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All About The Benjamins: A “Follow The Money” Book Salon Preview

followthemoney.jpgThis Sunday we will have John Anderson here to discuss his fantastic book, “Follow The Money: How George W. Bush and the Texas Republicans Hog-Tied America.” I have been re-reading the book this week in preparation for my book salon intro, with a handy pad of post-it page markers at the ready for important bits I want to mention.

At the moment, the book is a sea of post-it markers. You have got to read it.

I wanted to give everyone a little preview of what promises to be a fantastic chat on Sunday — so here’s a little excerpt of Follow the Money:

…If Gingrich was the architect of the Republican House ascendency, DeLay was soon to emerge as its financier, and therein lay his claim to power. The day before the Republicans were to organize the 104th Congress — the first time in forty years that they were the majority party in both houses — DeLay opened the doors of the majority whip’s office for the purpose of setting in motion the innocently named Project Relief. The not-so-innocent goal of Project relief was to cut corporate taxes and loosen government regulations over big business. The name given the project was a pure piece of advertising (like Contract with America) — but full of irony, foretelling an ominous future. The “victims” awaiting relief turned out not to be the country’s many millions of poor and indigent, but instead were a handful of America’s richest citizens and biggest corporations.

While Tom DeLay cracked the whip in public, his chief of staff, Ed Beckham, lurked, ever present, in the shadows. That no one outside Capitol Hill knew his name mattered little. For Buckham, elected to nothing, exercised the power that his boss had seized — exercised it ruthlessly, too….

Another of [DeLay press secretary Tony] Rudy’s tasks — one that might at first glance have seemed menial to outsiders, but which actually brought with it significant power — was to oversee the whip’s “member maintenance” operation. This amounted to running a concierge service that provided Republican House members with private town cars and expensive meals — at no charge — during late-night votes. “The whole purpose of this,” Rudy boasted, was “to treat members of Congress like kings and queens.”

Buckham, however, wasn’t content to be a concierge or even a gatekeeper. His boss, DeLay, had already shown the way. Where Gingrich was obsessed with ideology and with his personal place in history, for Buckham, as for DeLay, it was — 24/7/365 — all about the benjamins.

And that’s just a tiny fraction of what Follow the Money digs into on Tom DeLay’s K Street crony crowd. There is a LOT more: Jack Abramoff, Ralph Reed, Karl Rove, Grover Norquist and the corrupt little nest of vipers from their College Republican days, George W. Bush, Jim Baker and the Carlyle Group…you name it. It is all here. This is a book salon that you will not want to miss.

See everyone Sunday, November 25th, at 5 pm ET/2 pm PT for Follow the Money — and a live chat with it’s author, John Anderson, the former deputy editor of the American Lawyer.

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All About The Benjamins: A “Follow The Money” Book Salon Preview

followthemoney.jpgThis Sunday we will have John Anderson here to discuss his fantastic book, “Follow The Money: How George W. Bush and the Texas Republicans Hog-Tied America.” I have been re-reading the book this week in preparation for my book salon intro, with a handy pad of post-it page markers at the ready for important bits I want to mention.

At the moment, the book is a sea of post-it markers. You have got to read it.

I wanted to give everyone a little preview of what promises to be a fantastic chat on Sunday — so here’s a little excerpt of Follow the Money:

…If Gingrich was the architect of the Republican House ascendency, DeLay was soon to emerge as its financier, and therein lay his claim to power. The day before the Republicans were to organize the 104th Congress — the first time in forty years that they were the majority party in both houses — DeLay opened the doors of the majority whip’s office for the purpose of setting in motion the innocently named Project Relief. The not-so-innocent goal of Project relief was to cut corporate taxes and loosen government regulations over big business. The name given the project was a (more…)

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com

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