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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Democrat Convention Spending Spree

This week's Democrat National Convention has become a microcosm of the governing philosophy that pervades both parties from top to bottom. Free spending is easy at the DNC (as well as in DC) when those spending the money are not the same as those actually earning the money. Compare this account about the Democrat National Convention to the description about the Wal-Mart Shareholder's Convention:
  1. DNC: "Lobbyists are once again spending millions of dollars here on gourmet food, top-shelf liquor and private lavish parties for Democratic elected officials who seem more than happy to play the role of world-class freeloaders. According to Denver's top chefs and caterers, no expense is being spared. Kevin Taylor, of the Denver restaurant Palette, who says he is the only four-star chef in Denver, says he is booked to prepare delicacies for more than 100 "high end, hush-hush events." "The demand is over the top, you've never seen anything like this," said chef Taylor, especially for his signature King Crab terrine appetizer with white champagne caviar. At the Ritz Carlton Hotel, where rooms for Democratic VIP's are now going for $2,000 a night, the executive chef, Andre Jimenez, says even the room welcome gifts need to be elaborate for the 35 top donors and celebrities, including "the rarest peaches in America." "It's only for the best of the best that we host here," the chef told ABC News. "We're seeing lobbyists gone wild," said Craig Holman of Public Citizen, a non-profit group that lobbied for the new ethics law enacted last year, aimed at curbing lobbying abuses.
  2. Wal-Mart Convention: "Scott and Chief Financial Officer Tom Schoewe earned a combined $14 million in stock and cash in 2003. But on business trips, the two will share a $49 hotel room. "Sharing rooms is a very symbolic part of what we do," Scott says. "It's also an equalizer. If I'm asking the district managers to share a room, but I won't share a room with Schoewe, then what am I saying? There are two different standards here? The customer is the most important thing for all of you, but for me I think I'll run a different standard."

The differences between the practices of the private sector versus the public sector are astounding. When will one of these parties stop to think about the virtues of thrift, savings, service and sacrifice? Don't hold your breath. Obama recently claimed:
"We will not take another dime from Washington lobbyists," Obama said in a speech June 5, repeating a theme he has main a key to his campaign. "They will not fund my party."
So what is the reality? This from Steve Weisman of the Campaign Finance Institute, affiliated with George Washington University.
"Barack Obama, who says that he doesn't want to have any lobbyist money in his campaign, is having a lobbyist bundle money from large corporations, many of which are clients, for the convention that's going to nominate Obama," said Steve Weisman
It's kind of odd to see Democrats shaking down corporations for cash when they have been demonizing them for years.