Thursday, November 03, 2005

GOP: Religious Right 'Wacko'

"Simply put, we want to bring out the wackos to vote against something and make sure the rest of the public lets the whole thing slip past them."
-- GOP fund-raiser Michael Scanlon
Via Dave Johnson at Seeing the Forest we are directed to (subscription required), where Michael Shearer reports on a rare glimpse inside the cynical skull of one of Tom Delay's closest pals: the Christian Right, this guy thinks, is merely a useful bunch of "wackos."

Johnson reports today:
Jack Abramoff and his former business partner Michael Scanlon... stand accused of exploiting Native American tribes to the tune of roughly $66 million, laundering that money into bank accounts they controlled and then using it to buy favors for powerful members of Congress and the executive branch.

But they sure did know how to play the game.

Consider one memo highlighted in a Capitol Hill hearing Wednesday that Scanlon, a former aide to Rep. Tom DeLay, R-Texas, sent... to describe ... the source code of recent Republican electoral victories: target religious conservatives, distract everyone else, and then railroad through complex initiatives.

"The wackos get their information through the Christian right, Christian radio, mail, the internet and telephone trees," Scanlon wrote in the memo, which was read into the public record at a hearing of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee. "Simply put, we want to bring out the wackos to vote against something and make sure the rest of the public lets the whole thing slip past them."
The committee hearings are being chaired by Arizona senator John McCain. He's taken on the impossible task of trying the peel back just one of the curtains draped over the criminal schemes of the Republican Party's main money man, Jack Abramoff. He can't get far because at the same time various federal prosecutors and grand juries are trying to put Abramoff and associates in prison for everything from bribery, extortion, racketeering, and perjury to murder.

The Abramoff story is no ordinary Washington scandal. As veteran journalist Robert Sheer wrote a few weeks ago, "[T]he defining case study on the deep corruption of the Bush administration and the GOP is emerging from the myriad investigations of well-connected Republican fundraiser and lobbyist Jack Abramoff."

Although the public's attention may be on Scooter Libby, intertwining probes of Bush buddy Jack Abramoff's multifarious misdeeds is far more likely to bring down a heap of Republican politicians. Long-time political reporter Elizabeth Drew explained why in the New York Review of Books (subscription required) early last Summer:
Abramoff's behavior is symptomatic of the unprecedented corruption — the intensified buying and selling of influence over legislation and federal policy — that has become endemic in Washington under a Republican Congress and White House. Corruption has always been present in Washington, but in recent years it has become more sophisticated, pervasive, and blatant than ever. A friend of mine who works closely with lobbyists says, "There are no restraints now; business groups and lobbyists are going crazy — they're in every room on Capitol Hill writing the legislation. You can't move on the Hill without giving money."
She wrote that before Abramoff was arrested for fraud, his partner was implicated in the gangland-style killing of South Florida gambling boat owner Konstantin Boulis, Tim Flanigan had to withdraw as deputy attorney general, and George W. Bush's chief of federal procurement was indicted.

A lot of Republicans in Washington may be corrupt. But they aren't all that stupid.

While we ordinary people watch Plamegate unfold, and the supporting chorus of religious 'wackos' gets energized over the Alito nomination, Republicans in the know are watching the Abramoff prosecutions.

Why? Because that's where their money has come from.

As former Minnesota congressman Vin Weber told the Washington Post last month, "The one [scandal] that people are most worried about is Abramoff, because it seems to have such long tentacles. This seems to be something that could spread almost anywhere. That has a lot of people worried."

edited title 11/4/05

1 comment:

My Daily Struggles said...

The following spam was voted "Best Blog Spam ...... ever" by the blogger known as The Walker:

October 3, 2005
3801 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Apartment 136
Washington, DC 20008
Telephone: (202) 362 7064

The Honorable Kenneth Wainstein
U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia
U.S. Department of Justice
555 Fourth Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001

Dear Mr. Wainstein:

The full text of my autobiography titled "Significant Moments" can be accessed on the web at The manuscript is unusual in structure, and is written entirely in the form of quotations from published material. I spent about ten years writing the document, from the spring of 1993 to about the year 2004.

From June 1988 to October 1991 I was employed at the law firm of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld, two of whose executive managers are Robert S. Strauss, Esq. and Vernon E. Jordan, Jr., Esq. Dennis M. Race, Esq. of Akin Gump designated himself the contact person regarding questions about my employment (202 887 4028).

From 1992 to 1996 I was an outpatient at the Department of Psychiatry of the George Washington University Medical Center Department of Psychiatry, which at that time was chaired by Jerry M. Wiener, M.D. (now deceased). Dr. Wiener served in 1994-1995 as President of the American Psychiatric Association. He had earlier served as President of the American Psychoanalytic Association. Coincidentally, Dr. Wiener was Jewish and a native of Texas, like Robert S. Strauss (who serves as a trustee of GW's Ronald Reagan Institute of Emergency Medicine). Robert S. Strauss has an interest in biomedical issues and endowed a chair in neurology at the University of Texas Medical School. Both Mr. Strauss and Dr. Wiener were graduates of the University of Texas.

I believe (without proof) that senior Akin Gump managers surreptitiously (and unlawfully) obtained draft versions of my autobiography which I submitted to my psychiatrists at GW. I further believe that Vernon E. Jordan, Jr., Esq. transmitted the draft versions to his close friend and confidant, former President William Jefferson Clinton or Hillary Rodham Clinton. If you recall, in the mid-1990s, Mrs. Clinton chaired an ill-fated national health care reform initiative that considered benefits for mental health treatment.

I understand that the willful fabrication of delusional symptoms to bolster a Social Security disability mental health claim would constitute a prosecutable act of criminal fraud.


Gary Freedman

cc: Eugene Lambert, Esq., trustee, GW
David Kendall, Esq.

January 5, 2005
3801 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Apartment 136
Washington, DC 20008

U.S. Secret Service
245 Murray Drive
Building 410
Washington, DC 20223

Dear Sir:

This will advise the U.S. Secret Service that I have been the victim of an ongoing fraud and racketeering conspiracy run by attorney managers of the Washington, DC law firm of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld: a criminal enterprise that has involved The George Washington University Medical Center Medical Faculty Associates, The District of Columbia Public Library (Richard Jackson, Interim Director), as well as several high-level federal officials including former President William Jefferson Clinton, former Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin, and former Treasury General Counsel, Edward S. Knight, Esq.

The Government of the District of Columbia (Office of The Corporation Counsel) determined (in 1997) that I formed a genuine and good-faith belief (though unsupported by fact) that in January 1990 members of the law firm of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld (a class of persons that included Edward S. Knight, Esq.) gained unlawful entry to my apartment (at the above address), and that the unlawful entry was made with the knowledge and consent of the firm's management committee (a class of persons that includes Robert S. Strauss, Esq. and Vernon E. Jordan, Jr., Esq.). Freedman v. D.C. Dept. of Human Rights, 96-CV-961 (DCCA, Sept. 1998), Brief of Appellee District of Columbia at 9. The firm did not dispute the District's determination or its legal or factual relevance.

Vernon E. Jordan, Jr., Esq. is a close personal friend of former President Clinton's.

Secret Service Special Agent Philip C. Leadroot (now retired) is familiar with this matter.

Enclosed is a collection of pertinent documents.


Gary Freedman

At 10:01 PM, Anonymous said...
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the walker