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Old 09-29-2018, 10:38 AM
 
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Air Force squadron spends $56,000 on metal coffee cups | Fox News

Extreme waste isnít exclusive to the Air Force. This is just another in a long line of excessive cost. Back in 1997 when I was in the Navy we received an order of plastic tie straps. We were suspicious when we opened the box and each tie strap was individually wrapped in bubble wrap. Each tie strap was at least $15 per strap. If we had a budget or debit card we could use for shop purchases we could have saved the Navy a small fortune in town shopping even if we went to a locally owned hardware store instead of a national chain store.
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Old 10-02-2018, 07:34 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
3,182 posts, read 9,221,015 times
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This is not the Air Force's fault. Their hangs get tied by law makers. We can't purchase foreign products for things like this. Often times, needed items go out of production in the United States, and we have to pay a company to create an entire mold for a product, and then make just a handful in production for us. The coffee cups, sure, we could do without those. But, the $10,000 toilet seat? It's a specially made toilet seat and no other seat will work on that particular aircraft. We aren't allowed to outsource, so we have no other choice but to pay those prices. Same with uniforms, they must be manufactured in the United States and we're paying $70 a shirt and $160 for boots when they could be so much less if not produced in US textile mills. At least they are produced in scale, so the prices come down.
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Old 10-02-2018, 08:37 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmarie123 View Post
This is not the Air Force's fault. Their hangs get tied by law makers. We can't purchase foreign products for things like this. Often times, needed items go out of production in the United States, and we have to pay a company to create an entire mold for a product, and then make just a handful in production for us. The coffee cups, sure, we could do without those. But, the $10,000 toilet seat? It's a specially made toilet seat and no other seat will work on that particular aircraft. We aren't allowed to outsource, so we have no other choice but to pay those prices. Same with uniforms, they must be manufactured in the United States and we're paying $70 a shirt and $160 for boots when they could be so much less if not produced in US textile mills. At least they are produced in scale, so the prices come down.
I understand high cost for specialized parts and equipment. But in my example these were basic black plastic tie straps. Nothing special about them at all. And I donít blame the military for paying such high prices. That comes from certain members of Congress and certain officers at the Pentagon getting special favors and or kickbacks.
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Old 10-02-2018, 09:24 PM
 
Location: Midwest
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I have long maintained that the federal budget could be cut in half with NO harm to anyone except profiteers, if all waste, fraud, and abuse were eliminated. That day is far far off.

Cut the budget in half, watch everyone get more efficient.
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Old 10-03-2018, 07:15 AM
 
Location: San Antonio
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^^ As long as the laws changed.

Just one example. We are forced to buy supplies from the Industry for the Blind. Forced. We can only buy office supplies elsewhere if they don't have an item we're looking for. I'm paying 2 or 3 times Office Depot and Walmart prices for paper, post-its, ink, toner, staples, etc, because I can't shop for price comparison.
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Old 10-04-2018, 12:26 PM
 
749 posts, read 214,778 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmarie123 View Post
^^ As long as the laws changed.

Just one example. We are forced to buy supplies from the Industry for the Blind. Forced. We can only buy office supplies elsewhere if they don't have an item we're looking for. I'm paying 2 or 3 times Office Depot and Walmart prices for paper, post-its, ink, toner, staples, etc, because I can't shop for price comparison.
On the other hand, I was surprised to see that my recently found SKILCRAFT ballpoint pen still works after forty years.
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Old 10-04-2018, 12:42 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by victimofGM View Post
But in my example these were basic black plastic tie straps. Nothing special about them at all.
You'd be surprised. I once worked for a vendor that provided for the military. We supplied them with a pretty simple device, but they required extra testing to meet more stringent requirements and specifications. Specialized equipment was bought, with additional testing in place to make sure the product met those additional specs.

So, a normally $2 widget all the sudden became $10 or so.


Not saying that's the case here, but it did happen occasionally.
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Old 10-04-2018, 04:47 PM
 
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Originally Posted by TomC23 View Post
On the other hand, I was surprised to see that my recently found SKILCRAFT ballpoint pen still works after forty years.
And you can order them online
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Old 10-05-2018, 01:20 PM
 
17,887 posts, read 9,831,212 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmarie123 View Post
^^ As long as the laws changed.

Just one example. We are forced to buy supplies from the Industry for the Blind. Forced. We can only buy office supplies elsewhere if they don't have an item we're looking for. I'm paying 2 or 3 times Office Depot and Walmart prices for paper, post-its, ink, toner, staples, etc, because I can't shop for price comparison.
That must be a change since I retired. I was required to go round-robin through all the local suppliers with each purchase.

Which only points out that it's just a political game the military is forced to play by Congress.
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Old 10-05-2018, 01:24 PM
 
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But I've been on the staff and had to sign for actual $500 ball peen hammers (SR-71 tool kit) and $50,000 4-gee 24-cup coffee makers (for the RC-135).

I also remember early in my career when we were required to first request military Space Available flights for TDY travel and could only go commercial if there was no military Space-A. But the airlines complained that was money they were losing, so Congress turned the requirement upside down. Now you're required to go commercial and can only go Space-A when commercial is not available.
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