Sunday, February 24, 2013
Nestled among the lofty rhetoric of "hope and change," Barack Obama made a core promise during the 2008 campaign that he would put an end to the corporate cronyism that has long pervaded the political system. "The days of sweetheart deals for Halliburton will be over when I'm in the White House," he proclaimed.
Google, quickly emerging as the Halliburton of his administration.
Though the Internet giant recently faced serious federal antitrust charges that might have broken up other companies, it emerged virtually unscathed just two months after President Obama won re-election with significant financial and creative assistance from Google and its executives.
Regardless of how people feel about antitrust laws, the hallmark of corruption is to selectively enforce laws in a way that harms your opponents and accommodates your allies. In this case, an administration that has been aggressive on antitrust enforcement when, for instance, spiking the AT&T and T-Mobile merger, took no enforceable action against Google even after finding wrongdoing.
Since 2008, there has been a steady flow of cash, personnel, and technology from Google's California headquarters to the White House. Google employees have given the President over $1.5 million in combined donations. In fact, they were his fourth-largest source of cash in 2008, and in third-largest in 2012.
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