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Aug 05, 2008

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Joe America

As someone who does not just sit idly by, I have used the database to write letter of protest. For example, Exxon has got to be the biggest corporate whore out there and I have used POGO's information to protest their horrendous record. Thanks POGO. But, reading these comments make me sick. How can these KSB people sleep at night knowing how they are raping and pillaging our country by support corporations like those in the database. As we used to say in the 60s, while you may not have your finger on the trigger of the gun, but if you don't do something to stop it you are just as guilty. If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem. I'm sure you K Streeters have great salaries, but the only way you can look yourselves in the mirror is by using twisted logic.

VetLit

Found FCMD useful when considering employment with the various contractors. I just finished working for one high on the list, and was glad I knew what kind of company I was getting into.

The FCMD would also be useful for opening arguments in any trial case against a company high on the list.

Connie the Contractor

Jeff –

You have it pretty well figured out. Sadly, for every Kelman or Soloway we manage to expose, there are many more like them who will lobby for the highest bidder. BTW, did you catch the Wash Post piece about the 200 largest local businesses? One of them is GTSI, on whose board Kelman sits. According to their proxy statement, he’s made a lot of money exercising his options.

Then you wonder why he is such a fan of IT contractors. He’s gone very far since joining the govt with the Clintonites. It’s a long way from a duplex in Cambridge to a mansion in Lexington.

KSBR shocked&awed

Jeff,
You sound like a "practitioner" on the govt side of things, perhaps threatened by contractors, even though you know the govt can't do without them. No one quarrels with that. Consider setting your sights on improving the productivity and output and service orientation of your fellow civil servants. Like contractors, most of them are probably honorable, but there may not be a fire within. You just want to pound contractors for existing. At least try it the way POGO does sometimes. Try a credible source or a fact or two. Just don't emote. But make comparisons along the way. Do we save or lose time or money or quality with the traditional civil service approach or with contractors? If one, or better yet, both "talent" pools were tapped, fired up, and ready to collaborate, do you think that would work? It did in WWII, but the contractors were almost all in mfg, and the threat was more concrete. But today, services are the thing. Do you think federal civil servants do a better job at delivering services than contractors.? The government can't perform many of the services it buys. Prove it, rather than hugging a catalog that damns contractors for settlements with no admission of wrongdoing. Wouldn't you like to penalize civil servants for taking another year at x,y,or z, or wasting a few billion here or there, or stonewalling the citizens or the Congress, or stampeding out of the building at 4:30. Of course, there are some stellar civil servants; we would have ceased having a government without them, but the beast becomes more and more ponderous, expensive, and nonresponsive. How big is the government's figurative catalog of malperformance? Whoops, forgot there's no accountability. Think big, Jeff; think big. And again, think carefully about whom you vote for.

Anay Shah

I think the young folks that worked on this in the summer of 2003 were absolutely critical!

But seriously, if this is to impact contracting, then its use by Government Contracting Officers, the Office of Acquisition, and the General Counsel within Agencies should be the focus. Obviously, the holy grail would be to have this adopted and run by an central agency and made part of the technical review of any procurement (which I know you are working towards).

Design looks great.
Former POGO-ite

Jeff

KSBRR,
Paul Light? That's the best you got? Paul Light? He's a nice little academic. He does nice work, and since he has a corner on the niche market he gets a lot of attention. But, he's not a practitioner. He's been in an ivory tower for as long as I can remember. He doesn't get his hands dirty. I'll let Scott Amey, who's covered in it from head to toe explain, or he'll probably just link to example after example from this website of how with we're dealing with billions and billions in procurement problems. And, Scott would probably tell you that this election is more than likely not going to change drastically the procurement landscape. The federal government does need strengthening and the importance of oversight needs to be stressed from the top down. But, Soloway, Steve Kelman, and the K Streeters are going to let Hope or Mavericks change the status quo. We do have the government we deserve, but that doesn't mean that we can't change.
Candle in the wind,
Jeff

Connie the Contractor

I think Jeff Hamilton wants a date with Danielle.

The FCMD is great, if only because it puts Stan and his ilk on notice that someone is watching.

KSBR redux

Jeff Hamilton,

Suggest you read Prof. Paul Light's "A Government Ill Executed" to see where the overwhelming majority of waste and abuse and even fraud comes from. How big would a catalog be of government official and civil servant misdeeds, incompetence, and negligence?--and whom could you link it to? Difficult job, eh?

Sure, procurement's a problem in some well known respects and needs to be fixed in terms of what the government does and what some contractors do. But, according to Light, that's hardly where the incompetence , malfeasance, and negligence of some officials and some civil servants comes from. And those qualities are what's making most programs fail. We have the kind of government we deserve. See if you can make things better by how you vote in November.
We gotta keep on trying to strengthen the government in all respects. You'd be misguided to think that contractors are the central front in the war on waste, and abuse and fraud.

Jeff Hamilton

Hey Neil,
Where are Stan Soloway's comments on your data base? Isn't it interesting that Stan and his gang of K Street Buddies in their many various forms are nowhere to be found on this blog post? Is it because transparency is like a light to those cockroaches and they've scurried for cover? Your information is great and I know several people who use it, but wouldn't dare admit it. I can't believe how much work just a few guys at POGO do. POGO's budget is probably smaller than Stan's annual salary. Is this a great country or what?
Get back to work,
Jeff

I work for the GAO and I know that informally, the GAO has accessed the federal contractor mismanagement database and found it a very credible tool. The site has been useful for sending analysts and auditors in the best direction.

While the design and look are great, the limitations of the information include its use of information from companies which have had civil penalties levied or settlements with the USG.

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