James McPherson's Media & Politics Blog

Observations of a patriotic progressive historian, media critic & former journalist


  • By the author of The Conservative Resurgence and the Press: The Media’s Role in the Rise of the Right and of Journalism at the End of the American Century, 1965-Present. A former journalist with a Ph.D. in journalism, history and political science, McPherson is a past president of the American Journalism Historians Association and a board member for the Northwest Alliance for Responsible Media.

  • Archives

  • June 2021
    S M T W T F S
     12345
    6789101112
    13141516171819
    20212223242526
    27282930  
  • Categories

  • Subscribe

Posts Tagged ‘no-bid contracts’

It’s only money: Another reminder of how little your voice matters

Posted by James McPherson on January 25, 2010

CNN reports that about $600 million–“enough to pay the annual insurance tab for $45,000 families”–has been spent on lobbying, advertising and campaign contributions to try to influence the health care debate. It has become the single most expensive legislative issue ever.

And as I noted the other day, the Supreme Court has guaranteed that things will get worse in terms of you having a voice. It almost enough to make you want to cheer for the Tea Party crowd, if they had a clue about where their money really goes, or which parts of society system are the most screwed up.

Also on the money front, Barack Obama apparently will call for a freeze on “non-security federal discretionary spending.” And Fox News reports that no-bid contracts for friends of the administration, the norm under George W. Bush, apparently continue under the Obama administration.

It’s a worthwhile story, and would be more so if Fox hadn’t predictably downplayed the Bush/Cheney contracts–citing dollar figures for such contracts under Bill Clinton and Obama but simply stating about the Bush Leaguers, “The OMB Watch figures show that the practice appears to have accelerated sharply during the Bush administration, but the figures are not adjusted for inflation.” Uh, guys–what were those figures?

Posted in Journalism, Politics, Written elsewhere | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Pipe dream: Palin’s ethics may mirror Cheney’s

Posted by James McPherson on October 25, 2008

As inept as the McCain/Palin campaign has been, and with the squabbles apparently going on within the campaign itself, at this point it may seem that any bad news regarding Sarah Palin is piling on. Still, a report today suggests that a desire for increased vice presidential power may not be the only characteristic Palin shares with Dick Chaney (who must be involved in lengthy political negotiations or a secret romantic tryst with North Korea’s Kim Jung Il, since both seem to have vanished from the face of the earth).

In another apparent case of Palin acting like Cheney with lipstick, the Associated Press reports today that “Palin’s signature accomplishment–a contract to build a 1,715 mile pipeline to bring natural gas from Alaska to the Lower 48–emerged from a flawed bidding process that narrowed the field to a company with ties to her administration.”

As a result of the deal, the state of Alaska may have to pay TransCanada $500 million for a pipeline that is never built. According to public records, Palin also spoke at least twice to Cheney on “energy issues” several months before the pipeline deal was approved.

On the plus side, Palin seems immediately ready to step in and help out Halliburton if she is somehow elected to help perpetuate the Iraq War and its free-flowing no-bid contracts to Cheney’s former employer.

Posted in History, Journalism, Politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »