Janet Napolitano wins California lottery ! Total payout $847,149 , to be paid annually

The swiftly diminishing number of discerning Americans – the small minority who haven’t yet been slowly bludgeoned into brain death by the relentless incompetence of US media – have unfortunately become accustomed to the gut-churning sight of incompetent members of the political oligarchy (who are slowly destroying this great nation) migrating freely from elected office to politically-appointed state boards or university management. Or between Wall Street and the White House (there actually seems to be some sort of magical revolving door between Goldman Sachs and the West Wing). But we may have hit a new low in California with Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano resigning in order to become the president of the University of California system.

It has long been apparent that the easiest way to get rich now is to become a politician – whether through Nancy Pelosi’s “Blue Horseshoe loves Visa IPO” insider trading stock market tips, to the more brutal Dianne Feinstein “Pay my husband to build the most expensive railway in the world” overt violation of taxpayers.

The Napolitano appointment just underlines the corrupt nature of our government.

The most pertinent reason for this appointment is that the UC system was the top contributor to Obama’s 2012 campaign. In light of recent NSA revelations, the next three slots are disconcertingly occupied by Microsoft, Google, and U.S. Government.

This is what used to be called a Nomenklatura appointment in the old Eastern Bloc, but personally I think academic and author Joel Kotkin nails it on the head quite brilliantly with the term New Clerisy. This encompasses the Silicon Valley donors, Wall Street, and, significantly, almost all university administration.

To further underline the nature of these appointments, it merely requires a quick glance at the other Regents. Like a pernicious rash, there you will find California’s greatest crony capitalist, Richard Blum (aka Mr. Dianne Feinstein, aka one of the men behind Solyndra, aka Mr. California High-Speed Rail) availing himself of some more taxpayer dollars. So whilst Elizabeth Warren campaigns fearlessly for the reduction in student loan rates, she fails to mention the absurd salaries being paid to Democrat Nomenklatura university management. Perhaps Dances-with-Facts is distracted, and still smarting from losing out on the role of Tonto in the Lone Ranger movie to Johnny Depp?

Comrade Napolitano is being richly rewarded by the Inner Party for her fantastic work record – she prevented not only the Fort Hood massacre, but also the Nigerian Detroit flight underpants bomber, and not to mention the Boston Marathon bombing. Plus, she made the entire process of flying horrible, and slightly rapey for everybody. It is only appropriate that such competence and devotion to the Party be munificently rewarded.

Well, California – never mind the competence, just feel the salary and benefits. In ancient times, Emperor Obama would have awarded such a feudal barony in a distant land (in this case on the opposite coast from the Imperial Throne in D.C.), but now it’s much more straightforward. Janet, you have no experience in academia, you are incompetent, but you have shown an admirable dedication to The Party. Here is $850k per annum.

So as the University of California system slowly degrades itself from being a world-beating academic organization into being nothing more than an opulent satrapy for political appointees and donors – who can happily plunge their greedy snouts into the bottomless trough of taxpayer (and student tuition) money – we can only shudder and think of the quality of graduates such an organization will start churning out in the future.

Crony Capitalism Express : Dianne Feinstein’s California high-speed bullet train is completely exempted from federal regulatory oversight.

It certainly pays to know the right people. It pays big-time. As we all know, DiFi is a renowned crusader against Big Government and excessive regulations, right? I think ruder people call her a crazy Tea Party extremist, don’t they? She has complete contempt for any sort of regulations; she’s all money-influenced and pro-business and new construction at any cost, eh? I heard she had a concealed weapon permit. What a right-wing gun-nut.

So, a mere matter of weeks after being initially excluded from the bidding process completely, a second magical thing happened to DiFi’s husbands’ former company. Lightning does indeed strike twice!

The first miracle was the Lazarus-like reincarnation of Tutor Perini during the bidding process after initially failing. After falling at the first hurdle, the lame blind DiFi/Blum/Tutor horse was diverted from the glue factory and helpfully prodded back towards the finishing line of the race. Those pesky technical bidding rules were altered when they failed to produce the desired Nomenklatura outcome. Happily, after changing the rules, the correct Nomenklatura candidate was chosen.

In Soviet California, expensive railway bidding process submits application to you !

If any rules conspire against the process of the ruling oligarchy enriching itself even further – well, it’s pretty handy if those same oligarchs control the entire government apparatus.

The second miracle is the (as of today) complete absence of any oversight. Let’s just simply bulldoze mountains of California (and federal) taxpayer money straight into the bank accounts of DiFi’s cronies.

For the admittedly now-tiny minority of Californians still capable of critical thought, all sorts of alarm bells are going off.  Let’s think back to Solyndra. Not so long ago. Same politician. Same state. Same president. Same “Green Energy” roofie slipped into the electorate’s drink. (“Mmm … Tastes like environmentally-friendly Kool-Aid!”)

In Solyndra’s case, it required Oklahoma oil billionaire George Kaiser (Gasp! Big Oil!) being a top 2008 campaign bundler for Infallible Chocolate Jesus in order to get the “loan” approved (plus 20 visits to the Obama White House, and the participation of, inevitably, Goldman Sachs). But extra machinations were still needed – like tactically inserting another top Obama bundler (Steve Spinner) as an advisor to Energy Secretary Steven Chu and charging him with “helping” oversee the loan guarantee program ….. and it probably helped that Spinner’s wife’s law firm represented Solyndra to the tune of $2.4m in federal funds for legal fees related to the Solyndra loan guarantee. In Solyndra’s case, the loan was “fast-tracked” before all due diligence was completed (and due to its economic fruit fly lifespan, died expensively even before some very valid questions could be raised).

Unbeknownst to anyone who relies on the California lapdog media for any real information, over $261 million of the $528 million Solyndra taxpayer dollars that were incinerated up into money heaven back then were received … by a subsidiary of Tutor
Perini, controlled formerly controlled by Richard Blum. At the time, California’s servile lapdog media were heroic in their non-coverage of the story, or indeed of acknowledging any financial link whatsoever to Mommy Warbucks or FeinBlumStein’s Monster, and the same pattern is now being dutifully repeated. (“Good media lapdog. Now give all your metadata to the government. Ha ha. We’re just kidding – we already have it. Who’s a good boy? Who gives endorsements even after they get abused? What a good boy!”)

The success of the Solyndra “keep it in the family” business model may have actually inspired FeinBlumStein’s fiscal monster to aim for even more expensive projects.

To DiFi’s credit, her innovative business model actually completely cuts out the pesky lobbyist/campaign bundler middleman. Just marry the crony capitalist instead. I believe Beyoncé paraphrased this with “Single Female Politicians (Get the Crony Capitalists to Put a Ring on It)”. Imagine Barack Obama gay-marrying Goldman Sach’s Lloyd Blankfein and you might begin to grasp the immense destructive financial power that such a union is capable of inflicting on the US taxpayer.

Updated 27 Nov 13 : Blum no longer controls Tutor Perini (he maintains a small stake) so the association is much more along the lines of Dick Cheney and Halliburton – CEO resigns shortly before former company receives massive government contracts for questionable taxpayer-funded project.