Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Red Scorpion's Jack Abramoff sentenced

Convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff received the shortest sentence attainable: five years and ten months in prison.

Earlier this week, Abramoff's lawyers submitted a 62-page memorandum in aid of sentencing in an attempt to fight back against the "caricature" foisted upon him by the media that "has distorted a lifetime of accomplishments beyond recognition."

At Raw Story I have an article, Abramoff ashamed of own film, based on a section of the memorandum:

According to a biography of Jack Abramoff crafted by his lawyers in an appeal for leniency, "Hollywood politics" triumphed over his pious attempts to keep offensive language out of an action film he produced in the late eighties, RAW STORY has found.

But left unmentioned in the appeal is any hint that the film was shot in South African-occupied Namibia during apartheid, and may have even been partly funded by the South African military.


But apartheid isn't the only thing left out of Abramoff's behind-the-scenes story about the making of "Red Scorpion."

According to Abramoff's plea, he "accepted the rabbinic decree that, because there were still vendors to be paid from the production, he should do nothing to impair its commercial viability and must not publicly protest or remove his name."

Last August, the Salon news site reported that "a lot of people didn't get paid" for their work on the film.

Also, Slate has obtained emails written to and from Amy Ridenour, associate and long-time friend of Jack's and president of the conservative think tank National Center for Public Policy Research, which indicate that she did indeed write articles to help multiple Abramoff clients, as we reported at Raw Story a few weeks ago.

In one email written to Jack on March 2, 1999, Amy wrote, "I am open also to a Pitney-Bowes op/ed-like piece on the CNMI, as you mentioned in your note, if a good angle is there."

From our first article on this angle at Raw Story, John Byrne and I reported:

In a series of editorials between 1999 and 2001, National Center for Public Policy Research president Amy Ridenour went to bat for the Commonwealth of the Marianas Islands, a small U.S. territory in the Pacific. Her releases bemoaned efforts to expand federal immigration laws to the island, defended the islands' meager wages and attacked Clinton Administration attempts to tighten labor laws.

Slate didn't link to our articles...perhaps they never heard of the Associated Press: Associated Press says they based article on Raw Story report but refuses to credit or correct by John Byrne and Now "We Credit Blogs we Know" - AP Part II by Larisa Alexandrovna have more on that (and I plan to expand on this very soon).


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