You are browsing the archive for campaign finance.

The Military-Industrial Marx Brothers

3:50 pm in Uncategorized by JP Sottile

The great Lisa Derrick of La Figa likes to say that “nomenclature is destiny.”

That adage proved true once again, this time in the strange case of the four “best-paid” Congressional beneficiaries of the defense industry’s impressive political slush fund.

According to a recent article in AlterNet, four of the six largest recipients of Military-Industrial campaign donations are:

1. Howard “Buck” McKeon (R-CA): $566,100 in 2012 cycle defense sector donations.

2. CW “Bill” Young (R-FL): $229,760 in 2012 cycle defense sector donations.

3. Charles Albert “Dutch” Ruppersberger III (D-MD): $229,550 in 2012 cycle defense sector donations.

4. Morris “Mo” Brooks (R-AL): $202,020 in 2012 cycle defense sector donations.

Seriously.

First of all, they all have nicknames. What are the odds? Is it a requirement to join the club…like a frat house initiation?

Secondly, all those nicknames  “add up” to a boatload of cash.

Finally, they all sit in key positions on the key committees and subcommittees that reallocate taxpayers’ dollars into the hands of defense contractors.

Yup, nomenclature is destiny:

Because the defense industry generously passes out the bucks to “Buck.”

“Bill” never met an authorization he didn’t like, nor has he refused those stacks of bills offered in exchange for his reliable compliance.

Dutch is one guy who never has to “go dutch” when it comes to financing his reelection.

And Mo gets mo’ and mo’ money with each passing election cycle.

Hello, America! Meet the sweethearts of the Military-Industrial Complex: Buck, Bill, Dutch & Mo!

These are the biggest, shiniest stars in the Empire’s greatest hit: Duck and Cover Soup!

It is currently opening in new “theaters” around the globe: in Niger, Mali and the Persian Gulf.

These are “limited engagements,” but rest assured that Duck and Cover Soup will open in more theaters, even if it doesn’t turn out to be a big hit in current screenings.

Of course, like any blockbuster franchise…future sequels are already in development. Sure, they keep remaking the same movie. Just like Hollywood, the Empire’s producers don’t really have any original ideas.

Alas, this is no laughing matter. America is more and more like a Marx Brothers’ movie every day.

The plot is absurd. Like Freedonia, our country is broke. But unlike the original Duck Soup, this current cast of characters ain’t very funny.

Frankly, we’d all be a lot better off with Groucho, Harpo, Chico &  Zeppo.

At least we could laugh all the way to The End.

(the Newsvandal)

Spare Rod, Spoil the Child?

2:43 pm in Uncategorized by JP Sottile

Oh, Rod!

You are an idiot. A narcissistic megalomaniac who refers to your beloved comb as “the football,” as in the Elvis-wannabe’s equivalent to the “nuclear football” that each president must keep with him at all times in case he is forced to go ballistic.

Rod, it would seem, went ballistic whenever his comb—“the football”—was not within reach.

Rod has some “issues.”

Today, though, David Johnston of the NY Times finally asked whether or not Rod’s foolish pay-for-play chatter is really much different than the sort of pay-for-play that secures big donors ambassadorships, and has done for decades. Is Rod guilty of anything more than being stupid about the form of legalized bribery we call the campaign finance system?

Also, Johnston brings up another issue—did St. Patrick Fitzgerald blow an eventual conviction by jumping the gun and cuffing Rodvis before he actually got some pay for some play?

Robert Bennett of that ubiquitous left-right song and dance team, the Fabulous Bennett Boys, was already finding loopholes for a Rodvis defense. But he was also pointing at the stinking truth that all the zeal and outrage is missing…that this pay-for-play is just the way business is done. Period.

Look no further than the thorough profile of Senator Chuck Schumer in Sunday’s NY Times. Yikes! He is Senator Chuck Wagon for the financial industry.
Read the rest of this entry →