by Robert Wilkinson
Bob Ney, convicted felon who was part of the Jack Ambramoff scandal involving Congressional bribery and worse, just released a book where he exposes Speaker of the House John Boener's craven duplicity and more. If you're a political junkie, you'll want to read this.
We have this story courtesy of The National Journal. While many could attack the messenger, I did extensive blogging on this back in 2003-05 when the corruption was in full swing. Bob Ney was in the heart of a far reaching scandal, and I'm sure doesn't even give us the full story in his book. Still, it's a sordid tale of an alcoholic megalomaniac and his duplicitous fellow Republicans, right up to and including Karl Rove and W. From the article:
Ney’s most dramatic accusations are against his fellow Ohioan John Boehner, the man he once saw as his biggest rival to someday being speaker. He describes Boehner as “a bit lazy” and “a man who was all about winning and money. He was a chain-smoking, relentless wine drinker who was more interested in the high life--golf, women, cigarettes, fun, and alcohol.” He said Boehner “spent almost all of his time on fundraising, not policy.” He “golfed, drank constantly, and took the easy way legislatively.” Ney recalled Boehner handing out checks on the House floor and said his ties with a tobacco company were so tight that lawmakers could get free cigarettes from Boehner’s office. His golfing, Ney said, was “nonstop” and “paid for by lobbyists.”
Ney wrote: “If the Justice Department were ever to make John produce receipts for his addiction to golf just for the years from 1995 to 2004, he would be hard-pressed to comply. John got away with more than any other Member on the Hill.”
He blasts prosecutor Alice S. Fisher as “undoubtedly the most covert, manipulative, cunning, stealth, vicious, cold-hearted instrument of evil that Karl Rove and the Bush administration had.” He wrote that she “along with Alberto Gonzales, Andy Card, Karl Rove, and President Bush shredded the Constitution of the United States and did as they pleased.”
I haven't read the book, so don't know what isn't in there. I do know that Bob Ney was the fall guy for some really bad stuff beyond just bribery. He and Boener were Congressional Ohioans who were power players during the time when the Ohio Sec of State gave a pass to rigged voting machines owned and programmed by Republican controlled companies (giving W the 2004 election via Ohio) while Ney, Tom Delay, and their allies engaged in major league money laundering via rare coins and more. On the whole that tangled mess was one of the worst periods in American politics ever seen, and only now do we get a glimpse at the inside workings of the most corrupt administration in history.
Anyway, take a look at the article if you're so inclined. For me, it just brings back very bad memories of a time when the Constitution was shredded and we slipped into crypto-fascism as the administration wrapped itself in the flag. Every bad thing going on now can be tracked back to the Bush administration. They incubated and gave birth to the monsters now called American domestic and foreign policy. At least the beast will eventually die due to a lack of sustainability, though there will be wreckage along the way. This book seems to be a story of a tiny piece of that wreckage.
Copyright © 2013 Robert Wilkinson
ADD: Here's the WaPo story that just broke on this: Former Rep. Bob Ney skewers John Boehner: ‘I don’t hate him now’