Skip to comments.DOD Wastes Billions on Non Military Projects
Posted on 11/27/2012 9:44:54 AM PST by jazusamo
The Department of Defense (DOD) is responsible for protecting national security and providing military forces to deter war, yet it blows tens of billions of dollars on preposterous things unrelated to its mission.
A variety of unimaginable examples are featured in a baffling report (Department of Everything ) published this month by a Republican U.S. Senator, who asserts the Pentagon could easily save around $70 billion over ten years without cutting any Army brigade combat teams, Navy combat ships or Air Force fighter squadrons. It could be done simply by getting rid of the waste, according to the findings.
Thats because the DOD has a monstrous $629 billion annual budget and a chunk goes to dubious projects that are tough to justify as defense expenses. For instance, the senators probe reveals that the Pentagon funded $6 billion in studies that have little or nothing to do with national defense or medical needs related to military service.
Here is an example of where defense dollars are going; an anthropologist at a public California university got $681,387 to examine whether men holding pistols are viewed as taller, stronger and more masculine than those wielding objects such as saws, paint brushes and caulking guns. For the record, guys with guns do in fact appear bigger, stronger and more masculine, the study found.
Another good one involves fish. For $5.2 million researchers at an Ivy League university found that golden shiner fish could show the nation how to overcome political polarization and promote democracy. The Office of Naval Research spent $450,000 to study how babies interact with robots. The DOD also burned $700 million on duplicative and unnecessary alternative energy projects and $1.5 million to create its own brand of beef jerky treats.
The Pentagon also spends more than $9 billion to operate 254 grocery stores throughout the United States to benefit military retirees. Most of the stores, known as commissaries, are actually located just blocks from major chain grocery stores. The money spent on these questionable projects could fund a third of the planned fleet of new strategic Air Force bombers, according to the Oklahoma senator, Tom Coburn, who exposed the waste.
I prepared this report because the American people expect the Pentagons $600 billion annual budget to go toward our nations defense, Coburn said in a statement posted on his official website. That isnt happening. Billions of defense dollars are being spent on programs and missions that have little or nothing to do with national security, or are already being performed by other government agencies.
I know this report has a lot that needs to be cut..but how else will the big wigs line their pockets? and if their budget is cut..it won’t stop ..just the care and well being of solders will go down..
How many of these are covers for ‘dark’ projects?
If I, as a hetrosexual soldier or salior, wants to go impregnate some woman to whom I am not married, I'm expected to pay child support out of my regular military pay. So it should be for military who contact STDs with their openly homosexual lifestyle.
Good luck finding Republican or conservative legislators to do anything about it, though.
What the Pentagon wants, it gets. Heck, it even gets stuff it doesn't want & did not ask for.
Quite the sacred cow.
“First place the Pentagon should cut: No health benefits to be paid for the treatment of STDs which are the result of “lifestyle choices.””
Right! Obamacare will spend your tax money on JUST THIS in the general population. Make us all pay for sin inflicted disease.
Why are our soldiers any different?
This article reminded me of corrupt elected officials such as former Rep. Murtha that have power and reward their friends and contributors with this type graft.
I seriously doubt those high up in our military channel funds for these type programs, more likely many of these project funds are from Congress and earmarked for them.
Actually, they benefit active duty military families AND retirees.
Frankly, I am not a fan of commissaries. One can find better products for the same price off base. But there are some bases that don't have a grocery store nearby.....
Republican Golden Calf (pork) ping!
To get their budget approved the military must do some odious things. The Navy was required to buy a bomber that was so obsolete we couldnt give them, brand new, to our allies. The plant was in the budget chairmans district. Bush H. finally put the kibosh on it because every time it dropped its iron bombs in Iraq it hit a school, a hospital or a huddling family of tiny children. The Green movement has forced the military to buy oodles of incredibly expensive green fuel. The military is now buying Chevy Volts, so too, is the State Department.
A contract may be for five years, but the money to pay for it is approved one year at a time. This forces the contractors to pony-up mullah to Congressmens (pardon, Congresspersons) re-election campaigns. This also prevents money-saving expenditures such as automation. If you knew you had a five year contract you could save lots of money by automating production. But, instead, every major item is virtually hand-built by expensive labor. (Then, that labor gets laid off the moment the contract blips; a condition Im in as of November 16th.)
Paying themselves and friends.
Much of the “waste” in the defense budget is added on Capitol Hill before the budget “mark” is sent back to Defense. Every member of congress with a pet project will try to get it into a defense bill or steer more defense dollars to their district. When Defense gets their budget back, it will contain all manner of things they never asked for and don’t want. If DoD needs A, they had better to be willing to take B also if Senator Blank wants B funded.
” ....Here is an example of where defense dollars are going; an anthropologist at a public California university got $681,387 to examine whether men holding pistols are viewed as taller, stronger and more masculine than those wielding objects such as saws, paint brushes and caulking guns. For the record, guys with guns do in fact appear bigger, stronger and more masculine, the study found.”
I would have done this in one afternoon for free : )
The 4’ 10” intruder with an AK-47 asked, “Do I look short to you?”
The 5’ 10” to 6’ 2” dwellers replied, “Ah..., no?”
End of study.
I would do it for a mere $100K and save the taxpayers the other $581K .
I keep a very close eye on my family's grocery spending. The commissary is indeed much cheaper. We routinely save well over $100/mo on commissary shopping vs. chain store shopping. And, since commissaries have the same products as any normal grocery store, I'm not sure how you can "find better products."
Fort Irwin, CA...35 miles to civilization and I mean civilization, but right next to Death Valley.
ALL of the ‘entitlement’ budget is a combo of unnecessary, bloat, waste, white-collar welfare, shiftless bum welfare, and theft.
Good luck finding ANY legislators to do anything about it, though.
What the Entitlement State wants, it gets. It would get stuff it doesn’t want, if any such actually existed.
Quite the sacred cow.
There has always been a duplication of services policy for the DoD. All services were forced to use GSA vehicles in the early 90s, rather than have individual "motor pools" at each base.
Some defense contracts need to be investigated to find out who got a BIL deal to supply things like $600 hammers and $1000 toilet seats like were found several years ago. Same thing applies to uniform changes every few years.
Relook the Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, FOODSTAMP and Social Security Disability programs. Stop all money to these programs and make everyone reapply. Then look to cut the military budget.
What the report doesn’t tell us is how many liberal politicians and bureaucrats are involved in these ancillary avenues of wasting our tax dollars - no opportunity to spend will be ignored.
” The 4 10 intruder with an AK-47 asked, Do I look short to you?
The 5 10 to 6 2 dwellers replied, Ah..., no?
End of study.”
Hard to charge 100K for this, SOL : )
Local stores tend to have fresher produce, more local products.
We routinely save well over $100/mo on commissary shopping vs. chain store shopping.
Have to ask Mrs. Gamecock on that one. She tends to do well off base.
And if you live on post, do not forget gas savings.
Also you can not beat the foreign food section. Try to find a decent German mustard at Kroger.
The other issue not raised is security. All commissaries are inside the wire (that I know of). Not many parking lot robberies.
Fort Irwin is only 35 miles from civilization? That is a pretty low standard for civilization. Barstow must have improved since the last time I was out there on rotation.
Yeah, but it’s at least worth $25k, don’t you think? /s
Still saves over 650 M
You izz hired!
Dude, you go after the $581K contract and I’ll work on the $5.2 million research contract. Maybe we can combine the offer to save the goobamint separate shipping and handling.
“...appear bigger, stronger and more masculine...”
I would guess that the reason “they” fund and do these studies in the first place is to figure out a way to even further try to erode masculinity (as least in the white hetero male) and make us more “docile”.
We’re the “threat vector” to them, after all.
For the record - that ain’t gonna happen, so they can stick their studies up their collective arses...which they probably do anyway.
This is the deal.
First, I will acknowledge there is a lot of waste, especially since the DOD has gone to using ECHO and VistA management methods as a way to ‘save money’ (which actually means it adds in so many layers of bureaucracy it costs ten times as much as it should).
However, there is also a method to some of this. Do you really think that the DOD was paying $2K per toilet seat or $900 per hammer? Nope. Let’s say that the DOD via DARPA is looking into a new weapon system, unlike any other, that is so innovative it has to be absolutely top secret. They don’t create a budget for it. What they do is create a lot of ‘projects’ or other line items. They will, for example, claim to fund a $500K study on rodent poop. They will then pay a college kid $1,000 to write a paper on rodent poop and funnel the rest of the money to that ‘dark project’. It has worked this way since the 50s, if not before.
” Were the threat vector to them, after all.”