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Glenn Greenwald from February this year. "The Daschles: feeding at the Beltway trough"

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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-18-09 02:23 PM
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Glenn Greenwald from February this year. "The Daschles: feeding at the Beltway trough"
It is no surprise to see Tom Daschle speaking out now against the public option. Not surprising at all. Glenn Greenwald did a long magnificent column about Tom and Linda Daschle and their ties to corporations.

The Daschles: feeding at the Beltway trough

Other than his ability to know how to swing doors wide open in Congress, what "expertise and insights" worth that level of compensation does Tom Daschle have? It's pure legalized influenced peddling, and -- upon being booted out of the Congress -- he ran right to it as quickly as he could and engorged himself at the trough as hungrily as possible.

In doing so, he followed perfectly in the footsteps of his second wife, Linda, who served as the Clinton administration's Acting Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, and then, once she left her position running the agency that regulates the airlines industry, returned to her extremely lucrative lobbying practice with her largest clients being American Airlines, Northwest Airlines, Boeing, Lockheed and various airports and airport executive associations -- the very companies that she had been regulating. She began lobbying the Senate on behalf of those clients as soon as Tom left the Senate, where -- needless to say -- he has many "friends" and others who remain loyal to him, and she is continuously successful in defeating measures to impose greater regulations on the airline industry and to obtain other massively beneficial legislation for them.

In 2002, Washington Monthly editor Stephanie Mencimer wrote a thorough expos detailing how the couple has spent many years in Washington intertwining their political power and private-sector interests, including their joint role -- he as a Senator and she as FAA administrator -- "to reduce safety inspections of an air-charter company owned by a family friend," one which, in 1993, "crashed in a snowstorm in Minot, North Dakota, killing the pilot and three doctors on their way to a reservation clinic" (after numerous accusations of serious wrongdoing, an Inspector General report cleared her of wrongdoing). Time and again, companies with a very substantial stake in legislation before the Daschle-run Senate paid huge fees to his wife.

It's hard to pick just excerpts from the long column. Here is one paragraph of interest.

Other than his being more extreme than most, and the fact that he and his wife work in tandem as a public-private team, there isn't anything particularly unusual about how Tom Daschle functions. He's quite emblematic of the Beltway syndrome. But that's the point: while it's unreasonable to expect that Obama will be able to avoid all ethically questionable individuals, it seems rather unnecessary to take one of the most ethically compromised Beltway mavens and place him in charge of a massive industry, one that has been lavishing him with undeserved wealth for the past several years.

As I said here seems like the same people who were in places of power in 2000 are the same people in places of power now. Daschle did not make the cut for HHS, but he is still out there trying to thwart progressive change.

I did not realize how he met his present wife, Linda.

Yes, it's true: Before Mrs. Daschle was Mrs. Daschle, she was Miss Kansas, 1976.

Petite and blond, with perfect, straight white teeth, Daschle is still strikingly beautiful at 46. But she has a vise-like handshake you wouldn't expect from a beauty queen that suggests the steely interior necessary to survive in Washington power circles. . . .

She met Tom Daschle on a work trip to South Dakota. At the time, Tom Daschle was a freshman congressman, married to the woman who in 1978 had helped him ring 40,000 doorbells and go on to unseat an incumbent by 14 votes. By 1984, Tom had divorced his first wife, with whom he had three children, and married Linda . . .

Glenn includes a video of Daschle on The Daily Show in 2003 expressing opposition to gay marriage. Daschle said "that gay marriage must not be allowed because "a man and a woman have a sacred and a traditional cultural bond within this country. . . it's a statement of fact: society is embracing the marriage of a man and a woman, and by and large, that's the way it should be . . . DOMA is the statute and I don't think it's unconstitutional".

At least he says DOMA is unconstitutional. :eyes:

He also back in 1997 introduced one of the most restrictive ever anti-choice bills...more restrictive than those urged by the GOP.

Daschle Abortion Bill 1997

"Daschle's so-called compromise bill, as quoted in the New York Times, permits an exception to the ban for `a severely debilitating disease or impairment specifically caused by the pregnancy (emphasis added),' but makes no provision for a pre-existing, life- and health-threatening `debilitating disease or impairment' that is being exacerbated by the pregnancy. This could include kidney disease, severe hypertension and some cancers. Nor does the Daschle bill allow for an abortion in cases of severe fetal abnormality where it is unlikely the fetus would live long outside the womb, even with technological support.

"The physician certification requirement and the potential loss of a medical license in the Daschle language invites government scrutiny of private medical matters and threatens doctor-patient confidentiality. The intent of this and other abortion ban bills is to control women and to limit their ability to make critical reproductive decisions that affect their families, their health and their lives. These bills represent the ultimate in Congressional arrogance," Gandy charged.

I was not surprised to see him coming out against a public option. Just surprised it took him so long to be doing it so openly.

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OHdem10 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-18-09 02:39 PM
Response to Original message
1. If this is the Daschle plan, this whole Healthcare Discussion is beginning
to appear suspicious. The Daschle Plan--no public option, the Centrist
Dems on the Hill and Blue Dogs dragging their feet on Public Option.
The GOP call it a "non-starter". (In other words, for the GOP there
is no way they accept a public option.

Add to that the Kennedy, Dodd Plan spends all this trillions and
only covers 30,000,000 people. I do no know of any plan that enthusiastically offers a public plan.

It is beginning to look as if our Lawmakers are not as concerned
with providing Health Care as they are with Reforming Medicare
and SS. The old Mantra --if we do not reform Medicare and SS
the world is coming to an end.

Are we being snookered. They are trying to reform the Social Safety
Net and call it Health Care Reform.

If so, every activist had better get a move on.

No Public Option means the dismantling of Medicare and SS in the long
run. We know Conservatives do not believe in these Programs.
IMO, the Dems on the Hill have handled this so poorly. Look at
what I began to see, sitting on a Cul de Sac in OHIO.

They had best get out and explain just what is going on.

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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-19-09 12:57 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. It is appearing suspicious right now.
It worries me that Daschle is teaming with right wingers on this.
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dflprincess Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-18-09 03:15 PM
Response to Original message
2. I don't think many of us are suprised by this.
Though, there were a lot of people here who were not happy with those of us who questioned Obama when he said he wanted Daschle to play a big part in health "care reform".

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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-18-09 07:34 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. You are right, it was not popular to question.
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ControlledDemolition Donating Member (901 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-19-09 01:28 AM
Response to Original message
5. Paradigm shift.... from health care to health cure! Step #1, people should have the rights...
... of people! Corporations should not! People should be able to lobby their governement, not corporate entities!!!
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democracy1st Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-19-09 01:38 AM
Response to Original message
6. This is where I get tired of all this Obama praising, Stevie Wonder can see these people are frauds
Edited on Fri Jun-19-09 01:38 AM by democracy1st
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