Q&A Friday: Cheney & Haliburton

Question: “When someone says to you “Haliburton is evil and they sneaked past all the bidding wars and got exclusive rights to Iraq because of Cheney” how are you supposed to respond? Any facts to back up a different viewpoint then that?” — LordJezo

Answer: Look, Dick Cheney has nothing, zero, nada to do with the bidding process. The VP does not pick up the phone and say “Hey, I want my old company, Haliburton, to get this contract”. It just doesn’t work like that.

Next, while Haliburton does still pay Cheney a deferred salary from when he was their Chief Executive, that’s unaffected by current deals. Cheney also still has Haliburton stock, but all profits from the stock are given to charity. So, whether Haliburton loses or makes a billion dollars this year, Dick Cheney isn’t effected one iota.

You must also remember that Haliburton is a competent firm, with government security clearance, in an industry with few competitors (at least for some of the things they do). That’s why they were able to get no bid contracts in Iraq and that’s why the Clinton administration gave them a no-bid contract in the Balkans back in 1997.

Now if people hear all that and still want to insist that every time Haliburton gets hired, it must mean it’s part of some sort of nefarious “Dick Cheney scheme,” there’s nothing much you can do to enlighten them at that point.

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