He had the perfect resume
Dick Cheney was an incredible government official. It is also very easy to see how he made an excellent CEO. I believe you noted that Brown & Root Services specializes in providing logistics for American troops in potential war zones around the world. Dick Cheney seems obviously qualified to head a company with this focus.
Perot wasn’t kooky?
RE: “Reform This, Pal”
The mainstream media made fun of Perot — and he probably made it easy for them to do so. But he was the only contender for president who opposed NAFTA. This stand was, of course, presented by many of the talking-head types as kooky, just as they are also portraying the demonstrators in Seattle as being somewhat loony. In fact, anyone who doesn’t follow the politically correct view that global markets are the equivalent of the Second Coming is either made fun of or ignored. I don’t follow the Reform Party, but maybe all those people who are opposing the takeover of their party by Pat Buchanan aren’t just stupid yokels. They probably have a point of view that is just as valid as those we are fed at the two major party conventions.
Santa Cruz, Calif.
Suits them right
RE: “Killer Grilles”
We think that SUV stands for “stupid, useless vehicle.” If you live in the city, there is no point in owning an SUV, except to enhance your macho image.
Not only do SUVs constitute a danger to other motorists and pedestrians, they burn inordinate amounts of gas and contribute greatly to pollution of the environment.
I agree that SUV owners and manufacturers may face the danger of mass action suits, and it will serve them right.
William R. Bunge
New Berlin, Wis.
RE: “Killer Grilles”
As an SUV owner (who frequently goes off road), I think I have found a novel idea regarding safety. I drive responsibly and remain aware of my surroundings. As for bull bars, I currently do not have them; however, after I repaint the front of my death machine, I may resort to that option to protect my investment.
Why don’t we try involuntary sterilization of the masses. You can’t die from anything if you’re not born.
Hey, it’s all meat
RE: “Red tape kills whales”
I think it’s rather hypocritical for a nation such as ours, which slaughters and processes over a million chickens in one day at a single poultry processing plant, to point fingers at the Danes for killing a few whales. The whales are utilized as food and are killed seasonally, not on a daily basis, unlike the animals killed by this country’s lamb, beef, pork, and poultry processors. The Sea Shepherd Society is nothing more than a means to an end, that being to attract media attention to Paul Watson and to keep his life’s blood (contributions and donations) coming in.
You point out in this piece that contracts were given to this company between 1992 to 1999. Hmmmm, who was in the White House during that time period? Who was running the Pentagon during that time period? Sounds like legitimate business dealings on the part of Mr. Cheney and sour grapes from you.
Tribes’ power is well-deserved
RE: “Tribal Politics”
I always cringe when I hear anyone describe American-Indian tribes as “newly flush with cash from casinos,” as Keith Meatto’s story did. Far from all tribes have casinos, and far from all of those casinos are successful.
The implication that tribes are having an undue impact on politics due to their gambling profits is a cynical, misleading notion promoted by anti-Indian politicians, and we would do well not to adopt it.
On the whole, though, I appreciated the story’s emphasis on the growing influence of Indian groups in the political system. One can only hope the tribes’ influence on the American political system will continue to grow — casinos or no casinos.
What’s the big deal with Dick?
I worked for Brown & Root in Hungary and other places, and I can tell you that if Mr. Cheney had any influence on the contracts the company won from the Department of Defense, it wasn’t much. Somalia and Haiti were part of LOGCAP, a contract that Brown & Root lost to Dyncorp on the rebid in or around 1996 — one year after Cheney became Halliburton’s CEO. The State Department contract is, of course, not a Defense Department initiative, and B&R only won 75 of the 150 embassies to be reinforced. Brown & Root has earned only one contract from the department since 1994.
It is also important to keep in mind that B&R bids on hundreds of Defense Department contracts per year. With all the help that Dick Cheney has allegedly brought the company, you would think its success rate would be higher.
I think I now have to contemplate the possibility of two — not one — bogeymen in the White House.