Please visit SOUTH KNOX BUBBA for great pictures great local color and great comments

And any of the blogs listed on your right particularly the League of Liberals




Halliburton racks up $1.72 Billion as NO-BID Contract is Extended AGAIN

Pentagon delays award of Iraq oil contracts again - So what else is new.

Army doubles the Halliburton Contract Cost Estimate to 2 Billion for "sabotage".

We didn't really believe it when we were told Halliburton's NO-BID Contracts would be open for bidding in August.
In October when we were told it would be mid-December we did not really buy that either.

Well here we go again.
"Army Corps spokesman Bob Faletti said the "deadline window" had been extended until Jan. 17, 2004. An announcement would be made between Dec. 15 and Dec. 17, "
Nobody believes for a minute that Halliburton won't win the open bidding but why don't they at least care about appearances? We know Dick Cheney is running the war and the country. As long as that is true more billions will be funneled to Halliburton. When are we going to wake up and throw these thieves out of Washington? If 1.72 Billion isn't enough then what is?
12.02.03, 12:35 PM ET WASHINGTON - The U.S. military said Tuesday it had again extended a deadline for awarding two new contracts to repair Iraq's oil fields, giving Vice President Dick Cheney's old firm Halliburton more time under its no-competition deal.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said in October it would replace by the end of December a no-bid deal given in March to Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg Brown & Root, which by last week had clocked up more than $1.72 billion in business.

But Army Corps spokesman Bob Faletti said the "deadline window" had been extended until Jan. 17, 2004. An announcement would be made between Dec. 15 and Dec. 17, he said. "Our goal is to make sure that we have a good contract and so we are giving ourselves that five-week window to ensure we have a good, solid contract," said Faletti.
Bushit! Contracts don't get better with more time! By the time this deal gets done the secret underground pipeline to Kuwait will have sucked IRAQ dry like the Bush led Congress is sucking the treasury dry. All of these thieves will be living on some island like Sultans while we are left here in utter financial ruin and chaos.
In the meantime, he said KBR, which has also bid on the new deals, would continue its work in Iraq."This is not about KBR, it is about having a good solid contract," he said, rejecting past criticism that delays served to give KBR more lucrative business in Iraq.
Yeah and if you believe that I have bridge in Brooklyn.....and you also believe this:
"Work will continue in Iraq and the work to award these contracts will continue. Our goal has always been to issue competitively-bid contracts."

Faletti said the deadline had been extended to give selection officials more time to look at the complicated bids and because of the coming holidays. He said the terms of the contracts -- one for the north and the other for the southern region in Iraq -- had not changed and he did not expect the amount of the contracts to increase.

The two new deals were meant to have been announced in October but were delayed after intense looting and sabotage doubled defense officials' original estimates from a billion dollars to $2 billion.
Yes we have an army there but they can't stop a billion dollars worth of sabotage and looting.
Faletti said looting and sabotage still hampered oil field repair work but it was not as intense. "Every time the pipelines are blown up that is money that has to be diverted to fix it from other stuff that was due to be repaired."

The work given to KBR in Iraq has been strongly criticized by Democrats, who allege cronyism and favoritism in handing out the deals and claim that KBR is overcharging for some of its services. Aside from the oil fields no-bid deal, KBR has a separate logistics contract with the military, with tasks ranging from building bases to delivering mail and feeding U.S. troops.

Last week, three Democratic lawmakers asked the Pentagon's inspector general to investigate alleged overpricing of gasoline sent to Iraq by KBR. Halliburton has strongly denied overpricing of gasoline into the oil-rich country, which has suffered an oil shortage because its refineries are not running to capacity.
Well you wouldn't expect them to admit to being thieves would you? Christ gimme a break. Just take all the money and leave us with some self-respect.



Cheney threatens "fundamental principles of the separation of powers"

High court may hear Cheney appeal -
Energy case focuses on confidentiality, presidential powers

This administration now threatens the power of Courts and Congress to balance the Executive

12/1/2003 WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration's sustained campaign to build up the powers of the presidency and to extend the confidentiality of White House decision-making is due for a major test in the Supreme Court, possibly as early as today.

The justices appear ready to decide whether they will hear an appeal by Vice President Dick Cheney, who is defending his refusal to disclose files of the task force that he headed in developing the administration's energy policy, which is now stalled in Congress.

If the court grants a review, a final decision would be months away. The administration has raised the stakes on the preliminary decision by arguing that the case threatens "fundamental principles of the separation of powers" between the branches of government.

Because of the sweeping constitutional arguments being made, the case has the potential to sharply curtail the power of the courts and, by implication, Congress to oversee the workings of the executive branch.

The key argument is that the Constitution's separation of powers among the three branches means that the other two branches are without authority to second-guess the president when he and his staff are deciding how to use executive powers.

The position of the administration in the case parallels arguments against judicial interference in the president's handling of the war on terrorism, arguments being made with increasing frequency in court cases involving terrorist suspects or "enemy combatants."

The White House has been making similar arguments in a running battle over access to internal presidential papers that are being sought by the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the US, an independent body that is investigating the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Cheney is not only the leading figure in the task-force dispute that is now ready for the Supreme Court's reaction. He also is the central officer of the administration waging the public campaign for greater presidential authority.

Early last year, he told a television talk show that in 34 years in Washington, "I have repeatedly seen an erosion of the powers and the ability of the president of the United States to do his job." It is a theme he repeats often in public appearances, and that Justice Department lawyers regularly make in briefs filed in court.

In the energy task force case, those arguments have been losing for the past two years, as a federal judge and then a federal appeals court have ruled that courts may order at least limited inquiry into the decision-making process that the agency used.

Two private groups, Judicial Watch, a conservative legal advocacy organization, and the Sierra Club, an environmental protection group, have sued Cheney, Cabinet officers, and other government officers, seeking to force into the open the role that energy industry executives might have played in influencing administration policy.

So far, the case is nowhere near going to trial, because Cheney has steadfastly refused to acknowledge that the courts may order such an intrusion into the decision-making process. Although given a chance by the federal judge to cite specific documents that the White House could claim were shielded by "executive privilege," the administration has refused to assert that claim as to any document, standing on its view that it need not do so in order to maintain confidentiality.

In the past, challenges over the confidentiality of presidential documents have often been ended, or settled, after presidential assertions of executive privilege -- a broad confidentiality doctrine first outlined by the Supreme Court in 1974 in the White House tape recordings case during the Watergate scandal.

But Cheney and President Bush have refused to invoke that privilege in the energy policy case, saying the independence of the executive branch does not require it. Besides, Cheney has argued, the president should not be bothered with the task of going over each document sought and deciding whether to claim a privilege to withhold it.

Cheney's appeal insists that the task force's work involved only government officials giving advice to the president. But the case against him by Judicial Watch and the Sierra Club argues that industry executives served as influential advisers, too, and their lawsuit seeks documents to show who attended meetings and what role advisers played. US District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan has allowed the case to go forward, at least to the point of requiring the disclosure of some task force papers -- unless the government claims they are privileged.

Last week, Senate leaders decided not to press for final congressional action on the broad energy measure during the current session of Congress, because of the threat of a Democratic-led filibuster. The bill will be brought up again next month.
These people are megalomaniacs and will stop at nothing to claim total control of the country.


Five Black Veterans Accuse KBR div. of Halliburton with Racial Bias

Nov 29, 2003 Five black veterans have accused Kellogg Brown & Root, a subsidiary of Halliburton, of engaging in racial discrimination. One of the men, a 21-year veteran of the Marines, contended in an arbitration filing that he was paid less than his colleagues, endured racist epithets, was passed over for promotion in favor of less-qualified people who were white and ultimately lost his job at Kellogg Brown & Root, the engineering and construction subsidiary of Halliburton, which is a major global supplier of oil field services.

It is difficult to draw conclusions about a company's employment practices based on the accusations of a handful of employees, specialists in employment law say, and nearly every large company has faced its share of discrimination claims. But such accusations made by veterans are potentially very sensitive for Kellogg Brown & Root, which has strong ties to the military.

A former Army staff sergeant said he lost his job when the company fired 84 percent of the blacks in his unit, according to the filing. Two other claimants, a former Army major and a former sergeant, said that, in separate incidents, they were told their jobs were no longer necessary - only to find later that white employees were promptly given their old positions.

A fifth man, a former Air Force sergeant, said that he was repeatedly denied employment at Kellogg Brown & Root when he applied in person for jobs at the company but received an offer when he sent his résumé via fax; the offer was rescinded before he could start.

"I was devastated," said Wayne Whiting, the former Army staff sergeant. He and the other four men have begun arbitration proceedings against Halliburton and Kellogg Brown & Root. "I was a former military guy, now a retired military guy, and I was well known in logistics, and I was just surprised that a company of this magnitude could go on to treat their employees with no kind of respect whatsoever."

The terms of the employment contracts signed by the four former Kellogg Brown & Root employees prohibit them from suing in federal court. This is not unusual, employment lawyers say. A date has not yet been set for the arbitration, which will be in New York, said Joshua Friedman, the lawyer for the veterans.

The stories of the four veterans who worked at the company have common elements. Each man says that he was singled out for unfair treatment by superiors. Two say that they complained to the human resources department at the company, and three filed complaints with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

All four lost their jobs and contend that clearly less-qualified white employees took their old positions - even after the company told them, in some cases, that the positions were to be eliminated.

Mr. Whiting, for example, started in November 1998 at Kellogg Brown & Root in Taszar, Hungary, helping to run a supply system for the Army, according to the arbitration filing. He was told in an e-mail message in October 2000 that his position was being eliminated, the filing said. Then he learned that one of his subordinates, who is white, was taking over his old job.

According to the arbitration claim, the e-mail message with the news of Mr. Whiting's job loss came after one of his supervisors told him, "You're not the right man and color for this job."