The Hayden/MZM connection

These confirmation hearings could be lots of fun.

I doubt that Republicans would benefit much from a debate about NSA wiretapping right now. When people don’t trust the President, asking them to trust the President probably won’t work very well.

I could be wrong about that, of course. But I’m dead certain they won’t benefit from inquiries into how it was that MZM (the central company in the Cunningham/Hookergate scandal) got all those contracts. And it seems that the Hayden nomination will provide an opportunity for Democrats to ask some pointed questions.

Of course, if I’d lived a better life, gone to schul regularly, eaten all my vegetables, and not dissed Digby and Atrios, God would love me so much that he’d arrange for Hayden to have attended some of those poker parties. But that would be asking for more than is strictly necessary.

Note that retired three-star general James King, the guy Hayden hired through MZM, took over MZM when Wade stepped aside, and wrote a couple of heavy checks to some of Wilkes’s favorite politicians. That makes it unlikely he was entirely ignorant of Wilkes’s goings-on. And it’s perfectly reasonable for the Senators to want to ask him some questions before confirming Hayden as CIA Director.

There are, after all, lots of questions to ask. And it’s not at all clear that the Republicans in the Senate &#8212 Pat Roberts in particular &#8212 are willing to do their usual job of making sure those questions aren’t answered.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com

3 thoughts on “The Hayden/MZM connection”

  1. Well, the veggies etc. pale in comparison to disagreeing with Atrios. I learned long ago that Atrios is good and right in all ways, and that only unreconstructed Bush-lovers would even CONSIDER SUGGESTING that he is not right in every particular.
    Shame on you, Mark. What were you thinking?
    I can't believe I used to think you were one of the good guys.

  2. The real problem may be that Democrats will once again try to be polite. Cf. your Sen. Feinstein.

  3. Not sure that's "the real problem"…though it may be *a* problem…
    "polite" is an unusually vague term. It *can* suggest a kind of diffidence, and diffidence is not permissible in the face of a government like this. But no one is counseling *that*.
    I'd suggest that we need to use the most effective means to oppose these criminals. One must be willing to relentlessly speak truth to power, but without frothing at the mouth. Frothing at the mouth is largely counterproductive, and harmful to the long-term health of the body politic. Many conservatives may have elected to disregard that latter point, but we must not.
    Anysay, to urge civility is not to encourage diffidence.

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