Skip to comments.Arlington Cemetery Probe: Where Did $5 Million for Records System Go?
Posted on 07/31/2010 9:23:43 AM PDT by epithermal
Officials don't know what happened to more than $5 million that was supposed to buy a new technology system to automate burial records at Arlington National Cemetery.
The money is spent, but the nation's cemetery for military killed in combat, veterans and their families continues to keep burial records for fallen soldiers on paper. After Thursday's Senate committee hearing to review contract mismanagement at Arlington National Cemetery, senators still have few answers on how, where and when the money was spent.
(Excerpt) Read more at politicsdaily.com ...
I think I recall from the last Arlington Scandal...wasn’t a Friend Of Hussain put in charge of all this, and didn’t the last scandal disappear, come to think of it?
Uhmmmm, you could buy a computer at Best Buy and not only computerize all the records but still have plenty of memory left over for burning CD’s to your IPOD.
$5 million? And they still couldn’t do it?
IMO, one can follow the corruption back to the Ruling Class in Congress. Vote them out on November 2nd and finish the scouring of that sewer in 2012.
Years ago...when I was with the Air Force...there was this multi-million dollar contract for a intelligence software program. The winner of the bid...was a company who’d never done anything but video games for kids. They had sixteen months to develop and handle over the Beta version of the software, then six months to wrap up the final version.
They were supposed to do a demo eight months into the deal...but this wasn’t held until the thirteenth month. Nothing worked like it was supposed to. At the sixteenth month...they had two or three things that worked but half of the software was non-functional. When the final day of the contract came...nothing worked like they thought it would...and they had to spend another couple of million and six more months to get to a final end.
I suspect the Arlington guys fell into the same mess...and whatever they got...was faulty...but they couldn’t pay any more to get the final fixed version. So they just sat there with a box of software that wouldn’t ever work.
Here’s the thing...for decades and decades...we just buried guys and there was a section for guys from each war period. Nothing fancy. With today’s GPS technology and a dozen kids...I could barcode each headstone in Arlington in six months and have a GPS coordinate fixed up for that headstone. I’d put everything in plain Excel and make this dirt-simple.
You beat me to it. There are people ordering the Gull Wing Mercedes that two hours ago were on welfare alone. Now they are on both welfare and have been given the cemetery funds.
AOL won’t let me say it but ... this is another example of what happens when affirmative action is used in hiring practices. Yes, I know the no. 1 guy was not a minority but the no. 2 guy was and I don’t think the no. 1 guy was responsible for the day to day paperwork required.
Plus the no. 2 guy, Thurman Higginbotham (AA hiring), was the one in charge of the contracts.
A major red flag is somebody saying "the database is in Excel". For database guys, it's one of those walk away moments.
There are 300000+- graves there. Try that in Excel.
Well the wealth distribution seems to have been going on for quite a while. Metzler and Higginbotham the former superintendent and former deputy superintendent were at Arlington for nineteen years and forty years respectively. The automation mess seems to go back to 2002. It's going to take some time to unravel the mystery as to where the money finally ended up and with whom.
From the posted article-
"Between 2002 and 2009, $5.5 million to $8 million was spent on contracts to automate Arlington's paper-based operations, yet the cemetery still has no computer system to track graves and manage burials. Officials don't know the exact amount spent, who received the money or what contractors were being paid to do.
Army Deputy Assistant Secretary Edward M. Harrington told senators Thursday he couldn't find records for more than half of the contracts that were issued. Other contractors had been paid -- in one case, more than $226,000 -- without delivering a service, according to the June Army Inspector General's report.
This is freaking insane. A mysql database costs nothing to acquire or operate. Surely the feral government has a server or two they can run a database on, and a few programmers who could write up a front-end to it. This isn’t rocket science. Even the schema for this would be incredibly straightforward. GPS coordinates for the grave, name, rank, date of birth, date of death, maybe a few other items. Sometimes it’s hard to believe our government is as incompetent as they try to make us believe.
Not only that, but excel still doesn't handle dates that go beyond 1900 very well. I've tried to create a spreadsheet of the national debt going back to 1791. Ended up having to use OpenOffice, because excel just couldn't handle it.
The government bureaucrats and their minions were responsible and look just how they screwed this up. This is wrong on so many levels. The families of the honorable people who died, their eternal souls and so forth. What an affront. And to top it off, these morons were given $5 million to create a system. If the government had given me merely $3 million, I’d be there every day with my assistant writing down each and every burial and its location. I’d also make a copy of my records at no charge. And to think that it is government idiots like this who are in charge of many things: nobamacare, school loans, mortgages, Government Motors and so forth. Total insanity. TOTAL. Oy, vey! (p.s., did they misplace teddy (the swimmer) kennedy’s grave?)
The rest of the $5M was for installation and tech support.
Nah, the truth is, somebody needs to be fired for this. Who?