C’mon all you big strong defense contractors. Belly up to the feeding trough at Homeland Security. HSA has spent millions and four years updating their dinosaur terrorist tracking computer system, and wouldn’t you know it, the whole thing is a colossal train wreck! In fact things are so FUBARed, HSA has no idea when or how it can be fixed. except, of course that it might cost $1.5 billion or more. No word on how this estimate was reached given they’ve no clue what is wrong. The more cynical among us might think such calculated incompetence is the result of corruption and graft rather than mere stupidity.
After spending millions of dollars and over 4 years on TECS modernization, it is unclear when it will be delivered and at what cost,” [said] David Powner, GAO’s director for information technology management issues.
This antiquated mess of COBOL code patched together over decades that supposed protects us from terrorists doesn’t even have a web browser.
Every day, the antiquated system screens more than 900,000 visitors and roughly 465,000 vehicles. To use the system, CBP personnel must log in to a dedicated TECS computer. The upgrade is supposed to provide users with Web browser access, among other things.
It’s rumored version 2.0 of the upgrade might include those newfangled email and instant messaging thingees all the kids are talking about nowadays.
The US government despite blusterings to the contrary is intent on insuring the flow of drugs continues from Mexico, along with Â billions of Â dollars of dirty money. As for Rule of Law, well, I guess that’s just for the little people. All that drug cartel money flowing into our financial is just too juicy to ignore. And if thousands get tortured to death each year because of it. oh well. Â Keeping the banksters happy is the most important goal.
“Anxious to counterattack, the CIA proposed electronically emptying the bank accounts of drug kingpins, but was turned down by the Treasury Department and the White House, which feared unleashing chaos in the banking system.”
This happened under Bush. Obama is no better. Geithner has pointblank said big banks will not be criminally prosecuted for the very same reason, because it would hurt and upset all the corrupt banks and hedge funds.
This one sentence betrays Washington’s distorted foreign policy priorities. The CIA proposal had several clear benefits: drug lords forced to pull their investments would have less incentive to stay in the game, cartels would be robbed of operating funds, and most importantly of all, the proposal could be implemented with minimal American involvement.  There would be no need for more boots on the ground. The drawbacks were also clear: folks on Wall Street would lose money. The White House took Wall Street’s side in the debate, and favored a policy designed to kill or capture the “high value targets” whose bank accounts were not to be touched.
There is only one word that explains this and that is “corruption.”
William Ward, the former head of the United States’ Africa Command, is accused of spending hundreds of thousands in taxpayer dollars on personal expenses.
Ward is (was?) a four-star general accused of using public money for personal use, yet the story is getting very little play in the US and appears absent from major media here. This link is from Al-Jazeera.