What’s Your Point, Grey Lady?

From the New York Times (reg req’d), comes a long, bloviating article on Bernard Kerik’s involvement with several security and armament corporations, making him tons of money. What is the point of the article?

Just five years ago, Bernard B. Kerik was facing lawsuits from a
condominium association and bank over delinquent payments owed on a

New Jersey condo
he owned. Today, he is a multimillionaire as a result of a lucrative
partnership with former Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani and an even more
profitable relationship with a stun-gun manufacturer.

he is confirmed to the post of homeland security secretary, to which
President Bush nominated him last week, he will oversee an enormous
department that does business with some of the companies that helped
make him wealthy.

The list of income sources that transformed Mr. Kerik, a former New
York City police commissioner, into a wealthy man is a diverse one,
including a best-selling autobiography, speeches around the United
States and service on corporate boards
. Mr. Kerik, who now lives in a
large house in the decidedly more upscale New Jersey town of Franklin
Lakes and drives a BMW sedan, even sold the right to make a feature
film about his rags-to-riches life to Miramax, the film production

Looks like some free shots at how he made money, somehow. Is his being rich now a problem, after the Times spent all that time backing Kedwards, both of who are rich men?  Or could it be Kerik’s involvement in the Board of Taser International?

But it is the relationship Mr. Kerik has had since the spring of 2002 with Taser International, a

Ariz., manufacturer of stun guns, that has by far been the biggest
source of his newfound wealth. That relationship has earned him more
than $6.2 million in pretax profits through stock options he was
granted and then sold, mostly in the last month. A White House
spokesman said Mr. Kerik would resign from Taser’s board and sell his
remaining stock if confirmed.

Imagine someone in the law enforcement business making money due to involvement in that type of business. Would the Times print this type of article if say Teresa Heinz Kerry was nominated for Director of School Lunches? I fail to see the point of the article. It is a thinly veiled attempt to smear Mr. Kerik for his involvement in making money with his law enforcement connections. It gives the appearance that he will be involved in impropriety when he officially takes over the position of Homeland Security Secretary. To my way of thinking, a guy who has intimate knowledge of law enforcement and security methods is an asset.

So, again, what’s the point?

Mr. Kerik will have to be approved by the Senate before he takes
control of Homeland Security. Several members of the Senate Committee
on Government Affairs, which must pass on his nomination, declined to
comment when asked about Mr. Kerik’s work in the private sector. But
staff members indicated that questions about this work were not likely
to disrupt his nomination

For now, Mr. Kerik remains on the
Taser board and remains an employee at Giuliani Partners, but his work
at both companies has been suspended and he will resign if confirmed.
Any remaining stock he owns at Taser or ownership at Giuliani Partners
will also be cashed out, company officials said.

Ah, there is the point. After a long article which hints at possible impropriety, we learn that his work is suspended, he will resign if confirmed, and he will sell off any remaining stock.


Save $10 on purchases of $49.99 & up on our Fruit Bouquets at 1800flowers.com. Promo Code: FRUIT49
If you liked my post, feel free to subscribe to my rss feeds.

Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed

2 Responses to “What’s Your Point, Grey Lady?”

  1. I think the revolving door can be a problem. Maybe he has a conlfict of interest, maybe he doesn’t.

    It is like Cheney and Halliburton . . . while he was a legislator he helped secure them government contracts. Then he was their CEO despite having no prior experience running a business. Then he was back in government securing them even bigger contracts.

    I’m not saying he did anything improper. I’m saying it smells bad.

    Something really should be done about business hiring people that were tasked with regulating them and vice versa. Not everyone will be able to resist the temptation to pad their nests after retirement by greasing a few palms while a legislator or cabinet officer.

    Just sayin.

  2. William Teach says:

    true, PW. Unfortunately, it is business as usual in gov’t. But, we should give Kerik a chance.

Pirate's Cove