Not good..

Discussions about US MREs and other US rations
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BigMark
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Not good..

Post by BigMark » Wed Feb 15, 2006 1:50 am

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/story?id=1619126&page=1

Wasn't sure if this should go under buy/sell/trade or not.. because this could be bad for ebaying.. lets hope not..

dermeister025
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Post by dermeister025 » Wed Feb 15, 2006 3:44 am

Oh yes, selling them on ebay is definitely a waste of taxpayer dollars and government resources... moreso especially than throwing the unused ones away after they've been issued from the warehouse :roll:

I love the way the news - especially major american news stations (no offense guys) loves to put as negative a spin on something as they can. Nevermind the probability that most of these were surplus that were left over from when supply lines were restored, and the MRE's were no longer needed by rescuers and victims... Nope, they must have been diverted from victims and people who really needed them! Of course the latter sounds much more dramatic than the former, which is why the news reports it as such...

Responsible, reliable reporting is hard to find these days.
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dirtbag
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Post by dirtbag » Wed Feb 15, 2006 4:27 am

Yeah,and they really did their research too! Notice the "MRE" photo...
It's a frozen TV dinner!! :oops:
Typical media hype :P

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Post by Dekard » Wed Feb 15, 2006 4:49 am

In case the link goes south:http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/story?id=1619126&page=1

Image
CAPTION: Some Hurricane Katrina victims and military personnel are selling government-issued Meals Ready-to-Eat (MREs) for profit on eBay, according to a government report. (Photo Disc)

Katrina Victims, Military Personnel Sell Rations Online
Government Report Finds Ready-to-Eat Meals for Sale on eBay
By LARA SETRAKIAN

Feb. 14, 2006 — Emergency rations paid for by taxpayers and distributed to Hurricane Katrina victims and military personnel to sustain them in their hour of need are being sold on eBay, according to a government report.

A Government Accountability Office report released yesterday found that government-issued Meals Ready-to-Eat are being sold for profit on that site, and that at least some of the MREs were diverted from hurricane-relief efforts.

Today ABC News found 83 military ration items on sale on eBay when searching for "Ready-to-Eat Meals" — almost all of them government rations and at least 14 of them from sellers claiming to be Katrina victims.

Prices for the items range from 99 cents — the opening bid for an unopened pack of chicken stew — to $69 for a case of mixed meals. A case contains 12 meals and is sold by the government for $86.98, an employee with the Defense Logistics Agency told the ABC News' law and justice unit. Meals being sold on eBay include cheese tortellini, beef enchiladas and sloppy Joes.

'Outrageous'

Scott Amey, general counsel of the Project on Government Oversight, said the online sale of government rations is an outrage. "It is absolutely outrageous that people are going to exploit a national disaster to make a buck. It's food that could have gone to other volunteers or victims who were in bad shape and in need of those products," he said.

Among the eight sellers the GAO investigated, two are Katrina victims and five are military servicemen. The report states that "if MREs are sold to the general public on eBay, then they represent a waste of taxpayer dollars and possible criminal activity." Six of the eight cases have been referred to the Department of Defense inspector general.

According to the Defense Logistics Agency, the government body responsible for buying and distributing MREs, the meals have a shelf-life of three years or longer and are "designed to sustain an individual engaged in heavy activity."

On the one hand, the sale of these MREs can be seen as Katrina victims and others simply selling off what's left over in the pantry. On the other hand, it is potentially illegal for-profit manipulation of taxpayer-funded emergency relief supplies.

EBay spokesman Hani Durzy told ABC News that since at least 2002, the DOD has requested that the site ban the sale of ready-to-eat military meals. The company continues to permit the sale of government-issued rations, saying that there is no specific law against selling military meals.

Its assertion that selling rations is not against the law is confirmed by the GAO report, but the agency adds "although no statues or regulations specifically prohibit the sale of MREs … policy states that DOD regulations permit the sale of MREs to a limited number of organizations, including, among others, U.S. military organizations and federally funded activities."

"We ban the sale of expired MREs because we have an expired food policy," said Durzy. "We ban the sale of food heaters for safety reasons. But we won't keep someone who owns something legally to sell it on eBay. You can find millions of them in Army-Navy surplus stores around the country."

He added that there are relatively few government meals being sold on eBay compared with the 78 million listings the Web site hosts.

Lorraine Netzko of the Defense Logistics Agency told ABC News in a written statement that "MREs may be made available for use by victims of natural or man-made disasters" but that they are "not provided for commercial resale."


Based on this scary GAO report - best not to buy MREs off of eGhey anymore. It may not be "illegal" for eGhey to sell them - but it's no fun when NCIS shows up at your door.

(pdf file)

http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d06410r.pdf

dermeister025
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Post by dermeister025 » Wed Feb 15, 2006 4:50 am

LOL good call dirtbag, i was so focused on the article i didn't even see the pic! That is too rich... hey, i have a few of those in my freezer - let's see if i can sell them as MRE's :wink:

Stories like this will probably cause MRE prices to go up again as people try to get them while they're still around... lovely, right when i need to restock my US ration supply too...
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Post by mw509 » Wed Feb 15, 2006 6:41 am

dermeister025 wrote:I love the way the news - especially major american news stations (no offense guys) loves to put as negative a spin on something as they can.
As the saying goes "if it bleeds it leads".

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kman
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Post by kman » Wed Feb 15, 2006 9:46 am

That article just seems like a rehash of the "selling MREs on ebay" articles from a few months ago. Typical ABCNews.

I think the point they're missing - that they always miss - is that in a lot of cases, these are Katrina "victims" selling the MREs themselves. They were *given* something by the government and instead of eating it, they chose to sell it. That's just how it works.

ABC should spend a little more time getting down to the bottom of the real fraud problems that occurred after the hurricane. Forget $60/case MREs. How about the $2,000 cards that FEMA handed out that were used to buy purses, shoes, and entertainment at strip clubs?

But my hat's off to that guy from Ebay they quoted in the article who said they haven't banned the sale because there's no law prohibiting the sales. Let's just hope Congress doesn't get bored and create a "No selling MREs on Ebay law".

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Post by jubifahrer » Wed Feb 15, 2006 10:09 am

i am wondering, were the many MRE cases in german ebay come from?

The price of 35 Euro seems to be ok, and the inspect date is most time in 2007. Is US army making an selling out in germany?

Rudi

dermeister025
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Post by dermeister025 » Wed Feb 15, 2006 1:12 pm

Us knowlegable ones must get the word out! Private MRE sales aren't a waste of resources, they're preventing a waste of resources! Bah, who's gonna believe a little circle of crackpots like us? :wink:

Actually i read that military report that was linked to and several of the case studies did say that the seller was a katrina victim who had a surplus of them, and sold them for some spare money because they were unemployed. I don't have a problem with that, anyone else?
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Post by Sr. Wing Commander » Thu Feb 16, 2006 10:37 am

Has anyone emailed ABC?? I went to see if anything was on there message boards but I didn't see anything, plus my login doesn't work. Doesn't matter, bunch of far lefties on there anyways.

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