Monday, February 04, 2008

Business As Usual

Housing Secretary Alfonso Jackson runs his department the way all of the Bush appointees seem to do: they take care of their friends and steamroll those who dare to complain about the cronyism. This article in today's Washington Post is another fine example of BushCo's way of conducting the people's business.

Housing Secretary Alphonso Jackson demanded that the Philadelphia Housing Authority transfer a $2 million public property to a developer at a substantial discount, then retaliated against the housing authority when it refused to do so, a recent court filing alleges.

The authority's director, Carl Greene, contends in a court affidavit that Jackson called Philadelphia's mayor in 2006 to demand the transfer to the developer, Kenny Gamble, a former soul-music songwriter who is a business friend of Jackson's. Jackson's aides followed up with "menacing" threats about the property and other housing programs in at least a dozen letters and phone calls over an 11-month period, Greene said in an interview.

Greene and his colleagues have alleged in the court filing that Philadelphia is now paying a severe price for disobeying a Bush Cabinet official. The Department of Housing and Urban Development recently vowed to strip the city's housing authority of its ability to spend some federal funds, a move that the authority said could raise rents for most of its 84,000 low-income tenants and force the layoffs of 250 people.
[Emphasis added]

Apparently Mr. Jackson has been operating in this fashion with impunity from the start of his tenure, and enough people have complained that he is now the subject of several internal investigations.

According to people familiar with the existing probes of Jackson, investigators are scrutinizing whether he interfered in the operations of housing authorities in New Orleans and the Virgin Islands by helping steer no-bid and inflated contracts to friends, and whether he lied when he told authorities he had not.

Investigators are also examining Jackson's alleged role in arranging a New Orleans Housing Authority contract for a contractor and occasional golfing buddy who allegedly did repairs and remodeling on the secretary's South Carolina vacation home, according to two sources familiar with the probe. ...

Under Bush, the business of government has been business. It will be nice to return to the days of the business of government being the public weal.

350 days.

Labels: ,


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dubya's showing his administration is like Reagan's, after all.

5:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It would be nice to see John Edwards out ahead of this and giving it the visiblity it deserves.

3:57 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home