Small Towns Hire Lobbyists For Big Bucks!

I do not know what to add. The lunatics not only have the damn keys....They now have lobbyists! ---

Excerpts from NYT article written by Jodi Rudoren and Aron Pilhofer:

Via The Raw Story, Saturday July 1, 2006.

-HERE-

Cities, towns, school districts, and other local governments and agencies are turning to lobbyists to pry loose federal dollar, the New York Times will report Sunday.

[....]

But in a last-ditch gambit, city officials hired a federal lobbyist who had known the local congressman for four decades. Within weeks, the congressman, Representative C. W. Bill Young, called the mayor to say he had slipped a special $50 million appropriation, known as an earmark, into an omnibus bill.

The city had originally sought $15 million. But Mr. Young -- a Republican who was then the all-powerful chairman of the Appropriations Committee and, as his lobbyist friend knew, believes public roads should be free -- raised it to eliminate the toll.

Since that windfall three years ago, Treasure Island has continued to pay $5,000 a month to the lobbying firm, Alcalde & Fay, and has continued to reap earmarks: $500,000 to fix a sewer plant, $625,000 to repair wooden walkways over the dunes, $450,000 for pedestrian crosswalks.

Tags: lobbying, small towns (all tags)

Comments

4 Comments

Crazy like a fox

Lobbyists have been returning money to corporates at a 100:1 clip ($100 returned for every $1 spent).  Small towns are hardly crazy to follow the same path.  In a world where government is bought and sold, they are merely being shrewd.

by David Kowalski 2006-07-01 02:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Small Towns Hire Lobbyists For Big Bucks!

The Republicans in this Congress are all about how to monetize their positions. And while DeLay and  Cunningham have been the most in the headlines, barely the surface has been scratched. You have the land deals, where crooks like Speaker Hastert, Gary Miller (R-CA), and  Ken Calvert (R-CA) have bought worthless or cheap land and then forced up its value with taxpayer funded improvements-- for hundreds of millions of dollars-- before selling at huge personal profits. This is just one scam among dozens. Certain crooks like Ney and Doolittle have become masters at a wide range of them. But no one comes close to House Appriopriations Committee Chair Jerry Lewis, the most corrupt man on Capitol Hill, bar none! Lewis has forced his constituents to pay him millions of dollars in "legal bribes," through his own persona lobbyist/bagman. Dozens of government entities in his own district-- from cities, counties, towns, to hospitals, schools and utilities-- have been forced to pay Lewis' lobbyist millions to get Lewis to... do his job.

by DownWithTyranny 2006-07-01 03:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Small Towns Hire Lobbyists For Big Bucks!

David Kowalski said:

In a world where government is bought and sold, they are merely being shrewd.

Well damn. I never thought of that.

My only question is: Is there a point where individual shrewdness becomes collective insanity? Is there such a point?

by blues 2006-07-01 05:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Small Towns Hire Lobbyists For Big Bucks!

Let's say Senator Swinebucket, elected by the good people of Arkansas, is chairman of the all-powerful Fats and Sugars Committee. This in itself is undemocratic, since, why should the chairman of a committee have any more power than any other Senator? That is obviously wrong, and to say otherwise is to settle for something less than real democracy. We can now embellish this injustice by supposing what happens of, say, the Town of Ridgefield, Connecticut hires the lobbyist Jake Cadabramoff, who persuades his "good buddy" Senator Swinebucket to "earmark" $50,000,000 for a new art museum in Ridgefield, the residents of which collectively may have more money than exists in the entire state of Arkansas.

Obviously, when every city, town and neighborhood has its own lobbyist, things will be about the same as before, except now there are 300,000 fat lobbyists driving to "work" every morning, using up what little remains of the dinosaur fat. And every little town spends half its political energy chasing after the "hottest," and of course, priciest, lobbyists.

by blues 2006-07-02 04:04AM | 0 recs

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