In the 80s the Western Australian government formed what it called a partnership with business, which was known popularly as WA Inc. The principle if you are broad minded enough to call it that was that the government would help business to develop and grow.
The way it worked was that in return for contributions to the Labor party business would receive preferential treatment from them. It was all very honourable, once the government was bought they stayed bought. A company could make a contribution then pick up a state asset at concessional prices.
Want a mining lease, that’ll be…. Want planning approval, that’ll be…. Want to get a state property cheap, that’ll be…. and so on.
I was reminded of this when I followed up a comment by Stephen R Maloney, who wrote: - I believe every conservative in America will want to support the candidacy of Lt. Col. William Russell (USA, Ret) who is running hard against John Murtha. Russell is a veteran of Desert Storm and Iraqi Freedom. Please visit his web site to find out how you can help -- even if you don't live in PA.
Wow, John Murtha, well what do you say? On following up I found the same sort of guy who would have felt quite at home in WA back then. The following is a selection of what I found, mainly on Stephens site.
UPMC contributed more than $110,000 to John Murtha's last campaign, an obscene amount. Presumably, it's planning to do the same in 2008, but it won't do so with impunity. In 2006, the money for Murtha came from UPMC's Political Action Committee, as well as from wealthy administrators
Why does UPMC shower money on Murtha? Because he has "earmarked" directed hundreds of millions of dollars to the heath system. Did he do so to keep UPMC afloat? Hardly! In the last fiscal year this supposed "nonprofit" organization declared a "surplus" (i.e., profit) of $480 million.
You can see the companies that financed Murtha's last campaign by going to http://opensecrets.org/, typing in the name "Murtha" and looking up details on his "top contributors." It's not a pretty sight.
If you'll look at Murtha's top contributors, you'll find one after another who has been the recipient of untold millions in federal dollars. The way the system works is this: Murtha earmarks them with tens of millions -- or more -- and they provide him tens of thousands in campaign contributions -- or more. It's a profoundly dirty system, but it's the way John Murtha "does business."
From 2001-2007 Murtha extracted Defense-related (supposedly) earmarks of $63,300,000. His campaign contributions from earmark recipients were $1,669.775 million.
So, who is the challenger? Lt. Col. William Russell (USA, Ret) veteran of Desert Storm, Iraqi Freedom, and the Balkans Conflict. In his military career he has served six tours in war zones including Desert Storm, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and the Balkans. These tours include almost three years in the Middle East (Iraq and Saudi Arabia) and a year and a half in the Balkans (Hungary, Bosnia, Kosovo, Croatia). His wife, Kasia, who was pregnant with their son at the time, and he were in the Pentagon on 9/11. Fortunately both survived.
From his site we find the following: - Pennsylvania has been the turning point in many of the great events that have determined our nation’s future as well as its character. These turning points include the founding of our nation with the signing of the Declaration of Independence to establish the political entity of our nation, followed by the Continental Army’s long winter at Valley Forge and its crossing of the Delaware to capture Trenton on the long road to military victory.
The Constitutional Convention defined the structure of this nation, the Battle of Gettysburg determined that such a nation could long endure, and Lincoln’s address there clearly defined the purpose of that most difficult of this nation’s struggles.
The passengers of Flight 93 turned the tide of battle on September 11 over the skies of this great state and diverted what would have been the most devastating of the blows to this nation. In this war against Islamic Radicalism, the political battle of the 2008 election in the Pennsylvania 12th Congressional District is a critical turning point of this war.
Win or loose, the Republican party should keep this guy deep in their hearts, he is what you need and there will always be a place for him where you need a man of principle.