Posted 9 months ago on Aug. 22, 2012, 10:11 p.m. EST by vitvitvit
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Crony Socialism Is Still With Us
Posted 08/20/2012, Investor's Business Daily
Corruption: It didn't take long after President Obama was elected in 2008 for the first signs of crony capitalism to emerge. And as time's gone by, conditions haven't improved. If anything, the problem is growing worse.
This much is clear: Democrats who controlled Congress and the White House used the $700 billion TARP program and the $860 billion stimulus as a giant ATM to pay back favored constituencies, at the expense of the rest of us.
We thought the problem, once observed, would disappear. After all, who would want his or her name associated with something as disreputable as crony capitalism?
And yet, it hasn't gone away. In recent weeks, more revelations show just how corrupt our now-permanent "stimulus" culture is:
• Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid has fought on behalf of a Chinese-owned energy company, ENN Mojave Energy LLC, to build a billion-dollar solar energy plant in Nevada as part of the Obama White House "green jobs" campaign. Only problem, Reid's son Rory is one of the attorneys representing ENN Mojave.
• Joe Hynansky, a friend and contributor to both Vice President Joe Biden and President Barack Obama, won a loan of up to $20 million backed by the U.S. government to build a luxury foreign auto dealership in . . . Ukraine. Stimulus? Hardly. Hynansky's family has donated more than $64,000 to both Obama's and Biden's various political campaigns.
• A new book, "Shadowbosses: Government Unions Control America and Rob America Blind," makes the startling claim that a key aim of ObamaCare is to unionize 21 million health-care workers — giving the dying U.S. labor movement a shot in the arm. Any surprise organized labor has given Obama and other Dems hundreds of millions of dollars in the last decade?
Past examples abound. They range from the corruption surrounding government loans to Solyndra and other politically connected "green energy" firms that squandered billions of dollars of taxpayer money, to the billions of "stimulus" paid out to states to bolster unionized state employees' benefits and pay. That's money spent not to build bridges, roads and ports, or to "stimulate" anything other than bureaucrats.
As the Hoover Institution's Peter Schweitzer documented recently, members of Obama's campaign finance committee, his campaign bundlers and major Democratic donors received $16.4 billion of the $20.5 billion in loans and grants doled out under "green stimulus" programs run by Obama's Energy Department.
This is crony corruption, pure and simple.
As we've said before in many different contexts, it's impossible to imagine a Republican administration or Congress having so many conflicts of interest, payoffs and out-and-out examples of crony capitalism without a steady drumbeat of indignant stories in the media followed by a massive government investigation.
You have to have priorities, we guess. At least the FBI is looking into a real scandal: the rumor that Republican politicians went skinny-dipping in the Sea of Galilee on a trip to Israel last year. We hope they get to the bottom of that, so to speak, soon.