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Even in wartime, Pentagon waste continues

by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / June 8, 2004 10:51 PM PDT
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Re:Even in wartime, Pentagon waste continues
by Dan McC / June 8, 2004 11:57 PM PDT

I was yelling at the radio when I heard this on NPR this morning. And what are they doing buying any first class tickets at all?

There may just be problems with military travel in general. I think it was on another board, but someone was saying that they got transferred and put in for mileage for a car that they towed behind the truck they got reimbursed for. Is there a web site to report possible fraud like this? Your tax dollar at work.

*sigh*

Dan

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Re:Even in wartime, Pentagon waste continues
by Mary Kay / June 8, 2004 11:58 PM PDT

Prosecution needs to be vigorous and we need to start taking away pensions from fed. employees convicted of crimes and or dereliction of duty.

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What I found dispicable is that our fighting troops have to buy their own tickets home
by Diana Forum moderator / June 9, 2004 12:28 AM PDT
http://abcnews.go.com/sections/WNT/YourMoney/wasted_airline_tickets_040608-1.html

As the government sat on millions of dollars in unused tickets, some soldiers on leave from Iraq were forced to pay part of their way home.

Staff Sgt. Chad Crandall of the North Dakota National Guard says he spent $405 in airfare in order to get home last October. His family could have used that money to help out with family expenses, he said.

"It kind of lets you down a little bit," Crandall said, after hearing of the GAO findings.

His wife says the government has a responsibility to the troops.

"It makes me sick to my stomach," said Heidi Crandall. "My husband is over there fighting and there should have been money that he should have been able to come home with."

Since that time the Pentagon has said it will reimburse the soldiers for this out-of-pocket expense, but Crandall says he has yet to see any of the money.

The GAO report also found that the Pentagon had no system in place to track unused tickets, and that it was totally unaware of the problem until the GAO audit.

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Re:What I found dispicable is that our fighting troops have to buy their own tickets home

Making our troops pay their own way home (even partially) is beyond despicable -- it's obscene. I hope this matter is dealt with swiftly and thoroughly.

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Re:Even in wartime, Pentagon waste continues
by Evie / June 9, 2004 4:17 AM PDT

1997-2003

Yep, waste that blossomed under Clinton where HUD couldn't account for about 60 billion, etc. And evidence that bureaucracies are slow to change.

Wouldn't it be nice if waste in governmental agencies not given their purpose in our Constitution would draw such ire.

Evie Happy

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Re:Even in wartime, Pentagon waste continues
by John Robie / June 9, 2004 4:24 AM PDT

And surely the airlines would not say anything. Wonder why there were no disgrunled employee to tip off a Sergeant who would report it to the IG & then GAO. Sort of like the $200 toilet seats & cresent wrenches.

I don't recall GI's not paying for commercial airline tickets in the US during Nam & Korea wars. I know if they were on leave and went to a USAF base in the US, they were given priority for travel on USAF aircraft anywhere that the acft was going to in the US or overseas.

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Had friends and relatives in Nam
by Diana Forum moderator / June 9, 2004 4:59 AM PDT

They got Air Force planes to states and flew priority standby on commercial planes for free.

I remember my cousin telling me that he bumped some long-haired hippie flying student standby.

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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Anything as large as the DOD, coupled
by Del McMullen / June 9, 2004 5:21 AM PDT

...with the bureaucracy of the federal government, is almost impossible to audit in any timely fashion. Too many layers of bureaucracy to work your way through.

When someone speaks of the Pentagon, too many get the picture of someone in uniform. The DOD has thousands of civilian employees traveling all over the world every day. Ways to 'cheat' on travel have been practiced and perfected over the years. And if it wasn't on someone's check list to track ticket purchases, and demand refunds for those not utilized, then no one did so. Civil servants are not paid to think, they follow the check list with blinders.

This kind of thing with travel goes on in industry also. A hi-tech company I once worked for purchased first class for anyone travelling "red eye",....till it became known that many, too many employees were downgrading to coach and pocketing the difference.

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Re:Anything as large as the DOD, coupled
by Diana Forum moderator / June 9, 2004 12:30 PM PDT

I worked for a company that handed out credit cards but the employee got the bill. If it was a company expense and the employee didn't get an expense report in and get reimbursed, that was tough. If the employee didn't pay the bill, the company paid the bill and the card was cancelled and sometimes the employee was fired.

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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Want a better one, Del?
by J. Vega / June 9, 2004 1:22 PM PDT

Dell, want a better one for misuse of travel in the Civil Service travel arena? When some upper-level types had to travel across the country east to west in a change of duty station they came up with a real "beaut". Time your departure and fly to Memphis via air. At Memphis, transfer to the Delta Queen riverboat and experience a tourist luxury river cruise to New Orleans. At New Orleans, again go to airline travel and proceed to points west. All on the government's nickel, of course. Oh, BTW, the auditors eventually caught onto this stunt and it came to a screaming halt. I still remember the stink, as I was working for the Government in D.C. at the time.

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