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The Bush Gang's Ten Most Outrageous Scandals
(Katrina vanden Heuvel, The Nation, January 13, 2005)
1. Halliburton's Corruption. Nine different reports compiled by the GAO, the Coalition Provisional Authority's IG and the Defense Contract Audit Agency faulted Halliburton's performance in Iraq, where it has been awarded more than $10 billion in US contracts.
2. Iraq's Decline. In June 2004 the GAO provided a bleak assessment of Iraq after fourteen months of US military occupation, documenting that in critical areas like security, electricity and the judicial system Iraq is worse off now than it was before the war.
3. Abu Ghraib Prison Torture. In late August Maj. Gen. George Fay released an official Army report charging that US military personnel committed torture and that civilian contractors and military intelligence interrogators played a greater role in abusing prisoners than previously thought.
4. The CIA's Pre-9/11 Intelligence Failures. Early this month the New York Times and the Washington Post reported that the CIA's IG will soon release a report criticizing the CIA's senior leadership for failing to "direct more resources to counterterrorism and inadequately analyz[ing] the threat from Al Qaeda" before the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
5. HHS's Deceptive Ad Campaign. In May the GAO concluded that the Health and Human Services Department conducted a secret propaganda campaign that illegally spent taxpayer money to produce and distribute videos touting the Administration's Medicare prescription drug law.
6. HHS's Scully Scandal. In September the GAO found that HHS had illegally paid the salary of former Medicare chief Thomas Scully, who threatened to fire veteran Medicare actuary Richard Foster if he told Congress that the Administration's Medicare prescription drug legislation would cost $100 billion more than the White House figure.
7. Government-wide Accounting Problems. In December the GAO reported that the federal government's accounting practices are unreliable and might not meet widely accepted accounting standards.
8. Sex Education Misinformation. A report that comes to us thanks to Representative Henry Waxman revealed that most of the government-funded abstinence-only sex education programs were giving students false information.
9. CAPPS II's Failures. In February the GAO uncovered significant gaps in privacy protections in the Administration's passenger profiling program developed by the Transportation Security Administration.
10. The Real Costs of War. In July the GAO criticized the Administration for underestimating by $12.3 billion the cost of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. This is part of a pattern of deception by the Administration, which has repeatedly hidden the real costs of the Iraq invasion and occupation from Congress and the public.
posted by Lorenzo 8:28 AM