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$32 Billion of taxpayer dollars for patches?

Inside the Black Budget
$32 Billion of taxpayer dollars for patches?

NY Times
April 1, 2008

Skulls. Black cats. A naked woman riding a killer whale. Grim reapers. Snakes. Swords. Occult symbols. A wizard with a staff that shoots lightning bolts. Moons. Stars. A dragon holding the Earth in its claws.

More badges

No, this is not the fantasy world of a 12-year-old boy.

It is, according to a new book, part of the hidden reality behind the Pentagon’s classified, or “black,” budget that delivers billions of dollars to stealthy armies of high-tech warriors. The book offers a glimpse of this dark world through a revealing lens — patches — the kind worn on military uniforms.

“It’s a fresh approach to secret government,” Steven Aftergood, a security expert at the Federation of American Scientists in Washington, said in an interview. “It shows that these secret programs have their own culture, vocabulary and even sense of humor.”

One patch shows a space alien with huge eyes holding a stealth bomber near its mouth. “To Serve Man” reads the text above, a reference to a classic “Twilight Zone” episode in which man is the entree, not the customer. “Gustatus Similis Pullus” reads the caption below, dog Latin for “Tastes Like Chicken.”

Military officials and experts said the patches are real if often unofficial efforts at building team spirit.

The classified budget of the Defense Department, concealed from the public in all but outline, has nearly doubled in the Bush years, to $32 billion. That is more than the combined budgets of the Food and Drug Administration, the National Science Foundation and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Read Full Article Here

 

Feds use cards for lingerie, iPods, gambling, a $13,000 dinner and more

Washington Post
April 9, 2008

Federal employees used government credit cards to pay for lingerie, gambling, iPods, Internet dating services, and a $13,000 steak-and-liquor dinner, according to a new audit from the Government Accountability Office, which found widespread abuses in a purchasing program meant to improve bureaucratic efficiency.

The study, released by Senate lawmakers yesterday, found that nearly half the “purchase card” transactions it examined were improper, either because they were not authorized correctly or because they did not meet requirements for the cards’ use. The overall rate of problems “is unacceptably high,” the audit found.

The GAO also found that agencies could not account for nearly $2 million worth of items identified in the audit — including laptop computers, digital cameras and, at the Army, more than a dozen computer servers worth $100,000 each.

Read Full Article Here

Over 40 Cents Per Tax Dollar Goes To Military
http://www.theseminal.com/2008/04/08/the-tax-mans-gone-belligerent/

What military spending is doing to our economy
http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2008/3/31/16227/0316/411/487759

 


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