“A Man Is Judged By The
Company He Keeps”
THE GOP BS!
Susan Rice Keystone XL Attacks Put White House In A Bind
Posted: 12/02/2012 5:23 pm EST
Updated: 12/05/2012 12:41 pm EST
Barack Obama , White House, Video, TransCanada, Susan Rice, Susan Rice TransCanada, Keystone Pipeline, Obama Second Term Cabinet, Susan Rice Keystone, Susan Rice Secretary Of State, TransCanada, Politics News
WASHINGTON — When Susan Rice’s potential nomination to the post of secretary of state hit another snag this past week, the White House found itself in a quandary.
On Wednesday, a publication affiliated with the Natural Resources Defense Council dug into the ambassador to the United Nations’ financial disclosures, and discovered that she and her husband were heavily invested in several oil companies in western Canada including one, TransCanada, that currently has a project under review at the State Department.
As secretary of state, Rice would have to oversee the review of that project, the Keystone XL pipeline, which has dragged on for several controversial and tortured years.
It would be an obvious conflict of interest, and were she to be confirmed as secretary of state, Rice would almost certainly have to divest from her shares in TransCanada. The ties could give some senators pause over whether to confirm her for the post.
TABACCO: In case you haven’t guessed it, Tabacco is dead set against another Vested Interest Capitalist joining the Obama Team, even if she’s not a Goldman Sachs Graduate! If Susan Rice divests from her Keystone XL SHARES, and becomes Secretary of State, you can bet lots of others with KEYSTONE XL VESTED INTERESTS will be extremely grateful to Dame Rice for her support in the form or Financial Remuneration! That’s how Capitalists and your Government work together regardless of Party!
But Rice is not yet the nominee, and, as ambassador to the U.N., her investments were not deemed a conflict of interest by ethics lawyers. (Earlier investments were found to be conflicts, and in 2008, as she was being considered for a post in the Obama administration, she divested from Boeing and GE.)
TABACCO: I wonder why! Can you say, “Military-Industrial Complex”!
And so the administration declined to comment about the impact of the investments on her possible nomination. A spokesman for Rice said she committed no wrongdoing with her investments.
“Ambassador Rice has complied with annual financial disclosure and applicable ethics requirements related to her service in the U.S. government and is committed to continuing to meet these obligations,” Payton Knopf, a spokesman for the U.S. Mission to the U.N., told The Huffington Post.
The reticence to address the swirling controversy shows the limits of what the White House feels it can do to defend Rice unless she is actually nominated.
For the administration, openly backing its U.N. ambassador against the onslaught of attacks, from her financial portfolio to her role in the September attack in Benghazi, Libya, risks giving the impression that it is laying the groundwork for her appointment to a post for which she has yet to be nominated. Staffers were reluctant to even let Rice go to Capitol Hill last week to answer questions about her role in disseminating talking points about the attack on the American consulate in Benghazi, wary that it would be interpreted as preemptive diplomacy for a future confirmation hearing.
Some fear that if the White House offered a stronger defense of Rice against her congressional foes, it could make it politically harder to nominate anyone else. When the president — during a national press conference shortly before Thanksgiving — urged Rice’s detractors to direct their criticisms at him, it was widely interpreted in Washington as the clearest indication that he intended to nominate her to the post. Nominating anyone else might be interpreted as political defeat.
Allies have been left confused and frustrated.
“Why is it that the White House seems incapable of doing anything to defend Susan Rice,” one top Democrat close to the administration asked this past week. “She is actually a member of the administration, last time I checked.”
For the time being, the administration has been heartened by the fact that few of the attacks so far have turned out to be sustainable.
Republicans have wavered over how hard to press Rice about her Sunday show appearances, in which she offered an early (ultimately erroneous) explanation for the terrorist attack in Benghazi, that left four Americans dead. It later emerged that Rice had faithfully transmitted the approved talking points from the intelligence community, which were ultimately deemed to be incomplete and inaccurate.
Another recent charge made by Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) — that Rice may have been partially at fault for the failure to prevent the 1998 bombings at U.S. embassies in east Africa — was undermined by the original investigators of the attacks, who told HuffPost that Rice played no direct role.
Even more recently, a conservative news website, poring over Rice’s financial disclosure documents, pointed to a set of investments she made with a Dutch oil company with a history of doing business with Iran. But Rice is not alone. News reports later noted that Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), the senator who has led the charge against Rice’s nomination, is also invested in the company.
The Canadian oil company investments may pose the clearest obstacle for Rice’s nomination, although NRDC officials said should she fully divest, they would have no objection to her nomination on those grounds. A veteran of past confirmation battles noted that financial conflicts of interest are not unheard of for high-level nominees, and are typically reconciled during the nomination process.
“It is awkward for her to be in the position of being judged on how her finances may conflict for a job she has yet to be nominated for,” said the source, who would only speak about a prospective nominee on the condition of anonymity.
Financial experts contacted by The Huffington Post say that the approval of the Keystone XL pipeline would have obvious benefits for the value of TransCanada stock, and would also affect the growth potential of several other companies exploring the oil fields of western Canada, and in which Rice also holds stock.
“In the event of her being nominated, we’re confident that she would divest,” said Susan Casey-Lefkowitz, the director of the NRDC’s international program.
“For us, the main point is that high-level State Department officials dealing with the Keystone XL pipeline decision should not have any conflict of interests. That means they can’t be invested in TransCanada stock or any other tar sands holdings.”
Sam Stein’s wife works for the Obama administration on matters of oversight that have included congressional inquiries into the Benghazi attack.
TABACCO: In case you didn’t know, the Huffington Post is a Liberal Democratic Blog. And yet they are telling the Truth about Obama’s “Pick”! Why can’t Republicans tell the Truth? Why are they still creating their own “Talking Points” about the Mundane, the Irrelevant and the Fictitious!
I had to dig deep to find one Republican, who is mentioning the Rice Investments in Keystone XL instead of harping on the GOP Talking Point “The Benghazi Distraction”!
Guess what! Another Conservative Source, but it doesn’t go far enough in its assessment of Liberal demands! Merely requiring that Rice “immediately sell every dollar of stock” is totally inadequate!
Liberals must learn that it’s not just what Disaster Capitalists already own, it’s what they can acquire – that includes “UNDER THE TABLE” & “AFTER THE FACT”!
WHAT ARE MOST
Rice in Limbo as Nomination Remains Uncertain
Susan E. Rice, the ambassador to the United Nations, at a meeting at the White House last week.
By MARK LANDLER and JENNIFER STEINHAUER
Published: December 7, 2012
WASHINGTON — It did not take long for Susan E. Rice and her champions at the White House to realize that the Republican furor over the Benghazi attack was not going away after the presidential campaign ended.
One of her fiercest critics, Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, made that clear on the Sunday after the election when he said he would oppose any attempt to make Ms. Rice the secretary of state, citing the account she gave in television interviews of the terrorist attack in Libya, in which Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed.
According to senior officials, Ms. Rice, the ambassador to the United Nations, and President Obama’s national security advisers agreed that she should meet with Mr. Graham and her other critics in the Senate. But the meeting has only complicated the effort to present her as a credible successor to Hillary Rodham Clinton when, as expected, she leaves the cabinet.
Far from clearing the air, Ms. Rice’s session last week with three Republican senators deepened their suspicions that she had shaded the truth about the attack for political reasons.
“What made it worse was that there were new questions that were not answered,” said Senator Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, who met Ms. Rice along with Mr. Graham and Senator John McCain of Arizona.
The ill-fated attempt at bipartisan outreach only highlighted the awkward limbo in which both Ms. Rice and the White House now find themselves over a potential nomination that by all accounts Mr. Obama has not signed off on.
Although Ms. Rice is still considered Mr. Obama’s favored choice to head the State Department, he is also seriously considering Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts. So putting on a full-court press for Ms. Rice, some officials said, could inhibit the president’s room for maneuvering.
Still, in an effort to contain the damage, the White House has set up an ad hoc team to respond to the charges over Ms. Rice’s statements about the attack on an American compound in Benghazi on Sept. 11. It has tried to recruit prominent outsiders, like former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright, and other cabinet members, like Mrs. Clinton, to come to her defense.
On Thursday, Mrs. Clinton said Ms. Rice’s statements on five Sunday TV news shows days after the attack were “based on the information that had been given to every senior official in our administration.” She added that Ms. Rice “made it very clear in her appearances that the information was subject to change.”
Ms. Rice’s most stalwart defender has been the president himself. He said last week that he did not worry about what “folks say on cable news programs, attacking highly qualified personnel like Susan Rice,” though he added that he had not made any personnel decisions.
In the meantime, Ms. Rice has had to battle a steady drip of negative news: accusations about her record as a policy maker on Africa, her role as a senior State Department official in a 1998 terrorist attack on American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, and even her financial holdings.
The question is whether Ms. Rice, 48, can survive a confirmation battle after the drubbing she has taken from Republicans who seem bent on disqualifying her before she is named. Some Republicans said the White House had left her to fend for herself.
“They floated her name to test the waters; they found out that the waters are pretty rough, and then they didn’t give her a life preserver,” said Senator John Barrasso, a Republican from Wyoming on the Foreign Relations Committee. “Now, Republican senators all across the political spectrum have questions about her experience and judgment.”
“I think it is very uphill for her at this point,” he added.
Republicans said the White House’s approach fits a pattern of not reaching out to Congress, whether on budget negotiations or to defend other appointments.
Senator Susan Collins, Republican of Maine, said the White House had not contacted her about Ms. Rice. After meeting with her last week, Ms. Collins expressed reservations about her suitability for secretary of state.
Ms. Collins said she did not believe outreach would have mitigated the issues that arose in their meeting, but she added that the White House generally had not engaged with Congressional Republicans in any meaningful way since the departure of Rahm Emanuel, Mr. Obama’s former chief of staff.
Friends of Ms. Rice, some of whom have voiced their frustration to the White House, said the administration had been distracted, first by the election and now by fiscal talks with Congress.
The White House, however, said that in addition to Mr. Obama’s very public defense of Ms. Rice, the administration had been working behind the scenes to push back on the negative reports and, through intermediaries, to change the narrative about the Benghazi episode.
In recent days, Ms. Rice’s defenders, who include former colleagues and staff aides, have begun their own counteroffensive.
They have pointed out that the Republican senators who criticized Ms. Rice for portraying the assault as a spontaneous protest, rather than a terrorist attack, co-sponsored a motion that said the site was “swarmed by an angry mob of protesters.”
After reports that Ms. Rice held investments in energy companies that have done business with Iran, journalists were pointed to evidence that Senator McCain also had holdings that included stock in an oil company that had been engaged with Iran.
As for Ms. Rice’s high net worth — between $23.5 million and $43.5 million, according to the Center for Responsive Politics — officials noted that Paul O’Neill, George W. Bush’s nominee for Treasury secretary, was swiftly confirmed in 2001, despite reporting $59.2 million in compensation the previous year.
When Ms. Collins asked whether Ms. Rice bore responsibility, as a former assistant secretary of state for African affairs, for not bolstering the security of embassies in Kenya and Tanzania targeted in bombings in 1998, the White House circulated a State Department report on the attacks that did not mention Ms. Rice.
“In the long run, as these facts come out, the focus on Susan Rice has become even more absurd,” said Benjamin J. Rhodes, a deputy national security adviser.
If Ms. Rice is nominated, the White House will put together a team, as it did for Mrs. Clinton, to guide her through the confirmation process. It would probably assign a skilled political operative, like Stephanie Cutter, who helped Timothy F. Geithner through his arduous confirmation as Treasury secretary.
Tabacco: If only Rice were not a Democrat!
“At a time when the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are winding down, Susan speaks to an affirmative view of what the United States would do around the world,” Mr. Rhodes said.
After the recent furor, however, it is not clear that the White House could get that kind of hearing for Ms. Rice. Senator Johnny Isakson, a Republican from Georgia, said the Benghazi episode had become too big a distraction for her to escape.
“If you go into a hearing on her nomination with a lot of the Benghazi stuff still hanging out there, that tends to be the primary topic instead of her vision for secretary of state,” he said.
Tabacco: So why are Republicans going berserk about Susan Rice’s Benghazi speech? Answer: Because that’s what Republicans do – ignore mountains and go ballistic over molehills!
WHAT IS THE MSM
Answer: Exactly the same thing that most Republicans are saying! Still think there is a “Liberal Media Bias”?
A LITTLE OF
This Diatribe is definitely not sympathetic with Blacks or Black views, but there is a lot of Truth here about Black Solidarity with almost anybody, who appears to be Black.
The Unmentioned Fact is that Jews often support Israel regardless of its Palestinian Atrocities.
The Tea Party is joined at the waist with the Republican Party, which has little real interest in Tea Party goals other than “Lip Service” around Primary & Election Day.
So the Black Solidarity Syndrome is NOT UNIQUE!
by BAR executive editor Glen Ford
Africa doesn’t matter, U.S. wars don’t matter, nothing matters to the Black Misleadership Class except the sickly prestige of basking in the (distant) glow of power. Susan Rice’s “Black boosters embrace an abettor of genocide and endless military interventions as one of their own – and indict themselves.”
The Shameless Vacuity of Susan Rice’s Black Boosters
by BAR executive editor Glen Ford
“They have rallied to the defense of a woman who has been mugging an entire continent since her appointment to Bill Clinton national security staff in 1993.”
In their reflexive circling of the wagons around United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice, the U.S. Black Misleadership Class reveal a total absence of political or moral values beyond the narrow pursuit of group prestige through proximity to imperial power. Even the dashiki-wearers among them care not a whit for Africa, whose rape and depopulation has been the focus of Rice’s incredibly destructive career. Rice’s intimate involvement in the murder of six million Congolese, her frenzied campaign to bomb and blockade Sudan, her successful instigation of regime change and race war in Libya, and her bloody-handed role in the ongoing torture of Somalia – all this means nothing to the vacuous and fawning class that claims to represent Black America.
Believing their own prestige to be entwined with Rice’s fortunes, her Black boosters embrace an abettor of genocide and endless military interventions as one of their own – and indict themselves.
“By any reasonable interpretation,” writes Dr. Avis A. Jones-DeWeever, Executive Director of the National Council of Negro Women, Rice has had “a stellar public service career.” Dr. Jones-DeWeever apparently finds it admirable that Rice has for a decade and a half zealously shielded Rwanda and Uganda, the two main culprits in the Congolese genocide, from censure or sanction at the United Nations and in the court of world opinion. “Bold sisters,” Jones-DeWeever admonishes, urging Black women to sign a petition in support of Rice, “Let this be the day we all say, Not again…Never again…Not on our watch!” Yet, on their “watch” Rice’s clients in the Rwandan and Ugandan armed forces and proxy “rebel” outfits have sown the chaos that has led to the rape of an estimated two million Congolese women.
“The broad outlines of racial atrocities by America’s allies and clients in Libya are no longer in dispute.”
Rice is widely credited with convincing President Obama to launch NATO’s eight-month bombing campaign against Libya, in 2011, resulting in a racist pogrom that killed or displaced many tens of thousands of black Libyans and migrant workers – a race war that continues to this very day. For Dr. Jones DeWeever, Rice’s role in this monstrous crime becomes, in language profane in its blandness, “someone who was instrumental in designing the resolution to the protracted Libyan clashes during that nation’s tumultuous period within the Arab Spring.” A Black bourgeois flavor to the banality of evil.
Although the broad outlines of racial atrocities by America’s allies and clients in Libya are no longer in dispute, Rice has remained silent on the issue. DeWeever keeps mum, too, although as an “accomplished scholar, writer, and public speaker“ – and as a person who feels qualified to assess Rice’s “stellar public service career” – one would assume she is at least somewhat familiar with the plight of black Libyans on Rice’s “watch.” We must conclude that she simply doesn’t care; that she deems the systematic murder and depopulation of blacks in Libya as immaterial compared to the need to populate U.S. high places with illustrious Black American faces.
In the same self-centered and fawning vein, incoming Congressional Black Caucus chairperson Rep. Marcia Fudge, of Cleveland, described Rice as “a person who has served this country with distinction,” while offering no assessment of the substance of that service. Surely, Jefferson Davis served the Confederate cause with “distinction,” too. “We will not allow a brilliant public servant’s record to be mugged to cut off her consideration to be secretary of state,” chimed in DC Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton, one of the 12 Black female representatives who rallied to the defense of a woman who has been mugging an entire continent since her appointment to Bill Clinton’s national security staff in 1993.
“The Institute of the Black World would do better to demand that Rice and the rest of the Obama administration keep their bloody hands off Africa.”
“We say hands off Ambassador Susan Rice!” Dr. Ron Daniels’ Institute of the Black World, a proudly Afro-centric organization, would do better to demand that Rice and the rest of the Obama administration keep their bloody hands off Africa. Republicans are “hypocrites “ who “have no moral or political authority to stand in judgment of Ambassador Susan Rice!” One can make that argument, but the Institute of the Black World and the rest of us certainly have the right and obligation to stand in judgment of a political operative and ideologue who, according to an article by Michael Hirsch in the Ethiopian Review, cavalierly dismissed the Rwanda/Uganda-sponsored M23 rebel group’s murderous rampages in the Democratic Republic of Congo. “It’s the eastern DRC. If it’s not M23, it’s going to be some other group.” Rice delayed for months publication of a United Nations panel of experts report documenting M23 as a front group for Congo’s neighbors, who have all but annexed the mineral-rich eastern part of the country since invading in 1996, leaving 6 million dead in their wake, half of them below the age of five. Rice and her then boss, Bill Clinton, supplied the money, arms and political cover. As Under Secretary of State for African Affairs, Rice left it up to Washington’s Rwandan and Ugandan puppets to safeguard against genocide. “They know how to deal with that,” Rice is quoted as saying. “The only thing we have to do is look the other way.”
Rice’s African American boosters also choose to look the other way. They shame us all.
BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com.
Tabacco: I consider myself both a funnel and a filter. I funnel information, not readily available on the Mass Media, which is ignored and/or suppressed. I filter out the irrelevancies and trivialities to save both the time and effort of my Readers and bring consternation to the enemies of Truth & Fairness! When you read Tabacco, if you don’t learn something NEW, I’ve wasted your time.
Tabacco is not a blogger, who thinks; I am a Thinker, who blogs. Speaking Truth to Power!
In 1981′s ‘Body Heat’, Kathleen Turner said, “Knowledge is power”.