Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Nepotism Everywhere in this Meritorious USA? Waaaaahhh!!!

It's being argued seriously that the "wingnut" mobs are providing cover for the Blue Dog Democrats and their allies to defeat the health care reform bill.

You be the judge.

On the edge of your seat about Sibel Edmonds' video deposition and transcript? Me too. (It's been released!!!) (Emphasis marks added - Ed.)

The deposition included criminal allegations against specifically named members of Congress. Among those named by Edmonds as part of a broad criminal conspiracy: Reps. Dennis Hastert (R-IL), Dan Burton (R-IN), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Bob Livingston (R-LA), Stephen Solarz (D-NY), Tom Lantos (D-CA), as well as an unnamed, still-serving Congresswoman (D) said to have been secretly videotaped, for blackmail purposes, during a lesbian affair.

High-ranking officials from the Bush Administration named in her testimony, as part of the criminal conspiracy on behalf of agents of the Government of Turkey, include Douglas Feith, Paul Wolfowitz, Marc Grossman, and others.

During the deposition - which we are still going through ourselves - Edmonds discusses covert "activities" by Turkish entities "that would involve trying to obtain very sensitive, classified, highly classified U.S. intelligence information, weapons technology information, classified Congressional records . . . recruiting key U.S. individuals with access to highly sensitive information, blackmailing, bribery."

I hear the military is looking for "A Few Good Kids" nowadays (h/t to Quaker Agitator!).

In the essay from Glenn Greenwald that you will access if you click on the title link, you will see the nepotistic ties between the players and their connected kindred that he wrote about in 2008.

It's much worse now.

Here's a current example of the rule by "divine right of kings" theory (which, evidently, most people still dig). (Emphasis marks added - Ed.)

Brenton Williams - a Professor of American Constitutional & Legal History at DePaul University - details one of the most egregiously undemocratic cases of nepotistic succession:

Democratic Blue Dog Rep. Dan Lipinski

His father, Bill, the long-time incumbent ran for the Democratic nomination in 2004 and won easily. A few weeks before the general election he withdrew and the Illinois Democratic Committee met with him for 15 minutes, late at night, behind closed doors before emerging with their new nominee, his son, then residing in central Tennessee where he was an assistant professor at the University of Tennessee . . . .

Still worse, a family friend [Ryan Chlada] with no funding ran as the Republican in 2004 to help insure that Dan faced no more than token resistance.

As Professor Williams notes, the Lipinski son, ever since, has been vigorously supported by the Democratic establishment, particularly Rahm Emanuel, in order to defeat progressive (and meritocratic) primary challengers. He was simply handed the seat by his dad.

Up to date financial info on our media (and other) bosses!

Peter Chernin . . . In February, Chernin announced that he was going to leave his longtime position as Rupert Murdoch’s number two at News Corp. instead of struggling to right the media giant in the midst of a recession. Chernin will get a cushy production deal with Fox Studios; News Corp. insiders will get the chance to diminish his accomplishments in Hollywood and argue that it was his fault that the News Corp.-owned MySpace site sputtered after a strong start. Among Chernin’s recent executive poachings: Nicholas Weinstock (from Judd Apatow’s production company), Lauren Stein and Katherine Pope (from NBC Universal), and Mike Larocca (from Spyglass).

Henry Kravis . . . The chickens from a cheap-money-fueled buying binge came home to roost in 2008, as KKR reported a $1.2 billion loss for the year — only the second decline in its 33-year history. Worse, the economy is pummeling its highly leveraged portfolio companies, investor interest is scant, public opinion could hardly be worse, and President Obama is still very likely to eliminate some favorable tax loopholes as soon as he has time to get around to it. Still, as of June 30, KKR had $50.8 billion in assets under management, up $3.5 billion from three months before.

Steve Schwarzman . . . In an era when excessive executive pay attracts public ridicule and government regulators, the Blackstone chief still managed to take home a whopping $702 million last year — on top of the $684 million he banked when the company went public in 2007. Meanwhile, shares of his private-equity behemoth — the company manages more than $90 billion in assets — are trading at a steep discount compared with its public-offering price. No matter. The company appears to have weathered the financial storm intact: second-quarter earnings topped $170 million this year.

Suzan _____________________


nunya said...

Have you subscribed to Sibel's podcast? Her website

Suzan said...

Thank you, ma'm.

Is it just an iTunes link?