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Government Contractor: Failure is the Norm

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Tom somewhere in Oklahoma.  Great to have you on the EIB Network.  Hello.

CALLER:  It's an honor, Rush.  Let me ask you first, how you feeling today?  You better?

RUSH:  I'm about 95, 96%, sir.  Yes.  Thank you.

CALLER:  Well, you sound really good for someone who's been sick.  You know what?  I've been a government contractor for 20 years, and I want to describe something here that I think people don't understand.  Failure is the norm in government contracting.  If it had been a success, that would have been the big surprise.  This website was going to fail, everyone knew it.  I want to explain why and then kind of some political implications for that.  When you do a government contract, you get statement of work, you get the contract, and it's all backed by regulations and several departments, et cetera, and if you look at everyone involved in this website, what they had there was direction and goals, which are typical for a government contract, they were unresolvable.  There was no way to implement this with the IRS coming at you from one direction, private insurers from another, HHS from another, the monster --

RUSH:  Wait, wait, wait, hold, you're going real fast here, and I'm having trouble. I think I know what you're saying, but I'm having trouble following you.  First, you've been a government contractor for 20 years so you have experience dealing with government contracts.

CALLER:  Yes. 

RUSH:  And you're saying when you get a government contract there's no way it can actually succeed because the objectives and goals are what?

CALLER:  They're unresolvable.  What they'll give you is directions, a directive to do one particular thing, but this doc can be written by a committee and another committee and another committee, and another committee will say, "Well, we want you to do this," but those two goals are unresolvable.

RUSH:  Oh.  Oh.

CALLER:  You have to choose one.  You have to say, "I'm going to do this thing," because they're not gonna get back all together.  You've got to implement this by a certain date, so you can't get everyone together and fix it.  You just have to choose one.  What that means is regardless of how good you do it, you will fail.  So it's perfectly normal, failure is the norm in government contracting, and the merry go round, you just get another contract, you move on, yes, you failed, but you're gonna get another, don't worry about it, just keep on rolling, but don't you dare blame us, don't you dare blame the government.  Now, I'm sorry the people are just coming to the realization when they go to this website that a government program was a failure, but that's the norm.  And what that means is --

RUSH:  Wait a minute, now.  What are people supposed to take away from your call?  What do you want them to know?

CALLER:  Look, if we're gonna cancel government programs because they were failures, we wouldn't have a government.  And so what that means is that if the Republicans are sitting around saying, "We're gonna wait for the HealthCare.gov and Obamacare to collapse because it's so bad," and fall into their capitalist hands, which is a good idea, but --

RUSH:  Okay, it's never gonna happen because they all do.

CALLER:  Absolutely.  Everything fails for the government --

RUSH:  Right.  And so this outfit that they hired, CGI out of Canada with a US subsidiary --

CALLER:  With a failed track record.

RUSH:  Yeah.  They tried to do a gun registry in Canada, they've never had a success.

CALLER:  It's a contractor merry go round, absolutely they were gonna get another contract, and they'll gonna get another one after that.

RUSH:  So the contractors know they don't have to succeed?

CALLER:  Well, they cannot succeed.  The goals of the program are irresolvable by the contractor.

RUSH:  Okay, what he's saying is it's not possible, the way the contracts are written, the demands, the list of things they want can't be done because they conflict.  Makes sense to me.

END TRANSCRIPT

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