, , , , , , , ,

New York Jets v Buffalo Bills

Lose the hat you amateur…

Only in America.  Only here (and a few basket case corruption pits in the former Soviet Empire) do you get to be an ambassador simply because you fancy the idea, and can drum up cash for politicians.  Only America can allow its prime diplomatic missions to be run by crass foolish amatuers with no experience of “foreign” whatsoever.  It is as blatant an example of how the cronyism oligarchy engenders holds the levers of power and influence, and it is as corrupt as it is sloppy and inefficient.  And nowadays it might be positively dangerous.

It has been ever thus.  In its first hundred years America never had any professional representatives relying instead on political appointees.  This was through an aversion to the trappings of monarchy and ambassadors being thought of as a king’s emissary.  Before the second World War the balance had settled to about 70% professional and 30% personal political appointees but the wretched system only really took a life of its own after World war II with the need for ever increasing heaps of cash to run the endless rounds of mid-terms, local party machines and the elections.

And those who pay the piper call the tune.  56.7% of the tune.

It’s not one side or the other.  Both parties are equally guilty.  When Obama was in power it was 30.05%, GW Bush 31.8% (including his own cousin Craig Stapleton), Clinton 28.06%, GHW Bush 31.30%, Ronnie Reagan 37.6% and Carter 26.24%

A lot are fairly useless, but able to be managed by the professionals (who should have had the jobs in the first place) in the embassy.  Others are spectacularly inappropriate like Oreck.  Some like Stephen King have never been to the country they now work in, others like George Glass had once been there years ago on a day trip.  Obviously he liked the place, so asked to go back.  Others appear on camera with no idea how they look to the host nation.  Robert Wood Johnson IV who appears in the photo above is the self-made heir to the Johnson and Johnson pharmaceutical billions.  He once bought a local football club, the New York Jets, of which he seems inordinately proud.  He insists on being seen wearing their baseball cap at every opportunity.  Sadly, he does not have the knowledge (or will not listen to advise) that wearing baseball caps in Britain is a sure sign that you are both thick and working class.  They call this look “chav” and it has undertones of being from the travelling gypsy community.  I am certain that this is not the image most American’s would like for their countries representative.  But that’s what happens when you have an unprofessional Ambassador class.

We might have hoped this would change with the much promised “draining of the swamp”.  Less cronyism more professional.  Sadly no, and of those Ambassadors already placed, 56.7% are Political Appointees, fund bundlers, old pals and golf buddies all.

Let us name names and, where we can, state how much they donated / paid to get the posts they will now enjoy – at the American Tax-Payers expense.  Don’t forget the pensions too!

Bahamas              Doug Manchester            $500,000 + $222,800 to the Republican party

Canada                 Kelly Knight Craft              $260,000 + $16,000

Costa Rica            Sharon Day

Croatia                  W Robert Kohorst

Czech                    Stephen B King

Denmark             Carla Sands

Dominican Rep. Robin Bernstein

Estonia                 Edward Mano

Finland                 Robert Frank Pence

France                  Jamie McCourt                  $400,000

Vatican                 Callista Gingrich

ICAO                      Thomas Carter

India                      Kenneth Juster

Israel                     David Friedman

Italy                       Lewis Eisenberg                                $35,800 + $25,000

Japan                    William Francis Hagerty IV

Morocco              David T Fischer

NATO                    Kay Bailey Hutchison

Netherlands       Peter Hoekstra

New Zealand      Scott Brown

Norway                Kenneth J Braithwaite

OAS                       Carlos Trujillo

Portugal               George E Glass                                  $77,000 + $38,000

Russia                   Jon Huntsman jnr

Spain                     Richard Duke Buchanan

Switzerland        Edward McMullan jnr

UK                          Robert Wood Johnson IV

UN                         Nikki Haley

UN Economic & Social Council    Kelly Eckels Currie.

All rather depressing.


Copyright David Macadam 2018