- Eye on Media
Another year of fun filled snarky news commentary and analysis is almost over and this December marks the second consecutive month that MGx has reached over 20,000 global visitors. Most visitors are from the US and 1% are classified as "addicts" and 35% as "regulars" by Quantcast. Almost 450 regulars are Oregon residents from Portland to Salem to Ashland to Brookings.
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"A critical, independent and investigative press is the lifeblood of any democracy. The press must be free from state interference. It must have the economic strength to stand up to the blandishments of government officials. It must have sufficient independence from vested interests to be bold and inquiring without fear or favor. It must enjoy the protection of the constitution, so that it can protect our rights as citizens." Nelson Mandela 1918 - 2013
For those of us who railed against the exorbitant profits earned by VP Dick Cheney through his Halliburton holdings as American troops were sent to die for mythical weapons of mass destruction, this comes as especially welcome news. Bunnatine “Bunny” Greenhouse, former chief oversight official of contracts at the Army Corps of Engineers reached a government settlement six years after she was demoted for publicly criticizing a multi-billion-dollar, no-bid contract to Halliburton and its subsidiary KBR. Greenhouse testified before Congress and was demoted for properly doing her job in retaliation for exposing problems with the contracts.
Well, I had taken an oath of office that said that I was going to conduct the business of procurement and contracting in the Corps impartially, beyond reproach, with the highest degree of integrity, and with preferential treatment toward none. That was federal law, and one that I respected.
I noticed that when they sent in the sole-source, no-bid contract justification, it had in there only government-imposed uniquenesses of the company—you know, KBR—not their own uniquenesses, such as a contingency plan, that the winner had to be familiar with a contingency plan. That was a plan that they had—the government had developed under another—out of scope, under another contract, which is like an economic analysis, that determines all of the budgeting, all of the actions and movements that were going on in the prosecution of that war. Halliburton had been granted that privilege to do that at $2 million.
Greenhouse speaks with Democracy Now‘s Amy Goodman. Watch the entire interview, it is well worth it.