Friday, March 14, 2008

Whatever Spitzer's testosterone was doing, it wasn't for prostitution he was targeted. . .

After spending a couple of early morning hours Googling the likes of John Fund, Michael Garcia, and Roger Smith, I went to my email and there was an email from Greg Palast, entitled "Eliot's Mess and the $200 Million Bailout" -- now available on his website here -- with that cutting edge of brightly lit clarity. Others got close but he nailed it. Uh-gain.

Greg found Spitzer's greatest crime: daring to point the finger at the greatest culprit of our times, Mr. Bush, and his own part in protecting the predatory bank thieves while ignoring the ambushed victims.

If you read nothing else, read Palast's story.

Meanwhile, back in the shooting gallery, I also found an angle that probably carries some weight as well -- though I'm sure Greg's revelation is at the very core.

In fact, the mystery of who would have targetted Spitzer reminds me of Agatha Christie's "Murder on the Orient Express" -- where it turns out that all the suspects murdered the victim that night. They each had strong reasons, and each did the deed.

By Tuesday morning I'd submitted the following to OpEdNews, where it was posted on Wednesday:


Spitzer and the Giuliani Shell Game

March 12, 2008

Is there a connection?

Shell Energy Company, in partnership with TransCanada Corporation, has a proposal awaiting approval by Elliot Spitzer that would allow the companies, working as Broadwater Energy, to build and operate a floating liquified natural gas terminal in Long Island Sound.

The terminal, a 1215 foot barge, could provide Connecticut and New York with a billion cubic feet of the liquified natural gas per day, but, as the Government Accountability Office reported in February of 2007, could also become a firebomb of huge proportions.

This year, Broadwater Energy launched an intense media campaign designed to sway public opinion about both the project and the company, with large publicized donations to Long Island United Way, and a blitz of commercials citing questionable studies and claiming customers will see huge economic savings.

However, the ads have also drawn a backlash, with both local activists and public officials calling for the New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo to investigate the dangerous “false advertising”.

Worth noting is that the campaign was created by none other than Rudy Giuliani’s own Giuliani Partners LLC – hired on to provide security and strategic planning services less than a week after the 2004 presidential election. According to Eric Hatzimemos, a managing director of the firm, “Security, safety, & reliability have been top priorities for Broadwater from the outset.”

This comes from the same law firm that lobbies for the Indian Point Nuclear facility (“as safe as a facility can be”) to be relicensed despite multiple security and safety problems, and for respiratory gas mask manufacturers to be immune from lawsuits for failure to provide protection.

After years of battles between environmentalists and industry, in February all eyes were on New York Governor Elliot Spitzer.

He, in turn, claimed to be waiting for the New York State Department to provide its review of the vast information presented from both sides, due on February 12th. But on February 7th, the State Department announced it had made an agreement with Broadwater which granted a 60 day extension of the deadline to allow for “further discussion of what is a very complex proposal”.

The next day, the New York Department of Environmental Conservation issued its second Notice of Incomplete Application letter to Broadwater Energy, noting that Broadwater’s response to the first Notice was entirely inadequate. Documentation on emissions calculation was lacking, and even with design changes, the barge was projected to destroy 274 million aquatic organisms annually.

Less than a week later, Spitzer was customer number 9.

On March 5, though they did not yet have the required approval of Spitzer and New York State, Shell announced it was ready to begin setting up contracts for purchasing the liquid natural gas that would be brought to New York and Connecticut.

Did they already know they’d won?


Then, at work yesterday, I listened to NPR's The Diane Rehm Show, and her hour on Spitzer. One of her guests was John Fund, from The Wall Street Journal, who uses as a noteworthy credential his authoring the book, of "Stealing Elections: How Voter Fraud Threatens Our Democracy." So already I know this is one of THOSE guys, the guys pushing the phony crime that is supposed to distract from the real method of election theft and provide fodder for Bush's "good" U.S. Attorneys.

Coming back from a break, Diane turned to Fund with a question. This is how it went:

DR: John Fund, is there any indication whatsoever that because of Eliot Spitzer’s behavior and his pursuit of Wall Street ne’er-do-wells that somehow he was targeted?

JF: I think the real targeting came from his personality and his style. THERE IS NOT A SINGLE PERSON IN NEW YORK STATE GOVERNMENT OR IN MANY BUSINESS CIRCLES WHO DIDN'T THINK ELLIOT SPITZER WAS A JERK -- and I’m being very specific here. He would yell and intimidate, threaten people. I mean he told one person I’m going to drive a stake through your heart. He basically said get out of my way to ano– to an assemblyman, saying I’m an f’ing steamroller. He managed to alienate people in his own party, people who would normally have ideological affinity for him. He had anger management issues. So I think that If you end up with 3 enemies in your life you’ve got, you know, an irritant; if you have 30 enemies you have a problem; and if you have 300 enemies eventually people are just going to try to remove you from the stage. I don’t think he was targeted; I think he took himself out because his behavior was so extreme and so far out of the bounds. And I think– I hope we get to some discussion of his civil liberties record here because he did go after some bad guys on Wall Street, he did do some good, but he went to more and more marginal targets, less and less substantial targets, and I think really rode roughshod over due process laws.

Okay, I know I just pointed out how many enemies he had, but Fund was so absolute and clearly wanted the public to understand that Spitzer deserved to be hated by reasonable people.

Once a pathetic propagandist. . .


So I wrote to Diane's show, in time, I hoped, to have the email read during today's Friday 2-hour review of the week's news:

Let's see, who would want Spitzer gone? Maybe Shell Oil and Giuliani, who are together fighting to get New York to approve an incredibly dangerous liquified natural gas barge in Long Island Sound.

Or maybe even Mr. Bush, who -- as the BBC investigative journalist Greg Palast pointed out -- Spitzer called the "Predator Lenders Partner in Crime" just THIS WEEK in The Washington Post, just before Bernanke provided $200 billion to rescue bankers.

Whatever Spitzer's testosterone was doing, it wasn't for prostitution he was targeted.


Meanwhile, on another of the many fronts, on Monday night we heard about Spitzer and prostitution, instead of hearing Congressman John Conyers, Jr. demanding that former White House aides Harriet Myers and Joshua Bolten obey the law and respond to Congress -- announcing the law suit against the two:

"We will not allow the administration to steamroll Congress. Under our system of checks and balances, Congress provides oversight of the executive branch to make sure that government power is not abused. The administration’s extreme claims to be immune from the oversight process are at odds with our constitutional principles on which this country was founded, and I am confident the federal courts will agree."

Phew. There's still hope.

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