The Project on Government Oversight, Inc.

Rating: 4.78 stars   316 reviews

Issues:

Location: 1100 G Street NW Suite 500 Washington DC 20005 USA

Mission: The Project On Government Oversight (POGO) is a nonpartisan independent watchdog that champions good government reforms. POGO's investigations into corruption, misconduct, and conflict of interest achieve a more effective, accountable, open and ethical federal government.
Results: Some recent examples of our work are: A) Partnered with IAVA to help Veterans. As concerns of mismanagement and deception within the Department of Veterans Affairs mount, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) and the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) entered into a partnership to protect VA staff who come forward with information about agency wrongdoing. As part of the effort, the organizations have launched a secure website, www.VAOversight.org, where VA employees can get in touch with POGO and IAVA. The effort combines IAVA’s deep knowledge of the VA system with POGO’s experience working with whistleblowers to expose federal wrongdoing. In an effort to stem the tide of negative publicity, the Inspector General of the VA has subpoenaed POGO in an attempt to find out who the whistleblowers are. POGO has refused to allow the government to learn the identity of the brave people who have come forth to alert the public of its misdoings. B) Received Journalism Awards. POGO won in June 2014 the Dateline Award for investigative reporting from its local chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists for its project on lax security at U.S. embassies overseas. It also won a business journalism award for its reporting on efforts by former employees of the Securities and Exchange Commission to influence regulations. C) Increased transparency around drone program. After POGO signed onto an amicus curiae brief in 2013 authored by EPIC in NY Times v. DOJ supporting release of the classified legal analysis justifying the controversial “targeted killing” drone program, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of increased transparency. The Court found that after “senior Government officials have assured the public” that the program is “lawful and that . . . advice establishes the legal boundaries,” it can no longer claim that the document is exempt from FOIA. D) Elected Chair of the Civil Society Sector of the USEITI. POGO Executive Director Danielle Brian was elected the chair of the Civil Society sector of the US EITI), a Federal Advisory Board composed of civil society, industry, and government members. In that role, POGO has helped organize outreach efforts to provide residents of communities directly impacted by extractive industries to have a voice in the crafting of transparency commitments that have been presented to the international EITI board by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior. The outreach is being conducting across the country from Alaska to New Orleans, involving impoverished communities including Native American tribes, Appalachia, the Gulf region, as well as Pennsylvania lands where hydraulic fracturing is being conducted. E) Closed Revolving Door Loophole at the SEC. Thanks to efforts by POGO, the SEC decided to close a loophole in the ethics rules that allowed some “senior” SEC personnel to lobby the agency immediately after leaving instead of staying on the sidelines for a year or more, as employees at other federal agencies must do. The change in the rules—revoking a longstanding exemption for some SEC officials—is a rare stand against the revolving door at an agency that has long blurred the lines between the regulators and the regulated. F) Removed Officer Unfit to Oversee Whistleblowers. A November 2013 POGO letter to Secretary Hagel asked for the removal of Major General Patton from his post as head of sexual assault prevention due to an investigation that found him guilty of violating the Military Whistleblower Protection Act. The letter resulted in news coverage of the issue and over 2,500 letters to the DoD from POGO supporters. A mere four weeks after POGO’s letter, the Pentagon announced Major General Patton’s plan to retire. A congressional staffer close to the issue told POGO that the impetus for Patton’s retirement was the unwelcome attention from POGO. G) POGO Recommendations on Contracting Reform featured in New York Times Editorial. In a very harsh critique of federal contracting rules, the New York Times editorial board cited POGO’s recommendations as a solution to the current practice of contracting out vast swaths of government work indefinitely — with little or no attempt to develop the needed technical and managerial expertise within the government or to enforce labor standards — which has created a bloated federal-contractor sector in which the public good is often subservient to profit. H) Strengthened Protections for Military Whistleblowers Signed into Law. Thanks to efforts by POGO, Congress has passed protections for military whistleblowers and victims of sexual assault against unfair retaliation which were signed into law by the President. This new law will help protect service members who make the difficult and brave decision to come forward and report sexual assault or other misconduct. POGO fought hard for passage of these reforms to upgrade the disgracefully broken whistleblower protections for our troops. I) Enforced Defense Contractor Rules Regarding Purchase of US-Made Products. POGO helped to expose that the Defense Department hasn’t been following the mandates for purchasing US-made products and instead was illegally supplying our troops with boots manufactured in China. POGO urged Congress to call for a DoD Inspector General (IG) audit into the DoD’s compliance with existing domestic preference laws, including the Buy American Act and the Berry Amendment. As a result, in August 2013, the DoD IG announced a preemptive audit, stating that it anticipated that legislation was forthcoming.
Geographic areas served: The United States
Programs: A. Open Government Investigations-Strengthening Government Oversight Functions B. National Security Investigations-Challenging Wasteful Defense Spending C. Wall Street Investigations-Strengthening Financial Oversight D. Contractor Accountability Investigations-Proposing Solutions E. Extractives Industries Transparency Initiative-Paying Their Fair Share F. Public Health Investigations- Improving Transparency of Programs
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Community Reviews

Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

POGO is an exemplary public-service group that speaks truth to power -- then holds it accountable through practical revelations about the inner workings of government. When analyzing energy and science issues at GAO, I found myself many times crossing POGO's path, as both organizations are dedicated to exposing waste, fraud, and the abuse of power. POGO's methods are more direct that GAOs, and in many ways more effective for their timely revelations.

As a journalist covering the federal government, and as a Senior Analyst at GAO, I have spent decades investigating and exposing foolish and wasteful government programs. POGO is unique in its ability to be an independent and rigorous watchdog for the public interest.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

POGO serves a crucial role in ensuring that U.S. citizens can continue to participate in open government and prevent corruption. POGO is particularly impressive because of its unassailable and unwavering dedication to its mission.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

open a west coast branch :)

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 5 stars  

POGO is priceless. Whatever one thinks of our government, we all should know the facts of what our government is doing.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Fight to not be forced to make changes.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Likely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 5 stars  

POGO provides a great service for U.S. citizens. This organization investigates public-realm activities that are wasteful and/or corrupt, and its findings are often the drivers of corrective action. POGO is smart, scrupulous, evidence-based, and non-partisan. To me, POGO embodies the best features of democratic governance.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I've been following and supporting POGO for about a year now, and I haven't yet seen an aspect of their operation that needs modification.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 4 stars  

A great organization that exposure corruptions and abuse on the government. We need more of these organizations.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Likely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 5 stars  

To All & Whom it May be Concerned about the VA-Hospital Scandales & the Great Non-Profit Organization of the POGO Who are Couragously Combatting These Systematic Corruptions & Lacks of Integrity at the VA:

I am a public safety whistleblower and a former employee of Veterans Health Administration employed as the Director of Safety & Occupational Health. I am presently on medical leave without pay pending United States District Court investigation of the civil action and criminal complaint that I have filed against Veterans Health Administration for their corrupt.

The VA Chief of Facilities of one of the Veterans Health Administration in 2006 and 2007 on multiple occasion threatened me not to do my job as the Director of the Officer that I was hired to do per my job responsibilities at the VA. THEY directly and blatantly threatened me to dismiss my National Whistleblowing Federal Supreme Court Public Safety Cases and Veterans Patient Safety cases or else THEY will destroy/ kill me and my family. When I refused to do so THEY began pervasively persecuting me leading to even THEM acting on their verbal threat against me and brutally assaulted me in the year 2010, in which, as the result of their orchestrated brutal assault I have been since then totally bedbound and totally incapacitated medically after having undergone total of 9-complicated major surgeries.

On May 17, 2014 I have shared my story with this wonderful grassroots organization of the” Project On Government Oversight (POGO)” who has a long history of working with individuals daring to expose corruption. Once I discovered about this God’s sent organization of POGO it was as if I have found hope again, and now because of POGO superb independent oversight of the VA that finally I can actually see a light at the end of the dark tunnel of the VA.

Throughout its history, POGO’s work has been applauded by Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle, federal workers and whistleblowers, other nonprofits, and the media for their outstanding Veterans Advocacy organizational skills & their marvelous corrective actions and preventing measurements of the VA wrongdoings that they discover or is brought up to their attentions.

POGO I admire the courage, the mission and goals of your organization. Please keep up the outstanding public service work that you all have been doing superbly all along.

Singed,

A former executive employee of the VA who his life and his entire family lives has been literally destroyed in retaliation him being a whistleblower on the Veterans Health Administration culture of corruption, intimidation and lack of integrity.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

None that I can think of....just please :POGO keep up the gre at work you all have been doing all along.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 5 stars  

POGO is the best organization i know of that works with whistleblowers and protects our democracy on behalf of the people. Their long history is testament to their quality, skill, and dedication. Danielle, their long time ED, is really smart and very effective. I put my money to work with POGO. Ben Cohen, co-counder, Ben and Jerry's

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 4 stars  

I am not aware of much of what this non-profit does. However, I believe that their stands on the A-10 and F-35 are spot on. I base this on my understanding of the work of military strategist John Boyd and on my knowledge of the rise of the military-industrial-Congressional complex. I grew up listening to unclassified stories about the management of the DOD from my father, who rose through the ranks of the Army Air Corps Management Control Directorate (Organizational Planning and Statistical Control Groups), and from my great uncle, who was fiscal director of the Navy from the close of WWII until the creation of the DOD, special assistant for financial matters to James Forrestal at the inception of the DOD, and comptroller of the DOD under its next five secretaries. When my father left active service in 1946 as a major, the USAAF split his job in two and gave each half to a one-star general. When my great uncle left his DOD job in 1959, he purposely took a job in which his connections would be of little or no use (President of Grace Lines). He waited years before joining the board of Fairchild Aircraft. In our last conversation before his death, he commented on the importance of the A-10, which, as Pierre Sprey and other POGO advisors can attest, was greatly resisted by the USAF top brass at the time, and has been ever since. The US Army and/or the USMC would be wise to volunteer to take over the A-10 program should the USAF choose to drop it.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I do not know enough about this organization to make specific recommendations other than I encourage them to work with other non-profits interested in government oversight to increase transparency. Regrettably, many of these organizations have agendas associated with or tied to one or the other major political parties. A high priority for all of these groups ought to be to find a basis for agreement on the role of government in information age economies.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Unsure

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 5 stars  

POGO is an essentail part of ending corrupotion and the distortiion in our democratic process. Keep up the grea work. Without organizations like POGO we are lost.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Unsure

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Some

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2007

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Rating: 5 stars  

In this ever changing world in which WE cannot trust our own government POGO stands out as one of the few protectors of YOUR rights. POGO watches out for how YOUR money is being squandered and misspent.
SUPPORT POGO. POGO SUPPORTS YOU.

Roger Weinreb

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Likely

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Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

POGO focuses a spotlight on government projects that are questionable or just plain foolish. Transparency is essential for an informed electorate and for maintaining democracy.
POGO is an essential ingredient in the fabric of American life.
I heartily endorse POGO and recommend POGO to and for all Americans.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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