Tuesday, July 12

Emperor's hand-picked Secretary of Transportation sued for being a ghost employee for 4 years before being picked

One of the hallmarks of good management--and certainly good governance--is picking the most qualified people to fill positions.  With that in mind, consider Obama's hand-picked Transportation Secretary, one Anthony Foxx.

Foxx went from city councilman in 2005 to become mayor of Charlotte, NC in November, 2009.  Four years later the emperor chose Foxx to be Transportation Secretary.  The U.S. senate unanimously voted to confirm him in June of 2013.

I'm sure the emperor chose Foxx because of all that experience as mayor of Charlotte, huh.

Turns out Foxx did have some vital experience--though possibly not in a positive sense:  The same month Foxx took office as mayor, he also was named deputy general counsel at a company called DesignLine, holding that title until the day before he took office as transportation secretary on July 1, 2013.

By coincidence, DesignLine filed for bankruptcy in 2013.  And last August the bankruptcy trustee sued Foxx, claiming he didn't actually do any work for the company, and thus should be forced to repay $421,000 in salary.

The lawsuit states that the company hired two outside law firms to help with legal matters, and that those firms were paid millions of dollars while Foxx, as deputy general counsel, spent little to no time at the company during the relevant time period.  According to the suit there are also no records of Foxx discussing any corporate matters with the outside law firms or working with them in any way, despite his nominal title of "deputy general counsel."

Surely--surely--you'd think someone in his circle would have vetted this guy, eh?  Wonder what made the emperor appoint such a minimally-qualified, unvetted, ghost employee to a cabinet post?

Oh, maybe I understand now.




A bit more info:  DesignLine was a fairly new company that supposedly built hybrid-electric buses.  Their main customer was the Charlotte airport, and in 2007--two years after Foxx was elected to the city council--the city bought a bunch of the buses.  They were scrapped in 2014 because of what were reported as "maintenance problems."

Gee, what would make a city take a flyer on millions of dollars worth of fancy, unproven electric buses?  Guess the same thing that made the federal Department of Energy give a half-Billion dollar loan (never repaid) to Solyndra, which immediately went bankrupt after paying handsome bonuses to execs.

Link here.

And here for the bus story.

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