The US arms industry is backing Hillary Clinton for President and has all but abandoned its traditional allies in the Republican party. Mrs Clinton has also emerged as Wall Street’s favourite. Investment bankers have opened their wallets in unprecedented numbers for the New York senator over the past three months and, in the process, dumped their earlier favourite, Barack Obama.
Mrs Clinton’s wooing of the defence industry is all the more remarkable given the frosty relations between Bill Clinton and the military during his presidency. An analysis of campaign contributions shows senior defence industry employees are pouring money into her war chest in the belief that their generosity will be repaid many times over with future defence contracts.
Employees of the top five US arms manufacturers – Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Northrop-Grumman, General Dynamics and Raytheon – gave Democratic presidential candidates $103,900, with only $86,800 going to the Republicans. “The contributions clearly suggest the arms industry has reached the conclusion that Democratic prospects for 2008 are very good indeed,” said Thomas Edsall, an academic at Columbia University in New York.
So now we have a groups of loonies helped by a crazy rich guy with a private army running around causing mayhem in the part of the world that they deem to be the theater of the coming Armageddon.
Today, Blackwater founder Erik Prince defended all of his company’s actions in Iraq to the Congress (and to the American people) as being as close to earthly perfection as humans can achieve on god’s earth. Prince, who is a also a founder of a right-wing foundation called “Freiheit,” which is German for “liberty,” aimed a laser-like scowl at the forehead of Chairman Henry Waxman and the other Democrats as they dared to ask questions of a CEO who has clearly grown accustomed to operating without oversight.
Herr Prince’s appearance before the committee led me to wonder what he has been discussing behind closed doors lately as a member of the super-secret “Council for National Policy.” Other right-wing luminaries who belong to the Council for National Policy include the Armageddonist novelist Tim LaHaye, and the right-wing evangelical leaders Pat Robertson, Tony Perkins, James Dobson, Gary Bauer, and Ralph Reed. The late Jerry Falwell was also a member. There also close ties between the CNP and the beer magnate Holland Coors, the NRA leader Wayne LaPierre, Phyllis Schlafly, Oliver North, Grover Norquist, and Frank Gaffney.
The Council for National Policy recently held a top-secret meeting in Utah that Vice President Dick Cheney attended. “The media should not know when or where we meet,” the Council instructs its members, “or who takes part in our programs, before or after a meeting.”
Oct. 5, 2007 —
In a scathing attack, Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards went after front-runner Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., Friday, calling her a “corporate Democrat,” comparing top Clinton campaign strategist Mark Penn to former Bush aide Karl Rove and assailing Penn’s ties to Blackwater USA, the embattled private firm of military contractors accused by the Iraqi government of firing upon and killing 11 unarmed Iraqi civilians last month.
“Bush has been a perfect example of cronyism because Blackwater has given hundreds of thousands of dollars to Republicans and to President Bush,” Edwards said in an interview with the Associated Press while campaigning in Iowa. “I also saw this morning that Sen. Clinton’s primary adviser, Mark Penn, who is like her Karl Rove — his firm is representing Blackwater.”
Edwards said that he thinks “it is important for Iowa caucus-goers to understand the choices they have in this election. And it is the reason I continue to say we don’t want to replace a group of corporate Republicans with a group of corporate Democrats. I think it is important for caucus-goers to see this choice.”
By Marc J. Ambinder
W A S H I N G T O N, May 2
Share When Steve Baldwin, the executive director of an organization with the stale-as-old-bread name of the Council for National Policy, boasts that “we control everything in the world,” he is only half-kidding.
Randi Rhodes just reported that Bush called Malaki and that Iraq will reconsider its decision to ban Blackwater. who’s attorney is Ken Starr…!
Remember, Blackwater does not have that many Mercenaries in Iraq, but they are by far the most well connected.