement side, as we still seem to "need" a glut of cold-war weapons systems that seem rather out of place in today's conflicts. What can the average poor activist do to fight the trend?

RoseCovered Glasses said...

Tomcat,

Suggest you review the following sites and if you agree with their approach work with them and support them:


http://pogo.org/

http://www.d-n-i.net/top_level/about_us.htm
posted by RoseCovered Glasses at 8:38 AM on Jan 14 2007

Robert said...

Thanks Ken, I appreciate this post and the comment at my site.

I guess I shouldn't be so naive when I read a story about the path of U.S. Military surplus.

It is really disheartening to learn that there is a whole, inside establishment more interested in the "all mighty dollar" when they really should be concerned about the preeminence of our nation.

Maybe I'm really the one wearing the rose covered glasses.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Ken. Btw, I finally updated my 'Blogs I Like' list at PP to include a link to you. pardon the delay.

Jake said...

Thanks for visiting the site. I would love to hear some of your ideas for restructuring the broken system that is our nation. I am always simultaneously hopeful and saddened.

RoseCovered Glasses said...

Frank,

Please follow the links at this article to Frank Spinney's testimony

Ken

mibs said...

The pentagon economy often makes me sick. Here is site that visual explains the military budget, as well as other departments.

http://www.thebudgetgraph.com

Anonymous said...

Hi Ken,

Thanks for visiting my blog again. If you keep this up I'm going to have to add you to my blog roll. Wonderful work you're doing here. I have a question. Why is the MIC trying so hard to make dollars when they are destroying the dollar in the process? Is it mindless greed, or is there a larger conspiracy working to enrich global bankers while simultaneously bringing the U.S. down under a mountain of debt? It seems to me the PTB are doing everything in their power to destroy and pillage. It shows a definite lack of intelligence on their part, unless they are trying to consolidate power elsewhere.

RoseCovered Glasses said...

Mort,

I appreciate your comments and the question you pose. I think by the way you couched it you probably know the answer. Both sides of the MIC in my experience focus totally on their career growth and welfare in the beaurocracy with a mentality that reflects an unlimited credit card way of thinking.

They have not had the inclination to study the national debt and what they are contributing to it. One of my esteemed coleagues here at the Minnesota Veteran's home has.

Please see:

http://jdstavern.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

Thanks.

Paul said...

Hi Ken!
Nice of you to stop by. I wanted to share more "complex" info with you and your readers, this one is about Lockheed.....
http://www.yuricareport.com/Corporations/Lockheed.html

PoliShifter said...

Hi Ken,

Hope life finds you well. Thanks for stopping by earlier and leaving a comment.

As far as the CIA reading my blog, they may be perhaps...I have noticed in the past hits from various .mil IP's as well as perhaps a signal battalion originating out of Texas.

But as far as the CIA wanting me to go to work for them? Very doubtful...

Be well my friend...You provide great info.

Anonymous said...

Hi Ken,

Looks like there will be new justification to stoke the fire or arms spending: The Chinese success destroying a satellite in orbit using a land launched missile.

http://spectrum.ieee.org/jan07/comments/1691

Thanks again for your comment on my site.

Starrider said...

Ken, Thanks for your visit to
http://geotheology.blogspot.com/

I think your testimony is VERY important. I am still reading thru the wealth of info. here. I created another post linking to your article there. I hope you don't mind.

It looks like you are a fine fisherman.... what is that, a muskie or walleye?

Gaime said...

Wow! The CIA, Pentagon and military complex have become a booming business, I see. Cheney said that "deficit doesn't matter". What exactly he means by that? I heard that they are planning on dissolving the "middle class". There will only be the distinct "poor" and filty, greedy rich ass class. So the NWO is for real then if this is the trend.

JMK said...

Awesome link (to Finney) and a great article.

I hope those facts eventually see the light of day, but politicians live off that kind of pork.

The "droppings" alone are enough to set up someone for life.

Michael said...

Thanks for the nice post!