Booz Allen Hamilton: This “Private” Company Earns 99% of its Revenue from the U.S. Government

One of the most dangerous things happening in America today is that so called “private” companies are doing much of the government’s dirty work, completely in the shadows and with essentially zero accountability.  Booz Allen Hamilton, the defense contractor that employed whistleblower hero Edward Snowden is one of them.  Recall that Booz Allen is the contractor that journalist and activist Barrett Brown was thoroughly investigating when he was arrested last year.  In the past couple of days, both Bloomberg and the New York Times have written stories on this shady company and some interesting facts have emerged.  One of the most telling is this excerpt from Booz Allen’s annual report:

“Because we are limited in our ability to provide information about these contracts and services,” the company said in its latest annual report, “you may not have important information concerning our business, which will limit your insight into a substantial portion of our business, and therefore may be less able to fully evaluate the risks related to that portion of our business.”

More from Bloomberg:

There’s a company near Washington with strong ties to the U.S. intelligence community that has been around for almost a century and has secret ways of making money — so secret that the company can’t tell you what they are. Investors who buy just need to have faith.

Booz Allen is the government contractor that employed Edward Snowden when he leaked a trove of secret documents about National Security Agency surveillance programs to the U.K.’s Guardian newspaper and the Washington Post. The consulting company, based in McLean, Virginia, is upfront about the ways in which its silence creates risks for shareholders. It derives 99 percent of its revenue from the U.S. government and says a substantial portion of its contracts are classified.

“Because we are limited in our ability to provide information about these contracts and services,” the company said in its latest annual report, “you may not have important information concerning our business, which will limit your insight into a substantial portion of our business, and therefore may be less able to fully evaluate the risks related to that portion of our business.”

About two thirds of Booz Allen’s shares are owned by the Washington-based private-equity firm Carlyle Group LP.

Now from the New York Times:

Thousands of people formerly employed by the government, and still approved to deal with classified information, now do essentially the same work for private companies. Mr. Snowden, who revealed on Sunday that he provided the recent leak of national security documents, is among them.

As evidence of the company’s close relationship with government, the Obama administration’s chief intelligence official, James R. Clapper Jr., is a former Booz Allen executive. The official who held that post in the Bush administration, John M. McConnell, now works for Booz Allen.

Looks like the revolving door has absolutely zero limits and absolutely no shame. I’m sorry, a company that earns 99% of its revenue from the government is not a “private” company, and should be subject to serious public oversight.

In Liberty,
Mike

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