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PostWar Profiteering in US: Then and Now (John Heelan, UK, 05/14/18 4:29 am)
In response to Paul Pitlick (12 May), one should remember that the US Congress passed pass four excess profits statutes between 1940 and 1943, as well as the War Profiteering Act in 2007.
The 1940 rates ranged from 25 to 50 percent and the 1941 ones from 35 to 60 percent. In 1942 a flat rate of 90 percent was adopted, with a postwar refund of 10 percent; in 1943 the rate was increased to 95 percent, with a 10 percent refund. One should also remember that members of Congress also benefit privately. "In 2004, the first full year after the present Iraq war began, Republican and Democratic lawmakers--both hawks and doves--invested between $74.9 million and $161.3 million in companies under contract with the DoD."
"Who profits from the Iraq war? More than a quarter of senators and congressmen have invested at least $196 million of their own money in companies doing business with the Department of Defense (DoD) that profit from the death and destruction in Iraq. According to the latest reports, 151 members of Congress invested close to a quarter-billion in companies that received defense contracts of at least $5 million in 2006. These companies got more than $275.6 billion from the government in 2006, or $755 million per day, according to FedSpending.org, a website of the watchdog group OMBWatch."
JE comments: Has anyone been prosecuted under the 2007 War Profiteering Act? A quick Google doesn't yield anything specific.
The $161 million Congress has personally invested in companies with DoD contracts works out to $300,000 per individual. Does this include, say, holding GE or Boeing shares in your 401 (k) portfolio? (Or how about DoD contractors Microsoft and FedEx?) If so, the numbers are not all that outrageous. I would have guessed higher.