Franks worked with Team Abramoff for Earmarks…

By now many folks have heard the name Trent Franks. He is the typical Republican douchebag who told Mike Stark that slavery was a better situation for African Americans than the life they live in America today. Franks is batshit crazy and he was just named the most conservative member of the House Republicans. And it should also come as no surprise that along with his racism, he is also a corruptionist.

In the trail transcripts of one of Jack Abramoff’s key team members it came out that Trent Franks turned to Team Abramoff to get earmarks slipped into a Transportation Appropriation Bill. And from the easy familiarity of the emails discussed in the trial, it is clear that Franks had a close “working” relationship with Jack and his gang of thieves.

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Grover gets Beck’s blackboard.

I have to say that I didn’t bother following CPAC very much this year, but this evening I was out running errands and caught the very end on C-Span radio and it made me laugh out loud.

I had missed all of Glenn Beck’s talk. As I tuned to C-Span there was applause and then a C-Span announcer noted that Beck was signing his blackboard. The wrap-up music started and then stopped. A voice came on and was identified as uber-wingnut David Keene, who–among his many roles–is the Chair of the CPAC conference. He finally gets a mike and says of the blackboard signed by Beck:

“Every Wednesday in Washington all the Conservatives meet in Washington to decide what they should be doing in the week ahead: this is going to go to the site of the weekly meetings to remind us of what we should be doing in the weeks ahead and will be put it to use there.”

The Wednesday morning meeting at Grover Norquist’s front for grifters (AKA ATR) has been a conservative tradition since it began in 1993 to coordinate efforts to block HCR. It looks like Beck’s board will grace the room as the group meets this week to work on blocking HCR and any effort to make Government work again. CPAC has become a way for Norquist to demonstrate the power he has over the modern conservative movement. I thought it was funny to hear the conference end with an offering and a bow in Grover’s direction.

The scribblings of a mad carny gracing the digs of a grifter as he meets with his gang of theives. Somehow, it struck me as funny.



ps: you can watch it at the 4:15:56 mark in this C-Span clip of the afternoon events at CPAC. I would bypass the rest if I were you (it is far better to kill your brain cells with a nice beverage than to do it by actually watching this mindless drivel). It would be great if somebody with the skills could post this bit on YouTube.

And yes, you should use this as an Open Thread…

The Grifter and the Coward…

As some may have heard there is an interesting primary shaping up in Arizona. Long-time Senator John McCain is being challenged by J.D. Hayworth, a disgraced former Congressman who lost his seat in 2006 in no small part because of his involvement with Jack Abramoff and that major corruption scandal named after him.

Hayworth is the Grifter and McCain is the Coward in this race. (Yes, I know that we are all supposed to be aware of reports that as a young man John McCain was a courageous POW, but history is filled with tales of men who were courageous heroes in their youth and craven cowards in their later years. John McCain’s story is one of those stories).

Both men are also linked to the Abramoff scandal. It will be fascinating to see if McCain will decide to release details about the Abramoff scandal that he has kept covered up for years in a desperate effort to hold onto his Senate seat. Yesterday he gave an indication that he was ready to take that step.

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The return of the grifters

One thing that is predictable about the modern conservative movement is that a grifter can always return and can always get a job.

For example, let’s take a look at the real people behind the Tea Party movement and the mad libs rescramble of platitudes also known as the “Mt. Vernon Statement“.

A few weeks ago the Washington Post took a look at the people in DC that are actually doing the work to drive the Tea Party Movement.

Not surprisingly, it was a list of grifters.

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$3.47 billion spent. Did you get a pony?

The Center for Responsive Politics has taken a look at lobbying expenses for 2009 and found that we have a new record. $3.47 billion was spent by 13,741 registered lobbyists to lobby the Congress in 2009. In 2008 $3.27 billion was spent. And this is only the spending for those folks who have to register under the extremely weak Federal lobbying disclosure laws. Billions more have been spent by PR firms, think tanks, front groups, shadow groups and other entities and individuals operating with carefully designed work-plans crafted to escape oversight and disclosure.

The recent Legislation enacted by the Bush/Roberts Court will flood the zone with even more money. This is another indication of just how deep in the shit our Democracy finds itself in these days.

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