Thursday, August 23, 2007

UPDATE: FBI Corruption Investigation of El Paso Commissioners Court Raises Little Interest Outside the Region

An August 18th report by the El Paso Times seems incredulous that there is so little effect of the ongoing corruption investigation of the El Paso County Commissioners' Court on the recruitment of new bid'ness investment in El Paso. The investigation has been looking into fraud and bribery on the court since 2005 and has produced a number of plea-bargains that have led to an expansion of FBI interests. Given the current Bush Administration-enabled international corporatist free-for-all, the lack of accountability of government officials and the negative role modeling they provide downhill, I'm not surprised at all at such apathy. The Times writes:

While the public corruption case in El Paso has stymied the city, its effects are not spilling past the city limits, officials said.

Several elected officials and business leaders say the investigation rarely comes up in conversations in Austin, Washington, D.C., or anywhere else. And it is not keeping them from doing their jobs.

"It's not a big deal outside of here," state Rep. Joe Pickett said. "I have not had one single person ask about it. It might be that other cities have also had similar investigations." [Indeed, Reeves County had the honor in 2006.]

Bob Cook, president of El Paso's Regional Economic Development Corp., said the corruption investigation never comes up when he talks to businesses. It is REDCo's job to lure businesses to El Paso.

"We are working with 60 to 65 businesses right now and not a single one of them has asked about it," Cook said. "So far, it is a nonfactor." --Ramon Bracamontes;

My guess is that investor groups and companies looking to relocate will begin to care significantly more after the 2008 elections when -- and if -- the citizens of West Texas become en-couraged that, indeed, it is possible to TAKE BACK AMERICA from the corporatists who now exploit her.

*[A special thanks this morning to the Grits for Breakfast blog for providing the link,
simmering payola scandal in El Paso County. Also of interest to Grits fans is their concerned report on the record 400th Texas execution, which took place last night in Huntsville. ] --Progress

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