Friday, October 29, 2010

How Do You Lose $8.7 BILLION dollars?

A report issued by the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction states that the Department of Defense is unable to account for $8.7 billion dollars of the $9.1 billion it received for reconstruction activities in Iraq. The summary is that no one followed any guidelines, kept any records, or took any responsibility for the money.

$8.7 billion dollars gone.  Stop and think about how much money that is.  It's staggering to think that much money can simply vanish.

Imagine if the Marketing department at Walmart couldn’t account for $8 million dollars. Or if the R&D department at Apple couldn’t account for $20 million dollars. I don’t find it beyond the realm of belief that the people in charge would be fired immediately. Possibly even people below the person in charge. I also think it would never happen. Why? Because corporations are interested in profit, so they monitor money going in and coming out expeditiously. People working there know what guidelines they need to follow, and they know the repercussions. The bottom line is everything. So why is it that our government and the people who work there don’t seem to care what happens to our money? Oh, I know. Because it isn’t their money, so it can be spent and spent and spent. And obviously there is absolutely no oversight, so it’s allowed to happen over and over again.  We would be much better off if our government was run like a corporation.  But no, tax dollars come in and it's all free!

How can $8.7 billion dollars go missing? And how can it be that extremely large checks could be written, yet there is no record at all? Records in archives already? That will take a long time to find? This has all happened within the past 6 or so years.  Who was put in charge of the money? Someone was spending that money, so who was it? And what were they spending it on?

There needs to be a huge investigation into this, because it’s absolutely indefensible that this much money could simply vanish. It also makes you wonder – how much money is missing from other departments? If the Department of Defense is this screwed up, it’s not hard to think that other departments are probably just as, if not more, screwed up and lacking in guidelines.

Hey, Obama? I want change. I want change that addresses messes like this.


  1. This has angered me soooo much! I heard it mentioned once on conservative radio and never again. WTF is going on?!!

    So, my bf was possibly going to work for a govt contractor in Iraq, setting up computer servers and whatnot. Well, he found out that the whole thing was getting canned because the guys already there were caught with hookers living in their trailers and the project wasn't even 50% complete but all the contract money was gone!

    That is a pindot on the tip of the iceberg of the free-for-all BS that's been going on over there.

  2. I don't understand why this isn't front page news on every news website. I mean, 8 billion dollars missing? Our media in this country is awful.

    Regarding your bf's possible contract: that is unbelievable that the budget got that out of hand, and that they put up with that kind of thing! I worked in management consulting prior to law school, and we were kept strictly to the budget that we proposed. If we went over, it was on our dime. Why doesn't the government work that way? Is anyone minding the store? Doesn't seem like it.

  3. All I can figure is there's SO much political backscratching going on... it's just working its way down the ladder. I can't even wrap my brain around it.

    I wondered about union workers, hazard pay, quadruple over-time, etc. but that should all be accounted for with payroll.