Wednesday, February 15, 2023

I Had Never Heard That Joke!

Weird how everyone in DC had!
There used to be a joke I’d hear around Washington, that everyone in town with an ounce of ambition was, in some way or another, on the payroll of Sam Bankman-Fried. And if you hadn’t figured out how to get on the gravy train, well, that was on you. Like all good jokes, there was more than a kernel of truth to all of it: I’ve covered the S.B.F. political machine as closely as anyone over the last few years, and I still encounter new names of lobbyists who were secretly on Sam’s retainer, of data savants who found a way into D.C.’s greatest donor-fueled growth industry, and amazingly, nonprofits that were moving millions of FTX-connected dollars without a scintilla of public knowledge.
There were lots of things about 2020-2022 or so that didn't make any fucking sense until this started coming out. Many of your faves are very implicated! Some, it seems, bought a new a boat!

This paragraph is pretty hilarious:
An argument I frequently hear from S.B.F. allies and political aides is that none of this is terribly unusual: Every special interest, be it Big Pharma or ethanol or pandemic-prevention, involves a labyrinth of dark-money groups, super PACs, think tanks and corporations that make political donations, curry favor, punish enemies and exploit every inch of the nonprofit tax code in order to twist arms in Washington. And many lobbyists get paid big salaries with the expectation that they use some of that salary to cut checks and build relationships with legislators—so why are people carping on S.B.F.’s aides for doing the same?
Especially hilarious as it was in the effective NYT style guide to refer to EPI as "labor backed" and I bet you have no idea about all this money sloshing around DC funding your journalist's favorite sources!!! And sometimes the journalists!!!