American Digital News
“FOLLOW THE MONEY” SERIES…
and what a journey it is. Loops, turnarounds, cul-de-sacs, expressways, dirt tracks, and detours….
This ongoing series will include (to name a few) the following sections:
(1) U.S. contributions to the U.N. / International Aid
(2) Paris Agreement COP 21
(3) Department of State, Hillary Clinton term – $6 Billion missing
(4) Pentagon (Department of Defense) — $29-33 Trillion reported unaccounted for
(5) Puerto Rico 2017 Aid
(6) American Red Cross
(7) $768 Million U.S. Humanitarian Aid to Al Qaeda’s Arabian Peninsula Headquarters
(8) Illegal Immigrants Costs
(9) Obama’s Iran Deal – $400 Million Cash night flight flown to Iran plus $1.3 Billion transferred later for total of $1.7 Billion paid (for questioned ransom allegations)
(10) Sanctuary Cities and States
(11) Congress “SHUSH-FUND” for sexual harassment cases against members of Congress
(12) United Arab Emirates (UAE) Gulftainer 35-year cargo container terminal lease at PORT CANAVERAL (and other U.S. ports)
(13) Uranium One – Rosatom – ATOMREDMETZOLOTO, Nuclear Regulatory Commission, State Department, and Obama Administration
(14) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Clean Water Act v citizen’s stock pond/fire prevention reservoir pond
(15) Environmental Protection Act (EPA) negligence and accidental hazardous Waste Water Spill affecting 4 states, 2 rivers, and a creek
(16) Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land tyranny.
Some of these “Follow the Money” topics could easily fill a small library. We assure all of you, that you will experience: bewilderment, disgust, and anger while reading this collection of information. You will undoubtedly have many questions. Therefore, for those interested in learning more, a few search links are provided herewith.
(4) Pentagon (Department of Defense) — $29-33 Trillion reported unaccounted for
a) Dec 2017 – THE PENTAGON (DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE) … 29 Trillion dollars missing from Pentagon. Trump calls for audit
Earlier this year, a Michigan State University economist, working with graduate students and a former government official, found $21 trillion in unauthorized spending in the departments of Defense and Housing and Urban Development for the years 1998-2015.
a1) Missing $21 Trillion Means Federal Government Is Lawless – Dr. Mark Skidmore
In one example, Skidmore found a huge transfer from the Treasury Department to the Army that, again, was not authorized. Keep in mind, the Army has an approved budget of a little more than $120 billion a year. Skidmore says, “In this one report . . . there is an appendix table that indicates there was a transfer from Treasury to the Army of about $800 billion. That’s almost a trillion dollars flowing in. There is a note that says we had to do this in order to reconcile past years. That doesn’t make sense to me either because, these earlier years, you have a transfer from the Treasury of your $120 billion or $130 billion, and every year, the Army is granted the authority to spend this money in the ways they say they will. How can you get (an additional) $800 billion in and call that an ‘adjustment’? I tried to call and talk to the office of the Inspector General to talk to the people who helped generate these reports. I haven’t been successful, and I stopped trying when they disabled the links.”
You heard correctly. The government cut off inspection of their own financial accounting to the public. Skidmore says, “I have been able to talk to a few people. I tried calling the Congressional Budget Office. I talked with somebody at the GAO, and one or two people at the Office of the Inspector General, who were generating these reports. . . .It’s a big question in why don’t people want to look at this? I am just a blue collar economist at Michigan State University, and I am saying this does not make sense to me. Why don’t we look at this? . . . Some high ranking government official authorized the disabling of all the links to the key documents. We know that.”
b) Dec 2017 – 29 Trillion Missing From Pentagon/DOD Announces Audit Under Trump – VIDEO
Catherine Austin Fitts joins Alex Jones live via Skype to break down how there is 29 trillion dollars missing from the Pentagon and an audit of the Department of Defense has been ordered under Trump.
b1) Oct 2017 – DOD and HUD Missing Money: $21 Trillion of Undocumentable Adjustments ($65,000 Per Person)
Catherine Austin Fitts Missing Money Docs – Solari Report (see link below)
c) Rumsfeld Buries Admission of Missing 2+ Trillion Dollars in 9/10/01 Press Conference
On September 10, 2001, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld held a press conference to disclose that over $2,000,000,000,000 in Pentagon funds could not be accounted for. Rumsfeld stated: “According to some estimates we cannot track $2.3 trillion in transactions.” According to a report by the Inspector General, the Pentagon cannot account for 25 percent of what it spends.
The Comptroller of the Pentagon at the time of the attack was Dov Zakheim, who was appointed in May of 2001. Before becoming the Pentagon’s money-manager, he was an executive at System Planning Corporation, a defense contractor specializing in electronic warfare technologies including remote-controlled aircraft systems
d) May 2003 – Military waste under fire / $1 trillion missing — Bush plan targets Pentagon accounting
Though Defense has long been notorious for waste, recent government reports suggest the Pentagon’s money management woes have reached astronomical proportions. A study by the Defense Department’s inspector general found that the Pentagon couldn’t properly account for more than a trillion dollars in monies spent. A GAO report found Defense inventory systems so lax that the U.S. Army lost track of 56 airplanes, 32 tanks, and 36 Javelin missile command launch-units.
And before the Iraq war, when military leaders were scrambling to find enough chemical and biological warfare suits to protect U.S. troops, the department was caught selling these suits as surplus on the Internet “for pennies on the dollar,” a GAO official said.
Defense is long overdue for “transformation.”
In congressional testimony Rumsfeld himself has said “the financial reporting systems of the Pentagon are in disarray . . . they’re not capable of providing the kinds of financial management information that any large organization would have.”
GAO reports detail not only the woeful state of Defense fiscal controls, but the cost of failed attempts to fix them.
For instance, in June 2002 the GAO reviewed the history of a proposed Corporate Information Management system, or CIM. The initiative began in 1989 as an attempt to unify more than 2,000 overlapping systems then being used for billing, inventory, personnel and similar functions. But after “spending about $20 billion, the CIM initiative was eventually abandoned,” the GAO said.
e) Sept 2013 – Pentagon Mocks Sequester with New Millions Wasted
While Pentagon officials fret over how the second wave of over $60 billion in budget cuts mandated by the sequester will undermine military readiness, and lawmakers warn against the potentially expensive strike in Syria, the Defense Department continues wasting millions on various programs.
From spending $1.5 trillion on a fleet of fighter jets that can’t fly, to tossing millions developing its own brand of beef jerky, the DOD is no stranger to government waste.
Delayed Navy Aircraft Carrier Goes Over-Budget:
The GAO on Friday blasted the DOD for delays and cost overruns for the Navy’s newest aircraft carrier, the USS Gerald R. Ford. The carrier is already 22 percent over budget and will not likely be ready in time for its commissioning deadline in 2016.
Overpriced AFRICOM Headquarters:
GAO reported Monday that the Pentagon didn’t use a well-documented analysis to assess the cost-effectiveness of keeping AFRICOM’s headquarters in Stuttgart, Germany. The agency suggested that if AFRICOM was moved to the United States it could save up to $70 million each year and potentially create more than 4,300 jobs.
DARPA Didn’t Properly Screen Contract Bids:
DOD’s IG reported that Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency slacked off on certain portions of its contract bid review and that there were flaws in DARPA’s scientific review process and that it missed Federal Acquisition Regulation requirements in 35 of 36 contracts, which totaled $426.4 million.
Vehicle Mismanagement Wastes $2 Million:
Due to staffing shortages, the DOD failed to manage its nontactical vehicles in the Washington, DC region in the National-Capital Region, costing the department nearly $2 .5 million in 2011 for the 774 nontactical vehicles in the region.
e1) Sept 2017 – The Pentagon’s $65 Million Plane That Never Flew a Mission
About 10 years ago, the Department of Defense and the Drug Enforcement Agency decided they needed a high-tech surveillance plane to monitor the heroin trade in Afghanistan. In 2012, a small airliner – an ATR 42-500, built in Europe – was delivered to a military contractor in Delaware to be crammed full with the latest technologies, such as “electro-optical infra-red video capability.” Five years and at least $65 million later, the plane was sitting in a hanger in Texas, stripped of its enhancements, having never made it to Afghanistan or flown a single mission. The DEA said it wants to auction the plane off to the highest bidder.
The whole fiasco really cost closer to $86 million once all of the spending by both the Pentagon and the DEA is taken into account – and that figure could be even higher, but we’ll never know since the Pentagon didn’t track its spending properly.
e2) May 2017 – Yet Another Attempt to Audit the Pentagon. Good Luck With That
The Department of Defense – the largest government agency with an annual budget of nearly $600 billion – has never been successfully audited.
Worse still, an investigation by Reuters in 2013 showed that “phony numbers” were inserted into Defense Department’s books to square the accounts with those of the U.S. Treasury—a sanctioned accounting practice that in any business would be considered fraud and lead to jail time.
“The Department of Defense is the only major department and agency in the federal government that cannot yet pass a test with an independent audit,” Gene L. Dodaro, Comptroller of the United States, said in an interview yesterday following his testimony before the Budget Committee. “There are some small components of the Defense Department that do pass audits, like the Army Corp of Engineers. But none of the major services and certainly not a department-wide audit so far.”
When Army financial experts mustered the courage to submit their books for review last year, the Inspector General discovered $2.8 trillion of accounting errors alone.
e3) Nov 2013 – How the Pentagon Cooks the Books to Hide Massive Waste
Linda Woodford spent the last 15 years of her career inserting phony numbers in the U.S. Department of Defense’s accounts.
Every month until she retired in 2011, she says, the day came when the Navy would start dumping numbers on the Cleveland, Ohio, office of the Defense Finance and Accounting Service, the Pentagon’s main accounting agency. Using the data they received, Woodford and her fellow DFAS accountants there set about preparing monthly reports to square the Navy’s books with the U.S. Treasury’s – a balancing-the-checkbook maneuver required of all the military services and other Pentagon agencies.
The data flooded in just two days before deadline. As the clock ticked down, Woodford says, staff were able to resolve a lot of the false entries through hurried calls and emails to Navy personnel, but many mystery numbers remained.
At the DFAS offices that handle accounting for the Army, Navy, Air Force and other defense agencies, fudging the accounts with false entries is standard operating procedure, Reuters has found. Former military service officials say record-keeping at the operational level throughout the services is rife with made-up numbers to cover lost or missing information.
Mired in a mess largely of its own making, the Pentagon is left to make do with old technology and plugs – lots of them. In the Cleveland DFAS office where Woodford worked, for example, “unsupported adjustments” to “make balances agree” totaled $1.03 billion in 2010 alone, according to a December 2011 GAO report.
In its annual report of department-wide finances for 2012, the Pentagon reported $9.22 billion in “reconciling amounts” to make its own numbers match the Treasury’s, up from $7.41 billion a year earlier. It said that $585.6 million of the 2012 figure was attributable to missing records. The remaining $8 billion-plus represented what Pentagon officials say are legitimate discrepancies. However, a source with knowledge of the Pentagon’s accounting processes said that because the report and others like it aren’t audited, they may conceal large amounts of additional plugs and other accounting problems.
The practical impact of the Pentagon’s accounting dysfunction is evident at the Defense Logistics Agency, which buys, stores and ships much of the Defense Department’s supplies – everything from airplane parts to zippers for uniforms.
It has way too much stuff.
“We have about $14 billion of inventory for lots of reasons, and probably half of that is excess to what we need,” Navy Vice Admiral Mark Harnitchek, the director of the DLA, said at an August 7, 2013, meeting with aviation industry executives, as reported on the agency’s web site.
And the DLA keeps buying more of what it already has too much of. A document the Pentagon supplied to Congress shows that as of September 30, 2012, the DLA and the military services had $733 million worth of supplies and equipment on order that was already stocked in excess amounts on warehouse shelves. That figure was up 21% from $609 million a year earlier. The Defense Department defines “excess inventory” as anything more than a three-year supply.
Statue of Liberty seems rather worried as United States national debt is soon to pass 20% of the entire world’s combined economy (GDP / Gross Domestic Product).
If you look carefully you can see the Statue of Liberty. The Statue of Liberty no longer keeps her arm and torch up high and proud. Debt is slavery, and she knows it.
Each floor of each pillar is worth $10 Billion. There’s an American Football field hiding inside Statue of Liberty’s prison cell made of debt.
Funny fact: The first version of the US Debt illustration shown above was for $16 Trillion, back in 2012. Now with $20 Trillion, instead of completely boxing in the Statue of Liberty, where you would not be able to see her, we instead opted to extend out the her prison cell and make it larger, with more pillars of debt, while keeping the view.
China only owes 7% of US debt, while all foreign nations hold together 32.5%. 67.5% of debt is owned by US Citizens and American entities, this includes the Federal Reserve, which explained in simple terms buys US debt (government bonds) with newly “printed” Federal Reserve Notes (money). The Fed writes blank checks to itself from an unlimited checking account, then buys the debt through various financial mechanisms. New money is introduced into the financial system through this mechanism.
The debt will likely never be paid back and here is why: Unless there is a completely new paradigm in thinking, history shows that public (US) debt will very likely never be paid back. The politicians make grand promises during elections, then when they can’t find the cash to keep their promises they borrow money. Paying back means making difficult decisions and losing the seat in office. It is always easier to borrow from the nation’s children’s future. Instead of paying back these piles of money, the piles will be made worth less through inflation– money will most likely be printed . That means the holders of US debt will get back less than they were promised, arguably defaulting on the debt in terms of real purchasing power.
Here are some cool quotes from the founding fathers of United States of America, over 200 years ago saying the right things about the future and in a sense predicting today:
“If ever again our nation stumbles upon unfunded paper, it shall surely be like death to our body politic. This country will crash.” – George Washington
“It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world.” – Thomas Jefferson
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Sources Series 4:
ADN Related Links:
Section 2 – Paris Agreement COP 21 / Green Climate Fund
Series 3 – Secr of State HRC missing $6Billion
Series 5 – Puerto Rico 2017 Hurricane Aid