Again, Not the Onion

How does the Onion stay in business with this competition:

The consortium in charge of restructuring the world’s most infamous private security firm just added a new chief in charge of keeping the company on the straight and narrow. Yes, John Ashcroft, the former attorney general, is now an “independent director” of Xe Services, formerly known as Blackwater.

Ashcroft will head Xe’s new “subcommittee on governance,” its backers announced early Wednesday in a statement, an entity designed to “maximize governance, compliance and accountability” and “promote the highest degrees of ethics and professionalism within the private security industry.”

I guess Gonzo was busy.






58 replies
  1. 1
    geg6 says:

    Not that I, in any way, want to defend Ashcroft, but he’s at least a tad less crass and subhuman than Gonzo. So good on Xe for at least knowing the difference. Okay, gotta go barf now that I typed that.

    Faint praise, I know. But I keep in my head the idea that Ashcroft didn’t or wouldn’t (we still really don’t know what happened in that hospital room) sign off on things that Gonzo happily did and still happily defends.

  2. 2
    Culture of Truth says:

    Forget that – with this crowd around, how does the Mafia stay in business?

  3. 3
    Zifnab says:

    Remind me again why Ashcroft isn’t in prison for countless violations of federal law? Oh right, forwards not backwards. Upward not forwards. And always twirling, twirling towards progress.

  4. 4
    BR says:

    Let the Eagle Soar.

  5. 5
    General Stuck says:

    Let the Kleagle Soar

  6. 6
    Asshole says:

    Surprisingly unsurprising.

  7. 7
    Amir_Khalid says:

    Everywhere you turn, it’s Murder Incorporated.

  8. 8
    Gregory says:

    Ashcroft will head Xe’s new “subcommittee on governance”

    Translation: Ashcroft will lobby Republicans to keep governance off Xe’s back.

  9. 9

    In other words he’s in charge of making sure no naked statue goes unclothed.

  10. 10
    Disgruntled Lurker says:

    John Woo didn’t want to give up tenure?

  11. 11
    jonas says:

    @Gregory: Nailed it.

  12. 12
    Poopyman says:

    Quid pro quo, Clarice. Quid pro quo.

  13. 13
    Folderol & Ephemera says:

    @Disgruntled Lurker: I think you’re thinking of John Yoo, not John Woo.

    Tho’ Woo would kinda be a good fit for Blackwater’s PR team, wouldn’t he?

  14. 14
    artem1s says:

    In other words, no more shooting civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan; no more signing for weapons its guards aren’t authorized to carry in warzones; no more impersonations of cartoon characters to acquire said weaponry; and no more ‘roids and coke on the job.

    So drugs on your off time still OK. And rape and torture still on the table.also.too.

  15. 15
    Ash Can says:

    @Gregory: And while he’s doing that he’ll also be a high-powered defense attorney on retainer, working to keep management and key mercenaries out of the slammer.

  16. 16
    RSR says:

    Speaking of officers of the court, WTF is up with VA’s AG?

    http://www.eschatonblog.com/20.....f-day.html

    From Virginia’s attorney general.

    How much would I give to be one of the 72 Virginans Osama is ‘hanging out’ with since Sunday?

    [typo(?) in original]

  17. 17
    Dave says:

    @Folderol & Ephemera: Think of all the doves that would fly every time they shot up a market square…

  18. 18
    stuckinred says:

    @Folderol & Ephemera: Whoo HOO?

  19. 19
    scav says:

    That much amorality and violence gathered in one place, we may see it collapse into a black hole.

  20. 20
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    I thought John Ashcroft was one of the “good” guys in regards to the whole Bush overreach thing? (Notwithstanding the awful awful hymns he writes and sings.)

  21. 21
    Loneoak says:

    At least we can be sure there won’t be any statues with bare breasts in their lobby. Because that would be distasteful.

  22. 22
    Loneoak says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    He was one of the slightly less evil guys, IMO. You might be thinking of the time he stood up to Gonzo and Andy Card and refused to sign a reauthorization of the warrantless wiretapping program after the federal courts had rule it unconstitutional. But he did numerous times tell anyone with a touch of civil libertarian in them that they were abetting ‘the enemy.’

  23. 23
    Paul in KY says:

    @RSR: ‘The love that dare not speak its name’, but can be tweeted about ;-)

  24. 24
    DecidedFenceSitter says:

    @RSR: Fairly popular punchline to a joke about Islam, here’s a variation:

    Abu al-Zarqawi died and George Washington met him at the Pearly Gates. He slapped him across the face and yelled, “How dare you try to destroy the nation I helped conceive!”

    Patrick Henry approached, punched him in the nose and shouted, “You wanted to end our liberties but you failed!”

    James Madison followed, kicked him in the groin and said, “This is why I allowed our government to provide for the common defense!”

    Thomas Jefferson was next, beat al-Zarqawi with a long cane and snarled “It was Evil men like you who inspired me to write the Declaration of Independence.”

    The beatings and thrashings continued as George Mason, James Monroe and 66 other early Americans unleashed their anger on the terrorist Leader.

    As al-Zarqawi lay bleeding and in pain, an Angel appeared. Al- Zarqawi wept and said, “This is not what you promised me.”

    The Angel replied, “I told you there would be 72 Virginians waiting for you in Heaven. What did you think I said?”

  25. 25
    Halteclere says:

    Another religious zealot brought into the Xe fold.

  26. 26
    GregB says:

    @RSR:

    So Cuncinelli wants to get screwed by the ghost of Osama Bin Laden?

    What a fucking creep.

  27. 27
    Ditto says:

    geg6 and Gregory nailed it.

  28. 28
    Muley Graves says:

    I thought John Ashcroft was one of the “good” guys in regards to the whole Bush overreach thing?

    @Just Some Fuckhead: He was. In the end Bush just went around him and got it signed off by someone else.

    I think after that episode of unplesantness Ashcroft realized he was in WAY over his head – he signed on for a little bit of the standard Republican venality, not a Mafia-style wholesale hit job on the constitution – and he did leave shortly afterwards, if you recall.

  29. 29
    eric says:

    Is it really any different than working for Goldman or Chase? They all employ soulless mercenaries that destroy lives and countries for (lotsa) money.

  30. 30
    Halteclere says:

    @Muley Graves

    I think after that episode of unplesantness Ashcroft realized ne was in WAY over his head – he signed on for a little bit of the standard Republican venality, not a Mafia-style wholesale hit job on the constitution – and he did leave shortly afterwards, if you recall.

    Yea, he left to do what no previous AG had done before – become a paid lobbying whore.

  31. 31
    Jay C says:

    Ashcroft will head Xe’s new “subcommittee on governance,” its backers announced early Wednesday in a statement, an entity designed to “maximize governance, compliance and accountability” and “promote the highest degrees of ethics and professionalism within the private security industry.”

    I guess “Hired Ashcroft as a lobbyist” sounded too prosaic for them…

  32. 32
    scav says:

    @eric: well, it’s sorta the with lead bullets or powerpoint bullets dilemma.

  33. 33
    eric says:

    @scav: the powerpoint bullets scatter wider and affect more lives, and with nearly no risk….it is “good” work if you can get it

  34. 34
    ricky says:

    This may have been interesting. Exactly who was this Gonzo fellow? I can’t recall.

  35. 35
    eric says:

    @ricky: well played.

  36. 36
    Jim Pharo says:

    It’s Ashcroft because they are long associated through the religious-right syndicate covered in Republican Gomorah by M. Blumenthal. Gonzalez was only an honorary member of that cabal…

  37. 37
    madmatt says:

    Bonzo was busy too.

  38. 38
    Yutsano says:

    @ricky: Some idiot Bushie lawyer who is now a dean at a university in Texas.

  39. 39
    Roger Moore says:

    @ricky:

    Exactly who was this Gonzo fellow?

    He was a friend of Hunter S. Thompson and founder of the journalism school at UNLV.

  40. 40
    David Hunt says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    I thought John Ashcroft was one of the “good” guys in regards to the whole Bush overreach thing?

    Only in the context of him being slightly less of an evil cock-sucker than the rest of the criminals he was surrounded by. Remember, that dramatic hospital scene that we were all hearing about at one point was not about him refusing to sign off on the blatantly illegal “Terrorist Surveillance Program” that eventually came to light. The TSP was the toned down version of something even more egregious that he’d been signing off on but had become convinced was so obviously super-illegal that even he couldn’t okay it. To the best of my knowledge, we still don’t know exactly what they were doing that was so much worse that he wouldn’t sign off on it. However, it’s my understanding that his objections weren’t moral as he’d been authorizing it for years already. It was more that they’d decided that whatever it was was so illegal that even the Bush DOJ lawyers couldn’t hand-wave enough to justify it. Think about the arguments that they used to support the TSP and reflect on that. The TSP was what they ended up doing after the DOJ wouldn’t sign off on the previous program, because Ashcroft would sign off on that.

    So we’re back with the faint “praise” that he’s better than Gonzalez

  41. 41
    Silver Owl says:

    Seems to me today’s conservatives are definitely into that evil liberal practice of recycling.

  42. 42
    Cheryl from Maryland says:

    @GregB: Known as “Kookinelli,” among other things he is harassing scientists at VA universities who investigate climate change by wanting to see their records to ensure they are not committing fraud (UVA is a state university), cutting off state money to charities, submitted a case that the health care bill is unconstitutional, etc. The VA governor, who went to Regents U! is spending time and money trying to stop this wing nut crazy train. A prime example of what happens during off year elections when only the Republican base votes.

  43. 43
    EconWatcher says:

    @Muley Graves:

    Yes. Ashcroft had some lines he would not cross. Not your lines or my lines, but some lines. And if I remember, Ashcroft was a supporter of Patrick Fitzgerald, who is my view of the ideal for what every prosecutor should be.

    Gonzales had no limits whatsoever. There is absolutely nothing I could imagine he would not do if asked by Bush. And the career prosecutors in Justice absolutely loathed him, which was not so much the case with Ashcroft.

  44. 44

    Yesterday I was told that Shaquille O’Neil bought Blackwater or a company like it. I’m like .. “whaaaa…???” I’ve been too lazy to Google it but will do so now.

    Anyone else heard that?

  45. 45
    fasteddie9318 says:

    @RSR: HAHA HAHA HAHA, Cooch tried to write “Virginians” instead of “virgins” because 72 Virginians would be kicking bin Laden’s ass in paradise or something.

    It’s not that he wants to suck Osama’s cock or anything, no siree.

  46. 46
    Sloegin says:

    Ethics head for a bunch of fucking mercenaries. How does that work? Memos on how employees should not randomly shoot people for sport?

  47. 47
    Kathy in St. Louis says:

    John Ashcroft is now in charge of ethics at Blackwater…for regardless of what they call it, the company IS Blackwater. It doesn’t say much for this minister’s son’s standard of ethics that he’d take a job like this. It doesn’t even say much about the standard of ethics of Blackwater that they’d hire this yokel.

    Just a nice country boy from Missouri…another reason for us all to be embarrassed.

  48. 48
    Loneoak says:

    @Sloegin:

    Ethics head for a bunch of fucking mercenaries. How does that work?

    Fucking ethics, how do they work?

  49. 49
    Paul in KY says:

    @Sloegin: Unfortunately, those might be a good idea for that company.

  50. 50
    maya says:

    You all were expecting Elizabeth Warren would get the job?

  51. 51
    Suffern ACE says:

    @RSR: That’s just bizaare. I can’t even think of any interpretation that would make that statement less creepy. Even if he meant Virginians…

  52. 52
    Amir_Khalid says:

    @Southern Beale: Google didn’t turn up anything for me about Shaq buying into Blackwater or any similar kind of company, but I have read reports that LeBron James has acquired a minority stake in Liverpool FC.

  53. 53

    Well I can’t find jack shit about Shaquille O’Neal buying Blackwater or Xe or any company like that. My friend was full of shit. As usual.

  54. 54
    SRW1 says:

    I guess Gonzo was busy.

    Nah. Look at it this way: Say your boys do another Nisour Square and your ethics guy gets called to testify in a congressional hearing. No way you would want him to be Gonzo.

  55. 55
    Jay in Oregon says:

    @RSR:

    From Virginia’s attorney general.

    If he wanted to be in AfPak looking for Osama bin Laden, he could have enlisted. There was some no-name rightwing talk show host the other day saying he wished he could have been there to pull the trigger on OBL.

    Screw them; they’re all posers like the rest of the Chairborne Rangers. It reminds me of this macro from Fark:

    http://blogs.warwick.ac.uk/ima.....y_maam.jpg

  56. 56
    asiangrrlMN says:

    I saw this on FB. I honestly couldn’t tell if it was a joke or not. Sadly, I realized it was not a joke at all. Yeah, The Onion has nowhere to go now.

    ::Pours one on the curb for The Onion::

  57. 57
    Ronbo says:

    You have to agree, the Republicans know how to make piles of money. They may have no soul and leave the earth a barren, lifeless rock – but they have the money.

  58. 58
    Arclite says:

    Ah, Gonzo. Here’s all you need to know about him.

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