There are lots of reasons that things are going south in Iraq. President Bush alienated the international community, lied to the world about the threat of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, failed to plan for reconstruction . . . and the list goes on. But theres another less talked-about reason that things are turning out so badly: President Bush and Vice President Cheney simply cant resist a chance to help their corporate friends make a buck, even when it undermines the troops.
Today, were launching a new ad to call the Bush administration on its ties to the scandal-plagued company Halliburton. In just a year in Iraq, Halliburton employees have accepted $6 million in illegal kickbacks1, the company overcharged taxpayers millions for gas2, and charged hundreds of millions of dollars for meals for our troops that were never delivered3. Its a perfect example of how Bush and Cheneys taste for corporate cronyism has weakened our country and cost taxpayers billions.
We know from polling that, for many people, the Halliburton debacle illustrates a core weakness in the Bush program, and helps convince independent voters to vote against Bush. Thats why its so important that we get this ad, which hammers that point home, in front of as many people as possible. If we can raise $1.1 million, we can run the ad deep for a week in a number of the key battleground states. Please contribute what you can to help us get it on the air today at: www.moveonpac.org.
On that page, you can also read a full script of the ad and take a look at the story boards.
Revelations regarding Halliburtons unethical and at times illegal behavior continue to pop up at a regular pace. But perhaps more worrisome are indications that the Bush administration isnt just turning a blind eye to Halliburtons corrupt business practicesits actively helping the company along. For example, Time magazine exposed last week that newly disclosed internal Pentagon e-mails suggest the office of Vice President Dick Cheney was instrumental in sealing an $18 BILLION no-bid contract for the vice Presidents former company4.
Nor does Halliburtons track record end at fraud. In a Pentagon audit, Halliburton was warned that its food service facilities, which serve our troops in Iraq, were dangerously unsanitary, with blood all over the floor of its kitchens, dirty pans, and rotting meats … and vegetables.5
As Representative Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) put it, Halliburton is ultimately a company that arrogantly is overcharging when they can get away with it and not providing the quality of service that they agreed to do.6
Vice President Dick Cheney still holds hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of stock options in the company.7 So its hardly surprising that the administrations response has been anemic, even when faced with clear evidence that the company is bilking taxpayers.
Thats why we need to get this ad on the air. Can you contribute to make that happen? Go to: www.moveonpac.org.
1. Halliburton admits $6m kickbacks
2. Halliburton: $61M Overcharge?
3. Halliburton Grilled Over Meals
4. Time reports Cheney hand in contract
5. Contractor served troops dirty food in dirty kitchens
6. See 5, above.
7. Cheney may still have Halliburton ties
MoveOn PAC, P.O. Box 9218, Berkeley, CA 94709