Bloggers discuss corruption investigations into Pennsylvania Rep. Curt Weldon. They also consider Wal-Mart’s expansion in China and hope Fabolous’ shooting helps him sell records.
Well done, Curt!: FBI agents raided the suburban Philadelphia homes of Rep. Curt Weldon’s daughter Karen Weldon and his political ally Charles Sexton Monday. The Pennsylvania congressman is being investigated for using his influence to help Itera, a Russian oil-and-gas company represented by his daughter and Sexton’s lobbying firm. Weldon claims that the investigation is politically motivated. For the most part, bloggers think he’s full of it.
CPray at the liberal Drudge Retort tells Weldon to, “Get a clue … the presidency and both houses of congress are Republican. Executive branch appointees for the last six years have been by your president. … [T]here must be a whole lot there for your own party to seek search warrants. After all, no branch of this government does anything without clearing it through Rove.”
Weldon accused Democratic operative Melanie Sloan of leaking information about the investigation and exploiting the election season; Stephen Morse at the Daily Pennsylvanian’s opinion blog, The Spin, got Weldon to blurt out Sloan’s name in this video. But D-Mac at Philadelphia Will Do doesn’t buy it: The complaint “was filed over two years ago. She really couldn’t have known the Justice Department would investigate Weldon two years-plus later.”
Ed Morrissey at the conservative Captain’s Quarters notes that Itera didn’t even get the contracts it was looking for: “the FedSpending.org database lists no awards to Itera from 2002-2004.” Even after Itera donated $8,000 to Weldon, “it looks like all they got was a handshake and a photo op at their North American offices.” Bluto at The Dread Pundit Bluto argues that Weldon is being punished for his work in exposing Able Danger personnel after 9/11 and “is paying the price for offending the Democratic establishment.”
Chris at liberal blog Booman Tribune calls Weldon’s ally Charles Sexton “a very big player” whose downfall could undo “the inbred colony of degenerates and thugs otherwise know as the Delaware County Republican machine”: “I imagine there are more than a few Delaware County Republican politicos who are feeling a little squeamish this morning thinking about all of the tunes Charlie Sexton could sing if wants to.”
Matthew O’Keefe at Gun Toting Liberal is sick of corrupt lawmakers and “wondering how many stones have to be turned over before the folks of our nation actually realize how much damage these distinguished gentlemen have done to our nations government and respect for it.”
Read more on the Weldon investigation.
Great Wal: Wal-Mart is in talks to acquire Trust-Mart, a Taiwanese-owned retail chain operating in China, for $1 billion. The transaction would make Wal-Mart, which already has 66 Chinese branches, the country’s biggest foreign chain. Bloggers debate the company’s manifest destiny.
Wal-Mart may be trying to replicate its U.S. market dominance in China, but Wall Street blog Dealbreaker argues that will be “no picnic. It’s going to be harder to undercut the competition the same way it can here. Instead, it’s going to have to market itself on the basis of product quality and reliability, something that American shoppers might be surprised to hear.” Suzanne Stevens at Corporate Dealmaker Forum suspects that the Chinese market is difficult to crack: “Competition is brutal, discount prices rule, and Western-style, customer-centric service is suspect. (That can’t bode well for those smiling Wal-Mart greeters.)”
Lynne Johnson at Fast Company’s blog points out a big difference between operations in the two countries: “A notable play in Wal-Mart’s expansion in China is the formation of trade unions by the retailer’s employees there, while resistance to such employee activities continues to be a practice for the company in the U.S.” Douglas McIntyre at AOL’s bloggingstocks fears meddling by the government-controlled unions: “With the growth in Wal-Mart’s presence, the company is likely to get further entwined in local politics. And, that is not necessarily a good thing.”
Read more on Wal-Mart’s China deal.
Absolutely Fabolous: Brooklyn rapper Fabolous was shot in the leg early this morning outside a parking garage. The rapper, whose real name is John Jackson, was taken to the hospital and is said to be in stable condition. Bloggers wipe their brows.
To hear the gossip lords at Gawker tell it, the MC “attempted to generate publicity for his upcoming album, but fell short of full martyrdom and was arrested for his troubles. … He remains in less than fab, but stabulous condition.”
Police arrested Fabolous and three members of his entourage after discovering unlicensed guns in their car. New York-based Jossip howls: “An arrest on gun charges? That’s only good for moving, like, 10,000 units.”
“Why is everybody’s life more exciting than mine?” The Superficial whines. “Sure, I spent the morning shooting at henchman as I skied down a mountain using the door of the Nazi chemical plant I blew up, but I’ve never ran a red. That shit sounds hardcore.” Perez Hilton thinks Fab got what he wanted: “[N]ow that he’s got some bullet wounds in him, that’s almost as good as doing jail time. Cred!!!”
Read more about the Fabolous shooting.