Friday, July 14, 2006

Republican Scheme that "Mortgages Black People"

As everyone should well know, politicians like Rob Simmons who receive dubious sources of funding from lobbyists who suddenly come under judicial scrutiny magnanimously -cough- "donate to charities".

It is unclear how pervasive the following scheme became but how can any American not find these ideas despicable. But aside from the obvious new political low that something like this may appear, it is precisely why education continues to scream with glaring gaps in achievement. The poor and minority populations remain hostage to politicians who want little more than to exploit them.

Read and weep if you have any tears left.

Ralph Reed Allegedly Mulled ‘Mortgaging Black People’
Only Senator Dodd didn’t go along with the plan. In fact, he was mightily pissed his good name had gotten dragged into such a scam, a point he made quite clear during an Indian Affairs Committee hearing.

The failed con took more than a year to play out, by which time the Tiguas were pretty much broke. So Abramoff came up with a way for his marks to continue paying him: the Tigua Elder Legacy Project. Abramoff would arrange, at no cost to the tribe, a life-insurance policy for every Tigua 75 or older. When those elders died, the death beneļ¬ts would be paid to Eshkol Academy, a private school Abramoff had founded near Washington. Eshkol, in turn, would then pay Abramoff’s fee to continue lobbying on behalf of the surviving Tiguas. Morbid opportunism disguised as charity: Each dead Tigua would be cash in the lobbyist’s pocket.

The Tiguas declined the offer. “It felt uncomfortable,” a Tigua official told the Senate committee last November.

The Tigua-death-fund offer had been made in March 2003. Four months later, Abramoff was pitching Reed—his connection to Christians—the Black Churches Insurance Program. There was only one difference: It would be huge, to use Abramoff’s word.

“Yeah,” a former associate of Reed’s says, “it sounds like Jack approached Reed about mortgaging old black people.”

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