Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Pay No Attention To The Man Behind The Curtain...

It wasn't all that long ago that President Obama ran a successful election campaign against John McCain to become President of the United States. One of the things he promised was that he would do away with lobbyists in the White House. Ever true to his word - he kept that promise throughout the campaign. Once he was in office it didn't take long before he was granting "waivers" to certain lobbyists. Funny how that works.

Fast forward to 2008 when Obama ran against Mitt Romney to retain his place in the White House. One of the things he slammed Mitt Romney on was his past association with the evil Bain Capital. Obama intimated that Mitt Romney was evil incarnate because he worked as CEO of Bain Capital (making them very successful, by the way) who, as a corporation, destroyed jobs and lives. 

Fast forward again to this past Saturday, May 17th. President Obama played golf at the exclusive Robert Trent Jones Golf Club in Gainesville, VA. One of the members of the foursome was Joe O’Neill, president and CEO of the lobbying and public affairs firm Public Strategies Washington. Among other companies, O'Neill lobbies for tax reform for none other than Bain Capital. Imagine.

The White House's supposed ban on lobbyists allegely a "major tool in fighting corruption and influence peddling." Yet there is no real ban. Last year, lobbying scholar Conor McGrath wrote in the Journal of Public Affairs that there are at least 119 lobbyists working in the Obama White House. "President Obama's public rhetoric on contact with lobbyists does not always accord with his private actions," says McGrath. Now there's an understatement.

"I think he played a game of golf," said White House spokesman Jay Carney when asked about it. Carney has such a knack of ignoring the obvious and pretending it didn't happen. The President has a motto that he wants the American people to follow: "Pay no attention to what I do. Simply listen and believe what I tell you."

Sadly, there are far too many Americans who do just that.

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