Monday, October 11, 2010

Tom Donilon

Some snarky people have criticized the appointment of Tom Donilon as National Security Advisor in the Obama Administration.  They point out his connections to Goldman Sachs.  They quibble about how he was head of obfuscation for Fanny Mae and spent his time unsuccessfully trying to prevent regulators from discovering the fact that Fanny Mae was insolvent and crooked:
 "After a stint at the law firm O'Melveny & Myers, where Donilon was registered as a lobbyist for Fannie Mae, he took on full-time work with the mortgage giant as executive vice president for law and policy. Donilon's name appears on Fannie Mae's public lobbying disclosure reports between 2000 and 2005.

While housing sales were still booming, internally these were troubled years for the company. In a report first noted by ABC News in 2008, Donilon is described as someone who lobbied for and helped paint a rosy picture of Fannie Mae's financial health to the company's board. He did so at a time when Fannie Mae faced accusations that it was misstating its earnings from 1998 to 2004. Fannie Mae settled with the Securities and Exchange Commission for $400 million in 2006, and did not admit any wrongdoing.

Donilon's tactics reportedly included attacks on the agency responsible for policing Fannie Mae's operations, the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, and an attempt to launch a separate investigation into OFHEO itself, according to a 2006 government report about Fannie Mae. Those efforts were ultimately unsuccessful, and regulators eventually discovered top Fannie Mae executives had been manipulating the company's financial reporting to maximize their bonuses."
And, of course, there is the cavilling about the fact that he knows sweet fuck all about national security.

All this ridiculous hand wringing completely misses the point.  He is uniquely qualified (my emphasis in red):
 "His deputy, Tom Donilon, earned $3.9 million as a partner at the law firm O'Melveny & Myers LLP, where his clients included Citigroup Inc., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Obama fund-raiser and hotel heiress Penny Pritzker."
The Pritzker family is a major backer of Obama, and that connection alone qualifies Donilon for any position.  Penny Pritzker, who has an ugly history, is currently trying to block legislative efforts to make unionization of hotel employees easier (Obama claims he supports 'card check', but he won't let it happen).  The two Chicago families, Pritzker and Crown, own Obama, and that fact goes a long way to explaining the startling failure of his Presidency.
blog comments powered by Disqus