Sunday, April 27, 2008

Mission Accomplished—Again

BushCo manages to once again accomplish the exact opposite of what they profess.

AP via Truthout:

Apr 26, 12:24 PM EDT
The whistleblower's unending story

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- The guest lecturer steps to the front of classroom 322 with a lesson plan, but not from any textbook.

Instead, Dave Welch comes with a story to tell, edgy and very personal. The names have been changed, he says, "to protect the guilty."

He directs students to the corporate financial forms projected on to a screen. Years ago, working at a small-town bank in the Virginia mountains, Welch combed through these figures and saw things that made him suspicious.

When he confronted the bank's president with his doubts, it cost him his job.

The story might have ended there. But this time - months after titanic scandals capsized Enron and WorldCom - things would be different.

There ought to be a law, Congress decided, protecting workers who expose what might be the next Enron. Who could've imagined the fight between the little bank and the fired accountant would become the new measure's most unlikely - and most strenuous - test?

More than 1,000 self-professed whistleblowers have come forward since.

The great majority have seen their cases rejected; about 160 settled before an initial ruling. Only six workers have won before a Labor Department judge - and the review board that hears appeals has not ruled in favor of a single whistleblower.

Now, Welch is ready to bring his story to a close. It's not easy, though, to conclude something that winds on without an ending.

"This is the message the courts are sending to whistleblowers," Welch says, the Tennessee in his voice taking on a chill. A new image beams on to the classroom screen - a pack of hunting dogs. In their midst is the prey, a nervous fox, head down low.

"When you're in deep trouble, keep your mouth shut and your eyes straight ahead."

There's a whole lot more.

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