Monday, June 22, 2009

Once more into the breach with (faux) selective outrage...

Some of our friends have discovered (ah! the horrors!) that many key Senators and Congresscritters have been the recipients of large campaign donations by the health insurance industry:

But as you listen to the back and forth of the health care discussion, be familiar with the Bought Off and treat their commentary accordingly.

OK, fair enough.

Just be sure you take a look at the health insurance/HMO contributions during the Presidential Election, as reported by Open Secrets, and include President Barack Obama among your list of the "Bought Off":

Health Services/HMOs
Barack Obama (D) $1,262,224
Hillary Clinton (D) $535,849
John McCain (R) $412,918

Here's the contribution totals for Health Professionals

Health Professionals
Barack Obama (D) $11,532,962
John McCain (R) $5,251,019
Hillary Clinton (D) $3,973,797

[And totally for kicks and grins, here are the figures for Commercial Banks]:

Commercial Banks
Barack Obama (D) $3,167,003
John McCain (R) $2,260,697
Hillary Clinton (D) $1,458,941

[Not to mention, Lawyers and lobbyists}:

Lawyers & Lobbyists
Obama, Barack $43,440,058
Clinton, Hillary $16,941,277
McCain, John $11,290,948

Don't think it matters? All throughout the campaign, to the deafness of our liberal friends, I kept pointing out that Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and John McCain were the three largest recipients of defense industry contributions, and that Obama had surrounded himself with defense industry lobbyists.

What happened?

Despite all promises to the contrary the number two spot at the Pentagon (directly in charge of weapons procurement) was handed over to Raytheon lobbyist William Lynn.

Despite all promises to bring defense spending into line, President Obama submitted a defense budget larger than the previous Bush administration defense budget, but claimed to be cutting major weapons pork ... only to turn a blind eye and sign off on Congress re-instituting most of that same pork in supplemental authorizations, stimulus spending, or as amendments to other bills.

So I am all for the category of The Bought Off as long as you have the intestinal fortitude to admit the category includes The Bought Off Occupant of the White House.

Holding breath waiting. Turning blue.

1 comment:

Miko said...

This is also why I'm skeptical of strategies for bringing about libertarianism that depend primarily on electing libertarians: the LP will never give us a president until they're racking up similar levels of insider cash, by which time their candidates won't be worth electing (if they even are now).

It's worth noting that the paragon of democracy--ancient Athens--didn't have elections, but rather selected leaders by lot and did so quite frequently at that. Our system of picking between two Bought-Offs is a mild oligarchy at best.