Tag Archives: Crony Socialism

Report: Obama Cronies in Egypt Looking to Cash In as Embassies Attacked

By Gary P Jackson

Check this out. During the lead up to the terror attacks on our embassies, the Obama regime sponsored a trip to Egypt. Officials from the State Department, as well as Soros lackey [and communist] John Podesta were part of the group touring Egypt and looking for ways to make money by teaming up with our enemies.

From the Washington Free Beacon: [emphasis mine]

A delegation of American business leaders with lobbying ties to relatives of a top Obama administration adviser wrapped up a four-day tour in Egypt aimed at laying the groundwork for increased economic cooperation on Tuesday, as violent rioters stormed the U.S. Embassy in Cairo.

Senior State Department officials accompanied more than 100 executives from 50 American companies on the trip, which included high-level powwows with Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood-backed president, Mohamed Morsi, and other Egyptian officials.

Among the Obama administration officials present on the tour, which was jointly sponsored by the State Department and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Egyptian affiliate, was John Podesta, a senior adviser to the Secretary of State and former Clinton administration official who founded the liberal Center For American Progress.

Ten of the 50 companies present on the tour have been clients of lobbying firms separately run by Podesta’s brother and sister-in-law, leaving some observers wondering what role the Democratic insider may have played in determining which companies earned slots on the potentially lucrative junket.

One of the firms, The Podesta Group, is operated by Tony Podesta, who is John’s brother. The other, Heather Podesta + Partners, is run by John’s sister-in-law.

During the several-day jaunt, business leaders from the finance, defense, and aerospace sectors, among others, were exposed to investment opportunities in Egypt’s burgeoning public and private sectors.

The group, which included representatives from 50 leading American companies and top administration officials, traveled to Egypt to deliver a simple message to the nation’s new government: Egypt is open for business, and the U.S. business community is ready to invest,” according to an account of the trip on the Chamber of Commerce’s website.

Ten of the most prominent companies to participate in the trip have been or are currently represented by either The Podesta Group or Heather Podesta + Partners, highlighting the close ties between the Obama administration and Democratic-leaning lobbying outfits.

The companies whose representatives John Podesta accompanied to Egypt have collectively spent millions on firms run by his brother and sister-in-law, records show.

They include Boeing, Raytheon, Eli Lilly and Company, Johnson and Johnson, Lockheed Martin, Credit Suisse, Google Inc., Oracle, Pfizer, and General Electric.

None of the companies commented on the trip when approached by the Free Beacon.

Lockheed Martin, a defense contractor that works closely with the U.S. government, has paid The Podesta Group more than $2.2 million since 2004 to lobby both Congress and the Obama administration on a range of issues, records show.

The Podesta Group has pushed lawmakers to endorse various appropriations measures that would benefit Lockheed, according to records.

Boeing, also an aerospace group, has been a partner of both The Podesta Group and Heather Podesta + Partners, according to records.

Since President Obama entered office in 2008, Boeing has spent $840,000 on The Podesta Group’s services, relying on the firm to lobby in favor of lucrative defense appropriations at the White House and on Capitol Hill.

From 2007 to 2009, Boeing paid Heather Podesta’s firm $760,000 to lobby the administration on multiple defense issues, including the implementation of a missile defense system, records show.

Raytheon, a prominent aerospace company, also has been a client of both Podesta family firms, spending a combined $340,000 since 2008 on a range of lobbying services.

Heather Podesta + Partners, for example, has monitored congressional legislation pertaining to the foreign sale of arms on Raytheon’s behalf, records show.

Another of Heather Podesta’s clients on the government-endorsed Egypt jaunt was Eli Lilly and Company, a healthcare organization that has paid her lobbying group more than $1.1 million since 2008.

Johnson and Johnson, which also has a stake in the health industry, has paid The Podesta Group $140,000 since 2011 to lobby lawmakers on legislation pertaining to certain medical devices.

Credit Suisse Securities, a firm that has been tied to Iran, also hobnobbed with Egyptian officials during the trip. It has employed The Podesta Group since 2009.

The company, which has been a Podesta Group client since 2009, came under scrutiny last month for paying senior White House adviser David Plouffe for a speaking engagement.

Internet search giant Google has spent more than $3 million on The Podesta Group’s services, utilizing it to lobby the White House on issues such as cyber security and online privacy, according to records.

Oracle, Pfizer, and General Electric also count themselves among The Podesta Group’s clientele, utilizing the firm to lobby on a range of high profile issues.

While details about the trip to Egypt remain sparse, the business leaders Tuesday issued a joint statement with U.S. Chamber of Commerce discussing their goals.

We believe in the critical importance and mutual benefit of investing in Egypt now—particularly in its talented young men and women,” the statement reads. “With a newly democratically elected Egyptian government now in place, we believe that it is critical to take concrete steps to broaden and to deepen the Egyptian-American economic relationship.

Egypt has clearly become an enemy of the United States since the Muslim Brotherhood has taken over, and yet, the Obama regime and it’s allies are all too ready to do business with the terrorist regime.

What is most troubling is how ready our top defense contractors are to do business with terrorists.

Communist Podesta’s role in all of this is equally troubling.

We are at war with radical Islam, and Obama’s State Department is lining up strategic defense companies to do business with our enemies. Of course, Obama himself can’t figure out if they are our enemies or our allies.

Things are out of control, and Obama’s cronies are more interested in making money than protecting America. Why are we even surprised by this?

H/T Jewish Americans for Sarah Palin

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New AFP Ad: Obama Regime Asked Solyndra to Hold Up Layoffs Until After 2010 Elections, Jake Tapper Hardest Hit

By Gary P Jackson

Jake Tapper really carries the Obama regime’s water as he attacks Americans for Prosperity the group that has created an ad that is scheduled to start running around the time of President Obama’s State of the Union speech.

Tapper drones on forever about the Koch brothers and so on, trying to take focus off the fact Solyndra is an abject failure, and Obama asked them to hold off firing workers until after the 2010 mid-term elections. A cold blooded political calculation intended to fool the American people and save some democrats from political annihilation at the polls.

While Tapper whines, here’s the meat of the subject: [emphasis mine]

The ad depicts the president as giving “Solyndra half a billion in taxpayer money. Politics as usual. Within the administration, the company’s potential collapse had long been discussed. Knowing all along Solyndra would have to fire their workers. But Solyndra held off until after the 2010 elections.”

That White House officials “knew all along” that Solyndra would have to fire their workers isn’t true. The ad is referring to an email released two months ago indicating that an adviser to the company’s main investor, Argonaut Equity, wrote on Oct. 30, 2010, that officials from the Department of Energy “did push very hard for us to hold our announcement” of layoffs “to Nov. 3rd – oddly they didn’t give a reason for that date.”…

Seriously? Like nothing big was happening on November 3? One really has to be dumb not to figure out why the regime wanted that information held. I don’t think Tapper is dumb. Just in the bag for Obama.

Here’s more:

The ad says: “1,100 workers had no idea that they would be fired, but the Obama administration knew. All that mattered was the 2010 election – ‘optics,’ not workers.”

While it may be that White House officials wanted the announcement to be made after the November 2010 elections – the only proof of that is that one e-mail, and the White House denies the charge — the layoffs that were announced were not as AFP describes. What is true: the day after the 2010 elections, on November 3, Solyndra announced it would lay end its contracts with more than 100 contractors, lay off 40 employees, and close one of its factories.

I bet the regime does deny the charge!

Yeah, the ad does make it seem all of the layoffs come at once, but so what. The facts are the facts, no matter how bad Tapper tries to make it sound like they aren’t.

Solyndra was a massive failure. The principles involved in the company were Obama cronies. They should have never been given a loan in the first place. No responsible lender would have touched this bunch with a 10 ft pole!

Here’s the ad. I think it’s quite effective:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Though Tapper claims there is no evidence of foul play, Bloomberg’s Jim Snyder begs to differ: [emphasis mine]

The Obama administration knew before the 2010 election that Solyndra LLC, a solar-panel maker that received a $535 million U.S. loan guarantee, planned to fire workers, according to e-mails released today.

The messages don’t indicate that anyone from the White House directed Solyndra to delay announcing the layoffs until after the vote. Previously released e-mails, indicating the Energy Department urged Solyndra to postpone the cuts, have been cited by House Republicans who say politics influenced Solyndra’s award and last-ditch rescue bid that put taxpayers behind $75 million in private investment.

Here’s the deal — Solyndra is going to announce they are laying off 200 of their 1200 workers,” Heather Zichal, a White House adviser, wrote to Carol Browner, then director of the office of Energy and Climate Change Policy, and other officials on Oct. 27, 2010. “No es bueno.”

If your Spanish is rusty, “No es bueno” roughly translates to “is no good.

Read more here.

Very disappointed in Jake Tapper, but it just goes to show you, when push comes to shove, the left wing media is going to do all of the Obama regime’s heavy lifting.

Obama and his cronies should all go to prison for what they have done to this country. It’s nothing less than wholesale theft. The regime has stolen taxpayer money and given it to cronies. Cronies who were totally unqualified to be in the business the loans were made to.

Until we get serious and start throwing corrupt politicians and their underlings in prison, and start going after their cronies as well, nothing is ever going to change. Oh, people will hoot and holler, some congresscritter will “investigate” but nothing real will happen.

America deserves better than this, and Americans need to get off their butts and demand it!

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Crony Socialism: Obama Proposes New Department of Corporate Welfare

By Gary P Jackson

Tad DeHaven at the CATO Institute reports on the latest corporate welfare scheme coming out of the Obama regime, and just how weak the feckless Republican party really is:

Contrary to what various news outlets are reporting, President Obama is NOT proposing to cut government. The administration is proposing to take four independent federal agencies that specialize in corporate welfare – along with the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative – and combine them with corporate welfare programs at the Department of Commerce to form what would I would argue should be called the Department of Corporate Welfare.

According to reports, this rearranging of the deck chairs would save $300 million a year. That’s peanuts. Worse, those alleged savings will be of no consequence to taxpayers as there is nothing to suggest that the president intends to cut overall spending for the agencies comprising the new bureaucracy. That portends bigger government, not smaller. The president is trying to sell the American taxpayer a false bill of goods.

The president’s proposal is also an attempt to counter the perception – an accurate one – that the administration’s policies are detrimental to commerce. But corporate welfare is detrimental to commerce because the market distortions it creates hinder economic output. Making it easier for select businesses to help themselves to taxpayer-financed subsidies would only perpetrate the same sort of crony capitalist schemes that gave us Solyndra and the Chevy Volt.

Of course, no transparent attempt to appear “business friendly” would be complete without a bone toss to the Small Business Administration. The “bone” this time is the president’s intention to elevate the head of the SBA to the Cabinet. As I discuss in a Cato essay on the SBA, rather than helping small businesses compete against big businesses, the SBA’s loan guarantees mainly help a tiny share of small businesses compete against other small businesses. In reality, the biggest beneficiary of the SBA is the banks, which reap the profits from the loans guaranteed by the agency.

Finally, Republican policymakers talk a good game about cutting government, but they often hide behind calls for making the federal government “more efficient.” Now that the president has seized a political opportunity to sing from the GOP’s hymnal, it’ll be interesting – if not entertaining – to see how Republican policymakers respond. To avoid embarrassment, I recommend offering specific spending cuts.

The Obama regime is running roughshod over the GOP and the country as a whole. One of the reasons our country may never recover from the mess we are in, is the fact government is actively picking winners and losers. Actively rewarding political cronies for their support.

Until we find real reformers, people who will not only create strong ethics rules that will punish those who engage in this activity, but also create reforms that limit politicians’ ability to engage in this activity, this sort of activity will go on unabated. We must reform the way government does business. Remove the situations that allow politicians to engage in unethical and harmful activity.

Government shouldn’t be rewarding [or punishing] any business, unless they actually break the law. We must allow the free market to work as intended. If someone has a good product, a product that meets a demand, and has a solid business plan to bring that product to market, then they will succeed. If not, they will fail. That’s how it works. Businesses failing is just as much a part of free markets as businesses succeeding.

If poor ideas are subsidized, if products that no one wants are subsidized, if businesses aren’t allowed to fail, then what we have is a perversion of the free market system. We have companies building products no one wants or needs, being subsidized by tax dollars. It becomes more about social engineering that actual success.

The above mentioned Chevy Volt is the perfect example. No one wants it. It’s a pathetic car that doesn’t work well. This experiment in social engineering has cost the American tax payer, according to Doug Powers at Michelle Malkin.com, roughly $250,000 per vehicle.

The Volt is such a failure, Chevrolet is likely to end production soon.

This is what happens when you allow politicians, not consumers, decide what the market wants. Obviously all of the billions wasted on nonsense like the Volt is an attempt to “fix” an imaginary problem. [global warming] Never mind the electricity used to recharge these useless, soul sucking appliances comes from coal powered electric generation plants.

Sanctimonious fools can ride around pretending they are “saving the planet.” That’s the only benefit this car offers.

There were well sorted, highly reliable electric cars over 100 years ago. The market left them behind because they weren’t practical. Except for city dwellers who never travel more than a few miles form home, electric cars are less reliable today than they were back in the day.

Now I’m picking on the Volt, but it’s just one of thousands of failures that government subsidizes on a yearly basis. Having government involved in picking winners and losers generally ends up with nothing but losers.

America is filled with creative men and women who successfully bring new and useful products to market on a daily basis. The best thing government can do is get out of their way. Remove the high tax burden, and the over regulation, and you will see businesses and the free market thrive.

Until we elect people who understand government has no place picking winners and losers, and understand that using tax payer money to prop up their buddies, nothing is going to change.

Free markets work well, when left alone. This all went to hell once corrupt politicians figured out they could game the system and gain more power for themselves.

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