Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Hall of Shame- 3 New York Mets players

It's been a while since I named anyone and shamed 'em, but 3 baseball players from the NY Mets made the list due to a recent no show when the team went to Walter Reed Hospital to visit some wounded warriors.  Only 3 players of the 33 man squad couldn't find it in themselves to show up, Carlos Beltran, Luis Castillo and Oliver Perez.

Luis Castillo said he was too squeamish."You see people with no legs and with no arms, being in a hospital like that, I don't like to see that".  Really?  How about donning some body armor and join these troops that are in harms way serving this country?  162 games in a season that starts in April and ends in September, or October, if you are lucky, doesn't compare in any way to multiple deployments, daily combat and time away from their loved ones.  Squeamish?  People like Castillo make me sick! Castillo also said.  "We didn't go because we didn't like to see that."  Castillo needs to grow up.

Perez declined to discuss the matter at all, only stating "I don't answer anything about outside the stadium."  

We are paying these jerks, who play a game for a living, a combined $36.5 million for next season and they don't have the common courtesy to pay respect to those men and women who have been injured while serving their country?  They are part of the 99% of this country that never have to think about the ongoing, endless wars.  1% of the people, the military and their families carry the heavy burden of these wars every day; they cannot walk away, they cannot put the war out of their mind.

Castillo, Perez and Beltran give baseball a bad name, and it's a good thing these 3 don't represent all of baseball or even all Met's players. Met's right-hander R.A. Dickey said when asked about the no-shows. "In our own way, it's a way we can pay personal tribute to people who we take so for granted every day.  "To have the empathy and to be in the moment enough to know that there are people in Afghanistan and Iraq fighting for the freedom that I'm able to enjoy ... To be able to look a guy in the eye who doesn't have arms or legs and say, 'Thank you,' that's a big deal. I take it personally."

Congratulations to this year's nominee's for the Baseball Hall of Shame-  Carlos Beltran, Luis Castillo, and Oliver Perez

Welcome to Hell, David Brooks, war profiteer

It's nice when karma comes around and bites someone in the butt; someone who thought they were too good to get caught and too good to play by the rules.  This is true in the case of David Brooks, #1 War Profiteer, at least that is how I described him back in October 2007.  While it took 3 years for this dirty dog to be found guilty, at least this day has finally come.

According to TPM Muckraker, David H. Brooks, a former contractor who supplied the military with body armor, was found guilty today on 17 counts, including fraud and insider trading, after allegedly stealing millions of dollars from his company and bilking his shareholders. 

Might I remind you what got Mr Brooks in trouble in the first place:
 His indictment charged him with manipulating DHB’s financial records to increase earnings and profit margins, in that way inflating the price of DHB’s stock. Beyond the $10 million bat mitzvah for his daughter, a sampling of the charges authorities say Brooks concealed from shareholders and the IRS:

  • $7,900 for a facelift for Brooks' wife
  • more than $1 million for expenses related to his 100 trotting and breeding horses
  • $101,190 for a belt buckle studded with diamonds, rubies and sapphires
  • $101,500 for an armored vehicle for his family's use
  • more than $1 million for numerous family vacations, including frequent stays at the Bellagio in Las Vegas and various Caribbean and European villas
  • $31,802 to transport one of his daughters and her college friends to Halloween parties in Madison, Wisconsin, using a private jet
  • hundreds of thousands of dollars in bonus checks drawn on a DHB bank account handed out by Brooks at a company Christmas party to non-DHB personnel, including his horse trainer
  • and of course the predictable $10,000 here, $5,000 there for purchases at Luis Vuitton, Gucci, Gianni Versace, and Prada boutiques around the world
The 71-page indictment (PDF) tells the whole ugly story.

The good people at Corpwatch, who investigates and exposes corporate violations had this to say about war profiteering at the time of the indictments. 
Today the victors of modern wars no longer rape and pillage as their predecessors did, instead they make extraordinary profits by giving contracts to their favorite companies to rebuild what they have destroyed and then hand the bill to local taxpayers to pay.
There is a special place in hell for people and corporations who profit off of war.  Welcome to hell, Mr Brooks!