Sunday, November 14, 2021

Government Ethics Expert Walter Shaub Learned from Reds and Blues

Government ethics chief Walter Shaub served nearly twenty years before retiring.  He headed the Government Ethics Division for Presidents Obama and Trump.  Shaub weighed in on Trump's use of the White House as a personal enrichment vehicle.  More recently he chastised the Biden administration for kid gloving Hunter Biden's $500,000 per piece art sales.

A telling situation occurred while Shaub served a top lawyer in the Ethics Department.  CBS News reported:

Huma Abedin, a longtime aide to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, worked for a little under a year as a "special government employee" for the State Department. During that period in 2012, she was also working as a consultant for a private firm called Teneo, giving private investors information about the government.  

Ms. Abedin earned approximately $135,000 from the State Department while receiving $355,000 in consulting income for representing outside clients, as she remained a Federal employee and a trusted advisor to Secretary Clinton

Teneo promotes the company as "the global CEO advisory firm."  It's roots included former President Bill Clinton and British Prime Minister Tony Blair.  FT reported:

Teneo’s growth was also fueled by private equity and plenty of debt.  In 2019, a leaked email showed the then head of Teneo’s UK operation reprimanding staff for behaving like “a bunch of clubbing teens”.

Teneo bought multiple restructuring firms after private equity underwriter (PEU) CVC Capital acquired a majority stake. 

They snapped up smaller PR firms such as London’s Blue Rubicon and StockWell, and announced an investment this March in WestExec, the geopolitical risk consultancy co-founded by Michèle Flournoy, a former senior Pentagon official. 

This year, CVC put in another $100m to help Teneo acquire Deloitte’s UK restructuring business, a $279m deal that will bring Teneo’s revenues close to $400m and leave its debt at more than six times its earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation, according to Moody’s.

Biden Secretary of State Anthony Blinken co-founded WestExec.  How much did he profit from the Teneo investment?  Obama's Health Reformer held residual private equity stakes that did not appear on her financial disclosures until NancyAnn DeParle received cash payments.

Blinken's government ethics filing indicates his background as a greed and leverage boy.

Even Blinken's Social+Capital Partnership LLC, (with two Cayman Island affiliates) operates as a private equity firm according to Bloomberg.

Blinken's filing indicated his managing partner position for WestExec, research positions at two universities, advisor for four organizations while providing advisory services to eighteen companies.  His wife held two positions that provide salary (unlisted), one of which provides stock options.

Members of America's Government-Corporate Monstrosity participate in a huge money grab at the expense of the average citizen.  Politicians Red and Blue love PEU and many are one.  Walter Shaub knows this well, having seen it from the inside.

Update 11-22-21:  The Blue Team has stocking goodies for the wealthy via more tax breaks.  Just what the public didn't order.  

Update 12-15-21:  Shaub wrote, "In an objective world, free of politics, members of Congress would be mocked for the absurdly weak ethics rules they've written for themselves."

Update 12-11-22:   Trump sold the D.C. hotel that furthered his pocketbook while President.  Meanwhile, Hunter Biden's art goes for up to $200,000 in a New York gallery.  

Former President Obama's ethics chief Walter Shaub ripped into the first son's art venture last year during an appearance on Law & Crime’s "Objections" podcast.

"There is simply no way an artist who has never even juried into a community center art fair is going to suddenly show up in New York selling art for half a million a pop," Shaub said. "Let's talk about the magnitude of this. . . . That’s $6.5 million going to the president’s son for being the president’s son, not for being an artist, and I just think that’s absolutely appalling."

PEU Report did a number of posts on Hunter Biden's ties to Rosemont Capital in 2012 and Burisma board position in 2014.