Sunday, March 12, 2006

Bush Chooses Interests of the Carlyle Group over Interests of the Country

OK, this is way too important, so I’m going to try to rush in one post before crashing. Bush fans will hate this post, but it is important, so do your own research.

Two weeks ago I wrote a piece on the potential connection between the UEA ports deal and the Carlyle group, a group with strong ties to the Bush family and various bit-money men around the world. Now, one day after the ports deal has collapsed, more data is being produced that confirm these ties, and they lead us to some very scary questions about our commander in chief.

What is the Carlyle Group? The Carlyle Group was founded in 1987 and is named after the Carlyle hotel, where they first met. The current chairman is Lou Gerstner, Former Chairman and CEO of IBM, and its members include George Bush (both senior and junior), James Baker, Frank Carlucci, Tony Blair, Colin Powell, John Major, Alice Albright, Arthur Levitt, and members of the Bin Laden family, to name a few.

The Carlyle Group’s offices are on Pennsylvania Avenue in DC, exactly equidistant from the White House and Capital Building, and pretty close to FBI and CIA Headquarters. The firm is worth app. $13.5B, and has acquired a bad reputation to accompany all that money:

In running what its own marketing literature spookily calls "a vast, interlocking, global network of businesses and investment professionals" that operates within the so-called iron triangle of industry, government, and the military, the Carlyle Group leaves itself open to any number of conflicts of interest and stunning ironies. For example, it is hard to ignore the fact that Osama bin Laden's family members, who renounced their son ten years ago, stood to gain financially from the war being waged against him until late October, when public criticism of the relationship forced them to liquidate their holdings in the firm.

Where do these “stunning ironies” come from? Perhaps it comes from the arenas that the Carlyle Group works in. The Carlyle Group is best known for its work in Areospace and Defense, Enegry and Power, and transportation. They have strong ties to the healthcare and telecommonications industries. They have investments on every continent, and huge investments in the Middle East.

The Carlyle Group has benefited tremendously from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, as a tremondous amount of contracting has gone out to group members. James Baker, Carlyle Group Member and former Secretary of State under Bush Sr., has been appointed as the envoy to help work out Iraq’s debt, has attempted to secure a $1B investment for the Carlyle Group from Kuwait towards a program to help rebuild Iraq’s economy.

And it was Baker who negotiated the Port deal. Baker’s new law firm, Baker Bots, actually opened up an office in Dubai last year, even though they already had an office in Riyadh. And Baker Botts was responsible for the negotiations of the purchase and sale of CSX World Terminals. In 2003, The Carlyle Group, represented by Baker, purchased CSX for $300M. Two years later the company was in disarray, and earnings were significantly down. However, Baker resold the firm to DP for $1.12B.

Anacher Forester asks what DP really received to make CSX worth so much money, and you know, promise of a $7.8B port deal would certainly be a fitting answer. If that was the case, has Carlyle renigged on it’s side of the deal by not delivering the Port Deal? Well, they certainly tried hard enough to save the deal, as we now know that when DP World promised to transfer control of the ports to an American based company, they were talking about The Carlyle Group.

And more information is coming out, such that Dubai International Capital, who has a major stake in Dubai World, is not only owned by the UAE but, you guessed it, The Carlyle Group. Initial estimates say the group itself stood to earn $108M from the deal, but members of the group would earn the lions share of the over $7B deal. And finally, we heard the first allegations that the Bush administration, after hearing about stories linking the UAE and Carlyle earlier this week, asked the reporters to hold off on reporting ties between the deal and Carlyle until this weekend.

You know, I always thought that taking an office like President of the United States is supposed to be a proviledge, and that the people who take that role are supposed to put the welfare and security of the country before personal gain. But the more we look at The Carlyle Group’s role in the Port Deal, the Bush family’s ties to The Carlyle Group, and Bush’s stauch backing of the deal, the more we have to question if Bush’s more concerned with the welfare of the country or keeping his family off welfare.

Here’s a clue, George: you’re not at risk, you’re family’s fine, fight for the people you’re supposed to represent!

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Posted by Scottage at 2:23 AM / | |