Christians, call to do away with the Pentagon and all military.
Are you a Christian or not? If you are, stand up for total pacifism and disarmament.
If you don't agree with the following, you're no Christian:
"And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more." Isaiah 2:4
DOD Contracts Out Contractor Oversight
Wednesday 04 June 2008
by: Maya Schenwar, t r u t h o u t | Report
The Department of Defense (DOD) now employs contractors to keep contractors in check in Iraq, under a new framework for war industry management solidified last month.
In April, the Pentagon split its largest military contract in Iraq - formerly belonging to the Houston-based corporation KBR, Inc. - among companies Fluor and DynCorp, in addition to KBR.
A fourth company, the British-American service provider Serco, is responsible for managing and overseeing the other three, according to its contract, signed last year and now in effect.
Based on the contract, Serco's duties include planning activities, managerial work, performance reviews, training and budget recommendations. According to an Army Sustainment Command news release last year, Serco is responsible for "analyzing performance contractors' costs," "working with the Army to measure contractor performance" and "recommending process improvements." The company also serves as a liaison between the other three contractors, and between the contractors and the government.
The Serco deal marks a new level of Defense Department privatization, according to Dina Rasor, the chief investigator of the Follow the Money Project, who founded the nonprofit Project on Government Oversight (POGO).
"It's gotten to the point where we're actually outsourcing the oversight," Rasor told Truthout.
In the absence of those provisions, Serco's contract does impose one unique regulatory mechanism: In addition to overseeing other contractors' duties, the company is responsible for some of the oversight of itself. The contract states that, prior to its assessment by the governmental Award Fee Evaluation Board, "the contractor shall submit a self-assessment," which "should contain any information that may be reasonably expected to assist the AFEB in evaluating the Contractors [sic] performance."
"Virtually the entire expanse of the DOD budget gets no oversight - certainly no aggressive oversight," said Wheeler, a former Senate staffer and GAO analyst. "I worked on Capitol Hill for over 30 years, and I've never seen it as bad as it is now."
"No one was watching the store for the first five years of the war," she said.
The following should appear at the end of every post:
According to the IRS, "Know the law: Avoid political campaign intervention":
Tax-exempt section 501(c)(3) organizations like churches, universities, and hospitals must follow the law regarding political campaigns. Unfortunately, some don't know the law.
Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are prohibited from participating in any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. The prohibition applies to campaigns at the federal, state and local level.
Violation of this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes. Section 501(c)(3) private foundations are subject to additional restrictions.
Political Campaign Intervention
Political campaign intervention includes any activities that favor or oppose one or more candidates for public office. The prohibition extends beyond candidate endorsements.
Contributions to political campaign funds, public statements of support or opposition (verbal or written) made by or on behalf of an organization, and the distribution of materials prepared by others that support or oppose any candidate for public office all violate the prohibition on political campaign intervention.
Factors in determining whether a communication results in political campaign intervention include the following:
- Whether the statement identifies one or more candidates for a given public office
- Whether the statement expresses approval or disapproval of one or more candidates' positions and/or actions
- Whether the statement is delivered close in time to the election
- Whether the statement makes reference to voting or an election
- Whether the issue addressed distinguishes candidates for a given office
Many religious organizations believe, as we do, that the above constitutes a violation of the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
That said, we make the following absolutely clear here:
- The Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project not only do not endorse any candidate for any secular office, we say that Christianity forbids voting in such elections.
- Furthermore, when we discuss any public-office holder's position, policy, action or inaction, we definitely are not encouraging anyone to vote for that office holder's position.
- We are not trying to influence secular elections but rather want people to come out from that entire fallen system.
- When we analyze or discuss what is termed "public policy," we do it entirely from a theological standpoint with an eye to educating professing Christians and those to whom we are openly always proselytizing to convert to authentic Christianity.
- It is impossible for us to fully evangelize and proselytize without directly discussing the pros and cons of public policy and the positions of secular-office holders, hence the unconstitutionality of the IRS code on the matter.
- We are not rich and wouldn't be looking for a fight regardless. What we cannot do is compromise our faith (which seeks to harm nobody, quite the contrary).
- We render unto Caesar what is Caesar's. We render unto God what is God's.
- When Caesar says to us that unless we shut up about the unrighteousness of Caesar's policies and practices, we will lose the ability of people who donate to us to declare their donations as deductions on their federal and state income-tax returns, we say to Caesar that we cannot shut up while exercising our religion in a very reasonable way.
- We consider the IRS code on this matter as deliberate economic duress (a form of coercion) and a direct attempt by the federal government to censor dissenting, free political and religious speech.
- It's not freedom of religion if they tax it.
And when they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute? He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers? Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free. (Matthew 17:24-26)