20060224

Red blogule to the DP World - P&O deal's Architects and winners

When Karl Rove claims total transparency and George W Bush puts his veto in the balance, something pretty vital for the Bush Administration must be under way.
We're just talking about a takeover of the P&O Group (The Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company), which happens to operate all major US ports on the East Coast, New Orleans, Florida and Texas included. Some are worrying because national security is at stake and the new owner, DP World (Dubai Ports World), is wholly owned by the government of the United Arab Emirates.

As far as I'm concerned, I'm sure DP World will do as good a job as P&O - if not better. The issue lies elsewhere and quite a few questions burn my lips :
. why are the Bush Administration so eager to push the takeover, defend DP World and take as many risks in an election year ?
. what can they get in exchange for DP World's new entry points, and not only in North America (ie Asia - including Russia, India, Indonesia and China -, France, the UK, not to mention P&O Estates' 25 million ft² of property in Western countries and Australasia ?
. what role did Dave Sanborn play during his one year of service at DP World (as a Director of Operations for Europe and Latin America) to deserve a nomination by Dubya himself as MarAd (Maritime Administrator - under Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta) ?
. why was the recent replacement of Russ Peters by Helen Deeble as P&O's CEO announced by, among all the company's top guns, Sir John Parker* ?
. what promises were made by Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Chairman of DP World and so much respected by the Haves More of the world (also Chairman of Nakheel, the owner of The Palm and The World luxury resorts) ?
. why did DP World overpay so quickly and overwhelmingly for P&O, far beyond what PSA could ever consider realistic (this Singapore-based competitor also coveted the UK operator and immediately gave up), and to the point they even had to admit by themselves the price was excessive ?
. ...
Looks like DP World's takeover of P&O was not only accepted by, but made possible by the Bush Administration. If not how, time will tell why.


* An advisor to the Defense Academy and a President of the Royal Institution of Naval Architects, Sir John has been cruising in the naval circles for ages (Carnival Corporation, National Grid Transco, P&O...), claims a few prestigious memberships or chairmanships (Court of the Bank of England, General Committee of Lloyds Register of Shipping, Lloyds Technical Committee...), but also seems to know quite a lot about lobbying in the US :
- Brambles Industries plc (support services for heavy industries),
- Babcock International Group plc (technical services and engineering, aerospace and defense, a major contractor in Afghanistan and Iraq),
- Chairman of the RMC Group plc (alias Cemex, the leader of concrete in the US)...

20060217

Red blogule to Wal-Mart's H. Lee Scott Jr. - "Can I hate you ?"

I suggest a new 10-foot rule to Wal-Mart's employees : if CEO Lee is less than 10 feet away, you're compelled to ask "can I hate you ?"

Judging by "Lee's Garage" worst of as selected by yesterday's NYT ("On Private Web Site, Wal-Mart Chief Talks Tough"), you can easily tell how this man made it to the top : his blog just reeks of the retailer's awful corporate culture ; XIXth century capitalism at its ugliest.

Everyday low, period.

20060214

White blogule to Dick Cheney - Shooting Star vs silver star

Unlike John Forbes Kerry, NRA fave Dick Cheney didn't get any silver star for his courageous behavior during the Vietnam war*.
So I'm pleased to unanimously award Richard B. Cheney a white blogule for his almost perfect shot at his hunting pal in Texas**.
This white blogule rewards Mr. Cheney's creativity and dedication to invent new reasons why he should be the most hatable, abhorrent and repulsive man in the US.
Training all day long with the toughest emulators does help. For an Administration to reach this level of ignominy, it takes more than one Architect.


* Mr. Cheney courageously supported the said war while serving the Nixon and Ford administrations, and later proved his courage by voting against the Martin Luther King, Jr day, against the creation of the Department Of Education, against the overriding of Reagan's veto (protecting South Africa from sanctions for maintaining apartheid) or against the liberation of Nelson Mandela. Even after joining the private sector, he lobbied against the US boycotts of Iran & Lybia because they didn't help the eradication of terror, nor the development of Halliburton.

** Despite 10 pellets in the torso, neck and face, 78 year old Attorney Harry Whittington shall survive and remain at the Texas Funeral Services Commission as a chairman - not a commodity.

20060204

Red blogule to New New Orleans - the bleach blitz

The Federal authorities are in no hurry to allow Louisiana citizens back to what's left of their homes : the area is enjoying a 2/3 white supremacy very much different from the 3/4 pre-Kathrina black rule. As in neighboring Texas, pro-Bush Hispanics may get their share of the cake, were this situation to last till next elections.
They'd be right to stick around : according to many wheather forecasts, greenbacks are supposed to start pouring soon over the region. I'm not sure they will land in the pockets that most deserved them.
One could recycle the tactful words the Queen of Diplomacy Condi Rice once uttered about another massive disaster, "I do agree that the tsunami was a wonderful opportunity to show not just the US government, but the heart of the American people, and I think it has paid great dividends for us".
Praise Lord Dubya and his clerical clique ; always fighting against Evil and defending the Haves and the Haves More. Let their followers enter the kingdom of whealth. O when the Saints go marchin in...

20060201

Red blogule to demokracy - professor Bush's vision

There were eventually quite a few changes between the final version of Dubya's State of the Union speech and the complete and uncut version I published last week. But as for surprises, I didn't get a lot.
I don't need to learn from such a lousy teacher "terrorists have chosen the weapon of fear". I don't need the President of the United States to quote an unknown soldier (Dan Clay) to paint a thin emotional layer of justification on his strategic mistakes. I don't need W to speak directly to the people of Iran the same way he did with the people of Irak right before invading their country.
Democracy definitely is on its way and here are the results : fundamentalists won in Iran and made their highest scores ever in Saudi Arabia or Egypt in 2005, and fundamentalists won in Palestine in 2006 because fundamentalists won in the US in 2004.

When George W Bush is talking about "a nation now held hostage by a small clerical elite that is isolating and repressing its people", is he talking about Iran of the Amerika that harrassed and fired all the good law people within its own administration who confessed some doubts regarding the use of torture ? The Amerika that reserved the best positions for the promoters of Intelligent Design and crucified the ones who refused to mix religion and science ?
And yet, this man is asking for more support : "tonight I ask for yours. Together, let us protect our country, support the men and women who defend us, and lead this world toward freedom". The freedom of being either with him or against him, the freedom of facing the consequences, the freedom of either being a good Amerikan citizen/churchgoer or abandoning all rights and dignity, the freedom of contributing to the economic domination of the Liberator or undergoing boycott and pressure.
And what is his ultimate goal, the final point of his brilliant speech ? "By applying the talent and technology of America, this country can dramatically improve our environment … move beyond a petroleum-based economy … and make our dependence on Middle Eastern oil a thing of the past." What an inspiring vision... I suggest another wording for this back-to-square-one agony : "Help me outta there ! I've been stuck to that damn Texan pit ever since I started digging for my life but I've never been able to collect anything but mud, debts and shame."
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