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Thread: Google execs lose discount fuel perk for jet fleet

  1. #1
    Franc Tireur is offline Senior Net Builder
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    Google execs lose discount fuel perk for jet fleet

    Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin may have to dig deeper to operate their fleet of private jets, after the U.S. Department of Defense ended a little-known arrangement that for years allowed the tech billionaires to travel on sharply discounted jet fuel bought from the Pentagon.

    The agreement between the Google founders and the government, which started in 2007, ended Aug. 31 after officials at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration—which sponsored the arrangement—opted not to renew it, according to a Pentagon spokeswoman.


    The move followed discussions earlier this year between the Pentagon and NASA over whether the Google founders may have exceeded contract terms by using fuel for non-government flights, according to a letter from a Pentagon official released by Sen. Charles Grassley.
    Sen. Grassley, an Iowa Republican, said he is seeking an audit of the arrangement by the Pentagon's inspector general. "Are some executives getting a special deal on fuel that isn't available to other businesses?" he asked, saying the setup raises concerns about the government's role as a "fair broker with businesses and responsible steward of tax dollars."

    The relationship with the Google founders already is part of an ongoing audit by NASA's inspector general, an official in that office said.

    Although Moffett is closed to most non-government traffic, NASA in 2007 signed a deal allowing H211 LLC, a private company representing jets owned by the Google founders and Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, to base aircraft there.
    Google execs lose discount fuel perk for jet fleet | Fox News

    If it was only about jet fuel! [sarcasm] "U.S. Department of Defense ended a little-known arrangement that for years allowed the tech billionaires to travel on sharply discounted jet fuel bought from the Pentagon."
    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

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    Bob Barr is offline Newbie Net Builder
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    ...whether the Google founders may have exceeded contract terms by using fuel for non-government flights...
    Very strange story. I have to wonder what the legal basis for the original contract was.

    If Google making "non-government flights" is the sticking point, what sort of "government flights" might Google have been doing? How would those flights qualify them to get discounted fuel prices? Google's not a government agency, or is it?

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    Franc Tireur is offline Senior Net Builder
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Barr View Post
    Very strange story. I have to wonder what the legal basis for the original contract was.

    If Google making "non-government flights" is the sticking point, what sort of "government flights" might Google have been doing? How would those flights qualify them to get discounted fuel prices? Google's not a government agency, or is it?
    Good questions Bob

    Also why Moffett is closed to most non-government traffic, NASA in 2007 signed a deal allowing H211 LLC, a private company representing jets owned by the Google founders and Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, to base aircraft there.

    I have read that internet was created by the US military to connect all the nuclear silos, but it seems like they never totally gave up the control of their network to the free private market without forced "secret deals", see Yahoo CEO feared jail over NSA scandal
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    Bob Barr is offline Newbie Net Builder
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    I'd have to discount any tie-in between the military's secure communications and the internet. IMHO, the military currently has (and has always had) much more secure communication methods to link to its missile silos and other operational units than the internet could possibly provide. The military had neither the need nor the desire to conduct any but its most routine communications over a publicly accessible network.

    Linking the many universities involved in DARPA (military research) projects, though, could easily provide them ample justification for developing the foundation of the internet.

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    Franc Tireur is offline Senior Net Builder
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Barr View Post
    I'd have to discount any tie-in between the military's secure communications and the internet. IMHO, the military currently has (and has always had) much more secure communication methods to link to its missile silos and other operational units than the internet could possibly provide. The military had neither the need nor the desire to conduct any but its most routine communications over a publicly accessible network.

    Linking the many universities involved in DARPA (military research) projects, though, could easily provide them ample justification for developing the foundation of the internet.
    Well on this site, there are more detailed information than the others, If I find something else I will post it.

    The ancestor of the Internet was the ARPANET, a project funded by the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) in 1969.

    The ARPANET was both an experiment in reliable networking and an effort to link DOD and military research contractors, including the large number of universities doing military-funded research. (ARPA stands for Advanced Research Projects Administration, the branch of the DOD in charge of handing out grant money. For enhanced confusion, the agency is now known as DARPA -- the added D is for Defense, in case anyone had doubts about where the money was coming from.) Although the ARPANET started small, connecting three computers in California with one in Utah, it quickly grew to span the continent. The reliable networking part involved dynamic routing. If one of the network links became disrupted by enemy attack, the traffic on it could be rerouted automatically to other links. Fortunately, the Net rarely has come under enemy attack. Cutting a cable during road construction (known in the biz as backhoe fade) is just as much of a threat, however, so it's important for the Net to be backhoe-resistant.
    Because the ARPANET was wildly successful, every university in the country wanted to sign up. This success meant that the ARPANET began getting difficult to manage, particularly with the large and growing number of university sites on it. It was broken into two parts:

    • MILNET, which had the military sites
    • The new, smaller ARPANET, which had the nonmilitary sites

    The two networks remained connected, however, thanks to a technical scheme called IP (Internet Protocol), which enabled traffic to be routed from one network to another as necessary. Because all the networks that are connected in the Internet speak IP, they all can exchange messages.

    UPDATE:

    Another interesting article: National Security and the Internet
    http://www.utexas.edu/lbj/21cp/isoc.htm
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    Bob Barr is offline Newbie Net Builder
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    As far as I can recall, the MILNET sites were never intended to be used for secure (command and control) communications. They were essentially PR portals for the various military facilities that provided a way to communicate general information to military dependents and the general public.

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    Franc Tireur is offline Senior Net Builder
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    As is common, popular knowledge by now, the Internet was first launched as a research project funded and managed by the U.S. Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) in the late 1960s. In 1983, the Defense Communications Agency split the network into two parts, ARPANET and MILNET, the former for the research community and the latter for nonclassified military communications. ARPANET's name was changed to the Internet, and management was turned over to the National Science Foundation. It was also in 1983 that the network adopted TCP/IP, which was perhaps the most important technical decision in the history of the Internet to date, allowing a vast expansion of the Internet that continues at an amazing rate of growth today.
    There is a persistent myth surrounding the history of the Internet that it was designed to "sustain a nuclear attack," and that this was the chief research interest of the Internet's Pentagon sponsors. As described in the definitive history of the Internet, When Wizards Stay Up Late, by Katie Hafner and Matt Lyon, the story that lies behind this myth is somewhat complicated
    National Security and the Internet

    I guess what we have to remember is that internet was a creation of the U.S. Department of Defense, and frankly it is a great invention.
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    TopDogger is offline Über Hund
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    The fact that Google was getting a special discount proves that they had long-term ties with the government. That is the important part. Perhaps they are being punished because those connections have now become public information, or they do not deserve special treatment because they no longer have to maintain a secret relationship.
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin


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    Franc Tireur is offline Senior Net Builder
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    Quote Originally Posted by TopDogger View Post
    The fact that Google was getting a special discount proves that they had long-term ties with the government.
    Google is a US government asset not only for National Security, and intelligence, there are numerous complaints about economic and industrial espionage as well.

    Just to be clear, every foreign governments do more or less the same and these practices have been exposed long time ago by real journalists.

    NSA spied on networks of Google and other companies

    http://news.cnet.com/8301-1009_3-57601950-83/nsa-spied-on-networks-of-google-and-other-companies-report/
    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

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