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Old 27 Aug 2011 , 20:09 PM   #1
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Scholarship America 911 Fraud File

Just another reason to doubt the existence of victims:

While researching another aspect of 911, I ran into a 2008 article concerning the Bill Clinton/Bob Dole charity, The Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund, meant to provide money for college tuition and expenses for family members of victims. The generic article seems without purpose other than to serve as a follow-up to a New York Post piece published the year before. Essentially, the writer makes it appear as though the non-profit in charge of dispersing the funds from “Families of Freedom” is being very particular about which victim's family members, based on need, qualify for the funds and how much they should each receive. In short, they are being stingy. The non-profit involved is Scholarship America.

Read the AP article http://www.usatoday.com/news/educati...larships_N.htm

I wanted more details so I found the original Post article and hoped it would have the usual information found in a story. The who, what, when, where and why. Well, of course, it didn't.

Phrases like “some families have complained”, “some students said” and “others complained” are used instead. In fact, the name of not one family spokesperson appears. The name of a family lawyer does not appear. Other than Clinton, the name of some random advocate does not appear. Susan Edelman, who penned the Post article, didn't even bother with the general phrases above.

Read the Post article http://www.nypost.com/p/news/regiona...zS3JmuEOFaJ1hK

So how does a journalist get this story in the first place if absolutely no one is cited as a source, anonymous or otherwise? Who brought this story to Edelman? Did Edelman dig into this on her own? Read just a few of her short, inept articles and you will find that a clear impossibility. So far as I can tell, the only possible source for this story is Scholarship America itself.

EDIT Edelman did cite family members on the second page of the article and relayed their stories. Still, these were not the sources, just examples of what was occurring. I apologize for my own sloppiness.

So there's that. Perhaps Edelman deserves her own thread someday... all in good time.

Then I google the name of Scholarship America President and CEO Clifford Stanley, wondering what other interesting jobs he's held that would qualify him for this position... and a one on one meeting with (sarcasm ahead) a very concerned Bill Clinton.

Oh boy. As it turns out, Clifford Stanley is no longer the CEO, leaving Scolarship America in 2010, but has returned to the public sector as Obama's Under Secretary of Defense (Personnel and Readiness). I say returned because Stanley is a retired general whose military education includes Amphibious Warfare School and the Naval War College. Despite medical science and law degrees, Clifford Stanley has always been a military man.

Read his full bio herehttp://www.defense.gov/bios/biograph...iographyid=245

Yes, nothing better than a marine general with zero business experience to run your non-profit and it's hundreds of millions of dollars!

So, how did this all go down?

My guess, the Clinton/Dole money grab, probably due to Clinton's fantastic ego, just brought in too much damn coin. By 2005, the year Stanley was appointed CEO, Scholarship America was sitting on a boatload of cash and commitments and had absolutely no direction on what to do with it.

They were worried about cons and frauds.

They were wondering why only a select few had been chosen to receive funds.

They were wondering why the government wasn't cooperating with their requests for more information on the victims and their families.

The perpetrators of 911 began to worry. Things were going to get messy and very, very soon. They needed one of their own at the helm and were more than willing to help Scholarship America find an educated and brilliant CEO.

So, in comes Clifford Stanley. Now, the very people behind 911 control the non-profit who control the tens of millions from “Families of Freedom”!

Enter fake names into database. Send out checks. Launder money. CIA slush fund is fat and happy once more.

But, the non-profit has reports to file and finances that must be made public. Even after all this, not enough money is going out. I know, let's extend the program, past 2030, to grandchildren of victims. (The original plan was for SA to use any funds post-2030 for needy kids anywhere) I know, let's plant a story in the press that, based on the amount of interest families are receiving on their Victims Compensation Fund accounts, we are having to withhold a lot of scholarship money. I know, Bill Clinton needs his ego petted, so lets make it look like he gives two craps and is all over this thing.

And, as a bonus, the ultimate goal of it all... let's make it seem as though these victims are a reality.

Two years ago, I would have read these articles and been none the wiser. Damn that Scholarship America! Why are they treating people like this? At least Bill Clinton is doing something right! Good thing such phenomenal reporters are investigating things like this! Those poor families...

Anyway, let me know your thoughts on this one.
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Old 27 Aug 2011 , 20:11 PM   #2
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Re: Scholarship America 911 Fraud File

Here's the 2008 AP article:

NEW YORK (AP) — Former President Clinton has been in talks with the directors of a huge college scholarship fund for families of Sept. 11 victims to address complaints that the program has given out too little money.
The Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund raised more than $128 million in donations and pledges in the years following the terrorist attacks, with the help of several big corporate donors and public appeals by Clinton and former Sen. Bob Dole.

The money was set aside to help the children and spouses of 9/11 victims pay for college. Through June, the fund had given $27.3 million to nearly 1,000 students, and signed up thousands more children to receive aid once they reach college age.

But over the past few years, some families have complained that the grants being handed out by the fund's caretaker, the Minnesota-based Scholarship for America, are too stingy.

Some students said they expected large scholarships that would cover much or all of their tuition, only to receive a few thousand dollars.

Others complained about bureaucratic hurdles, or aid amounts that changed without explanation from year to year. Others said they saw their aid slashed after they began earning interest on payments from the Sept. 11 Victim Compensation Fund. The program awards scholarships based on need, and families with higher incomes qualify for less aid.

Their complaints were first reported in the New York Post last year.

Clinton was scheduled to meet Wednesday night with Scholarship America's chief executive to discuss the problems.

"President Clinton has been listening to the concerns of the families involved and he feels strongly that these families should get the money they deserve and he is working hard to make sure that happens," said Jay Carson, a spokesman for the Clinton Foundation.

Scholarship for America spokeswoman Janine Krantz Fugate acknowledged that there have been some complaints but defended the program's performance.

The scholarship fund, she said, was never intended to cover 100% of the families' college expenses — just the portion they couldn't afford through savings and traditional loans.

Despite the fund's large size, she said, there isn't nearly enough money to give every student a big stipend. Giving full tuition to the nearly 4,500 students currently in the application pipeline would cost at least $443 million, according to the charity's estimates.

Most students eligible to receive aid will be hitting college in a wave that begins this year and continues through 2022.

"We are trying to do as much as we can for each family, while being careful that we have enough money down the road," Fugate said. So far, she added, that has meant having to make tough decisions about who needs help the most.

"In the cases of a number of families, their incomes are simply too high to demonstrate need," she said.

The organization determines need by applying a formula similar to the one used by the federal government for its student aid programs.

Clinton's planned meeting with Scholarship for America president and chief executive Clifford Stanley followed nearly two years of off-and-on discussions with the group.

Some changes have already been made at Clinton's request.

Scholarship for America had originally intended to take any funds left over when the program expires in 2030 and roll them into programs available to any needy students. That plan was abandoned last winter. Now, the group has pledged to make any unexpected surplus funds available to the grandchildren of Sept. 11 victims.

Fugate said the organization was open to making other changes, as long as they didn't lead to spending practices that weren't sustainable.

"This is the only fund of its kind, and we are learning as we are going," she said.
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Old 20 Sep 2011 , 15:04 PM   #3
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Re: Scholarship America 911 Fraud File

The following article is long, but important. About a week before my original post, the National Journal also uncovered some shenanigans Clifford Stanley has been engaged in.

Read the article and ask yourself how this guy ran Scholarship America for five years!


Pentagon Personnel Chief Investigated for 'Tyrannical' Leadership
By Megan Scully
Updated: August 19, 2011 | 6:02 p.m.
August 19, 2011 | 1:17 p.m.


The Pentagon inspector general is investigating Clifford Stanley, the official charged with overseeing the Defense Department’s massive personnel bureaucracy, after a spate of highly detailed allegations of gross mismanagement and abuse of power. He's accused of firing respected senior staff, neglecting programs for wounded troops, and using limited funds on expensive consultants and a lavish new conference room.

Senior civilian and military officials filed at least four separate complaints with the IG's office and to Capitol Hill since May, alleging that Stanley, the under secretary of defense for personnel and readiness, has hurt the military’s ability to deliver crucial services to troops and their families. Stanley, a retired two-star Marine Corps general, has been on the job since February 2010.

Stanley did not respond to e-mail and phone messages seeking comment for this article. Pentagon spokeswoman Cynthia Smith said "the department is aware of the allegations and takes them seriously." She added, "As a matter of policy, the DOD IG does not confirm or deny the existence of, or comment upon investigations or investigative issues."

In the complaints, four of which were obtained by National Journal, Stanley is portrayed as vindictive, wasteful, and unfit for service. The officials charge in their complaints that he has largely ignored pervasive problems such as sexual assault and the rising rates of suicides among military personnel. Other senior officials outside Stanley's office have stepped in to handle some of his core responsibilities, according to a July 11 complaint filed by unidentified senior civilians and military personnel.

"He has created a dysfunctional command marked by fear and mistrust through a capricious, tyrannical and arbitrary leadership,” the complaint states. “Waste, fraud and abuse of power are rampant. Even if he were competent, his destructive leadership would assure ‘P&R’ (personnel and readiness) mission failure.”

The investigation into Stanley, one of the Pentagon's most senior and powerful appointees, could pose the first significant personnel challenge for new Defense Secretary Leon Panetta. His predecessor Robert Gates didn't hesitate to fire senior officials for poor performance, at one point even flying to Afghanistan to sack one four-star general commander.

While the inspector general’s decision to launch an investigation does not confirm any wrongdoing on Stanley’s part, the complaints from these whistle-blowers have made their way around the Pentagon. Moreover, the unusual nature of the complaints – and the high stakes involved -- have not been lost on the House Armed Services Committee, which received the July 11 document. A committee staffer said the letter marked the first time in anyone’s memory the panel received a complaint from such a senior level about an under secretary. The staffer said the committee will defer to the inspector general until the work is done.

Inspector general complaints lodged against government officials are not uncommon. But what makes the case against Stanley different from most is the sheer number of the complaints targeting one of the Pentagon’s most well-known officials.

Like the July 11 complaint, most of the missives sent to the IG office and the Capitol are anonymous because of concerns of reprisal. "Dr Stanley has demonstrated that he is vindictive against those who merely offer contrary opinions," the July 11 complaint claims. "The reprisals he would carry out against those who lodged a complaint would be severe."

Several officials who work or have worked within various personnel and readiness offices spoke with National Journal on condition of anonymity, and they back many of the allegations made in the complaints against Stanley. The complaints charge that Stanley decimated much of the institutional knowledge within personnel and readiness offices by transferring, firing, or forcing into retirement 30 civilians in the top-tier senior executive service ranks. A senior P&R official said he couldn't believe all 30 were unfit for their jobs, saying it cost the department a huge loss in brain trust.

At least two other officials – a colonel and a high-ranking government civilian – were fired on the spot, sending a “chilling tone” throughout P&R offices, according to the July 11 complaint. Other allegations in the various complaints suggest that Stanley has hired unqualified people, including at least one friend, to replace high-level staff.

Stanley, meanwhile, has created new and often redundant positions within P&R, at an added expense to the Defense Department, according to a May complaint filed by unnamed Defense Department executives. In one case, Stanley tapped former Maine Gov. John Baldacci to be the department’s “health czar.” Officials argue in the complaint that Baldacci and his team are doing work that should be handled by the assistant secretary of defense for health affairs and his staff.

At a time when the Defense Department is trying to cut the amount of work it outsources, Stanley has also spent more than $5 million on a contract with McKinsey & Co. to help create a strategic plan for P&R and conduct an employee survey. According to the May complaint, McKinsey contractors completed the employee survey in the fall, but Stanley refused to release it because it was so "damaging", adding: "If the survey were given again, the results would be even more damning."

The July 11 complaint, meanwhile, takes issue with McKinsey contractors assisting with the strategic plan, an “inherently governmental” function that, legally, must be handled by defense officials. A P&R official said on condition of anonymity that it should have been done, and could have been done, inhouse.

Like the employee survey, the strategic plan has not been released, according to the complaints.

Others, meanwhile, have taken issue with Stanley’s decision to build an expensive new conference room – whose price tag is estimated to be in the range of $360,000 to nearly $500,000 -- at a time when critical accounts, including programs for wounded warriors, have been cut. By one estimate, each chair in the new conference room cost about the annual salary of a lance corporal.

An August 3 complaint asserts that wounded-warrior accounts helped pay for both the McKinsey contract and the conference room. That complaint, which was sent to Congerss as well as to the IG from officials who work on wounded-warrior issues, says the money would have been better spent on the "Warrior Games," which is aimed at rebuilding injured troops’ self-esteem and confidence as they transition to civilian life. Funding for that program was slashed as part of a broader $11 million cut to wounded-warrior accounts.

“So these heroes really paid for the soft chairs and $30,000 of wall decor (and a lot more) so Dr. Stanley could hold his morning staff meetings in luxury,” according to the complaint.

Building the conference room is certainly not illegal. But one P&R official asserted in a July 13 complaint that it flies in the face of efforts within the Pentagon to cut unnecessary overhead. Stanley already had one conference room at his disposal in addition to other meeting rooms available throughout the Pentagon.

"The fact that this extravagance was clearly inconsistent with direction from the president and Secretary Gates to eliminate waste and efficiency was troubling to many," according to the July 13 complaint.

Officials interviewed for this story stressed that Stanley’s leadership has had repercussions across the force. Many pointed to the system used to evaluate wounded personnel’s disabilities as one of Stanley’s biggest leadership failures. Processing time has grown from 291 days in May 2010 to 404 days in June 2011 -- leaving wounded personnel in limbo for more than a year.

“This means that because of Dr. Stanley’s disruptive leadership and siphoning of funds for other purposes, a wounded warrior who lost a leg or his eyesight is now languishing in a Warrior Transition Unit this day for an additional 100 days!” officials wrote in the complaint filed earlier this month. “This fact pains us enormously.”
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Old 31 Mar 2012 , 13:41 PM   #4
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Re: Scholarship America 911 Fraud File

Just to keep the thread up to date, in October of 2011, Clifford Stanley resigned from his position within the Defense Department and is currently being investigated by the DOD inspector general as a result of the numerous complaints of waste and abuse.

As an aside, you have to wonder what kind of impact the 911 aftermath/cover-up has on an active participant like Clifford. I like to think that the guilt and stress from his time at Scholarship America led him off the deep end and he's now just a miserable, angry, empty wreck. Perhaps he's none of those things, but it's nice to imagine there is some private comeuppance these people suffer.
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