August 12, 2002

"Confidence Men - Why the myth of Republican competence persists, despite all the evidence to the contrary.

"We now know that as CEO, Cheney got snookered into a disastrous merger that has since sent Halliburton's stock price plummeting, while signing off on dubious balance sheets that have sparked a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation. His mastery of the Beltway is similarly in question. Last year's Cheney-led energy task force produced an all-drilling-no-conservation energy bill that went nowhere. The task force's real legacy was to mire the administration in a thicket of congressional investigations and private lawsuits, all springing from Cheney's insistence on Nixonian secrecy. His major foreign policy gambit - last spring's shuttle-diplomacy mission to the Middle East to secure support for an invasion of Iraq - was a debacle. The tough-talking VP went to the region to line up the Arab states behind the United States against Saddam; days after Cheney's return they were lining up behind Saddam against the United States." - Joshua Micah Marshall.

Under Dick "Chicanery" Cheney, superpatriot, the number of Halliburton subsidiaries registered in tax-friendly locations ballooned from nine in 1995 to 44 in 1999. The result? A dramatic drop in Halliburton's federal taxes, which fell from $302 million in 1998 to less than zero - to wit, an $85 million rebate - in 1999. At the same time they were hard at work stiffing U.S. taxpayers, Cheney and Halliburton were happily feasting at the public trough - the company received $2.3 billion in government contracts and another $1.5 billion in government financing and loan guarantees. Cheney's reluctance to talk to reporters is understandable, given the questionable accounting, the offshore subsidiaries, and the revelation that the company did business with Iran, Libya, and - despite Cheney's denials - Iraq. - Arianna Huffington, via

No comments: