TOMMY WHITE'S CROCK OF STUFF

Thursday, November 21, 2002   |   Posted by Jim Hightower
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Would you want to take management advice from a former exective of Enron, whose corporate division ripped-off millions of dollars from shareholders and was involved in the infamous offshore partnerships that brought bankruptcy and disgrace to that corporation?

Well, like it or not, this same Enron guy is now making major management decisions affecting your tax dollars. He's Thomas White, who is now George W's handpicked choice to be secretary of the army.

Tommy, as George fondly calls his buddy, has recently issued a management memo decreeing that 214,000 army jobs are to be privatized. This would be the largest transfer ever of government functions to private contractors. These are crucial military support jobs the experienced mechanics, accountants, computer managers, and other skilled operators who keep the system moving despite the ineptness of the Brass. White says he's just trying to cut costs.

In practice, however, he's turning over these essential operational funtions to profiteering corporations that'll provide little cost-benefit returns... and skim the profits for themselves. National Security be damned, this privatization memo from Mr. Enron is about shifting taxpayer dollars to corporate contractors who financed Bush's election. George himself even has a quota system in place, having directed that 15 percent of Pentagon jobs are to be converted to private contractors by September of 2003.

But here's a question that he and Tommy don't want asked: Who is going to oversee this privatized workforce? Secretary White, you say? Hello. He now claims that he didn't know what was going on in his own Enron division. Besides, the army admits that it doesn't even know how many people are already on its privatized payroll, guessing that it's somewhere between 124,000 and 605,000.

This is Jim Hightower saying... never play poker with a man named Doc... and never buy a crock of stuff from an Enron exec.

Sources:
"Army may contract out jobs", Austin American-Statesman, 11/3/02. "Army Weighs Privatizing Close to 214,00 Jobs", by Christopher Lee, washingtonpost.com, 11/3/02. "U.S. Army Mulls Outsourcing Jobs", New York Times On-line, 11/4/02.

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