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A deadly monster: Part 1. An overview of the military-national security, industrial, political triumvirate

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Makers and sellers of deadly products and services used in military interventions are sometimes referred to as "merchants of death." More than one million people work in the war/snoop industry.

What follows are some long lists taking up a lot of space, but they are necessary. They identify potential targets of any corporate reform efforts.

The top 100 defense contractors [1]

Acutronic   Accenture   Ltd.   Action Target Advatech Pacific, Inc   Aerojet   Aerospace Corporation Aerovironment   Advanced Armament Corporation (AAC)   Advanced Integrated Systems   AECOM Aegis Defense Services   Aimpoint   AirScan   Airtronic USA   Aivea Corporation   Allen Vanguard   Alliant Techsystems   Allied Container Systems   AM General Corporation   American Dynamics Flight Systems American Ordnance LL C American Petroleum Institute   Analysis, Computing & Engineering Solutions, Inc.   (ACES, Inc.)   Antonov Airlines   Applied Research Associates Inc.   Arcturus-UAV ARINC   Argon ST   ArmorSource   ArmorWorks   Artis LLC   ASSETT, Inc.   Astronautics Corporation of America   Aurora Flight Sciences   AV-Optimal Defense Consultancy Service   AVX Aircraft Company BAE Systems plc   BAE Systems Inc.   BAE Systems Land and Armaments   BAE Systems Electronics, Intelligence & Support   Land Systems OMC   Ball Corporation   Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. Barrett Firearms Manufacturing   Battelle Memorial Institute   Bechtel Corporation   Benelli USA Berico Technologies   BDM Corporation   Blazeware Inc.   Black Knight Technology Inc.   Boeing Company *   Boeing Sikorsky Comanche Team   Boeing SVS    McDonnell Douglas   Insitu   Booz Allen Hamilton   Boston Dynamics   British Nuclear Fuels Limited   Brogden Enterprises, Inc.    CACI International Inc. Carlyle Group   Carnegie Mellon University   Ceradyne   Charles Stark Draper Laboratory   Chenega Federal Systems   CNA Corporation   Colt Defense Concurrent Technologies Corporation   Critical Solutions International   Crye Associates   CSA Engineering   CSI Combined Systems   Computer Sciences Corporation *   Cubic Corporation   Omega Training Group   Decibel Research Inc.   Defense Technologies Inc.   Delta Intelligence & Security   DEW Engineering    Digital System Resources Inc.   Dillon Aero   DRS Technologies   DynCorp   Dynetics, Inc   EADS   EADS North America   Exnovo Solutions, Inc. Eurocopter   American Eurocopter   Airbus   Earth Class Mail East/West Industries, Inc.   Ensign-Bickford Aerospace and Defense    Edison Welding  Elbit SystemsInstitute   M7 Aerospace   ENSCO, Inc.   Environmental Tectonics Corporation   Ernst & Young Evergreen International Aviation   Exxon Corporation   Fabbrica d'Armi Pietro Beretta   Fabrique Nationale de Herstal   FLIR Systems   Fluor Corp.   FGM Inc   F M C Technologies   Force Protection Inc Foster-Miller, Inc.   Foster Wheeler Ltd.   Foundation Health Systems Inc.   G4S plc   Armour Group Inc GB Industrial Battery   Gemini Industries Inc.   General Atomics   General Dynamics *   Gulfstream MOWAG   General Dynamics Electric Boat   Bath Iron Works   General Electric Military Jet Engines Division *   Geo-Centers Inc.   Glock Ges.m.b.H.   Goodrich Corporation *   Gordon and Castille Industries Georgia Tech Research Institute   Harris Corporation   Halliburton Corporation   Health Net, Inc. Heckler & Koch USA   HESCO USA   Hewlett-Packard *   Honeywell HS Produkt   Humana Inc.   Hybricon Corporation   IBM   Industrial Machining & Design Services, Inc.   Infotech Aerospace Services   (a   Pratt & Whitney   joint venture )  Insight Technology   Institute for Defense Analyses Intelsat   International Resources Group   iRobot   Israeli Aerospace Industries   Israeli Military Industries   ITT Exelis   ITT Research Institute   Jacobs Engineering Group Inc.   JGB Enterprises, Inc. Johns Hopkins University   Kaman Aircraft   Kearfott Corporation   Kellogg, Brown and Root   Knight's Armament Company   Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace   L-3 Communications Holdings, Inc*. SYColeman   Brashear   EOTech   Lockheed Martin Gyrocam Systems   Longbow Limited Liability Inc. LRAD Corporation   M9 Defense Systems MacGregor Group  ( part of  Cargotec corporation A.P. Moller-Maersk Group   ManTech International Massachusetts Institute of Technology   Maytag Aircraft Corporation   MBDA   McQ Inc   Menatek Spare Parts   Metal Storm   Milkor USA   Mission Essential Personne   MITRE Corporation ; also see   ANSER Institute for Homeland Security Mitsubishi   Motorola Inc.   Mustang Tech Group   Natel Electronic Manufacturing Services   Navistar Defense   Nextel   NexGen Data Systems, inc.   Nichols Research Corporation   NITTOH KENSETSU CO, LTD.   NorthropGrumman   Corporation*   Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems   Northrop Grumman Information Technologies   Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems   Northrop Grumman Mission Systems   Northrop Grumman Newport News    Northrop Grumman Ship Systems   Northrop Grumman Space Technology Northrop Grumman Technical Services   Ocean Shipholdings Inc  Oceaneering International   Olin Corporation ; John M. Olin and John M. Olin Foundation   Orbital Sciences Corporation Oshkosh Corporation *   Osterhout Design Group ; Ralph Osterhout   OT Training Solutions Para-Ordnance   Perot Systems   Picatinny Arsenal   Pinnacle Armor   Point Blank Solutions, Inc. Precision Castparts Corporation   Quantum3D   QinetiQ North America   Raytheon BBN Technologies   JPS Communications   ELCAN Sighting Systems   Remington Arms   Revision Eyewear Rock Island Arsenal   Rockwell Collins *   Rolls-Royce plc   RONCO   Horn of Africa   Saab AB   SBG Technology Solutions   Science Applications International Corporation * Sensis Corporation   Shell Oil Company   Siemens AG   SimplexGrinnell, LP   SFA, Inc.   SGIS Smartronix, Inc.   SmartRounds   Smith & Wesson   Sobran, inc   SPARTA, Inc.   SpotterRF   Springfield Armory   SRC Inc   SRI International   ST Engineering   ST Kinetics   Sumaria System   Vision Technologies Systems   Stanley, Inc.   Standard Missile Company LLC   Stevedoring Services of America   Stewart and Stevenson   Strum, Ruger & Company Incorporated   Subsystem Technologies Incorporated    Sverdrup Corporation   Swiss Arms SIG Sauer   Talla-Tech   Tangent Networks LLC   Forjas Taurus S/A   TCom Teledyne   Telent   Texas Instruments   Textron Inc. Bell Helicopter Textron   United Industrial Corporation   AAI Corporation   The Columbia Group   Trijicon   Tri-Star Engineering, Inc.   TriWest Healthcare Alliance   Tyco International Ltd.   ADT Security Services   University of Texas System Unisys   Corporation   United Technologies *   Sikorsky   Pratt & Whitney *   URS Corporation *   Washington Group International   USmax Corporation   US Falcon   US Ordnance   Vangent   Velocity Systems Verizon Communications   Vinnell Corporation   Vinnell-Brown & Root   Westinghouse Electric Corporation   Wiley X   Worldcorp Inc.   Wyvern Technologies , Aerospace & Defense Contractors Academi LLC (formerly Blackwater and Xe Services)   York Executive Operations .

Private military contractors [2]

AirScan     Academi   Xe Blackwater   Boughton Protection Services / BPS   Custer Battles   DynCorp   GK Sierra   Global Enforce Inc.   Hambright Protection Services   TT Corporation JaneGroup Inc  Jorge Scientific Corporation   KBR   MPRI, Inc.   The Intelligence Group International   Laconia Consulting Group   MVM, Inc.   Northrop Grumman   Obelisk, International LLC   Pathfinder Security Services   PinPoint Security Group   Raytheon   Red Star Aviation   RRISC MANAGEMENT.   Raptor Defense   Saber Teams LLC.   Titan Corporation   Titan Corporation    Versar, Inc   Vinnell Corporation   Wes-Intel    Xeros Services   Grey Feather Solutions

Uncle Sam's war/snoop shopping list and "malls"  [3]

Uncle Sam, if you want it or dream it up, we got it or can make it---

Accounting   Administrative Support   Advertising and Marketing & Public Relations   Air Purification & Air Conditioning   Aircraft and Aircraft support   Cemetery Memorial Dealers   Commercial Food Service Equipment   Communication & Media: Other Telecommunications   Communication & Media: Telecommunication   Communication & Media: Wireless Communication   Computer Software Computer Technology: Data Storage   Computer Technology: Hosting and Related Services   Computer Technology: Programming   Consulting Services   Consumer Products   Contractor Materials & Services Cosmetics   Counseling/Therapy   Drugs and Pharmaceuticals   Education & Training Engineering/Design/Architecture   Entertainment and Exercise & Recreation   Environment & Consulting   Equipment Rental   Fabrication & Construction   Food & Beverage: Catering   Food & Beverage: Other   Food/Beverage Appliances and Equipment   Furniture: Stores   Furniture: Stores Supplies and Products   Gifts and Memorabilia   Granite   Ground Maintenance   Hand Tools, Clean Room   Hardware Supplies   Human Resources and Executive Search Consulting Services   Hydraulic Equipment   Industrial Equipment & Products   Information Technology   Janitorial Services   Legal Services   Lighting   Lodging & Accommodation: Hotels/Motels   Management Services   Materials: Chemical Materials   Materials: Metal Manufacturing   Medical Supplies   Office Equipment & Supplies Oil and Gas & Fuels Industries   Optics   Packaging & Paper Products   Paint and Coating & Adhesives Pest Control   Plastic Products   Printing & Publication   Professional and Commercial Equipment   Real Estate   Repair and Maintenance   Research & Development   Safety & Security   Science Equipment & Laboratory   Shelter Systems   Ship and Boat Building   Signs   Sporting and Athletic Goods Manufacturing   Transportation & Delivery   Utilities   Vehicles: Automotive   Vehicles: Trucks   Waste Management: Hazardous Material   Waste Management: Other   Water Features   Weapon   Windows & Awnings .

--------but Too Often Not Very Well 

Uncle Sam's chief DoD buyer isn't too happy but what can he do? He can't leave in disgust and become chief peace buyer, ain't no such job. The Pentagon's weapon procurement woes are well known. They are mentioned in countless speeches and blue-ribbon studies, but never successfully tackled, says the Defense Department's acting acquisitions chief, Frank Kendall. He goes on to say that "A combination of an entrenched culture, management incompetence and bad contractor performance has snowballed over the past decades into an avalanche of embarrassing program failures. We start things we shouldn't have started. ---it's not clear that [the weapons we order and buy] produce any   valuable outcomes."[4] Just what are "valuable outcomes," Mr. Under Secretary?

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The political part of the triumvirate

Warrior-in-chief; political appointees overseeing the military-national security part; Congress; and State and local officials in jurisdictions doing business with the military-national security part.

      Congress, the Industry's Excessively Generous Pawn and Patron 
                  Gift Wrapped in Committees for the Industry 

Senate Subcommittee on Defense Appropriations Senate Subcommittee on Homeland Security Subcommittee on Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Senate Committee on Armed Services (six subcommittees) Senate Committee on the Budget Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (six relevant subcommittees) Senate Subcommittee on Energy Senate Subcommittee on Clean Air and Nuclear Safety Senate Committee on Finance (two relevant subcommittees) Senate Committee on Foreign Relations (seven subcommittees) Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs (five subcommittees) Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Committee  

The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (three subcommittees) House Subcommittee on Homeland Security Appropriations House Subcommittee on Defense Appropriations House Subcommittee on Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriations House Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government Appropriations House Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations House Committee on Armed Services (nine subcommittees) House Committee on Budget House Committee on Energy and   Commerce (three relevant subcommittees) House Committee on Foreign Affairs (seven subcommittees) House Committee on Homeland Security (six subcommittees) House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology (five subcommittees) Subcommittee on Technology and Innovation House Subcommittee on Small Business Contracting and the Workforce House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure (two relevant subcommittees) House Committee on Veterans' Affairs (four subcommittees) House Committee on Ways and Means (oversight committee) 

How the industry dictates to Uncle Sam 
The industry, not the American people at large, tells "their" government what its annual military-national security budget should be, what its purchases should be, for what purposes, and how much they should cost, and what minimal legislation and oversight would be acceptable. The industry exercises this stranglehold in several ways. 

The industry gets its pawns and patrons elected 

The industry donated over $24 million during 2011-2012 in campaign contributions. The main focus is always to ensure that members of Congressional committees important to the industry get reelected. 

The industry strategically locates its facilities 

The industry's lifeline and profit bonanza comes from contracts awarded by influential and courted members of Congress. Locating facilities in their Congressional districts and States helps ensure that contracts will be steered to them. Few things make a member of Congress more anxious than the prospect of a facility moving out or a member more pleased than a facility moving in. 

The industry sends touts up Capital Hill 

Winston Churchill called lobbyists touts. The industrial sector in 2011 spent over $133 million to send about 1,000 touts up Capital Hill to cash in on all those campaign financing bribes from the sector by telling their elected officials to keep boosting the federal budget for the sector, what and how to legislate and regulate the sector's business, and to peddle its products and supplies. Trade associations are clusters of touts concentrating on a particular kind of military-national security business and thus represent not one but all of the corporations in that business. These associations include the Aerospace Industries Association, Armed Forces Communications Electronics Association, Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems, International National Defense Industrial Association, and the Submarine Industrial Base Council. 

The industry comes and goes through the revolving door

Now you see them here. Now you see them there. Who are they and where are they coming and going? They don't stay put like the career bureaucrats do. They are the self-serving shufflers shuffling back and forth through the so-called, perfectly named "revolving door." To author and activist Jim Hightower these shufflers are among the "thieves in high places, steadily and quietly pilfering" the essence of our democracy." [5].

There are actually four kinds of revolving doors. One is for industry executives and lobbyists who go through to appointments in key government posts to ensure industry interests aren't denied by the American people. A current example is that of Ann Elise Sauer, a former executive and lobbyist for the top defense contractor, Lockheed Martin. She has been appointed to one of the most powerful posts in Congress that oversees the defense industry, including major weapons systems that are a mainstay of Lockheed's business. [6]

There's the government-to-industry door through which public officials, having gotten experience and valuable contacts from the inside in keeping public interests at bay, go to the industry and parlay their experience and contacts into furthering industry interests in exchanges, usually in private, with the government.

And finally, there's the government-to-lobbyist door through which former legislators, their staffs, and executive-branch officials pass on the way to lucrative positions in lobbying firms to lobby their former colleagues. According to a recent report, "the best lobbying firms are headed by former members of Congress and staffed by former staffers from the Hill and regulatory agencies---and can have significant influence over the legislative process since they'll be lobbying their friends and former colleagues, many of whom will be angling for lobbying jobs in the future." [7].

Besides the revolving doors there are the "archways," the clever metaphor author Naomi Klein uses for the passage of people who used to occupy top posts in the government, left for lucrative positions in the industrial world, then left it but stopped short of going through the revolving door. [8] Instead they remain outside as influential advisors to top government officials and in so doing avoid conflict of interest rules (which have never stopped conflicts of interest among the revolving door people). Members of the Defense Policy Board is a good example. Those folks helped pedal the Iraqi War. 

The industry gives politicians junket trips and other emoluments 

Congressional members vital to the military-national security industry are plied with junkets to sunny places in the winter, honored with awards, and in other ways cater to their egos, palates and pleasures. For example, the Aerospace Industries Association in 2011 handed one of its top awards, the Wings of Liberty, to Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), one of the co-chairmen of the special deficit-cutting committee. The award was given to her, not coincidentally, "on the same day the congressional super committee held its first public business meeting," presumably to influence her vote on any budget cut that would hurt that Association's industrial interests. [9]

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T rue story from an incestuous marriage made in Hell 

Yes, there are three parts to the triumvirate, but they are in an incestuously inseparable. They are constantly feeding off of one another and have come to look and act alike. How this is so is nicely illustrated in the following true story about a drone trade show. 

If the three parts were not tied together at the groin, you would expect the show to be held at a private facility, like say, a big arena rented by the "Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International." But this is a true story, not fiction. 

The event was held in the large foyer of the triumvirate's (note the adjective isn't "government's") Rayburn House Office building adjacent to Capital Hill. What follows are some excerpts from an article in which the writer tells about the event and then adds some commentary. 

"---on tables around the room sat some very fancy, very tiny flying things. A bunch of beefy guys in suits or polo shirts or military garb were gathered around tables. The toys were mostly military devices that the company representatives said they're now marketing to cops and civilians. Table hands from companies like Lockheed Martin, Boeing and RP Flight Systems told me they'd come to show the hottest new drones, robots and mini blimps to House members and staffers. They were there at the invitation of the U.S. House Unmanned Systems Caucus. A rep from RP Flight Systems explained that his companies drones helped put out fires. But across the room a man in camo (sic) who looked just out of combat showed me his drone for cops. 

---the  Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) -- which doubled its lobbying expenditures from 2010 to 2011, spending nearly $300,000. In the process, the defense industry's man on Capitol Hill Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) was convinced to start an Unmanned Systems Caucus in the U.S. House, as industry showered the caucus members with cash. 

---there isn't much difference between the two entities' missions [and] AUVSI's values are the Unmanned System Caucus members' values. This, of course, is no mistake. The Obama administration wants drones to continue its shadow wars, from Africa to Pakistan, that have yielded hundreds of drone strikes -- and the deaths of hundreds of civilians, with many more than that injured, according to data meticulously collected by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism. There is little public debate over these strikes, largely because the administration, while publicly talking about the CIA's drone policy, will not officially acknowledge it exists, ----. There is little if any mention of this aspect of drone usage on the Unmamned Systems Caucus website. 

When the line between industry profit motives and public officials' priorities is beyond the point of blurry to the extent of being non-existent, there is a problem for true representative democracy, to say the least. When Congress is beholden to its donors and not voters or the public citizenry, the system is broken. And there is no better way to illustrate the corrosive impact of money's effect on American politics than this system of defense spending and the Military-Industrial-Congressional Complex. The toy du jour for this system is the drone. New technology, same game." [10]

End of story. It's just one of countless examples of the incestuous marriage made in Hell. Who is getting the more screwed than the marriage partners that never get out of bed? You got it, the taxpayer who's not even in the house, let alone the bedroom.

Supporters of the triumvirate: Accessories, accomplices, allies, and standbys

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I am a retired (1995)organizational psychologist who has since concentrated on the subjects of the collusion between government and corporations and matters of war and peace. I have just finished writing my final book (final because I am staring (more...)

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Peace through strength? Only if you believe in sca... by Gary Brumback on Wednesday, Dec 12, 2012 at 2:51:36 PM
Thanks for firing a point-blank shot at the primar... by Angellus Californicus on Wednesday, Dec 12, 2012 at 8:57:13 PM
And thank you Guber for your positive commentary. ... by Gary Brumback on Thursday, Dec 13, 2012 at 6:49:58 PM
Well researched and important, Gary. You cover a l... by Arlen Grossman on Wednesday, Dec 12, 2012 at 10:56:53 PM
Arlen, as I said in my separate e-mail to you, tha... by Gary Brumback on Thursday, Dec 13, 2012 at 6:52:10 PM
No need to finish the trilogy, but I would certain... by Daniel Geery on Thursday, Dec 13, 2012 at 6:01:55 PM
Really appreciate your nice remarks and appreciate... by Gary Brumback on Thursday, Dec 13, 2012 at 6:53:57 PM