Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Earmarks and Your clothing - - All For Sale

Today, your tax dollars are not at work.

Instead they are for sale, at rock-bottom prices. Everything must go.

On the other hand, the just-as-abusive-hand, this is genius mass marketing.

I admit to being confused by the labyrinth of backroom-Congressional sleazy deals, as well as being pulled by my capitalistic core beliefs; for they both get yanked in deals such as the one here. Please be patient, as I unravel this garment before your eyes.

THE T-SHIRTS PICTURED HERE, you, I, we have already paid for. With our taxes. For our military, our Marines, our Army. Only thing is, these T-shirts were NEVER requested by any branch of the military, and they are unusable, if they had been. They are worthless in the theatre of our present wars. Yet, we taxpayers bought them.

These t-shirts are just the least of many purchases by the Federal Government, a result of Congressional earmarks.

Earmarks are federal dollars that members of Congress dole out to favor seekers — often campaign donors. In the process, lawmakers advocate for the companies, helping them bypass the normal system of evaluation and competive competition. Besides these t-shirts which YOU and I own, there's so much more:

Following, from an excellent expose`, about nonsense earmarks, from the Seattle Times Intelligencer, "The Favor Factory".

In June 2005, Rep. David Wu, Democrat, of Oregon arrived in Iraq and handed out free T-shirts to Marines. He was promoting the wares of InSport, a Portland, Oregon-area company that makes fast-drying polyester shirts.

Earlier that year, Wu and other Northwest lawmakers got a $2 million earmark in the defense bill to sell T-shirts to the Marines. Wu said the shirts would be far more comfortable than the cotton ones the Marines wore under body armor.

But there was a big problem with these T-shirts, a problem encountered in the deserts of Iraq and in 1982 during the Falklands invasion: Polyester clothing melts in intense heat, adhering to the skin. "This essentially creates a second skin and can lead to horrific, disfiguring burns," said Capt. Lynn E. Welling, the 1st Marine Logistics Group head surgeon, who conducted research in Iraq in early 2006.

Months after Wu's visit, a Marine wearing a polyester T-shirt was riding in an armored vehicle in Iraq when a bomb hidden on the road exploded. Even though the Marine wore a protective vest, the shirt melted in the explosion, contributing to severe burns over 70 percent of his body. Doctors had to extract the shirt's remains from the Marine's torso.

In April 2006, the Marines banned polyester T-shirts for use in combat or anywhere outside the protected "Green Zone" bases.

But in July of 2006 [unbelievably], because of Wu's earmark, the Marines announced the purchase of 87,000 of the banned polyester T-shirts, along with 11,000 T-shirts with fire-resistant sleeves. None was allowed in battle, the Marines said.


But by then, the Marine Corps had done months of testing to find the best fire-resistant T-shirts. It selected two shirts, one made by Potomac Field Gear, the other by Danskin, according to the Marines.

InSport's T-shirt — even its new fire-resistant version — still can't be used in combat, said 1st Lt. Geraldine Carey of the Marine Corps Systems Command.

Pissed Off yet? Wait until you read at the above Seattle Post-Intelligencer link, about the 18 Million dollar fleet of boats we've bought for our Navy and Coast Guard, which have been sitting in dock for years, since they too, ARE WORTHLESS!

These boat purchases by the DoD were secured by campaign contributions to Senator Patty Murry, D-WA ($15,000), Representative Norm Dicks, D-WA ($16,750), and Representative Brian Baird, D-WA ($14, 277).

The next time that I hear of some kook Democrat Senator, or corrupt Democratic Representative barking about no-bid contracts to Haliburton, I will just explode.

At least Haliburton provides a service to our servicemen and women which cannot be contracted by anyone else-- not like some melting T-shirts or useless boats!~

1 comment:

Red S Tater said...

great research and digging mal, I knew there was a lot of waste, but holy macaroni... clothes they can't sport and boats they can't float.

But money for the actual war?... no way jose'.