2:32 PM, Mar 17, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
It comes as no big surprise that K Street has no plans to impose sanctions on Russia … or itself.
As Kevin Bogardus at the Hill reports
The public relations giant Ketchum has earned more than $26 million representing Russia, and is keeping the country as a client despite the widely denounced incursion into Crimea by the Russian military.
It is a long-standing business relationship, after all, that has withstood previous crises like that unpleasantness over Georgia and:
Ketchum has worked for the Russian government since 2006 ... it helped the country prepare for the Group of Eight Summit in St. Petersburg … and media rollout for Putin's 2007 "Person of the Year" award by Time Magazine and contacted The New York Times last year about an op-ed written by the Russian president, according to Justice Department records.
Well, one person’s strongman is another person’s valued client. And business is business. K Street is an easy target but it is not alone in considering self-interest in the present crisis. France is building warships for the Russians and one wonders if Paris will cancel the contracts as a way of showing Vladimir Putin that the West means business.
In the coming days, one can expect the sanctions to be finely calibrated by the practitioners of Smart Power so as to insure the least possible disruption to business-as-usual.
Russia is playing hardball while the West is playing chess.
4:19 PM, Feb 6, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
News of a new and creative way for the recipients of federal grants to spend the money. Use it to pay lobbyists. Who will, presumably, work their magic in order to get more federal money, which can then be spent to lobby for yet even more federal money.
12:36 PM, Jan 28, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
Happy days are here again on K Street. As Kevin Bogardus and Erik Wasson of the Hill write, with Congress debating individual spending bills instead of simply passing continuing resolutions:
9:00 AM, Nov 18, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
Washington, D.C. is booming. That's in large part because of a massive growth in lobbying expenditures and federal contracts.
8:03 AM, Aug 26, 2013 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The bigger and more bewildering the legislation, the better for the Lords and Ladies of K Street. So as Megan R. Wilson of The Hill reports:
4:16 PM, Aug 12, 2013 • By BENJAMIN SILVER
Special interests—mostly advocacy firms and former-Congressmen turned lobbyists—drive Congress’s agenda and play an oversized role in the formation of policy. But the face of lobbying is changing, thanks partly to approaches pioneered in the last three years by Heritage Action for America, the lobbying and policy organization affiliated with the conservative Heritage Foundation.
11:51 AM, Mar 26, 2013 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The country has been crying out for another big-money lobbying effort and now, as Jennifer Martinez writes in the Hill, "Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is helping launch a new lobbying organization with a group of prominent Washington political consultants and tech executives."
3:28 PM, Jul 20, 2012 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
National Public Radio media enterprise is so essential, according to backers, that it requires government support. But, as its supporters always point out, in an amount equal to merely 2 percent of the NPR budget. Which leads one to ask if the outfit couldn't find a way to spend two percent less or raise the money in one of those marathon pledge drives it holds every two or three weeks. The government, after all, is tapped out.
If it were only that easy …2:02 PM, May 3, 2012 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
It appears increasingly likely that Senator Richard Lugar will not be the senior U.S. senator from Indiana when the next Congress is sworn in. After 36 years on the job, he is running behind in a tough primary. His opponent's main knock on Lugar is that he has been in Washington too long and been infected with the incumbency virus.
2:31 PM, Apr 12, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
In just the last few months, Bidzina Ivanishvili, one of the world's richest men with an estimated $6.5 billion fortune, hired a small army of PR consultants and lobbyists in Washington, including at least 7 of Washington’s most prominent firms.
But not for Taiwan.12:29 PM, Jun 1, 2011 • By JOSEPH A. BOSCO
A delegation of the People's Liberation Army, the largest group of Chinese military officers ever to visit the United States, recently toured the Pentagon and other U.S. defense facilities. Part of their mission was to further erode and finally end the congressional ban on weapons and technology sales to China imposed after the Tiananmen Square massacre of peaceful demonstrators on June 4, 1989.
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